Welcome back folks. Progress has been slow but steady. I’m in the home stretch now.
I need to finish up this leg vise, then the lower shelf and I’ll be ready for final assembly.
A while back BrandonW gave me a Jatoba board. Its the same stuff I’m using on my deadman. Its beautiful dense wood and I’ve been milking every last scrap of it. I used the below scrap as my garter even though it is the checked end of the board. I ended up having to use a lot of superglue in the cracks to hold it together. But I think it’s going to be worth it. It really looks nice.
Here is the final result after laying out and cutting it to shape.
This wood is a lot redder than it appears in the pics. I’ll be sure to take some better pics for the final reveal.
Then I needed a handle for the vise. I had a piece of hickory firewood that worked perfectly for this. I am introducing yet another wood species here but I think it blends well with the oak.
I tried to match the style of my lee valley screw handle that I will be using for the wagon vise. Close enough…
Next, I needed a nut for the screw I’m using as my parallel guide. I made the nut 1.5” thick so that it would engage at least 3 threads on the screw. This is one of the disadvantages to the screw I’m using (2tpi). The nut on the Shaker bench in Scott Landis’ book is only 3/4” but its on a screw that is smaller with a higher TPI. Also a nut that is 3/4” does not affect the vise closing down to zero. Mine does.
Here is my solution to overcoming part of that problem. You’ll notice that the picture above has a lot of guide lines for the bevel cuts I decided to make.
I pulled out my home made tenon jig which is just an LVL block with a cleat screwed to it, works great:
And cut some bevels on it.
The advantage to this is that it keeps my threads intact while thinning the outside. This allows the leg vise to wrack a little more without the nut getting so much in the way.
You’ll see in a minute that the vise still does not close up all the way but I can very effectively clamp a 1/4 board (more like 3/16”) without it budging.
Here is a pic with a 1/4” piece of plywood clamped in the vise with the leather I’m planning on using. The leather is about an 1/8” thick so that helps. I can move the bench before the piece will move. So I’m thinking I will leave the vise as is even though it doesn’t close up all the way. It bugs me a little but I can live with it.
Oops, that pic is a little out of order and gives away part of the ending. Oh well… :-)
The other option was to cut a recess in the vise chop to make room for the nut but I think I will hold off on that.
Now to shape the chop. I had planned to make it similar to the Shaker vise chop but I decided to keep it as beefy as possible. The walnut was so beautiful that I wanted to keep as much of it as I could. So I decided to just do a round over at the top and leave the rest along.
I did the layout with a French curve and a white wax pencil. I tried a couple of variations but finally went with the outside line for a more robust round over.
Sawed out most of the waste.
Gave the new #62 a spin. I’m still getting used to this tool so I’ll reserve judgment. I just didn’t feel comfortable maneuvering it during this application.
The #4 worked out better. I just felt right.
This is what it looks like with Mineral Spirits on it! I’m pretty happy with the way it turned out.
And here is the finished product.
This is an older picture but you can see that the capacity is pretty nice!
So the leg vise is pretty much done. I have some UHMW tape I want to put in the hole of the parallel guide to make it run smoother and keep it from getting bumped around so much it passes through the leg.
The clamping power of this vise is amazing. I put Christef’s Mallet in the vise with the leather and I’m not exaggerating when I say I can move the entire bench by moving the handle and the mallet doesn’t budge at all!
You’ll see in the next blog I am using the leg vise a lot for edge jointing shelf boards.
Thanks for following along!
-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch