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View AbeFroman's profile

Have bar clamps completely replaced C-Clamps?

by AbeFroman
posted 1128 days ago


22 replies so far

View Loren's profile

Loren

7223 posts in 2244 days


#1 posted 1128 days ago

C clamps are really originally for metal work I think. I have a ton
of little c clamps that come in useful once in awhile for making
curved laminations without a lot of fancy cauls.

There’s a picture in Sam Maloof’s book I think of a curved staircase rail
being glued up with dozens of clamps, many of them c clamps.

C clamps can get into small spaces bar clamps can’t, easily, and
they are not so heavy to handle if you’ve got clamps just the
right size for what you are doing.

I wouldn’t buy c clamps new, generally, but I buy them when
I see them used and cheap and I generally feel you can’t have
too many clamps.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View jusfine's profile

jusfine

2280 posts in 1522 days


#2 posted 1128 days ago

You can NEVER have too many clamps…

I don’t use many C clamps either anymore, but I keep a few hanging around different areas of the shop just in case I need something clamped, they do come in handy at times.

-- Randy "You are judged as much by the questions you ask as the answers you give..."

View richgreer's profile

richgreer

4522 posts in 1671 days


#3 posted 1128 days ago

There is definitely a role for C clamps in my shop. I only own 4 in 2 different sizes and they do not get used a lot, but there are times when they are clearly the best option. They can deliver a lot of clamping force.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View knotscott's profile

knotscott

5367 posts in 1972 days


#4 posted 1128 days ago

I still use C-clamps on the calipers when I’m changing brake pads, but not for much else.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View William's profile (online now)

William

8890 posts in 1438 days


#5 posted 1128 days ago

I still use C-clamps. I have a free source of wood, but most of it is three quarters of an inch thick. I often have to glue these panels together to make thicker stock. C-clamps work great for this purpose. Of course, I am so used to using my bar clamps that I seldom use the C-clamps until I have run out of bar clamps to use.

-- http://wddsrfinewoodworks.blogspot.com/

View Mickey Cassiba's profile

Mickey Cassiba

312 posts in 1627 days


#6 posted 1128 days ago

My c-clamps are invaluable…I use ‘em for all kinds of stuff, clamping jigs to tools is the main use…but they make a handy ‘third hand as well.For jig making the are the cat’s pajamas…

-- One of these hammers oughta fix that...

View Grandpa's profile

Grandpa

3043 posts in 1271 days


#7 posted 1128 days ago

I have 5 I think. I hardly ever use them unless I am welding. Sometimes I use some old pipe clamps for that if I can. they are just easier to manipulate than C-clamps. C-clamps mar wood and are difficult to operate. I have the one hand Irwin clamps and many bar clamps and hand screw clamps. I use those most of the time.

View TechRedneck's profile

TechRedneck

735 posts in 1453 days


#8 posted 1128 days ago

I have a number of them and still use them. Most of the time they are dedicated to a specific task and just stay there. You can pick them up fairly cheap. Two hold down the Incra-lite jig on the router table, a couple always hang on the drill press and a couple are in the tool chest with the socket wrenches. Two stay with the straight edge used for cutting down plywood sheets. The expensive Bessey’s and Jorgeson’s always go back in the rack.

-- Mike.... West Virginia. "Man is a tool using animal. Without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all.". T Carlyle

View crank49's profile

crank49

3336 posts in 1567 days


#9 posted 1128 days ago

I have a half dozen each of 4” & 6” C-clamps and about 10 of 3” clamps. I go to them for leg glue-ups mostly and any time I need a lot of pressure. They are great for making bent laminations; and as Techredneck said, there’s always a couple hanging around the drill press.

-- Michael :-{| “If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.” ― A H

View Loren's profile

Loren

7223 posts in 2244 days


#10 posted 1128 days ago

They do have the advantage, which most bar clamps don’t, of having
both clamping ends clear of the work by a bit. This comes in handy
often when clamping machine setups. For gluing, I admit the relief
in the c clamp is usually unneeded, so it’s advantage to a woodworker
won’t be immediately obvious.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View Lee Barker's profile

Lee Barker

2163 posts in 1446 days


#11 posted 1128 days ago

When I think of bark lamps I think of a juniper log with some wires running up a hole in the center and a brass harp and a shade….oh no, that’s not it…

Jorgensons, that what I think of. I have two smaller Besseys that I keep just for clamping a sacrificial fence on the ol’ BeastMaster fence. Got ‘em at a garage sale and have never seen them before or since.

