Free 173 Best Homemade Tools eBook:  
Remove advertisements
Results 1 to 6 of 6

Thread: Improved clamps for third hand

  1. #1
    mklotz mklotz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    LA, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,577
    Thanks
    104
    Thanked 2,960 Times in 1,027 Posts

    mklotz's Tools

    Improved clamps for third hand

    Those cheap, import third hand holders are handy tools for holding bits in alignment to solder or glue. However, as with all tools, they have limitations.

    The alligator clips can leave indentations in small parts; there is no adjustment of their holding force.

    As the left hand image in this picture...



    shows, the clips can not be adjusted to touch each other. While the resulting gap isn't a problem for many jobs, I have occasions when the combined length of the parts is less than the gap width.

    To solve all these issues, I built some replacement clamps that take the place of the alligator clips. They're longer, as this picture...



    shows so they can close to the point of touching. In addition they're built like tiny machinist clamps so the holding pressure is adjustable and the flat clamping surfaces don't mark the work. They open wider than alligator clips so can accept larger parts.

    Construction is dead simple as the disassembled clamp in the foreground shows. The body is a simple turning, milling and tapping job. I had some already knurled aluminum knobs lying around so I force fit them onto 6-32 SHCSs to make clamp screws.
    ---
    Regards, Marv


    Home Shop Freeware
    http://www.myvirtualnetwork.com/mklotz

  2. The Following 11 Users Say Thank You to mklotz For This Useful Post:

    Frank S (06-14-2018), jjr2001 (06-14-2018), Jon (06-14-2018), MakeFix (06-15-2018), Paul Jones (06-15-2018), PJs (06-14-2018), rlm98253 (10-12-2018), rossbotics (06-15-2018), Scotsman Hosie (11-01-2018), Seedtick (06-16-2018), Zaakoc (06-15-2018)

  3. #2
    Frank S's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Peacock TX
    Posts
    2,777
    Thanks
    518
    Thanked 2,426 Times in 1,203 Posts

    Frank S's Tools
    Thanks Marv, I have owned several of those 3rd hand tools over the years sometimes they are great while other times not so much you just gave me an idea that would improve 1 that I have with damaged clips or for a larger unit.
    Never try to tell me it can't be done
    When I have to paint I use http://kbs.justoldtrucks.com/

  4. #3

    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Posts
    9
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 9 Times in 5 Posts

    Alligator clips

    Quote Originally Posted by mklotz View Post
    The alligator clips can leave indentations in small parts; there is no adjustment of their holding force.
    If you have a couple of inches of silicone tubing like the kind used for nitro RC cars you can slip it over the jaws to help with the indentations.

    Nice toolmaker's clamps. Much too nice for my $5 helping hands.

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to Elizabeth Greene For This Useful Post:

    Paul Jones (06-15-2018)

  6. #4
    Content Editor DIYer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    3,087
    Thanks
    343
    Thanked 674 Times in 612 Posts


    Thanks mklotz! We've added your Third Hand Clamp Modification to our Clamps category,
    as well as to your builder page: mklotz's Homemade Tools. Your receipt:




  7. #5

    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Posts
    75
    Thanks
    14
    Thanked 11 Times in 10 Posts
    I have on like that I bought at HF I wish they would be on a on / off magnetic base

  8. The Following User Says Thank You to G.Paul For This Useful Post:

    Scotsman Hosie (11-01-2018)

  9. #6
    Scotsman Hosie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UTAH
    Posts
    18
    Thanks
    115
    Thanked 13 Times in 7 Posts

    Scotsman Hosie's Tools
    Marv has a machinist's upgrade, for those alligator clips. But I've had problems with that main/middle support bar rolling on me. I've tried roughing them up, but usually have to grind or file a flat spot - just to keep them in place. And when your hands shake as bad as mine do, anymore, they're handy as sliced bread. ��


    Post your reply!
    Join 33,912 of us and get our 173 Must Read Homemade Tools eBook free.



    173 Must Read Homemade Tools

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •