Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Making Pipe Clamps

Have been spending some time trying out different lay outs for my woodworking shop to free up maximum space around the new workbench and do some serious spring cleaning. This is usually an exercise in distraction as I look through boxes and discover stuff I had forgotten I had, today was no different. When I was building the workbench I could have used a few more large pipe clamps. Today looking through a storage box I found 6-3/4" and 7-1/2" fittings, I had picked up cheap many years ago. At the time I only had enough pipe for 2- 3/4" and 2 1/2", the rest ended up in storage. I got lots of 3/4" pipe last year with my steel order for the furnace. No 1/2" pipe for some reason, I am putting in another steel order soon so its on my list. In the meantime I decided to make up the 3/4" clamps today.


I started by measuring to size and cutting on a abrasive chop saw. I can't think of a project that would require a clamp larger than 7', so I will make 4-7' long and 2-6' long to go with the 2 I already have.


All cut and ready to thread. After cutting, both ends get a light reaming and one end gets a slight 45* bevel on the disk sander. The other end gets a much shallower light bevel to give an easier start to the threading die.


Here it is all threaded and ready for the clamp fitting. When threading reverse the die a full turn every 1 1/2 to 2 turns to break the swarf. I don't thread pipe enough to keep threading oil in stock so I use a squirt of light gear oil every couple of turns. A light wire brushing and its ready to assemble.


All assembled.


Here are all the finished clamps including the 4 I already had. A piece of threaded 3/4" pipe 4' long at the hardware store costs almost as much as a 21' length from a steel supplier so you can save alot of money threading your own pipe.


I'll do the 7-1/2"clamps in 4 and 5' lengths when I get my steel order. There's a saying that goes "you can never have enough clamps" with these and between 2 and 3 hundred lbs. of C and F clamps, I think I will be close.☺


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