Self-aligning pads with self-resetting mechanism
Patented solution designed by Erwin Halder KG prevents damage on the workpiece
Clamping bevelled workpieces is a breeze - even in horizontal position
Dependable workpiece clamping is paramount to machining components with the greatest possible precision. However, some workpieces, in particular cast parts, often end up with bevels as a result of their manufacturing process, which need to be offset during clamping to prevent the workpiece from warping. Erwin Halder KG has now found the perfect solution to this problem: self-aligning pads. The oscillating ball contours to the bevel of the workpiece. But, the company did not stop there: they have now patented a self-resetting mechanism for a version of these fixture components that is designed specifically for horizontal installation positions. This enhanced version keeps the ball from jamming, thereby preventing damage to the workpiece.
We find cast parts everywhere we turn - from everyday objects to highly advanced components used in the automotive, aviation and shipbuilding industry to electronic devices and medical equipment. All engines as well as a large number of chassis components are made of cast material. After being cast, these parts often undergo further mechanical machining. Their unique production process will, however, leave them with bevels, making the tasks of clamping the workpieces in a reliable manner a formidable challenge. Erwin Halder KG has now developed self-aligning pads designed specifically to overcome this challenge. Thanks to their internal ball with flat-faced surface, they contour precisely to the shape of the workpiece – including its bevelled surfaces.
"Our self-aligning pads have proven their worth in many applications where non-machined or machined workpieces need to be supported and clamped. They are equally well-suited for use as stops, supports and thrust pads. Better yet, they can also be used as part of clamping elements such as clamps or down-thrust clamps in the area of fixture construction. There is, however, one major limitation: when the pads are used in horizontal installation positions, the seating of the ball may lose its neutral position after a workpiece change, causing the next workpiece to become stuck after being inserted into the fixture. This may ultimately lead to damage on the component. This is why we have come up with a version of the self-aligning pads that includes our patented return mechanism, explains Bernd Janner, Sales Manager at Erwin Halder KG.
The design of these new self-aligning pads closely resembles that of its simpler sibling. The internal ball with flat-faced surface housed in the body can be inclined by 9°, allowing it to adjust to the shape of the workpiece. The feature that sets these new and improved self-aligning pads apart is found on the inside: The thermoplastic spring element reliably returns the ball to its initial position, thereby preventing any potential damage.
The right fit for every application
Erwin Halder KG offers self-aligning pads with self-resetting mechanism that are ideal for rough machining applications thanks to their grooved surface for added grip. Their body consists of phosphated heat-treated steel, while the ball is made of bare hardened ball-bearing steel. The right choice for applications that require flawless surfaces on the workpiece - such as precision machining or easily malleable materials including aluminium - are our self-aligning pads with flat surfaces. "Users choosing this version can also opt for yet another enhanced option that includes a body made of 1.4057 stainless steel and a ball made of nickel-plated 1.3541 stainless steel", Bernd Janner continues.
To give the user two different options for attaching the self-aligning pads to the fixture, we offer these products with a locating hole as a press-in option and with a male thread. The self-aligning pad equipped with a locating hole can, for example, accommodate set screws or studs. Using a male thread, however, allows the self-aligning pads to be screwed in directly. Erwin Halder KG offers the self-aligning pad with locating hole with in-stock availability in diameters from 12 to 28 mm for a flat-faced ball surface between 7.2 to 20 mm in diameter. Also available from stock, the versions with male thread come in diameters ranging between 13 and 50 mm and thread sizes of M6 to M24.
The self-aligning pads with self-resetting mechanism are available with a locating hole as a press-in option and with a male thread. The grooved surface is the perfect choice for rough machining applications, while the flat surface works best for precision machining.