Author Topic: Self setting parallels for the drilling vice  (Read 2628 times)

Offline Metalman

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Self setting parallels for the drilling vice
« on: January 23, 2017, 07:08:45 AM »
When drilling a part, supported by parallels in the drilling machine vice it is probable that,  like me,  you have had the problem of keeping the parallels away from the drill as the drill breaks through. The device in this video virtually eliminates the problem, except if any part of a holes diameter breaks into an area closer than 2mm from its edge.  Even then,  there are ways to avoid the problem whilst still using the device.

You will find a link to the video on this page

I know I have repeated the following many times but for those new to my videos an index of those already public can be found here

Harold Hall

Offline awemawson

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Re: Self setting parallels for the drilling vice
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2017, 09:14:32 AM »
Certainly a niffy device Harold - very neat  :thumbup:

(I've been known to use an off-cut of spongy foam for the same purpose - but it's disposable of course )
Andrew Mawson
East Sussex

Offline Biggles

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Re: Self setting parallels for the drilling vice
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2017, 02:32:39 PM »
very nice Harold.  :coffee:

Offline sparky961

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Re: Self setting parallels for the drilling vice
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2017, 05:17:30 PM »
Hmm.... Ok, I'll be the one to rock the boat. :P

I'm all for gadgets, but I see a few issues with this one.  If you have multiple places you'll use it, then you're going to be moving it all over the place with the good chance of misplacing it.  There's also very little chance that two vices you own will be just the right size to use the same device.  And in a non-hobby shop environment with multiple people using it, it won't last a week.

The device pictures is essentially the same as using parallels with a certain type of parallel "keeper".  While I do like the idea of keeping my "good" parallels away from some quick "punch a hole through this" job, I also don't tend to drill through parallels (or vices, for that matter). 

I keep a few pieces of pre-cut and deburred flatbar to use in these sketchy cases.  They're soft so if you accidentally drill into them, it isn't a big deal.  They're also cheap, and easily replaceable - or even consumable for some jobs that *do* require drilling very close to the edge.

How do I keep the flatbar where it's supposed to be?  Metal strapping/banding.  You can find it just about anywhere if you're looking.  If not at your own work, check behind someone else's and you're sure to find a skid with some of this still half wrapped around it.  It bends into shape while still retaining some spring.  It doesn't take a large assortment of "V" or "W" shapes to cover the opening range of most vices.

On a side note, banding/strapping also comes in different widths and thicknesses.  Collect different sizes and you can make yourself some reasonably accurate SUPER thin parallels for drilling and milling close to the vice jaw.

The other way to tackle this is to make step jaws for your vice(s).  I devised a set the last place I worked that had two different steps, each at a different height, and one of them had a work stop.  They were useful for the majority of jobs I did there, requiring me to swap the jaws or use parallels for only a few oddball setups.

Don't get me wrong, I think this would be a great little project for a beginner to develop their machining skills.  But for someone already possessing a bag of tricks to pull from, I'd suggest they pass on it.

Offline ieezitin

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Re: Self setting parallels for the drilling vice
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2017, 06:46:21 PM »
Actually i see the functionality of this, its a one piece item with a set it and forget it deal and can have a storage space slot near to where its needed.

The spring type wavy jobbies are a slight pain and you tend to throw them in the box where you have to dig them out then on the banding method you have to fiddle with the shape.

I am a believer in tools you use a lot that behave the same way every-time you use them. Thumbs up on this Harrold.  :thumbup:

If you cant fix it, get another hobby.

Offline Lew_Merrick_PE

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Re: Self setting parallels for the drilling vice
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2017, 11:25:23 PM »
Maybe pouring gas on the fire...

1) I have a set of 8 inch long parallels I normally use with my 6 inch vices.  They have (slightly larger than) 5/16 inch holes inside of the 8 inch length by (about) 5/8 of an inch.  Thus, a set of pairs of 5/16 round bar in various lengths accompanied by a (wide) selection of ID 5/16 (plush a scouch) compression springs provide an easy to set-up and widely variable "set" to hold my parallels "tight" to my vise jaws.

2) Another thing I do is to keep a variety of "bar" (that starts out as 5/8 inch thick HRS) to use as a "spacer" when I need to drill too close to the parallels.  I normally start with 5/8 X 6 inch bar; dress it flat and parallel; and am ready to "cut it to width" on my (drop) bandsaw as required.

Other than spending a couple of hours "dressing" the stock (so I always have a "cache" about, it's a non-problem.