Jigs and fixtures
Jigs and fixtures can be generically defined as devices used in the manufacture of components to locate and hold workpieces. The characteristic that distinguishes one from the other is that jigs are used to guide the worktool or template. Fixtures are not.
Both are used for holding, assembling or inspecting tools or other elements used in for applications in the aerospace, optical and computer fields.
Jigs and fixtures can be made from steel, stainless steel, magnesium, plastics and glass-reinforced plastics. Depending on the size of the jig or fixture, and the job specifications, tolerances can be from 0.0001" to 0.020".
Machining operations needed to fabricate jigs and fixtures are boring, grinding, turning and electro-discharge machining (EDM). Highly skilled machinists, a clean environment with closely controlled ambient conditions enhance the ability to produce the consistent quality and tight tolerances required in the specifications for jigs and fixtures.
The development of prototypes should be used by the supplier as vehicles to provide customers with practical and realistic feedback on design, materials and manufacture. Capabilities for use of Computer-Aided Design (CAD) documents and Computer Numerical Control (CNC) equipment are important to the value of the services provided.
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