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Easy to Use Modular Fixture Designed to Hold & Locate Work-Holding Materials

Easy to Use Modular Fixture Designed to Hold & Locate Work-Holding Materials

March 09, 2018

Hi guys, Rick here from Elijah Tooling.

Today, I'd like to talk to you about an Invert-A-Bolt™ Modular Fixture here we have; one that is really quite unique and it has a lot of features too. Yours may not be exactly like this one but I believe that it incorporates many of the features that you will see in one of our modular fixtures.

As you can see, there are lots of colors and different objects here and I want to take the minute to explain them to you. One of the things that is also just a side note, but unique about this plate, is that we made it so that it was easy for the operator to use.

It has an additional length over here on the right, and on the left, and on the front, so that it actually expands beyond the table size but within the Machine limits and if we use the machine in its full limit capacity it's not going to bang into anything. But, we've taken full advantage of the space that we've got. In this particular situation, for example, these vices are almost on the edge of the limits of this machine. However, we've got a lot of additional space over here that we can use to put other tooling components or even just to have storage for other tooling components.

The great thing about a modular fixture is that it performs a couple of functions really well. One is it locates things we have. Let me get the right wrench out here, all these little blues plugs are actually plugging a hole that we call a multi-purpose hole and in this particular fixture. We've represented it in two different ways. We have a multi-purpose hole that has got the hardware in it, so it has a bushing and a threaded insert below it. Or, we have a hole that is simply bored and threaded. Both do the same thing; both perform the same function and the idea is that we can use these holes to locate and hold.

So, we've got products that locate and hold. This particular product is a locator. It screws right into the hole and you can use it for shoulder screws like this or you can use it with a regular bolt like this one where you just need to screw something in.

All right, so, the flexibility in this fixture is that it allows you to screw in and use many components other than the Invert-A-Bolt™ Fasteners and Accessories. However, if we don't add the Invert-A-Bolt™ Fasteners and Accessories, we use it as a tremendously beneficial product to this kind of fixture and we're going to show that later as we get into actually locating the part and showing how that part is machined, but for right now, you can see that we have a number of different Invert-A-Bolt™ Fasteners and Accessories on this table. The precision locator, that we described before, right here and then you can see all these little red caps. Those are fasteners; they're all there ready to come up and be used whenever and as we wish them to.

So, this particular modular fixture has a 2-inch pattern and we know exactly where every one of these locators is. So, what happens is, we can load our parts and we can set up, in this case, set up a corner, and that corner becomes the positive location for everything from then on. 

When we load up other vices. when we load up plates that are held just with the Invert-A-Bolt™ Fasteners and Accessories , it does not matter. Our zero remains in the same location why because of the precision of this modular fixture. We hold plus or minus five tenths hold a hole and sometimes we can even do better than that. 

What else, this fixture also incorporates another feature that's really nice. As you can see along the outside and along the edges, not this edge, but that edge which is not on the camera but we have the rows and columns numbers and letters so that we know exactly which location this is, for example, this hole is 10 e so at e to e 10 our guy can put we can tell our operators put his locator there and we can tell them to bring up the fastener at location gg9.

So, without that kind of guidance you don't know where you're at but with it, changing things on and off of this fixture is very fast; very rapid. Everything is known. 

A couple of other features that I'd like to talk about on the modular fixture. You may be wondering about these black plugs. These plugs are plugging the Invert-A-Bolt™ Fasteners and Accessories. So, as much as we would like our customers to populate everything on their plate, they don't have to do that. We have plastic plugs that they can screw in, it closes the hole up which means that they don't have to use the fastener at every location. 

Of course, this is also great for keeping debris out of the hole. That's why we are using these plugs because you really don't want to take the time to blow all the debris out of the holes. 

One other product that you might have not even noticed here is what we call an Xzert. At the moment it was flush-mounted and we brought it up and now, it's a locator. It screws in and out of the hole and is a very convenient little product that you can use instead of a round locator or a diamond pin locator as well. The way we make these into diamond pins, we just change the size of the hole that accepts them a little big; makes them slightly bigger. 

Thank you for your time.

-Rick Miller 

Elijah Tooling


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