But I do keep lots of 3”, 2” and 1” C clamps around. They can do delicate work that even the Besseys don’t. It all depends on the project. Also they don’t project (the other pronunciation) so the lump of wood and iron can be easier to handle.

Kindly,

Lee

-- "...in his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

View ub52's profile

ub52

7 posts in 1580 days


#12 posted 1128 days ago

Deep throat c-clamps can get into places that bar clamps can’t even think about. I couldn’t get by without them.

Bob

-- Bob, San Diego, http://garageshopconfessions.com

View GaryK's profile

GaryK

10262 posts in 2584 days


#13 posted 1128 days ago

Yea, they still come in handy.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View helluvawreck's profile

helluvawreck

15392 posts in 1463 days


#14 posted 1128 days ago

I use all kinds of clamps, including c-clamps. My only problem is that I never seem to have enough clamps.

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2697 posts in 1882 days


#15 posted 1128 days ago

I use every type clamp I own—including my c-clamps. I think they all have their place.

-- She thought I hung the moon--now she just thinks I did it wrong

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

2716 posts in 1840 days


#16 posted 1127 days ago

C clamps are more compact. As Garry K’s picture (post#13) shows, bar clamps can be big and clumsy. My smallest bar clamps are 18”, so the bar sticks out too far sometimes. There will always be a situation where one type of clamp is the right one to grab. I wouldn’t use a Bessey to hold parts for welding for example. One big negative of bar clamps is the distance the handle is from the bar. Sometimes I can’t get my hand fully around the handle to grip it enough to tighten or loosen; I have to use my finger tips. There is one bar clamp that gets around this clearance problem. I think it’s Jet, in which the handle swings 90° so it can be tightened like a vise handle.

View ferstler's profile

ferstler

333 posts in 2116 days


#17 posted 1127 days ago

I have several sizes, and do use them on occasion. I have an adjustable-length (4 feet or 8 feet) aluminum “fence” that can be clamped to really big pieces of wood (usually plywood sheets), and it allows me to cut a long straight line on materials like that with either of my standard, Skil-type circular saws. The best way to secure the fence solidly to the wood sheeting is with small C-clamps. There are some clamping jobs where any kind of bar clamp just gets in the way.

Howard Ferstler

View rance's profile

rance

4125 posts in 1757 days


#18 posted 1127 days ago

I’m with knotscott, only for squeezing calipers. But I’m an impatient man.

-- Backer boards, stop blocks, build oversized, and never buy a hand plane--

View Bertha's profile

Bertha

12951 posts in 1289 days


#19 posted 1127 days ago

I’ll buy any clamp I can find. I use big Bessey C-clamps quite a bit. I’m also a big bar clamp fan. More clamp.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Grandpa's profile

Grandpa

3043 posts in 1271 days


#20 posted 1127 days ago

UB52, I have some deep throat pipe clamps. HF had them on sale for $7 each once so I bought a couple. I don’t use them often either but on ocassion they fill a need. I think they will reach 7 inches deep. They weigh a ton or maybe more…..

View derosa's profile

derosa

1532 posts in 1432 days


#21 posted 1127 days ago

Still good for brake calipers are someone else mentioned and for compressing the hydraulic tensioner for the timing belt.

-- --Rev. Russ in NY-- A posse ad esse

View Lee Barker's profile

Lee Barker

2163 posts in 1446 days


#22 posted 1126 days ago

A recent task was well suited to my collection of small C-clamps. Or other way around.

Here’s those little Bessey clamps which I mistakenly identified. I don’t know the brand—”W. Germany” is cast into them. I did not realize they were longer (8”) than my hang-on-the-front-of-the-bench Jorgensons, which are 6” capacity.

The 8” ones will clamp a double 3/4” sacrificial piece on my Biesmeyer fence, and are pretty puny for anything else. Hence their days are spent suspended near the table saw.

The gray C clamps you see are Fuller brand. Many years ago they were sold in sets, 1” up to 6” as I recall. I really value the 3, 2, and 1” sizes. The three has an Acme thread, and all of them are hefty and nicely made. I buy ‘em used when I can find ‘em.

Kindly,

Lee

-- "...in his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

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