Aluminum Bar Clamps

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Forum topic by gfadvm posted 04-10-2011 04:40 AM 1859 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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14940 posts in 2684 days

04-10-2011 04:40 AM

Topic tags/keywords: clamp

I just saw a CL post fer 38 4foot alum bar clamps for $140.Ive never used these and would like input from someone who has.Dont know the brand but the CL post said they cost $28 a piece new so this seems like a bargain IF they are useful.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

7 replies so far

View rivendale34's profile


12 posts in 2851 days

#1 posted 04-10-2011 06:45 AM

They have their pro’s and cons, just like anything I guess:

They are generally light, and easy to handle by one person or with one hand even, making adjustments pretty easy. Most of them are able to be stood on their spine (like parallel clamps or piple clamps with blocks), making clamping pretty easy too. The auminum bar won’t stain your workpiece like iron pipe from pipe clamps can.

They do have a short depth of reach, which limits where you can put the clamping pressure. Some I’ve found the bar will actually bend or twist if a lot of torque is put on the clamp and the jaws are fully extended (trying to clamp something say 4 feet wide). A few others I’ve takled too have noticed this. Most clamping needs don’t need the kind of pressure that would bend the clamp however.

And 38 clamps at 140.00… that’s a great deal, as most are in the 20+ range singly.

View Richard's profile


1916 posts in 2684 days

#2 posted 04-10-2011 07:56 AM

I would at least go look at them and if they looked good get them, if they look like junk then your only out the trip to see them.

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 3068 days

#3 posted 04-10-2011 03:24 PM

I bought 6 aluminum clamps a few years ago. 5 of the 6 have broken. They were bargain priced (i.e. cheap) clamps and I am not saying that all aluminum clamps are bad. I’m just saying that my experience was bad and I have not bought another aluminum clamp.

Whenever I can, I like to use 1-hand clamps. If I think I need a little more pressure, I add pipe clamps.

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

View kimball's profile


323 posts in 3291 days

#4 posted 04-10-2011 04:06 PM

I cant afford top of the line clamps so I started using aluminum bar clamps about 4 years ago and have 24 of them in all. They are Harbor Freight bought on sale. I love them and choose them over most of the other clamps in my arsenal. I have had trouble with only one of them and it was my own fault. The work piece wasn’t seated and the tip of the clamp broke off. I still use that clamp though and it works fine. I am even about to buy an additional set of four 12” aluminum bar clamps because I like them so much. Since I started using the aluminum bar clamps, my pipe clamps remain idle. I still use my F clamps on small projects and for general clamping but for glue-ups, I reach for the aluminum bar clamps.

View Gene Howe's profile

Gene Howe

10475 posts in 3422 days

#5 posted 04-10-2011 04:08 PM

I bought 10 aluminum clamps (24” long) about 5-6 years ago. On sale, one time purchase and I don’t remember the company. think I paid around $50.00. They are great for edge gluing, the bars are flat and straight. I get enough pressure for good joints. I’ve always operated on the assumption that if a lot of pressure is required, more edge work is needed. That being said, if mine were 4’ long, I might be a bit concerned about them bending. Mine are pretty light weight and the bar is a square tube only 3/4” wide by 1” deep.
If you inspect and are satisfied with their condition, robustness, and quality, I’d make an offer.

-- Gene 'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2684 days

#6 posted 04-12-2011 04:07 AM

Well,I bought the clamps today and spent the next eight hours cleaning the old glue off them with heat gun scrapers,Buck knife,sandpaper,etc,etc.The good news is they are Jorgensen and cost less than $4 each.But the BEST NEWS is the guy had 180 board feet of Brazilian cherry which I bought for $1 a board foot! I kept thinking about the B.Cherry while I toiled on the glue mess and remained cheerful!

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View ScottN's profile


261 posts in 2673 days

#7 posted 04-12-2011 02:31 PM

wow…good score all around.

I like the bar clamps. There easy to handle. I have jorgesons as well.

-- New Auburn,WI

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