Tooling & Workholding

Workholding

Workholding refers to any device that is used to a secure a workpiece and hold it in place against the forces of machining. The most basic workholding device is a simple clamp that is screwed into place on a machining center’s table, but workholding can also involve complex fixtures that are custom-built for particular parts. Other common workholding devices include vises and chucks, as well as indexers or rotary tables that are able to change the part’s position while it is held, so the machine can reach various features of the part without the setup having to be changed. In most machining applications, workholding also locates the part. In turning, for example, a chuck not only holds the part securely but also holds it precisely on the centerline of the spindle. On a machining center, the vise or fixture that holds the part may also hold it in the precise position and orientation where the machining program expects to find it. For this reason, components such as locating pins and workstops that make it easy to place piece after piece in the same location are also common workholding components.

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Featured Zone Content

The Case for Custom Fixturing


Photos of custom fixtures illustrate the types of applications that call for non-standard workholding.

Small Engine Precision Fuels Fifth-Axis Production Workholding Concept


The challenge holding tight tolerances for its billet RC helicopter engine components drove this company to develop an innovative fifth-axis tombstone device to complete multiple parts on an HMC in one setup.

Get That Part off the Table


Vertical machining centers with simultaneous five-axis machining capability have become popular in recent years.

Incremental Automation


This machine tool supplier sees shops searching for just a little bit of unattended capacity. Many shops are closer to obtaining this extra capacity than they realize.



Precision Workholding Offers Multiple Advantages

By: Chris Koepfer (editor)
As American manufacturing continues to transition from the mass production of conventional parts to the manufacture of complex, high-value components in relatively small lot sizes, precision workholding has assumed increased importance

Clamping Options for Five-Axis Machining

By: Peter Zelinski
In five-axis machining, the workholding has to get out of the way. The wrong choice of clamping risks collision and can obscure one of the principal benefits of a five-axis machine.

Hydromat Updates Features on EPIC R/T 45-12 Rotary Transfer Machine

By: Lori Beckman (editor)
The Hydromat Epic R/T 45-12 is a collet-style rotary transfer machine for precision metalcutting of stock sizes up to 1.75” round, 1.5” hex and 1.25” square and a length up to 6”.

VariClamp modular clamping system.

Vise Provides Firm Grip on Odd-Shaped Parts

By: Edited by Julianne Mobilian
Available from Lexair, OML's VariClamp modular clamping system uses a floating mechanism of fixed and moveable jaws and a wide variety of gripper forms to provide custom clamping of irregular-shaped workpieces including round, curved, elliptical, rectangular, stepped and slanted parts.

Buffoli Transfer Trans-Bar

Transfer Machine Offers High-Concentricity Finishing

By: Edited by Jedd Cole
Buffoli Transfer will present its line of rotary transfer machines, highlighting the Trans-Bar horizontal-axis transfer machine for precision workpieces from barstock.


Self centering vise is a cost effective and universal workholding method for five sided machining.
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