Author Topic: Getting my mill vices sorted  (Read 7980 times)

bogstandard

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Getting my mill vices sorted
« on: April 02, 2009, 09:40:23 AM »
No vices with my mill, just vices that bolt to the table.

This isn't a showing off exercise, just my efforts to speed up production when it is needed.

Now the silly season is starting, I need to get more organised, to prevent me having to do continual vice and RT swaps.
Before I can do that, I need to get the correct clamp down bolts for each bit.
The two for the main vice are what I have been using for both the vice and the RT. The split vice in the middle requires four hold down bolts because of the way it sits in line with the T-slots, and I have just 'made' a pair for the RT, this pair will also fit my dividing head (no not Ralph), and I don't envisage having both on the table at the same time.



So now to my pet hate, badly fitting hold down bolts.
I have been in industry and seen the results of using chocolate bolts and chewing gum nuts, not a pretty sight, smashed tooling, destroyed workpieces and even the mill table wrecked. To me, the time taken and materials used, cause me to prefer to go the 'buy it' route, but if you can make a good job of it, then it is easy to make decent hold down bits yourself. You can see on these, nice close fitting t-nuts with good strong shoulders and a built in washer under the nut head. I shorten the studs to suit the job it will be doing, so once made, it fits the tooling being held without the use of washers or packing pieces.



One major bit that has to be shown, is the bottom of the t-nut. It MUST have a deformation of some sort at the bottom of the threaded hole to stop the stud going all the way thru. This will stop you from inadvertently screwing away and jacking into the botton of the table slot. If you allow that to happen, because of the forces involved, you can easily smash out the table t-slots.



The first ones to try to mount up are the split vices. I was lucky in that the commercial bolts I had ordered were the correct length, but two required on each one, as the forces will be trying to push them along the t-slots, rather than against the edges.



As you can see, a vice with the capability to have jaws open very wide. These do have the advantage over clamps for holding down, in that they allow the part to easily be gripped and released, or repositioned without too much trouble. So now I know everything is ready to use, they were removed and put away for the time to use them again comes along.



My main problem is having to continually swap over the RT and vice on the table.
So what I have done is measure and position them up so during normal use, both can be left in position and set up, and only need to be moved for out of the ordinary work.
I have already spied two problems. The first is the RT, I will have to make a protective, waterproof cover for it, and the second is that I won't be able to fit my normal vice backstop. So I will have to design a multi function one that bolts to the side of the vice, that can easily be removed and stored away.



So I am now ready to start on my two latest jobs, one requires the vice and RT, the other, just the RT.

A couple of hours well spent, and a lot of hours saved.


Bogs
« Last Edit: April 02, 2009, 09:42:23 AM by bogstandard »

Offline websterz

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Re: Getting my mill vices sorted
« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2009, 11:58:21 AM »
So you are saying you DO or do NOT have a vise vice? :doh:

I did a few mods to a little vise I picked up a while back...makes it a lot more useful.

I clamped a parallel in the vise and held it against the back T-slot in the mill table, clamping it down on a pair of 1-2-3 blocks. I milled, drilled, and tapped for a set of keys. I got the vise for little quick jobs, now I don't have to sweep it in every time I use it.



Getting ready to check the alignment here:



Well within .001...good enough for me!



Then I decided to keep at it and make a set of clamping blocks.



And fix that pesky handle that always slides down in my way when I am moving the Y axis.



Underneath the set screw is a small bit of nylon that I turned to fit and cut off. It adds just enough friction to hold the handle in place, but I can still slide it easily.

That's my day so far.  :dremel:
« Last Edit: April 02, 2009, 09:26:19 PM by websterz »
"In the 60's, people took acid to make the world weird.  Now the world is weird and people take Prozac to make it normal."
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bogstandard

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Re: Getting my mill vices sorted
« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2009, 01:01:50 PM »
Nice one W,

As you most probably know, we use the same word for both things, vice, so really my pun in only valid for us true Olde English users.
I had forgotten about your use of a different word, otherwise I would have given the topic another name.

Nice mods to your vice, I'm sure it will give the lads on here a few things to consider.

Anything that makes life easier and safer gets my approval any day.

Bogs

Offline Darren

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Re: Getting my mill vices sorted
« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2009, 02:30:42 PM »
Nice couple of posts, I like the locating blocks  :thumbup:

John, does the RT need any setting up apart from centering it before each use. Couldn't it just be thrown on when needed or am I missing something?
You will find it a distinct help… if you know and look as if you know what you are doing. (IRS training manual)

bogstandard

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Re: Getting my mill vices sorted
« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2009, 05:35:02 PM »
You are quite right Darren, it could be just 'thrown on' when needed.

The problem is now, throwing it on and taking it off would become an almost daily event. By leaving it on there, just centre up, pop a chuck on and it is ready to go. Maybe 90% of my requirements can be fulfilled with the setup as it is now.
It is all due to my dream of having a versatile system between machines, the first few posts on this topic

http://madmodder.net/index.php?topic=422

plus this part, is all in the overall plan, and by the way it is working out, my dream is starting to come true.

All I need to do now is somehow find a link that can be used between the mill/lathe and my surface grinder, and then I will have true flexibility. Things are still in the very early stages on that project, but plans are afoot to get at least a partial solution. I have the necessary bits, but time is now the limiting factor.

Bogs

Offline John Stevenson

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Re: Getting my mill vices sorted
« Reply #5 on: April 02, 2009, 06:02:26 PM »
I mount my vises inside a shallow tray as I'm often running flood coolant.

All the holes / slots line up with the tee slots so they drain back.
This one is on the CNC mill and shows what would have pi$$ed all over the floor if the tray had not been there.


This one is on the old horizontal and is not a staged shot, even if it hadn't been cutting heavy the end of the vise, and the same in Bogs first picture is over the table so any coolant can't drain back.



JS.
John Stevenson

Offline Darren

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Re: Getting my mill vices sorted
« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2009, 07:47:06 PM »
You are quite right Darren, it could be just 'thrown on' when needed.

The problem is now, throwing it on and taking it off would become an almost daily event. By leaving it on there, just centre up, pop a chuck on and it is ready to go.

Sure, I fully understand what you mean, just making sure i wasn't missing something about setting up RT's  :thumbup:
You will find it a distinct help… if you know and look as if you know what you are doing. (IRS training manual)

Offline Darren

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Re: Getting my mill vices sorted
« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2009, 07:51:46 PM »
John S,

I've often wondered about that.

I now have a pump, so coolant will be one of my future projects afte I've got a couple of other bits sorted.

I was thinking with my little mill and in my new garage which I'm currently building, Of making a concrete bench for the mill.
My idea is to finish the top surface with resin, and up the walls etc. Add some lips around the sides to catch all the coolant. it should also be chemical resistant and very easy to clean.

Just an idea, but it may happen yet.
You will find it a distinct help… if you know and look as if you know what you are doing. (IRS training manual)

Offline sbwhart

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Re: Getting my mill vices sorted
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2009, 01:25:31 AM »
John S

Thats a good tip with the trays  :thumbup:

Thanks for showing

Stew
A little bit of clearance never got in the road
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Location:- Crewe Cheshire