Original Kreg Face Clamps or Regular Vise Grip ones?

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Forum topic by patcollins posted 02-10-2011 05:04 AM 8120 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1685 posts in 2890 days

02-10-2011 05:04 AM

I just got a Kreg Jr Pocket Hole Jig kit and was wondering about the Kreg Face clamp. At lowes I can get two Irwins that are very similar (but smaller pads) for about the same price.

Does anyone use something like that or even a one handed trigger style clamp instead and if so how does it work?

4 replies so far

View cabs4less's profile


235 posts in 2787 days

#1 posted 02-10-2011 05:40 AM

I used the one clamp that came wit my kreg for ever untill I upgraded to the insert plates and know I use it primarliy I do find that no matter what clamp you use if you will clamp it lenght wise it really helps with keeping the joint flush so I would say buy the cheaper ones and just back them up and you shouldnt have any problems

-- As Best I Can

View ferstler's profile


342 posts in 3545 days

#2 posted 02-10-2011 11:59 PM

I have a Kreg K4 rig, plus some extra stuff. I purchased two of the Kreg table clamps, but decided to get two standard clamps for regular clamping duties. The ones I got were from Harbor Freight and cost about half what the Kreg versions do. They are shown in the attached photo (hopefully, I managed to download it OK), and they are the ones with the red handles. Not cheap looking, but not expensive to buy. They work just fine.

I mounted the jig on a piece of wood for better stability, and then drilled holes in that wood to hold the drill bits, screw bits, allen wrenches and depth collars, and even a square-bit screwdriver to help finalize the tightening procedure. The wood piece in the upper-left corner is the same height as the mounted jig work surface, and allows longer boards to be stabilized when they hang off to the side a fair distance. I also used a black fine-point marker to highlight the engraved markings on the jig. Kreg ads show those in white, but the actual unit has no such markings. The fine-point black highlights work well. I also used a bigger marker to shade in the drill guide cutouts to make them easier to use, too.

The small jig at the lower left is an off-brand item that I purchased on a lark. It might work with some kinds of operations. I also purchased a 45-degree shoulder drill bit (the Kreg bit is a 90-degree type and I have two of them) for use with conventional flat-head screws. Those do not hold like the Kreg screws, but they are OK for general work that does not require extra-strong results. Saves money, since the screws are somewhat cheaper than the admittedly superb Kreg screws.

Howard Ferstler

View patcollins's profile


1685 posts in 2890 days

#3 posted 02-11-2011 02:07 AM

Thanks guys, I couldnt see anything really special about the Kreg clamps. I was also looking at those Harbor Frieght clamps too but since I don’t have a store near me I couldnt judge their quality too well from the website.

View prap's profile


50 posts in 2700 days

#4 posted 02-11-2011 03:39 AM

While we are on the subject I see where Kreg has the 90 degree corner clamp and the right angle clamp which one would I be better off with when making shelves with cubby holes in it. I know the ones on the outside corners I could use the 90 degree one, but what about th inside cubby holes? Do I need both or just one of them?

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