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Author: Subject: Any interest in lab stands?
Gurt
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[*] posted on 27-2-2018 at 11:34
Any interest in lab stands?


Hi all, I have a pretty simple question today. I am a machinist by trade and have a decent sized home shop. I never liked the prices for lab stands, as they are such a simple piece of equipment, so I started making my own. I will upload some pictures later, as soon as I can. My question is, would anyone be interested in purchasing some stands? I use 5/8" steel rod, threaded into 1/2" or 3/4" steel plate. The bottom plate provides plenty of weight to prevent tipping, and they are VERY sturdy. I could easily add a coat of enamel to prevent corrosion as well.

Just trying to see if there is enough interest to warrant making a few spares, thanks!

[Edited on Feb02-28-2018 by Gurt]
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happyfooddance
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[*] posted on 27-2-2018 at 11:41


I am interested. Can't wait to see pics! I am in Ca., where are you located? Shipping will be the major cost in this endeavor, I think.
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Gurt
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[*] posted on 27-2-2018 at 14:35


I am located in Iowa, I figured shipping would be the main cost. But if I can fit it in a flat rate box it would help. I'll try to get pictures up tonight, or first thing in the morning. All depends on when I get home.
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Morgan
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[*] posted on 27-2-2018 at 17:13


That seems like an admirable craft making a lab stand, deciding on a good design and bringing it to fruition.
Out of curiosity I found this simple homemade design that wasn't too bad. I didn't know about those hose clamps with the convenient nut mount on the side. Of course there're higher end designs but I guess it's all about how clever you are and what you have to work with or can afford or features you require. Usually when making something it later occurs to me some improvement can be made.
How to make laboratory stands! #DIY
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FYg-OYvXRfw
https://www.grainger.com/product/1RVC4?cm_mmc=PPC:+Google+PL...
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VSEPR_VOID
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[*] posted on 27-2-2018 at 22:23


That sounds interesting. You should see if you can sell them on Ebay



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elementcollector1
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[*] posted on 27-2-2018 at 22:45


If you're looking to save some cost, the plate can be replaced with a bent sheet steel of decent thickness. I'd imagine it'd be easier to drill, at any rate.



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aga
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[*] posted on 28-2-2018 at 04:48


Something i've not seen, yet might be useful is extensible support rods.

I.e. shorter sections of rod can be screwed into each other to make as long a rod as is needed.

If the base were filled with sand or water and shipped empty, the reduced weight + smaller package size would reduce postage costs.




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DavidJR
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[*] posted on 28-2-2018 at 05:14


Quote: Originally posted by elementcollector1  
If you're looking to save some cost, the plate can be replaced with a bent sheet steel of decent thickness. I'd imagine it'd be easier to drill, at any rate.


I'd ideally want a nice heavy base for stability.
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Plunkett
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[*] posted on 28-2-2018 at 05:26


If you sold just the plate with a threaded hole you might be able to fit it into a USPS small flat rate box; leave it up to the recipient to buy a length of all thread from a hardware store. With all thread, you can make as tall or as short of support rods as you want and easily change them out as needed. Last, if you drill an second hole in the stand, people with wooden benchtops can use a screw to secure the stand, and you can get away with a lot thinner material for the base.
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Morgan
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[*] posted on 28-2-2018 at 07:22


I've bought a few relatively heavy base plates from thrift stores that were kind of nifty but haven't used them yet. One was from a lamp stand and the other a microphone stand and both had threaded rods/poles of course. The mic stand comes with an adjustable height feature as well.
Even those magnetic bases might be something to consider. I like how you can clamp them to a thick piece of iron and merely turn the knob to quick release them. And they accept threaded rod as well but you can't go too deep lest the threaded rod starts rubbing internally on the magnet. But the depth is plenty to hold a rod firmly, you just need a nut to limit the depth, sort of like my large drill press that has a threaded rod and nuts on the side of it to set/govern the drilling depth.
https://www.amazon.com/Cen-Tech-Multi-Position-Magnetic-Base...
One time I thought it might be fun to make my own magnetic base but instead plop in a more powerful axially magnetized neodymium magnet. There's just 4 little screws that hold the face plate on and you can take one apart easily. Or you can pay a lot and buy one that's really powerful. As an aside I had this part from a mower with a little ~1 inch by 1/2 inch rectangular magnet that was very weak but with the two little iron bracket things that fit on either side really increased the strength.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnetic_base
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Gurt
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[*] posted on 28-2-2018 at 07:37


Here are some pictures of the stands, as well as bases. The bases are fly-cut to true them up, as well as leave some small "Legs" on the corners to keep the main body above the tabletop.

