Tacking Bolts, Pins, Ball Locks vs. table thickness

background: Aluminum fab shop, first fixture table, shopping for clamps, pins, fence blocks, eccetera.

Table: Langmuir ArcFlat (2x2 field, 3/8" surface, 16mm)

please forgive my ignorance but im shopping for items ive never been around. My concern is pin length & clamping ability. In my mind each stop requires 2 pins but only 1 needs to be a clamping “Ball lock” or similar.

As im looking through Fireball, Siegmund, Stronghand i rarely see a refrence to clamping thickness. As I type I realize that each manufacture wont concern themselves with competators table deminsions. Obviously just starting out into fixture tables, its hard to swallow some of the universal adjustable pins being $70 each.

Am I overthinking this? or is their a option i am missing? I know Fireball is working on more 16mm tooling but with a competators table im not holding my breathe it will benefit me.

Im having a hard time understanding what works together & what items shouldnt be mixed. obviously making sure im only buying 16mm items is a small challenge in itself. its hard to believe that all the pins offered will require a shim kit for my application.

This is the bolt that you need if you want to use the Fireball 1” thick fixtures. Since your table is thin it’s also going to require a 1/4 shim. Tacking Bolt - 16mm
Most new fixtures table customers only see the table and forget that this is a system and everything needs to work together. The table thickness should be the same as the fixtures

Our FA16 bolt is meant to clamp a target thickness of 1.5" where our fixtures are 1" and the tables are 1/2".

There’s some play in the thickness range of the bolt roughly plus or minus 1/8". The bolts should work with a spacer, you may need to adjust the spacers depending on the table.

The langmuir tables, the bottom of the hole is not counter bored or chamfered. This means the actual thickness of the hole for clamping purposes is going to be slightly variable since their table is from a casting.

On the Fireball tables, we counterbore and chamfer the bottom of every hole so each hole has uniform thickness and the bolts have a better grip.


well boys i greatly appriciate your replies. & the fact your both are on here regurarly says a lot. I’ve been working on a wood bench for the last 4yrs & in a shop smaller than most with concrete thats not remotely level. I occasionally build entire boats but usually its deck lids, pods, consoles, & repairing of outboard parts. Being a 100%Aluminum shop I bought 4 ArcFlats because of cost & the modular design. Im not terribly concerned with “Flat” or even strength. Im just trying to increase efficency & minimize frustration with warping. Between the 3 major brands i just purchased $1700 worth of clamps, blocks, pins, & shims… & some minion squares. I look forward to the 16mm toothpicks coming back into stock & plan to grab a set.
im @WhiterRiverRambo across Youtube, TicTok, Meta, WELD & create content around outdoor content. Always try to spread information & inspiration in a positive way even though nothing comes easy. happy Easter

1 Like