View Full Version : Welding table clamps question

Mr Fixit
06-08-2014, 01:53 AM
Hello Group,
I am getting ready to build my welding table and was wanting to know about these type of clamps.


https://encrypted-tbn1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSxzxGgBHfpLmNMNR4nXTP5NhpPqoJPu 1ehv4icbN_xMxIRQJkVtw

I was going to put some holes in the table top for holding things down while welding them up and am not sure how these attach to the table and work. Do they need a very thick top? Mine is a 3/8" 4'x4' top it is what I got for free and can use very well for the home shop application. I was thinking of threading the holes but it looks like these may just use a slip fit, but how do they hold in a down force clamping situation?
Ok hope this isn't a basic question that I should know but Im stumped.

Tx Mr fixit for the family
Chris :)

06-08-2014, 03:40 AM
The first clamps are for a Acorn type table with a bunch of holes. The drop in place and bind in the hole when you tighten them. They want to work with a very thick table, you will start bending the table otherwise.

Second one is designed for fixtures.

Black Forest
06-08-2014, 04:41 AM
I have a Siegmund welding and fixturing table. The table has holes every 50mm on a grind. The holes are not threaded. The clamps just go in the hole and when you tighten the clamp it holds because of the sideways pressure on the hole.

3/8" plate might be to thin to resist the sideways clamping forces. It will stay in the hole but with a tight clamping it might bend the plate.

But be careful, once you build your table and have some clamps and angles and you see how useful it is you will spend a lot of money on more clamps and accessories.

06-08-2014, 07:24 AM
I suspect what BF said about the table thickness is why many of the commercial tables are thicker than (?). Not sure what that thickness is but there will be a method to figure it out.
My plan is to duplicate the sizes from the Build Pro table so those tooling pieces/sets should work.

The only two choices I can see are to thread the holes or to thread the "stud" of the clamp, drop it in and use a nut from the other side (quickly becomes a reach and ease of use issue). A third option, design "T" slots, could be done. My thought was to fasten a second layer of plates arranged so as to form the needed slots but by that point you are very near the thickness that would allow for the "side load" method, so why bother?
StrongHand tools has their "Fixture Point" table, a table thinner than what you are planning on using and they fasten from the bottom, the size of the table is smaller however and you are only a foot (12") from the center along the long edges.

06-08-2014, 08:15 AM
My welding table is a 4'x4'x1/2" steel on 4 legs with castors. I drilled and tapped a series of 3/8 and 1/2 holes (new holes are easily added as required). I use all-thread and an old cheap mill clamp set as hold downs for most clamping. A cheap but nice Craigslist vise is bolted to one corner. The table has worked out well. It is easily moved in (TIG) and out (SMAW and all grinding) of the garage. If I had to do it over, I would have liked to have used 3/4 or 1" thick steel, but like you, I used what I had.

Jaakko Fagerlund
06-08-2014, 08:34 AM
One option is to weld reinforcement strips where the holes will go under the table plate, so that you will have a thicker section so that those sideways-locking thingamajigs can lock properly.

Old Hat
06-08-2014, 08:44 AM
sideways-locking thingamajigs .

Had an Acorn plate back in 80's with all the trimmings.
Old Man #1 called those Dog-Legs, Old Man #2 called those just Dogs.


Black Forest
06-08-2014, 08:54 AM
My table is 2000mm x 1200mm. The holes are 16mm in diameter. The material the table is made out of is 12mm thick with a grid on the bottom side to achieve rigidity. It is rated for 2000kg. weight support.

When you build your table try to incorporate sides with holes on at least two of the sides. I use that feature a lot. I originally ordered two tables but there was some delay on the second table and then I decided I didn't actually need the second table because I have another table that is nearly as big that I use next to the Seigmund table to support bigger projects.

06-08-2014, 08:58 AM
I dont have (yet) a welding table, just a steel plate. Drilling and tapping holes was a pain, crap would get in the holes etc, i use cheap magnetic bases, they can be got as replacements for track cutters, Gullco in my case, i have about 6, great as set ups can be tweaked easily, just an idea

06-08-2014, 01:32 PM
For table clamps in our shop we just took some Vice-Grip "C" clamps (11R) and cut the lower leg off and welded it to a small piece of 1/2" flat bar. When you need a clamp in a particular position just tack it to the table in the right spot. We've done the same to a couple of larger Bessey clamp clones as well. Simple and effective...

06-08-2014, 11:43 PM
You seen the new miller table tops? With "X" grooves in them that fit clamps? Pretty slick, but spendy

There is a shop here in Seattle that will laser cut the shape into a 3/8" table top... pretty reasonable. I bet you could find someone locally in Portland who would do that as well.

Cyberweld sells just the table top for $253 (whole table for $476). The local guy sells the table top for about $170.


06-09-2014, 08:57 AM
I made my welding table top out of 1" sq tube spaced about 6" apart & clamp things to it with C-clamps, vice grips, whatever.

06-09-2014, 10:39 AM
If I was to build a table, I think I'd set it up with 1/2" holes or slots and invest in a couple Vice Grip drill press clamps. Easy to adjust, easy to move, and guaranteed no twist clamping action.