Clamp kits are versatile tools that have a great many industrial uses. Their main function is to temporarily clamp or hold a work piece securely in place. Some of the common applications include woodworking, carpentry, CNC milling (i.e., CNC clamping kit), furniture making, welding and other types of metalworking.
Clamp kit can include a wide variety of types and styles, including C-clamp, bar clamps, one-handed clamps, spring clamp, ratchet-action band clamp, hand screws, etc. A clamp kit can contain clamps that are meant to be used temporarily, while other are intended for permanent uses.
It is important to maintain the fullest extent of awareness when it comes to the safety of industrial tools, including clamps. As a matter of fact, every person in a workshop is responsible for learning the proper ways of using any industrial tool, and the safety precautions and measures to take to reduce the likeliness of accidents to the minimum.
That said, we will provide you with a comprehensive list of safety tips for using any type of clamps in this article, so that personal protection and equipment safety will not be overlooked.
Using an industrial clamp of any kind should be a discreet process. If the related precautions are not done properly, you could be very likely to get injured during the operation. Some of the common safety precautions you should take before using a clamp kit include:
● Always wear safety glasses or goggles. Better yet, wear a face shield if you have to (along with safety goggles or glasses). It does not matter whether your line of work involves a clamp or not, you should always have your eyes protected when on the site of industrial operation.
● Choose the proper clamp from your clamp kit as clamps have an extremely wide variety of styles and sizes that are suitable for certain task. Assess your work piece holding requirement carefully and select the best suited clamps out of your clamp kit. Some of the factors you should consider are the clamp opening (length of reach), throat depth (depth of reach), ease of adjustment, clamping surfaces (material used and size), as well as the strength and weight of the clamp (e.g., the nominal clamping pleasure and the rail size).
● Before using a clamp, make sure that the swivel at the end of the screw can rotate freely. If it does not, you may have to dissolve the rust that might be causing this issue.
● Discard a clamp that has bend frames or are damaged in any way. A damaged clamp not only is inefficient but can also pose safety risks to the user. Replace the bend spindle if necessary.
● Once you hold the work piece in place and are ready to proceed to tightening the work piece, make sure that the pressure plate and the anvil part of the clamp are both contacting the work piece uniformly. Inappropriately tightened work piece can risk damaging the work piece, causing it to bent or deform. This is especially important when you are working with an irregularly shaped object.
● Similar to the above, close the jaws only when you feel that the clamping is tight enough so that a spillage does not take place. For instance, glue leaking out during gluing process is the perfect indication that the clamping isn’t tight enough. This is especially critical if you are working with potentially hazardous liquid and object.
● Upon finishing the job, remove the clamp immediately. As mentioned previously, clamps are only meant to hold a work piece temporarily. Unnecessarily prolonged and unattended clamping can pose certain risks to the people working on the same premise.
● As aforementioned, spillage during clamping operation is more common than you think. Therefore, it is important that you keep all moving parts of clamps cleaned and oiled to avoid spillage. Moreover, ascertain that there is no dirt, oil or any types of contaminant that might hinder your work. Contrary to popular belief, clamps are one of those industrial tools that require continuous and delicate maintenance.
Now we also need to address some of the things that you should avoid doing when using a clamp of any kind:
● Do not use an extra large clamp for the mere purpose of larger throats or grips. When you are required to work on something that requires more depth, consider using, for instance, a deep-throat clamp.
● Never use a clamp that has a bent spindle or bent frame as this could be very risky if you force it for your clamping tasks.
● Do not use improper tools in attempt to tighten clamps. Use tools that are specifically designed to be compatible with clamps. (e.g., some wrenches are especially designed complementary to tightening clamps)
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