Lately I’ve been looking around trying to find inexpensive ways to make clamps to use in the shop. I think of my purchased commercially available clamps I own two 3 foot bar clamps and three Quick Grip clamps, plus two old c-clamps.
Bar Type Clamps:
The first information I found about making your own clamps was Alex Harris’ video.
I made one of these out of some second hand wood I had, though I did fudge the screw in favor of my own variation.
I also have some spool clamps, a compliment of 14 which I used when i built my wife’s dulcimer. Since I plan on continuing my dabbling in lutherie, it seemed wise to have some around.
Not sure if I needed this, but here’s a video on the subject.
Another cool clamp is a cam clamp, also called a luthier’s clamp. Ya never know when you’ll need a light duty clamp with some reach to it.
Picture Frame Clamp:
And since I like oddball projects, I couldn’t resist making a picture frame clamp after I found this video:
My version, made of recycled oak from a shipping pallet.
My Bar Clamp:
This clamp I made after much searching around and careful though. I felt so good about the design that i sent a very short one out to Steve Ramsey in case he wanted to do something with it in a video. Later this year I’ll e making more of these. I figure I can make 6 clamps out of a board 12 inches wide. I plan on making six 4 footers and six 3 footers.
Steve was kind enough to give me my 15 seconds of fame in his Mere Minutes Vlog (though truth be told, I do not live nor ever have lived in Albany.)
Hand Screw Clamps:
And Lastly I made this hand screw clamp.
I was thinking about this for some time and thoroughly enjoyed the series starting here
However, it was when I found these instructions that I felt comfortable enough to make the attempt. I did fudge them by using nuts nested in a drilled hole instead of threading turned screws, but hey, that’s how I make sawdust.I think the best thing about these is that I can make them out of scrap 2×4s. The one shown used a hunk 9 inches long.
Heavy Duty Bar Clamps:
If you need to make a clamp that’s really heavy duty, I found this video that pretty much shows to to make classic style bar clamps. A couple of these are on my list for a future project.
And if you just like to watch videos, here is a link to a playlist I maintain about any shop made clamps I find. Enjoy.
-- Beware the flying swarf!