Really, this post is for my own use, to help me remember, but I wanted it available from anywhere not buried on one hard drive in a Word document, and I thought a few other people might find it helpful also.
I’m a big believer in viseless workholding for new hand tool and hybrid woodworkers (a category I most certainly fall into), partly because vises are expensive, and partly because their convenience can become a crutch for new woodworkers and lead to bad habits.
Okay, it’s mostly because of the financial thing. I can’t afford good quality vise hardware, and I’m trying to justify my prejudice that way.
Regardless, I think it’s a worthwhile endeavor to try to assemble a complete list of all the various ways one can hold a workpiece other than vises, handscrews or clamps. The focus here is on shop-made devices that can be made fairly readily by even a novice, so I’m also leaving out screws, nails, double-sided sticky tape (thank you Shannon Rogers!) and shelf liner. Oh and the Veritas Wonder Pup/Dog, even though I think they’re the bee’s knees.
Here’s a complete list as best as I can come up with so far. Additional suggestions would be most welcome.
Bench hooks/Chute board. I think both the broad, flat kind and Underhill style are valuable.
Bench dogs. I like round and wood, but whatever works for you.
Holdfasts. I forged my own from rebar, but as The Schwarz has pointed out, a forked stick from your back yard will work too.
Notched batten/Doe’s foot
Crochet/Frog. I see people leaving these out of their Roubo benches all the time and I don’t understand why. Even if you have a leg vise, how quick and easy is it to stick a couple of pegs/bench dogs into the holdfast holes in your bench legs and jam a board in the crochet?
Planing stops – metal, wood, a batten with dowels on the underside to go in your holdfast/dog holes, whatever. The kind mounted to the end of the bench with a couple of anchor bolts and wing nuts are neat, but probably too fancy for my tastes.
Paired wedges can be used to lock in a workpiece between dogs.
-- I have no idea what I'm doing.