Pedal clamp

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Project by Ben Simms posted 03-29-2012 04:47 PM 3594 views 13 times favorited 26 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is my first try at an idea I’ve had kicking around in my head. There is a rubber pad at the clamp point and it holds great. I am open to any suggestions.

-- I played with Legos as a kid and I never had the part I thought I needed, so I learned to improvise. Now I'm an engineer with a woodworking hobby.

26 comments so far

View lizardhead's profile


522 posts in 1630 days

#1 posted 03-29-2012 05:02 PM

Looks like a $ 50,000 nut cracker. lol

-- Lizardhead---Yeah but it's a dry heat--Tempe, Az

View docholladay's profile


1287 posts in 1847 days

#2 posted 03-29-2012 05:31 PM

Sort of a twist on the shaving horse idea for the bench. I should think it would hold fine, but might cause a problem with movement due to having to have your weight on the pedal for the item to actually hold the work. If you had a way to push down on the pedal and lock it in place so that you don’t have to keep your weight on the pedal, I think you would have something then. Especially if you also had a convenient quick release on it.


-- Hey, woodworking ain't brain surgery. Just do something and keep trying till you get it. Doc

View Philip's profile


1165 posts in 1328 days

#3 posted 03-29-2012 05:40 PM

This looks like it could be the next big bench craze. Well done.

-- I never finish anyth

View MShort's profile


1737 posts in 2207 days

#4 posted 03-29-2012 07:31 PM

Creativity at it’s finest.

-- Mike, Missouri --- “A positive life can not happen with a negative mind.” ---

View BTKS's profile


1971 posts in 2253 days

#5 posted 03-29-2012 07:47 PM

I know guys in blacksmithing that do something similar with a loop of chain throught he pritchel hole. Works great for odd shaped stock and most of all really quick!
The quick release docholloday was talking about could be achieved with a section of pipe and pipe clamp tail stock. Might take some tweeking but I believe doable.
Good luck, BTKS

-- "Man's ingenuity has outrun his intelligence" (Joseph Wood Krutch)

View exelectrician's profile


1847 posts in 1216 days

#6 posted 03-29-2012 08:43 PM

A simple sailing cleat in the line would hold fast and a quick flick on the line would release. But yours is the great idea to start with!

-- Love thy neighbour as thyself

View Eric in central Florida's profile

Eric in central Florida

3679 posts in 2364 days

#7 posted 03-29-2012 09:08 PM

Smart idea Ben.
That will be in the next Workbench Book !

-- All glory comes from daring to begin.

View Mark A. DeCou's profile

Mark A. DeCou

2000 posts in 3194 days

#8 posted 03-29-2012 09:41 PM

years ago I ran onto another powder horn maker, and he used a similar concept to hold his horns in place while working on them. I made a sketch of it, and planned to build one for myself. I think it’s been 12-15 years ago now. At least I still have the sketch even if I never did get the foot clamp built.

I say good job!

-- Mark DeCou - American Contemporary Craft Artisan -

View Sam Shakouri's profile

Sam Shakouri

1004 posts in 1876 days

#9 posted 03-29-2012 10:10 PM

It could be a good idea for a big job, but what did it give you more than a normal hand clamp?
I like Lizardhead’s comment.

-- Sam Shakouri / CREATING WONDERS WITH WOOD.....Sydney,Australia....

View oldoak's profile


56 posts in 1768 days

#10 posted 03-29-2012 11:45 PM

How about a spring to hold tension on your work and step on the pedal to release?

Looks good and useful.

View vakman's profile


301 posts in 1192 days

#11 posted 03-29-2012 11:55 PM

This has some potential, good thinking! I’d incorporate a pulley system so that you can get more clamping power (although I am aware that your current configuration is already x2 as far as leverage goes. You tell us…how well does it work?

-- - Power is not revealed by striking hard or often, but by striking true. -

View kiefer's profile


3480 posts in 1456 days

#12 posted 03-30-2012 02:36 AM

Great idea !
Simple with great potential .


-- Kiefer 松

View cabmaker's profile


1315 posts in 1598 days

#13 posted 03-30-2012 02:44 AM

I like it, but wait a minute, oldoak just may be onto something !

View Martyroc's profile


2708 posts in 1095 days

#14 posted 03-30-2012 03:31 AM

That’s a cool idea, I need to try that, thanks for posting

-- Martin ....always count the number of fingers you have before, and after using the saw.

View Ben Simms's profile

Ben Simms

191 posts in 1080 days

#15 posted 03-30-2012 04:08 AM

lizardhead, ha ha i don’t think i’ll try. All the parts were free.
docholladay, Yes it is a little annoying to have my foot on it the whole time. I was thinking that it needs to lock tight good point.
Philip, thank you.
MShort, thanks man.
BTKS, Brilliant! when I got home I grabbed one one of my old pipe clamps and jammed it under the table next to the pedal and it works great! i just need to devise a paddle for the release.
exelectrician, good idea i will have to give this a try, thanks
Woodwrecker, thanks, fingers crossed;)
Mark A. DeCou, you should dust off that sketch and give it a try.
Sam Shakouri, as vakman pointed out it i get some decent mechanical advantage, I’m sure a hand clamp would work to but its not done yet.
oldoak, a spring, oh cool. I will need a spring but yes I will try it.
vakman, yes a pully… I can do that.
kiefer, thank you.
cabmaker, Agreed!
Martyroc, sure thing man.
thanks for all the comments.

I will try out ideas and update/re-post

-- I played with Legos as a kid and I never had the part I thought I needed, so I learned to improvise. Now I'm an engineer with a woodworking hobby.

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