20180228_091154_001 - Copy.jpg - 2.7MB 20180228_091211 - Copy.jpg - 2.6MB 20180228_091226 - Copy.jpg - 2.5MB
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Gurt
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[*] posted on 28-2-2018 at 07:42


One more set of pictures, if needed I can sand blast these and enamel them. I have plenty of steel cutoff pieces around. So I can make a fair amount of these pretty quickly. The threading is 5/8-24 NF, so it may not be common for all thread. However, I can make these to any size desired, as long as it is imperial. I don't have much in the way of metric taps or tooling.

20180228_091313 - Copy.jpg - 2.7MB 20180228_091320 - Copy.jpg - 2.3MB
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aga
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[*] posted on 28-2-2018 at 08:19


Very nice !



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Sulaiman
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[*] posted on 28-2-2018 at 08:28


would the use of magnetic clamps not require a large heavy easily rusted iron plate as a work surface ?

for maximum stability with minimum weight and postal size,
a H-frame

H_Stand2.jpg - 27kB H_Stand.jpg - 61kB

or tripod

Tripod_Stand.jpg - 5kB

may be better.
=====================================
Even if the threaded rod is stainless it is likely to get corroded,
but threaded rod is cheaply replaced.

I have two of the common cheap stands
but I recently bought a bunch of lightning rods really cheaply, (unused <£1 ea.)
1.2m long, 14mm dia. 5/8" threaded ends, copper plated carbon steel.
Threaded couplers are available for these and for most plain threaded rod,
but with external couplers there will always be one at just the wrong height.
A hole in the end of each rod tapped for a shorter length of threaded rod can seamlessly join two round rods.




CAUTION : Hobby Chemist, not Professional or even Amateur
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Morgan
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[*] posted on 28-2-2018 at 09:29


Maybe another route use a larger diameter aluminum plate that would be stable due to its width and you could set larger things on it over a smaller platform. Here's some aluminum plates or rounds I bought for cheap from a place out in California, the last three with holes that cost the least.
http://www.sandsmachine.com/alumweb.htm

I used them for electrostatic experiments as seen here. The edges were kind of sharp so some tape was wound around them.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0HlovqIMGkM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M88GAbSqgV4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J8ygaZFUokM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=octlNpOfF7I
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Gurt
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[*] posted on 28-2-2018 at 10:00


Those are fine ideas, but one issue for me. With the H frame, I had thought about it. But decided there is no reason to cut material three times, weld it back together, then drill and tap. It's counterproductive in my case. The other factor which applies to the H shape and aluminum is simply cost. I don't see any reason to buy aluminum (Expensive) when I have these steel plates already cut as leftovers from a previous job. You really cant beat the price, which in my case means they're worth no more than scrap cost. As someone who works in the machining business I've learned to use what I have, and keep it simple. If I'm billing a customer $42 per hour for my time, they usually want it done in the most time effective manner. So I just figured I would use up some scraps, and get some use from them. The rust issue I don't consider a big deal, as a coat of industrial enamel will protect the metal, and wears quite well actually.

If anyone is interested in some stands, just shoot me a U2U. I could do some different size/length rods, right now I have been using 20" rod. But can always go longer or shorter. I suppose if people do want a more specific design or material I could certainly look into it. I can custom build pretty much anything that may be desired.
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Dr.Bob
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[*] posted on 28-2-2018 at 18:55


