There is perhaps no more valuable asset in a shop than time on a CNC mill. With sky-high demand for capable machinists, anything that reduces work required to complete a job adds massive value to any fabrication operation. Conventionally, machining parts with complex geometries or parts that need pristine surface finishes require a machinist to design, program, and machine custom soft jaws. All this time counts against a machine’s bottom line, as fixtures do not directly add value to the business.
3D printing soft jaws solves many of the bandwidth issues that make them an inconvenient machining option. They’re easy to design, as all a user has to do is CAD a jaw blank and subtract their part from the blank. Printing jaws requires no hands-on programming or machining time, and they can print overnight with no oversight. Markforged’s continuous composite technology adds the necessary reinforcement to survive vice clamping forces while also providing a conformal, non-marring grip surface. They work for both CNC mills and lathes, adding easy precision and adaptability while allowing your machinists to focus on making end-use parts.