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Clamps still out of stock - what can I use instead?


#1

First carve ever with xyz will be thin plywood from either 3mm to 7mm.

I was thinking of just sticking plywood down with double sided tape and buying some M5 bolts for the T nuts and then some large flat nuts so that just the flat nut will be the only thing keeping the plywood down.

Will this be enough until the clamps are back in stock? Or would the plywood still shift like this?

Seems to be very difficult to find M5 clamps online from a trusted supplier. RC Components don’t have very good reviews on Facebook.


#2

Double sided tape will work. Actually quite well but is expensive and difficult to remove.
Another option is a layer of normal packing tape applied in strips to the waste board & underside of part, then superglue between the two layers of tape. Holds surprisingly well due to the large surface area and then can be pulled off easily enough as its only standard packaging tape touching the parts. The super glue stays between the two layers of tape and is does not need to be pulled apart (which would not happen!)

Clamps wont help so much with 3-7mm. When you clamp it around the edge of the board, being so thin it tends to bow up in the centre. If you have areas of the cut that will be cut right out and are not part of the final part then you can use wood screws and screw it down to the waste board. This way you have a few points around the thin sheet that will hold the middle down.Then just some screws around the edge. It’s far faster than bothering with clamps and also you don’t have to worry about programming the machine to avoid the clamps.

We will have some clamps again in around 2 weeks.


#3

I feel like this is a stupid question but can the bit drill down on top of the superglue tape or should I put the superglue tape around the outside of the cut so the drill misses it?


#4

Hi

Sure, It will chew through it happily as if it were not even there.

Ben


#5

If you have one or know someone who has one, 3D print them. I can send you the stl files. Work a treat and also saves your router bits when the milling path goes wrong. Destroys the clamp but better that than the bit.
Have used them for holding down timber and aluminium.

For thin cutting, I have been placing an additional layer underneath what I am cutting. Protects the waste board too.

Jason


#6

This is a great idea - the worst thing about clamps is hitting them! 3D printed clamps will be like butter to an end-mill. The screw and nut will still do damage but its a smaller target!