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Thread: Deep-well wing nut for drill press locking clamp

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Greater Seattle, WA
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    Default Deep-well wing nut for drill press locking clamp

    I bought these locking clamps to use to conveniently hold things fixed in place while using my drill press:
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    http://www.harborfreight.com/9-inch-...amp-36221.html

    ...however, there was a problem with them. The "wing nut" part could not turn underneath my drill press's table because the deep reinforcing ribs underneath the table would interfere with the wing nut handle. (This is an old school powermatic drill press.)
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    My solution was to TIG welded some custom "deep well" wing nuts to space the handles out below the table's ribs. I ended up cutting out the threaded portion of the original wing nuts (using a cutoff wheel in an 4.5" angle grinder), and then welded on some lengths of 1/2" OD stainless steel tubing, along with two little handles 180 degrees apart (for conveniently making adjustments with your hands underneath the table... no wrench required.)
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    I used 304 stainless, 1/16" wall thickness for the materials (the threaded part donated by the original wing nuts were I believe some kind of plated mild steel), and I used 309 filler rod. Instead of cutting away the threaded portion of the original wing nuts, I could have just bought new nuts to use, but I think cutting up the original wing nuts saved me a trip to the store and also I would have had to grind new nuts down skinnier anyway so they wouldn't interfere with the reinforcing ribs underneath the table.

    Here is what the custom "deep well" wing nuts look like installed underneath the table:
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    I used a flap wheel to smooth the edges so there are no sharp edges when grabbing them with your bare hands.

    (Sometimes having a TIG welder around can be really handy. )
    Last edited by jakeru; 02-29-2012 at 03:25 AM.
    '13 Everlast 255EXT
    '07 Everlast Super200P

  2. #2

    Default

    everything from harbor freight works great... it just has to be modified to function correctly first.

    It'd be nice if i could do that with my table, but i've got a dovetail slotted table, so no through slots to mount clamps like that into... best i get is my quick release vise.
    -------------------------------------------
    Spike Customs, Inc.
    Fresno, CA 93727
    ph- 559-549-RIDE(7433)
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  3. #3

    Default

    great idea on the deep well nuts! another thing to add to my ``to do`` list
    Gil
    powerpro 256
    lincoln 185

  4. #4

    Default

    This is a great idea! I never bought that style clamp because of this same problem. I also never knew why they would design the locking nut to be that way, as most (good) drill presses have those same reinforcement ribs. On a side note, they look like little bombs ready to drop from your press.
    Thanks again, I will gladly borrow your idea and give you full credit!
    d.fisher, dedicated to art and craft

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