Hand Tools doings #6: home made "vise"

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Blog entry by Betsy posted 03-12-2008 03:00 AM 6852 reads 3 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 5: Third try - hand cut dovetails ---- Sooooo much better Part 6 of Hand Tools doings series Part 7: ohhhhh I've really done it now! »

I’m just puttering around tonight. I thought I’d snap a couple of pictures of the homemade vise that I’m using on my bench. I made this because the face and tail vise on my cheapo workbench pretty much won’t hold anything tight enough to saw or chop on. This was made out of a piece of scrap 3/4 ply. The size is arbitrary—I just took a piece and chopped it in half with the chop saw. I then hand chopped the slots for the screw and knobs and cleaned up the nasty edges (I’m still not a chopping queen) with a file. Added some cleats to the bottom so that the screws would slide easier across the bottom. This is clamped to my bench with two small clamps which makes it so I can move it out of the way when I don’t need it. The size is accidently large enough to clamp a six inch board – which would probably be the largest drawer I would ever do.

I’m quite sure I’ve seen something like this somewhere, but don’t know who to give credit to. The clamping strength is pretty amazing. For giggles I put in a board lying flat and in the vertical clamp and took a mallet and tried to get the board to move. Couldn’t do it. So I think it’s adequate for what I’m doing.

I probably could have done a better and neater job had I used my power tools, but I’m still taking it easy in that department.

Anyway, here it is.



-- "Our past judges our present." JFK - 1962; American Heritage Magazine

6 comments so far

View Thuan's profile


203 posts in 3812 days

#1 posted 03-12-2008 04:26 AM

That is one good idea. I’m making one for my bench, I’ll call it the Betsy Clamp.

-- Thuan

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 3982 days

#2 posted 03-12-2008 04:50 AM

See Betsy, if you got Thuan making one, then it shows that you are on the right track.

Good job.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3816 days

#3 posted 03-12-2008 04:53 AM

Thanks for the update. I noticed it in you dovetail post and thought that is a nice idea.

Very practical project.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Betsy's profile


3391 posts in 3890 days

#4 posted 03-12-2008 04:57 AM

That’s great Thuan – a tool with my name on it!!!! I’m glad I inspired you.

Just one of those things you make to solve a problem.

-- "Our past judges our present." JFK - 1962; American Heritage Magazine

View YorkshireStewart's profile


1130 posts in 3895 days

#5 posted 03-12-2008 09:49 PM

I’ll be making a Betsy Clamp too! I can see all sorts of uses for it.

-- Res severa verum gaudium - True pleasure is a serious business.

View Betsy's profile


3391 posts in 3890 days

#6 posted 03-13-2008 01:03 AM

Wow——I’m going across the pond!!!! I’m going to be famous! :-)

Seriously, glad I could inspire someone.

-- "Our past judges our present." JFK - 1962; American Heritage Magazine

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