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Assembly squares and clamps

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Project by Ross Leidy posted 01-22-2021 02:43 PM 1041 views 3 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’ve been meaning to make some assembly squares on the CNC for a while, and yesterday I finally got around to doing it. The squares are made from 3/4” (18mm) BBP. I also made a DIY version of the Woodpeckers CSP clamps. I cut a 3/8” square U-bolt in half to make two L-bolts. The U-bolts were from my local Lowes, and they’re a bit long for casework, but they might come in handy some day. I’ve got shorter ones on order from McMaster-Carr. Initially, I thought I’d insert metal sleeves in the sliding clamp piece, but I think I’ll give them a try as-is first and see how they work. I can always retrofit a sleeve later.

I was concerned that the clamping face might bend away from 90-deg, but with the force needed for an assembly clamp, it seems to work fine. It’s certainly not to the tolerances of the Woodpeckers clamp, but good enough. And considerably cheaper.





9 comments so far

View splintergroup's profile (online now)

splintergroup

4671 posts in 2231 days


#1 posted 01-22-2021 08:10 PM

As with any clamp, you just can’t have enough of these. Great idea with the U bolts turned into J hooks, you need to make maybe a dozen more 8^)

View Ocelot's profile

Ocelot

2874 posts in 3646 days


#2 posted 01-22-2021 08:41 PM

I have 4 of the Rockler “universal fence clamp”. I’ve taken note of your u-bolt trick in case I want to make more of my own.

-- I intended to be a woodworker, but turned into a tool and lumber collector.

View Ross Leidy's profile

Ross Leidy

218 posts in 2950 days


#3 posted 01-22-2021 08:53 PM



As with any clamp, you just can t have enough of these. Great idea with the U bolts turned into J hooks, you need to make maybe a dozen more 8^)

- splintergroup

I’ll definitely be making more after I determine whether I need to tweak the design at all. Nobody complains about having too many clamps. :)


I have 4 of the Rockler “universal fence clamp”. I ve taken note of your u-bolt trick in case I want to make more of my own.

- Ocelot

The U-bolt in the photo is 3/8” x 3×7. If they had a longer threaded section, I’d just cut them down. I’ve ordered shorter ones that are 3/8” x 3×4 that will have threads in the range I’ll need them 95% of the time.

View Ron Stewart's profile

Ron Stewart

270 posts in 3512 days


#4 posted 01-22-2021 10:40 PM

Those look great, and should come in very handy. After looking up the price of the Woodpeckers clamps, I can see why you rolled your own!

-- Ron Stewart

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

6636 posts in 2396 days


#5 posted 01-23-2021 05:53 AM

If you’ve got a dye, you could extend the threads and then shorten the bolts.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

View Eric's profile

Eric

955 posts in 881 days


#6 posted 01-23-2021 11:03 AM

Great idea, always nice to see folks making their version of tools of the trade.
+1 can never have enough clamps.
+1 on using a die to cut longer threads.

-- Eric, building the dream

View Ross Leidy's profile

Ross Leidy

218 posts in 2950 days


#7 posted 01-23-2021 05:29 PM



If you’ve got a dye, you could extend the threads and then shorten the bolts.

- Lazyman


Unfortunately, the shank is slightly smaller diameter than the threaded section. But, a die might have worked, but I don’t currently have any.

View swirt's profile

swirt

6008 posts in 3980 days


#8 posted 01-23-2021 06:31 PM

Super clever use of the U-bolt.

-- Galootish log blog, http://www.timberframe-tools.com

View Ross Leidy's profile

Ross Leidy

218 posts in 2950 days


#9 posted 01-23-2021 08:15 PM

Thanks, guys. I received the replacement U-bolts today – they’re still longer than they need to be, but they will let me clamp on 3/4” material. Here’s a final shot with the updated bolts and new star knobs. Only one clamp on each leg will fit with the square on the outside of the work. More will fit with the square on the inside of the corner.

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