Ben Heck Show Stickvise sighting!
Jul-10 2016

I sent Ben Heck a Stickvise a couple months ago, I thought it was a long shot to even get a response but I wanted to at least give it a try. You have to put yourself in his shoes, he probably gets tons of unsolicited crap shipped to him every week that people hope will make it into one of his videos. It turns out he was really nice, even sent me a thank you email when it arrived and told me that he was using it a few minutes after it arrived. Very cool of him to do that.

I noticed in the show's latest video (covering the completion of his Hackmanji game) that Stickvise was on his bench in the background the whole time. Not sure what he's holding in the vise but it's an honor to see it being used!

I sent his Stickvise out with a customized "Ben Heck Show" PCB, I thought it looked pretty cool:

Here is the episode

Replacement Jaws
Apr-23 2016

On Monday I'm shipping out Stickvise replacement jaws to the Hackaday Store! They should be available in the next week or so. For those who have damaged their jaws and want some spares, check them out. For starters there will be two options: standard nylon and high temperature PTFE




    I would like to know if you could provide any information about the stickvise device and the holder materials and their ESD compliance?

    Milling a PCB outline on Stickvise
    Mar-22 2016

    Still brainstorming the idea of using Stickvise for PCB milling. After a brief chat on Twitter with Danielle Applestone (owner of Other Machine Co. makers of the Othermill) I was inspired to delve further into this possible application. The main issue is full slotting, particularly parallel to the edges of the jaws where the PCB is most likely to slip. This morning I did some testing to see how Stickvise would handle this.

    Below are the results, not a bad start - didn't have movement in any of the five test boards I cut out.

    Sorry for the absolute bush league mistake of putting my finger over the lens, that's embarrassing. You can see more about the jaw design I'm using in this older project log.

    The info on the cut is as follows -

    Machine: Tormach 770

    Spindle Speed: 10,000 RPM

    Feed Rate: 10 in/min

    Tool: 1/8" diameter, 2 flute carbide endmill, uncoated, general purpose (I think I got it from McMaster)



      You may always add one or two swiveling flat metal pieces to each jaw to clamp down on the material while milling. When done,
      just loosen the screw, rotate the clamps out of the way and take out your PCB...

      Results may be fine with a factory new end mill but as they come near their service life they tend to put a lot more force into the material. I've seen big metal bars ripped out of vices because of that ;)

        Alex Rich

        That's a great point, my preliminary test doesn't prove that movement won't happen as the endmill gets dull.  I question what the value of a vise is if you also have to clamp on top of the workpiece though.  I wonder if there is a clever way I could lock the PCB in without resorting to a top clamp.

      Jaw production begins!
      Mar-21 2016

      Ok everything went well today, I cut all of my blank material (made like 135 pieces, or 67.5 pairs) using a table saw, that worked great. Then I used my fixture to make 12 pairs of PTFE jaws. It's not a blazing fast process, I am going to have to be careful how I price these things as I could easily see myself wind up working for $2 per hour if I go too low.


        Moritz Walter

        So cool to see this project continously evolving, adapting and enhancing. Totally made me scroll back and read over the beginnings:

          Alex Rich

          Yeah, thanks, it has definitely come a long way.  I first posted on hackaday to try to find beta testers and get feedback, little did I know they'd wind up selling it for me.  


          Those jaws look really nice! Just don't sell them too cheap, honest work and skills involved have to pay!

            Alex Rich

            Thanks @Jan!  I am going to need to be careful pricing them.  I'm still not sure how long it takes to make them, from cutting up raw stock, to mounting on the fixture, etc.  

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