Monday, July 13, 2020

Bar Clamp

Clamped Up
I needed a little clamp, but we were in Covid19 lock down.  So I made one.  No transistors, no batteries, no thermionic valves, no flashing neon bulbs!

There are many complicated ways to make a bar clamp, but I prefer the simple way.  A picture is worth a thousand words:


Mini Bar Clamp

It can't be simpler:
  • One 6 mm dowel rod
  • One 6 x 80 mm bolt
  • One 1" nail
  • Ten popsicle sticks
  • Glue

Yup - ten popcicle sticks glued together, made a small piece of plywood, that I could cut up for the clamp jaws.  You can use the exact same method to make a big bar clamp.  You don't need a super long lead screw, just a long bolt and a whole lot of little holes to adjust the other end of the clamp.  Scale it up as required for size and strength.

How do I keep the movable jaw in place?  Some funny putty (Press Stick) in a hole.  It churns around in there and keeps the block from falling off the end of the bolt - a little piece of rubber will also do.  The best way would be to file a ring in the end of the bolt, cut a washer in two and glue that into the block, but that is a lot of hassle - another day - do, do that on a big clamp.


It it really worth making a bar clamp?  Of course not!  One can buy a perfect clamp for a few Dollars, but what is the fun in that and what else can you do with a bag of craft store pop sticks?


Have fun!

Herman

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