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Thread: Tooling block

  1. #1
    Supporting Member mklotz's Avatar
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    Tooling block

    If you thought that buying a set of castings for an engine would simplify your life by now you've learned that castings can be a real bear to hold - especially so when you're trying to machine orthogonal features.

    I solved some of these problems by building a tooling block that is, in effect a strap-on set of reference surfaces for small castings.


    The block is sized to fit into my milling vise in all three orientations. It has T-slots sized to fit a range of miniature clamps I made. Most importantly, two adjacent faces have provision for removable fences. In place, they really help in getting things lined up and constrained while the clamps are set. Once the clamps are set they can be removed so milling operations can "go off the end" without chewing up a fence.

    A non-obvious advantage of this system is that mounting and aligning the workpiece can be done sitting at the comfort of the workbench after which the whole affair can be dropped into the milling vise.

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    Last edited by mklotz; Jul 7, 2017 at 09:01 AM.
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  2. The Following 12 Users Say Thank You to mklotz For This Useful Post:

    baja (Dec 13, 2019), cmarlow (Oct 9, 2021), DIYSwede (Dec 14, 2019), drivermark (Dec 14, 2019), Frank S (Nov 2, 2017), high-side (Dec 14, 2019), kbalch (Sep 4, 2015), Paul Jones (Sep 4, 2015), PJs (Sep 5, 2015), rendoman (Jul 2, 2016), Toolmaker51 (Nov 25, 2016), uv8452 (Oct 11, 2021)

  3. #2
    kbalch's Avatar
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    Thanks Marv! I've added your Tooling Block to our Clamps category, as well as to your builder page: mklotz's Homemade Tools. Your receipt:


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    Supporting Member Ralphxyz's Avatar
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    "Once the clamps are set they can be removed " huh?

    Great idea, but stuck on the removed clamps, what holds the workpiece in place while milling.

    I really like the idea of doing setup at the workbench.

    Ralph

  5. #4
    Supporting Member mklotz's Avatar
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    "They" refers to the fences, Ralph, not the clamps.
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    Supporting Member Frank S's Avatar
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    Marv I must admit that I have missed several of your tool submittals the first time around, this one is no exception, What I particulary like about this one for holding small parts, if 1 it can be made to fit most any mill vice 2 it can be easily zeroed in all 3 axis 3 the smaller "T" slots allow for the use of very small clamps and probably the best feature about it is the removable fences Thanks.
    Never try to tell me it can't be done
    When I have to paint I use KBS products

  7. #6
    Supporting Member Ralphxyz's Avatar
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    Thanks Marv, that certainly makes more sense, geesch some people. I still really like the idea of doing setup at the workbench instead of on the mill.

    Ralph

  8. #7
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    Harvey Melvin Richards's Tools
    I have a similar t-slot block that was made by Eclipse. It is very handy for setting up small parts.

  9. #8
    Supporting Member mklotz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harvey Melvin Richards View Post
    I have a similar t-slot block that was made by Eclipse. It is very handy for setting up small parts.
    It's nice that commercial ones are available, however, one advantage of making one's own is the ability to size it so it fits in your milling vise in all three orientations.
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    Supporting Member Toolmaker51's Avatar
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    "...fits in all 3 orientations...".
    Huge justification for toolmaking- how many commercial products are merely general accommodations instead of built to suit your facilities?
    Pics are relatively normal horizontal positioning; when it comes to need for vertical or angled directions is where things like Marv's really shine.
    Last edited by Toolmaker51; Oct 11, 2021 at 09:12 AM.
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  12. #10

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    Excellent build. I love seeing these sorts of builds from you old-sweat machinists. Is it made with tool steel? Does anyone know of any good outfits for supplying tool steel in the U.S.?



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