I’m looking for a solution to clamp an 8"x 8" x 0.25" piece of Aluminum onto my table. Anyone have a suggestion that would be easy to swap plates to keep things running?
Is running a compressor and using a vacuum an option?
No to vacuum, as I’ll be cutting through the plate. I’m personally biased towards mechanical clamping.
If you’re doing repeated work on the same stock size, I’d machine an 8x8 pocket into a chunk of MDF, attach the MDF with some hot melt and Roberts your Mother’s brother. Little bit of double-stick tape on the AL bottom and it won’t go anywhere. Plus perfect registration every time.
I cut a piece just that size recently. I screwed it down with wood screws into a larger piece of sacrificial MDF, then clamped the larger MDF using normal clamping. If you had a couple pieces of MDF the same size, and a way to set them into the same place every time (dowel pins, etc.) you could swap that way and have the next ready to go. I usually make 1/4" dowel pin holes with the SO3, I drill the holes into MDF, then set the first piece just where I want it, run the same NC program to drill holes in that (and every subsequent piece) in the same place, then place 1/4" steel dowel pins in and always have the same position, works good for 2 sided jobs too if you place the holes along a center axis. Or as Adam pointed out above, you could cut a pocket the same size as your stock and use tape.
Thanks for the suggestions.
I’m thinking of an oversized scrap board with a pocket sized for the stock, and a cam pin to lock the stock in place.
This sounds like an interesting project.
Runs off to drawing cave to make plans for tooling…