Free jig, clamp and fixture plans
In order to make use of your carpentry tools and machines to the fullest, in your workshop you need some jigs and fixtures. Also, a sufficient number of clamps of various types and sizes are in demand to replace a reliable extra pair of hands during the manufacturing of parts and the assembly process. In this category we offer plans to help you make these jigs, fixtures and clamps.
One of the most essential features of jigs and fixtures is safety, which can be assumed from their very definitions that they are supposed to hold the workpiece instead of the craftsman. This is very important as we know that cutting tools are extremely sharp and have a high rotational speed.
Although commercial jigs, fixtures and clamps can be easily purchased, there is a large number of craftsmen who make them themselves, relying on their previous experience, specific needs or plans found in books or on the Internet.
A jig's primary purpose is to:
- position the workpiece,
- hold it firmly in place,
- and to guide the workpiece in relation to the tool that you are using.
With the use of jigs, an increase in productivity, accuracy, repeatability and interchangeability is achieved. It should be noted that due to machinery automation and development of computer numerical controlled (CNC) machines the interest in jigs has declined (tool path is digitally programmed).
In small workshops jigs are very much used, especially in carpentry.
There is a large number of jig types, and each is designed to perform a specific job. In carpentry we usually deal with: Dowel Jig, Dovetail Jig, Router Jigs, Trammel arm jig, Miter jig, Tenoning jig, Drill press jig...
Fixtures are devices used:
- to position the workpiece and
- to hold it firmly in place so that a certain operation can be carried out.
A fixture will secure the workpiece, making for a cleaner, more precise cut.
There is a large number of fixture types that are classified into general-purpose (Vises, chucks, split collets, miter gauge, feather bord) and special- purpose fixtures (designed for a specific workpiece, machine or process).
A clamp is a fastening device whose role is to hold the parts firmly together, i.e. to prevent any moving of parts or sub-assemblies relative to one another. From the above definition, we conclude that clamps are most commonly used in cutting or gluing operations in carpentry, welding or cutting in metalworking and the like.
There is a large number of clamps for different purposes: C-clamps, bar clamps, pipe clamps, band clamps, picture frame clamps...
Clamps can be found in almost every workshop, because they are simply irreplaceable; when it comes to performing various specific tasks, their main purpose is to replace a reliable extra pair of hands needed by every handyman.
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