Around the Shop #11: A vintage Wheel drive for the leg vise

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Blog entry by Don W posted 589 days ago 3564 reads 5 times favorited 37 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 10: Finally, a leg vice. Part 11 of Around the Shop series Part 12: ok, the bench is clean »

Ever since I’ve seen the wheel drive like the bench craft I thought it would be pretty cool to have, as an upgrade to my leg vice. But I’m more of a vintage guy, so something that new and shinny wouldn’t fit the decor of my shop. Plus, at over $300, I find it hard to justify.

So as I saw wheels in flea markets and antique shops I’d stop and look. Most were way more than I thought they were worth, and I even bought an old tractor steering wheel, but it just didn’t seem to fit. Then one day I ran onto this in an antique shop. The price was right, so home it came.

Heavy, vintage and cool. So lets see if it will work. I had to purchase a set of larger drill bits. I needed to enlarged the hole slightly to 15/16”. A set of bits were only about $30, so I ordered them.

So I popped the pin and removed the existing handle
Made a new cherry knob.


And what do you know. A working vintage wheeled leg vice.


Thanks for stopping by.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

37 comments so far

View Brandon's profile


4138 posts in 1586 days

#1 posted 589 days ago

Wow, that thing is big! It’s very cool. I imagine using the leg vise is like steering the Titanic.

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View chrisstef's profile


10702 posts in 1641 days

#2 posted 589 days ago

No problem getting the proper amount of torque outta that bad boy Don. Once again i lust your rust brother.

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty

View Don W's profile

Don W

14899 posts in 1202 days

#3 posted 589 days ago

well, lets hope it don’t sink, although its cold enough in there right now to hit an iceberg!!

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

View Mauricio's profile


6809 posts in 1786 days

#4 posted 589 days ago

So cool Don! Can you free wheel spin it like the benchcrafted?

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View Mosquito's profile


4650 posts in 927 days

#5 posted 589 days ago

Nice, I’ve got a similar wheel off an old mill, or lathe, or something that I’m hoping to use for mine. It’s not quite so large, so I won’t have the leverage you would with this… I bet you could crush many things with that kind of leverage lol

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN -- Stanley #45 Evangelist -

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4119 posts in 1491 days

#6 posted 589 days ago

Don that is so neat.

-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View John's profile


341 posts in 2433 days

#7 posted 589 days ago

That is sweet, it just begs to be spun!

-- John - Central PA -

View Druid's profile


608 posts in 1430 days

#8 posted 589 days ago

Looks like a real improvement. Great idea.

-- John, British Columbia, Canada

View grizzman's profile


6944 posts in 1938 days

#9 posted 589 days ago

what a great upgrade…and why isnt your wood stove keeping thing warm, or did you not fire it up..ive got to get mine going, i have work to do, just have had a lazy week…plus my mom is in icu in florida, and im quite worried for her…to much on my mind , dont want a cutting accident…bt i really love the wheel, does it turn pretty smooth..grizz

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View AnthonyReed's profile


4575 posts in 1075 days

#10 posted 589 days ago

Oh hell yes!

-- ~Tony

View Don W's profile

Don W

14899 posts in 1202 days

#11 posted 589 days ago

Grizzman, I’ve been gone all week and didn’t get out there until this afternoon. The wood stove is going now and it not bad. Its been cold here though.

I’m working in tampa, so the temp difference is a pain. 0-80 you know!

Mauricio, I took a one handed crappy video of the spin. Now to figure out how to upload it again.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

View grizzman's profile


6944 posts in 1938 days

#12 posted 589 days ago

oh great, i was hoping your shop would be warm enough, the tampa area is where my mom is, if you have time, stop in and see her, she is in the icu unit at morton plant…last name is putman. tell her her son sends all his love…have a good weekend, i guess your going back…

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View stefang's profile


12953 posts in 1969 days

#13 posted 589 days ago

Very cool!

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Don W's profile

Don W

14899 posts in 1202 days

#14 posted 589 days ago

i posted a link to the crappy video. Someone remind me how to embed it and I’ll fix it.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

View Brit's profile


5128 posts in 1477 days

#15 posted 589 days ago

Very cool Don, I love it.

To embed a video from Photobucket, just click on the HTML code under the video links on the right. It automatically copies the code to the clipboard, then you just paste it in your thread.

-- Andy -- Old Chinese proverb say: If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it.

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