Clamping Basics 108

This class covers the most common types of clamping components and explains their relative advantages and applications.

Class Details

Class Name:
Clamping Basics 108
This class covers the most common types of clamping components and explains their relative advantages and applications.
Number of Lessons:
Additional Language:
Spanish, Chinese

Class Outline

  • Objectives
  • The Purpose of Clamps
  • Cutting Forces
  • Common Clamps
  • Cam Clamps
  • Screw Clamps
  • Toggle Clamps
  • Swing Clamps
  • Strap Clamps
  • Toe Clamps and Wedge Clamps
  • Power Clamping
  • Clamping Pressure and Supports
  • Protecting Surfaces
  • Summary


  • Describe the purpose of clamping.
  • Identify the cutting forces than clamps resist.
  • Describe the common clamp.
  • Describe cam clamps.
  • Describe screw clamps.
  • Describe toggle clamps.
  • Describe swing clamps.
  • Describe strap clamps.
  • Describe toe clamps and wedge clamps.
  • Describe power clamping systems.
  • Identify the determinants of clamping pressure and workpiece support.
  • Identify ways to protect the surfaces of workpieces during clamping.


  • CNC Milling Programming, Setup, & Operation
  • CNC Turning Programming, Setup, & Operation
  • Milling I
  • Turning Operations: Turning Chucking Skills


Vocabulary Term Definition
cam clamp A clamp that uses a gradual curved surface to lock itself in place. Cam clamps may be dislodged by excessive vibration.
C-clamp A screw clamp in a C-shaped frame. The C-clamp is a versatile clamp and is widely used for woodworking.
clamping An operation that holds the workpiece against the locators. Clamping resists secondary tool forces.
finger clamp A small strap clamp.
fixture A workholding device used on machine tools to position and hold a part during various machining operations.
fulcrum and lever A system in which a rigid bar, the lever, pivots around a fixed point, the fulcrum.
hydraulic power Power created by water or liquid pressure. A hydraulic system converts hydraulic energy of pistons and cylinders into mechanical motion.
inclined plane A plane set at an angle. The inclined plane can be used to raise or lower a load by rolling or sliding.
involute curve A curved line that gradually becomes more distant from a center point. An involute curve can be traced by a point on a taut string as it unwinds from a cylinder.
lever A device that pivots on a fixed point to transfer force and motion.
locator A workholding device used to position a workpiece within a jig or fixture. Locators establish a relationship between the workpiece and the workholding device.
pneumatic power Power caused by air used under pressure. Air power converts pressurized air into mechanical motion.
positive locking position A clamping position in which additional cutting forces encourage the locking position.
power clamping A clamping system that uses a means other than manual power to secure the clamps. Hydraulic and pneumatic systems are power clamping systems.
primary tool force A force that is resisted by locators. Primary cutting forces include the rotational forces in drilling or grinding as well as the downward force of the tool.
rise of the cam The degree of elevation on a cam clamp.
screw clamp A type of clamp that locks securely in place by the turning of threaded devices. A screw clamp is often slow but secure.
screw thread A spiral ridge cut into metal. The number of threads in a given space determines the speed and clamping force of the screw.
secondary tool force A force that is resisted by the clamps. Drilling generates secondary cutting forces when it penetrates the workpiece and attempts to lift it.
serrated A surface notched with a series of ridges or grooves. Serrated surfaces improve gripping ability.
straight strap clamp A basic type of strap clamp that looks like a bar with an oval opening in its center.
strap clamp A type of clamp that reaches over the workpiece to hold it in place. Strap clamps are often used when extra toughness is required.
swing clamp A clamp containing a swinging arm that moves to facilitate the quick loading and unloading of workpieces.
throw of the cam The maximum distance a cam clamp travels to create the rise.
toe clamp A type of clamp with a serrated surface that reaches forward and down to grip the workpiece.
toggle clamp A type of clamp that operates on a pivot and lever system. Toggle clamps lock just past the center of the pivot points.
torque The force exerted in rotation.
U strap clamp A type of strap clamp that is open on one end and forms a "U" shape.
wedge clamp A clamp that uses a wedge to gradually exert pressure on jaws located on each side of the wedge. Wedge clamps push out and down and typically hold a workpiece from the side.
workholding device A device used to support, locate, and hold a workpiece. The workholding device establishes a relationship between the cutting tool and the workpiece.