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Jigging Beams in Mid Air?


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  #1  
Old 01-02-2015, 09:36:31 PM
dalmatiangirl61 dalmatiangirl61 is offline
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Default Jigging Beams in Mid Air?

I'm familiar with jigging stuff for welding, but its always been smaller projects that I could use a tabletop, or build a quick jig just for that job. So I'm getting ready to start cutting roof beams for the new warehouse, it will be like 5 or 10 degree cuts that I will then weld a plate to so that everything bolts together. So instead a building a 20 ft long jig table, I was thinking why not just build a jig that clamps right to the beam so that the plates and bolt holes are all the same on all the beams?

Welding shop has big magnets designed to hold pipes at angles, but nothing for I-beams. So before I go re-inventing the wheel, does anyone have info on a mfr'd product, or advice on how you would do it?
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Old 01-08-2015, 01:34:07 AM
dkamp dkamp is online now
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Default Re: Jigging Beams in Mid Air?

I've been thinking about this for the last five days, because I'll be faced with a similar situation when I build my new shop building... but my roof will be up about 26', so doing it on-ground is more my plan.

I haven't had any grand eureka moments, but my GENERAL thought, is that rather than building a jig table, I'd probably lay out the beams on cribbing on the floor, and set the angles by marking the floor with chalk or a marker, getting everything in position, then (as you suggested) making the cutting/drilling fixture to slip over the end of the beam so it can be marked for cuts and drills...

OR, I'd make a fixture that allows me to fabricate coupling ends that socket the beams together for through-bolting... so that the beams don't really need to be precision cut... all the precision angle concerns are in the coupling socket...

and when construction time comes, I'd have a whole bunch of beams precut and pre-drilled, with sockets bolted to ONE, just lay the other pieces out on the ground, bolt 'em all together, prop one up rigid, stand the rest of 'em up against it, in line on cribbing, ready to rig and lift with a crane.

If you make a slip-on fitting, you could put a clamping bolt or two on it, so that it slips on, clamps down, and have a pivot included that you can slide in an abrasive, cold, or porta-band saw in, to lop the beam off at correct angle...
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Old 01-10-2015, 05:16:18 PM
dalmatiangirl61 dalmatiangirl61 is offline
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Default Re: Jigging Beams in Mid Air?

Yes I want to do all the jigging down on the ground, by mid-air I meant 3 foot of beam hanging off a saw horse, no jig table, just a fixture to clamp to beam to hold plate to the beam while I weld, so I can do 20 pieces and they all come out exactly the same.

Picked up 48- 6"x 6"x 18' heavy wall galvanized I-beam with base plates already welded on this past week, just need to weld a punched plate to the top of each of these for roof beams to bolt to.

For the most part I'm just copying the present building, although there will be differences because of material available. One area I'm still not sure what to do with is the center clear span roof beam, present building has a 12" thin wall beam, whereas my beams are 8" thick wall. Either I find different beams for the clear span, or truss out the 8" beams to 12"-14"
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Old 01-11-2015, 10:13:14 PM
dkamp dkamp is online now
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Default Re: Jigging Beams in Mid Air?

Well, a positioning fixture is relative to the two items being aligned, it shouldn't care where the floor, or gravity for that matter... wants it to be, aside from deflection under it's own weight.

Traditionally, one would design a fixture so that one part would sit IN it, and the other part would also sit IN it at a predetermined position. If you make your positioning fixture so that it just clamps onto the beam, then it doesn't matter if it's 30 feet, or three feet, or three inches off the ground.

Spacing it out to match the form-factor of existing beams would probably not be as difficult with the beams, as it is just making things elsewhere (overlap of siding, etc)...
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