My First Workbench #30: Day 31: Mounting the Leg Vise (part 3)

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Blog entry by RaggedKerf posted 10-22-2012 11:59 AM 1243 reads 0 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 29: Day 30: Mounting the Leg Vise (part 2) Part 30 of My First Workbench series Part 31: Day 32: Mounting the Leg Vise (part 4) »

Please click here to see the version with pictures.

I made some good progress for the 20 minutes I had to work on the bench today.

I used the utility knife to chamber the edges of the two locking nut/wood discs I fabricated, then polished off the wood with 220 grit sandpaper for a nice smooth finish that didn’t end up overly round.

I also got out the 3/8” paddle bit and started to hog out the slot for the support guide at the bottom of the leg vise. I ran out of time to get this part finished, but the hole is roughed out and I just started to chisel it smooth.

The main event, however, was a full up trial run of the vise. I put the chop on the threaded rod, then 2 washers (I haven’t decided fi I want 2 or 1) then the first nut/wood block, then the handle, then the end nut/wood block. I set the end piece to cover the sharp end of the threaded rod in case me or the kids or anyone else happens to get to close to the bench, they won’t (read that as I won’t) gore themselves. Then it was a simple matter of rotating the handle in the opposite direction until it was snug and tight against the end piece. Then , repeat that process for the last nut and the whole thing got incredibly tight. I don’t think I even need to glue it.

And the test? It worked like a dream. I spun the handle a little bit and it was so smooth. When the chop was engaged, I put Jim’s lamp mounting plate in it for the first test and man did it get locked down.

The chop wanted to wobble side to side a bit as I tightened it up, but I anticipate that the guide at the bottom that is to be installed with solve that.

I have yet to figure out a way to get a garter on this thing. The first idea I had met with horrible failure. I mortised out a little space in the rear of the chop (the inside face) and placed that little metal piece I worked on yesterday in the slot. Everything fit nice, the threaded rod passed right through…but when I went to test it, the chop just tighten up against the handle (using the same principle as the handle itself) and then wouldn’t budge. After some head scratching, I realized that this tack is the wrong course. That’s when it hit me that the garter can’t touch an actual thread or it acts like a nut. Duh. Ah well, the learning pains. Which means, I think I need to mortise a hole in the front of the chop, cut a thick slice off a thick dowel and hollow it for the threaded rod, then cut a groove in the dowel and mount a garter into that. I’m thinking this will ride with a washer on either end (one against the chop, one against the handle assembly).

But that can wait a while. It’s not so bad at all to just tighten things down, then back the handle off and manually pull the chop back. I’m going to live with it for a while and see how I like it. If I don’t, I’ll rig up the garter.
At the moment, I don’t want to mess up a good thing by tinkering too much!

Please click here see the version with pictures.

-- Steve

2 comments so far

View Sylvain's profile


706 posts in 2497 days

#1 posted 10-22-2012 01:48 PM

I would suggest you file out the thread where the garter comes in contact with the rod, in such a way that there no more thread at that spot. In other words making a circular groove with a width just greater than the garter tickness.

It will not weaken the rod as its strength depends of the core diameter.
You will have to get the garter a little bit closer to the core of the rod.
Probably a quarter of an hour job.

I see you have in some way sharpened you garter so that it can slip between two threads; take that bevel out so that it will not engage in the thread.

-- Sylvain, Brussels, Belgium, Europe - The more I learn, the more there is to learn

View RaggedKerf's profile


425 posts in 2118 days

#2 posted 10-22-2012 03:42 PM

Aha! Genius! Thanks so much for the tip! I will tackle that today. I agree, it shouldn’t take long at all. The light suddenly just turn on over my head—-I don’t know why I didn’t think of that before. So much simpler than trying to cut a dowel, etc…

Thanks so much!!!

-- Steve

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