Wavy Parallels. What are they good for?

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tornitore45
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Wavy Parallels. What are they good for?

Post by tornitore45 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 3:14 pm

I have a set and very rarely feel the need to use them.
The only application I found the useful is to drill a hole so close to the jaw that it will hit a regular parallel.
By positioning/guessing the location of the parallel so that the hole lands in the right spot of the wave.

Are they compressible?
Mauro Gaetano
in Austin TX

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Re: Wavy Parallels. What are they good for?

Post by spro » Fri Oct 19, 2018 3:08 am

I haven't yet owned them but see they are useful. Straight parallels are very thin and in setting up, tend to tip. I would select a spring to locate them against the jaws. The wavy ones seem to have an advantage there. Also when milling atop a fixed part, there is more support.

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Re: Wavy Parallels. What are they good for?

Post by whateg0 » Mon Oct 22, 2018 6:09 pm

I own a set and have used one of them one time. They don't seem to give as solid of a feel when tapping down a part. If you compress them much, they, of course, lose their shape, too. Not what I would call a waste of money, but not something I would consider close to necessary either.

Dave

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Re: Wavy Parallels. What are they good for?

Post by TRX » Mon Oct 22, 2018 7:10 pm

A former employer had a few. I liked them because they didn't fall over like thin parallels, when I opened the jaws to change parts.

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BadDog
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Re: Wavy Parallels. What are they good for?

Post by BadDog » Mon Oct 22, 2018 8:06 pm

Likely not good enough for milling, but for my drill press vise, I use pallet banding scrap. Cut to length and store conveniently. When you want one, Just bend it in a V,Z, or W as you think useful, and drop it in place. Flattens as needed and restrained by closing the jaws, and retains enough spring to stay locked in place as you loosen and replace parts. And if you hit it with a drill bit, as long as it doesn't bind/break, so what. If you want to maintain somewhat reasonable (loose by machinist standards) accuracy, make sure you make the bends crisp and square. I usually use the hardeneded Kurt clone vise jaws for the "V" style, or clamp between short v-blocks for the extra bends, but usually just by hand eye-balled sticking up in the bench vise jaws.

If I need accuracy, I have thin hard (Chinese) parallels from Enco, with springs to hold in place. Some of my most common springs used are drum brake transfer bar springs, the flat-oval ones, unless I need longer. I've also used the pallet banding to form a spring.

I also save square/rectangular bar stock remnants for parallel support. Before I had a surface grinder, I would pile them up near the mill. Next time I had a fly-cutter in it, I was clean them up in both dimensions for future use. Got quite a little pile, and also use them for weldment fixturing (though usually not finished, maybe finished to establish a critical gap). Mostly they are wide enough to use solo, but I made some matched pairs too, and those got stamped (primitive) to identify. The great things was they are soft and expendable. I hate to "waste" anything, particularly work/effort, but it if made things easier, drilling and milling into them didn't bother me a bit. Since I got the surface grinder I've gone to a new level, now making some real parallel blocks that wouldn't be too embarrassing to most machinists. The main thing is they are not hard and are sacrificial unlike those that are generally purchased. Nice to also clean up some free scrap finds of damaged v-blocks, i-beam parallels, and the like too.

Buying wavy parallels? I don't much see the point...
Russ
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kroll
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Re: Wavy Parallels. What are they good for?

Post by kroll » Sun Jan 06, 2019 7:07 am

Not speaking from experience but think they are for holding say thin pieces for milling on edge.As you tighten the vise wavy will still hold up the thin part but will compress as jaws close.

TomB
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Re: Wavy Parallels. What are they good for?

Post by TomB » Sun Jan 06, 2019 12:38 pm

I find then useful when measuring things on the granite table. The thin flat parallels are what I use in the vice and to use then I have a box of wood spacers of various sizes each with one side covered with some compressible foam insulation.

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tornitore45
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Re: Wavy Parallels. What are they good for?

Post by tornitore45 » Sun Jan 06, 2019 1:00 pm

I find then useful when measuring things on the granite table.
What about the waviness that makes them useful on the granite block as opposite to regular parallels?
Mauro Gaetano
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Re: Wavy Parallels. What are they good for?

Post by TomB » Wed Jan 09, 2019 2:41 pm

tornitore45 wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 1:00 pm
I find then useful when measuring things on the granite table.
What about the waviness that makes them useful on the granite block as opposite to regular parallels?
Sorry for the late response. I started to respond then went to lookup a price but got called away. While away my laptop stopped and the restart wiped out my initial response.

When working on the granite table I sometimes want to build a platform at some relatively precise height. To set up a surface at say 4.050" high on the table I can stack various measuring tools. I have 1-2-3 and 2-4-6 blocks, parallel sets that are 1/8" and 3/16" thick and 3/8 thru 1.75" high, 1 wavy set that has about 1/2" base and heights ranging from 1/2" to 2", plus a couple of sets of 3/4" diameter and 1/2 x 1" gauge blocks. So to build the platform I might start with 4 .175" thick gauge block stacks then cover them with 2 thin parallels laid flat, add two 1.75" high wavy parallels, and top it with a 2-4-6 block. The alternate stack with thin parallels would substitute two 1.75 x .125 x 6" parallels for the wavy ones but then the stack would be easy to tip sideways I find it hard to work with an unsupported parallels set on edge as I typically am clumsy enough to knock them over.

Tom

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