How to Choose the Right Toggle Clamps

Toggle clamps by Monroe Engineering

Toggle clamps offer an effective solution for securing and holding workpieces in place. They feature a lever-like arm that, when engaged, will apply a clamping force to the workpiece with which it’s used. There are different types of toggle clamps, however. When shopping for toggle clamps, there are several things you need to consider to ensure that you choose the right type.

Vertical vs Horizontal

Toggle clamps can be classified as either vertical or horizontal depending on the orientation of the handle. Vertical toggle clamps live up their namesake by featuring a vertical handle, whereas horizontal toggle clamps feature a horizontal handle. Both types will apply a clamping force when you engage the handle. The orientation of the handle is simply different with vertical and horizontal toggle clamps.

Handle Shape

In addition to vertical and horizontal orientations, the shape of the handle may vary. All toggle clamps have a handle. With that said, the shape of the handle may vary. Most toggle clamps have a straight lever-like handle. You can grab the straight handle and pull it to apply a clamping force. Other toggle clamps have a T-shaped handle. T-shaped handles are similar to straight handles, but they have a horizontal extension at the top.

Clamping Force

Don’t forget to consider the clamping force when choosing toggle clamps. Toggle clamps are designed specifically to apply a clamping force. But the pressure of this clamping force may vary. Some toggle clamps will apply a stronger clamping force with more pressure than others. To determine the pressure of a toggle clamp’s clamping force, you can refer to its clamping force.

Holding Force

Something else to consider when choosing toggle clamps is the holding force. Not to be confused with clamping force, holding force is the maximum amount of pressure a toggle clamp can withstand after the handle has been engaged. Engaging the handle will apply the clamping force to the workpiece. At the same time, the toggle clamp will be exposed to pressure from above. The maximum amount of pressure a toggle can withstand is the holding force.

Hand Force

There’s also the hand force. The hand force of a toggle clamp refers to the amount of pressure needed to engage the handle. You’ll typically have the pull the handle to engage it and, thus, apply a clamping force. Hand force refers to how much pressure is needed to pull the handle.

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