What's a Surround-Clamp?

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Blog entry by Steuss posted 01-01-2011 02:59 AM 1483 reads 2 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Have you ever wanted to clamp in two directions on a multi-piece project on your workbench? How did you do it?

That was the problem I had for over 25 years of woodworking. I searched the catalogs—no clamp existed that would do that. If you used pipe-clamps, the second direction was impossible as you couldn’t cross them. And there was no control over small parts.

Than I thought of the solution! It’s simple! Just SURROUND the objects you want to clamp!

So I designed a clamp that will do that. It works like a wooden band-clamp with pipe-clamp power!
I have tried it on a complicated segmented platter and it worked just fine. (See picture) You have control of where the pieces go at all times. And when you want to glue them, you can adjust the two sides in eight places and get the workpieces to fit exact with no struggle.

This is especially important when you are trying to clamp angular pieces or uneven material.

At any rate, this thing really works and saves a lot of grief.

-- Dick, Novato

5 comments so far

View patron's profile


13606 posts in 3364 days

#1 posted 01-01-2011 03:21 AM

simple and straight forward
i usually just hammer wedges
against stops
but this is re-usable

great for boxes and bread boards martyn (britboxmaker) did something similar
but i cant find it
his had higher sides
for squaring and clamping boxes

can be done for angles too

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View Gregn's profile


1642 posts in 3007 days

#2 posted 01-01-2011 04:26 AM

Very handy and simple to make. In some cases better than band clamps. Funny how some of the simple ideas can be the best ideas.

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 3332 days

#3 posted 01-01-2011 07:29 AM

That is a great idea and similar to a surround clamp/downdraft table I built a while back. The panels with holes for the dust collection can be removed and solid panels put in their place. The clamping on all four sides can be adjusted from perfectly square to any angle in between. It has come in handy for glue up on projects, holding projects for sculpting, carving & Sanding. The table top adjusts from flat to 45 degrees and the table height is also adjustable.

View Eagle1's profile


2066 posts in 3088 days

#4 posted 01-01-2011 02:19 PM

Wow a couple of great looking and useful homemade jigs. Great thinking there..

-- Tim, Missouri ....Inside every older person is a younger person wondering what the heck happened

View Don's profile


517 posts in 3096 days

#5 posted 01-02-2011 08:37 AM

I mostly just use bar clamps with a deep throat that can easily be crossed over each other.
For small things like boxes and frames I can see where this jig would be quite usefull though.

-- Don - I wood work if I could. Redmond WA.

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