An unusual clamp - what is it for?

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Forum topic by skruft posted 08-17-2012 01:02 AM 1006 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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8 posts in 1367 days

08-17-2012 01:02 AM

Normally I know the purpose of woodworking tools, but not of this odd clamp that I found in an old garage. I have not seen one before and wonder if anyone knows its purpose. I suspect it is for carpentry rather than fine woodworking.

At first I thought it might be one of the old attachments that was used to turn a 2×4 into a long panel clamp, but I have a few of those and they are different. This seems designed to clamp onto a board 1-1/2” wide with great force and then do something else, also with great force and with no concern about marring the wood. The “X” that is cast into each of the two clamp pads seems designed to dig into rather than protect the wood.

There are no markings except the “No. 1” and “1 1/2” shown in the photos.

10 replies so far

View Wdwerker's profile


333 posts in 1481 days

#1 posted 08-17-2012 01:14 AM

Seems like the intent is to grab this and push on that. I bet it could come in handy sooner or later if you can find it when you need it ( or even remember that you have it). <grin>

-- Fine Custom Woodwork since 1978

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 2556 days

#2 posted 08-17-2012 01:35 AM

Slide it along a workbench and clamp it where you you need it.

View DIYaholic's profile (online now)


18967 posts in 1923 days

#3 posted 08-17-2012 01:57 AM

Could it possibly be a “wood stretcher”??? Lol.

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procrastination a bad thing?

View RussellAP's profile


3053 posts in 1534 days

#4 posted 08-17-2012 02:28 AM

It looks like something that might be used to pull a tenon out of a mortise.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


13008 posts in 1866 days

#5 posted 08-17-2012 02:38 AM

Got a pair of them!

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View FirehouseWoodworking's profile


675 posts in 2521 days

#6 posted 08-17-2012 02:39 AM

If you clamp this fixture onto the end of a 2×4 and nail a block onto the the opposite end of the 2×4 (at just a bit more than the width of the boards you wish to clamp) you have a wooden “bar clamp” of sorts.

Least ways, that’s my guess.


-- Dave; Lansing, Kansas

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8 posts in 1367 days

#7 posted 08-17-2012 02:42 AM

There’s always a chance that the famous carpenter Xavier used it to sign his work.

View shipwright's profile


6726 posts in 2046 days

#8 posted 08-17-2012 07:09 AM

I’ve never seen one but it would work very well in carvel boat building to clamp on to a rib and force a piece of planking down tight. We used another method involving wedges but this or something similar may have been it’s purpose.

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglas boats he would have given us fibrerglas trees.

View derosa's profile


1568 posts in 2084 days

#9 posted 08-17-2012 07:29 AM

The crank handle looks exactly like the ones on my E.C. Sterns clamps from the 1800s. They also made a lot of other styles and after long searching I did one time find one of their clamp catalogs online. They were from Syracuse, NY to help with the search process.

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

View Bluepine38's profile


3295 posts in 2333 days

#10 posted 08-17-2012 03:05 PM

It looks like it was made to clamp onto a joist and push a warped floor board into line for nailing or screwing
down. I could have used it when I was putting the deck boards down last week. Anyone working alone
would really appreciate it. The mark in the joist would not matter or show, and the mark on the side of the
board would be covered by the next board.

-- As ever, Gus-the 77 yr young apprentice carpenter

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