My boss gave me the day off for independence day so I thought I'd write about my new Vice Fixture from @pocket_nc!
After talking a bit with a few different people about my old clamp system, I designed a couple of months ago; they pointed out a few flaws. The main flaw with it is the rigidity of the design, the only point of contact with the stock is the lower half maybe 1/2" in total, and the rest is free-floating; this causes vibrations to go through the stock and leaves imperfect surface finish quality.
I talked with my boss about it and mentioned @pocket_nc had a circular stock fixture to hold round rods of material with an ER-40 collet. It's got sufficient clamping force to hold it securely in the vice and provides much more rigidity. I was convinced that it was worth it very quickly, especially since I didn't have to do as much work calculating where the stock was in the machine. My boss also mentioned that you could take 3" round stock and put it on a lathe to cut one end down to 1" (the largest diameter the clamp can hold). With a piece of circular stock cut down to 1" on one end means you can pretty much mill out whatever size part you like on the machine with relatively stable work-holding.
It came in on Tuesday, and I was dismayed to find the tool to tighten the fixture, not in the package. I contacted Pocket NC, and they responded within an hour, apologizing for the mistake, and shipped a new one right away. The next day I received it, not even 24 hours after I got the package. I love the people at @pocket_nc; they are always super friendly and have fantastic customer support!