I like the design, it is easy and simple, and using scrap materials, which is excellent. I have made them from 2x6 before, and that is not near as pretty. The end user could always spray paint them with whatever paint they have around as well, and save money. I like the idea of seeing if they would fit into a small flat rate box, or you might be able to get several into a flat rate envelope, as long as you tape them together or put them ina padded envelope. The rods are harder to ship, I have had them come out of boxes before in shipping, as they just poke right through cardboard if the box is dropped. I like the idea of just doing them separately, perhaps from local sources like HD, Lowes or scrap metal. I have lots of Al 1/2" rod, not sure if the combination of steel base and Al rod would be good, but I could test it. Might protect the steel?
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Gurt
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[*] posted on 1-3-2018 at 15:22


The Al/steel combination should be fine. The only issue would be that aluminum has a tendency to lock itself into steel after threading it in. But as long as you wouldn't need to take the rod back out very often it wouldn't be any issue. The threads are pretty tough on these. As the plates are actually 4140 steel. Which is very very strong, we use it for high stress components. Rifle receivers, pillow blocks, bearing housings, hydraulic cylinder brackets...
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happyfooddance
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[*] posted on 1-3-2018 at 16:10


These stands are beautiful. Enamel protection would be nice, at least on the bottom. I don't worry too much about visible corrosion on the stand, as much as the rust stains they leave on the benchtop sometimes.

Yes, the rods do tend to escape from boxes, the one stand I have purchased and had shipped (my other's I made myself, though not as pretty as yours) came without a rod, which the seller had to replace. He said "I remember putting it in the box..." I didn't know what to tell him except "It definitely wasn't in the box I received."

[Edited on 3-2-2018 by happyfooddance]
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Morgan
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[*] posted on 1-3-2018 at 17:15


Instead of a threaded rod and tapping a hole for a variation maybe heat the base and chill an aluminum rod and plop it in the hole for a tight fit. Or a steel rod in a steel base hole, sort of a press fit again using hot and cold. A thick plate with a hole would probably be fine if a smooth rod just fit well enough not to wobble, no hot or cold or threading needed, say just a few taps with a rubber hammer to tap the rod in place.
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DavidJR
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[*] posted on 2-3-2018 at 09:02


Quote: Originally posted by Morgan  
Instead of a threaded rod and tapping a hole for a variation maybe heat the base and chill an aluminum rod and plop it in the hole for a tight fit. Or a steel rod in a steel base hole, sort of a press fit again using hot and cold. A thick plate with a hole would probably be fine if a smooth rod just fit well enough not to wobble, no hot or cold or threading needed, say just a few taps with a rubber hammer to tap the rod in place.


That just makes it even more inconvenient to ship, store when not in use, etc, as you can't easily disassemble it again/
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TheNerdyFarmer
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[*] posted on 2-3-2018 at 09:43


I'd be interested depending on the price of the item and shipping. It would be way better than the current on I'm using which is a thick wooden block with a hole and a half inch rod jammed into it lol.
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Morgan
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[*] posted on 2-3-2018 at 14:13


Quote: Originally posted by DavidJR  
Quote: Originally posted by Morgan  
Instead of a threaded rod and tapping a hole for a variation maybe heat the base and chill an aluminum rod and plop it in the hole for a tight fit. Or a steel rod in a steel base hole, sort of a press fit again using hot and cold. A thick plate with a hole would probably be fine if a smooth rod just fit well enough not to wobble, no hot or cold or threading needed, say just a few taps with a rubber hammer to tap the rod in place.


That just makes it even more inconvenient to ship, store when not in use, etc, as you can't easily disassemble it again/


Well yes that's true, once assembled a tight fit design would be harder to take apart. You could assemble it at home though with a torch and use of a freezer. But threading the end of a rod if you didn't want a complete length of rough all-thread for some attachments or parts to sleeve/glide up and down it and threading a plate takes time too. And if you wanted, the rod could be just snug enough that it there wouldn't be any difficulty to wiggle it free.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interference_fit
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DavidJR
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[*] posted on 3-3-2018 at 08:58


In my opinion the faff of heating/cooling to assemble/disassemble is ridiculous compared to taking a few minutes with a tap/die to thread the hole/rod.
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Gurt
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[*] posted on 3-3-2018 at 13:46


Exactly my thoughts. If I am already drilling the hole, it takes maybe two or three minutes longer to tap it. Threading the rod only takes about two minutes, as I just use the lathe and set the auto feed. Really it would be more hassle to heat the base, chill the rod, and mate them.
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