Any good ideas on fixturing this one? Mild steel, .125 dia. with a .187
button head, about .75 long. We need to cut a slot for small flat tip
screwdriver in the customers existing parts (10,000). Probably multiple
slitting saws cutting multiple rows of parts, but any good clamping ideas?
End opposite head has a female thread (2-56?). The part is called a 'binding
Depends on what type of machines and tooling you have. If you've got
a horizontal mill with an arbor you can do the multiple slitting saw
thing. If you've got a right angle 40 taper milling head/tool you can
do them in your VMC by holding them upright in your vise. If you're
limited to a VMC without a right angle tool, you can hold the
horizontally by machining a couple of pieces of alum. bar stock to fit
between two vises (thick enough to not bend in the open spaces between
the vises), drill and plunge bore a series of slip fit holes along the
bar stock near the edge (leaving room every inch or two for tapped
clamp holding holes), mill away about 1/4 of the diameter of the holes,
get a piece of steel bar (for stiffness), glue a strip of rubber to it,
drill some clearance holes in it so you can screw it to the alum. bar
to hold your parts by the 1/4 diameter that is sticking up.
You can make two alum. bars and two steel/rubber clamps. That way
when one is in the machine cutting the other one can be unloaded and
loaded. Put your slitting saw in, and machine away. If you have a
couple of Bi-Lock Kurts you can make 4 sets of bars/clamps.
I've just given the bare outline of just one way of holding your
If this is going to be an ongoing repeat job you might want to buy a used
"screw slotter". Some makers include Behr, Warren, Waterbury Farrell, and
These things can do 100's of parts per minute automatically and should be
fairly cheap used.
Another good way is to use an old lever feed horizontal mill like a
Nichols <http://www.lathes.co.uk/nichols/> I worked at a place where we
had one rigged up with a 5C collet chuck that was pedal operated
(pneumatic). The operator would chuck a part then pull the lever which
moves the table via a gear rack. While she was doing that she would drop
off the last finished part and pick up a new one with her free hand.
The trick is to work the pnuematic logic so the chuck only opens when the
table is against the return stop. Otherwise sooner or later the operator
will have a brain fart and step on the pedal when the part is into the
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