Pad for a C Clamp

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Introduction: Pad for a C Clamp

C clamps are great, but they can leave unsightly dents unless used with a piece of scrap wood to prevent those dents. But, a piece of scrap wood almost requires a third hand to keep it in place while you hold the clamp and tighten its screw.

This Instructable will show a simple way to attach a pad to a C clamp to eliminate clamp dents and also the need for a third hand.

The photo shows a piece of walnut clamped to a jig I made for cutting 22.5 degree miters to be used on some flag cases I am building for an organization that will sell them to support its ministry to homeless. 

Step 1: Cut a Circle

I used a holesaw to make a round piece from 3/4 inch plywood. The diameter is about 2 1/4 inches.

Tools
  • Holesaw
  • Electric drill
  • Twist drills
  • Angle head grinder with cutting wheel and grinding wheel
  • Dremel tool and cutting wheel
  • Screwdriver

Materials
  • 3/4 inch plywood
  • Sheet metal
  • #8 x 3/4 inch screws

Step 2: Drill a Shallow Hole

The cone on the clamp screw is 3/4 inch in diameter. I drilled a shallow hole 3/4 inch in diameter on center in the plywood disc. Later I drilled this hole a little deeper for fit, but there will be more about that later.


Step 3: Two Pieces of Sheet Metal

I cut two pieces of sheet metal 1 1/8 inch by 1 7/8 inch and clamped them together. I ground the edges on all four sides so the pieces would be identical. I marked the center and simultaneously drilled a 7/16 inch hole through both.

Step 4: Drill Holes for Screws

A mounting hole will be needed on each end of the sheet metal pieces. The screws will be #8 x 5/8 inch.

Step 5: Cut Openings to the Side

I cut openings to opposite sides as shown. These "U"-shaped openings will fit around the cone at the end of the clamp screw.

Step 6: Fasten to the Disc

Slide the sheet metal pieces around the cone on the clamp screw. If the fit is too tight, make the 3/4 inch hole a little deeper so the cone goes down into the disc a little farther.

Mark to drill for the screws. Turn the screws in tight.

Step 7: Done

I can remove this clamp pad by loosening one screw and removing the other. Or, I can make this clamp a dedicated clamp for applications that require a soft footprint that will not leave a dent in a fine wood project.

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    14 Comments

    Looks like you reinvented the wheel.But heck I just love the idea even though.Great idea and another save. ;-)

    Thanks.

    Thumbs up and bravo !…

    What any good inst' should be : clear simple effective and immediately understandable thru the pictures posted …

    I lost the swivel pad of two of my clamps. Thanks for inspiration.

    Thank you. Welcome to Instructables.

    I love it I'm always denting my wood.

    Thank you.

    Thank you.