Need Longer Clamps!!

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Forum topic by Rookie702 posted 11-22-2012 03:51 AM 2050 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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43 posts in 2270 days

11-22-2012 03:51 AM

Well I got myself in a pickle sorta, I have been milling and laminating some 2×4’s for the table of my first workbench and i am ready to glue the three separate sections of the table together and come to find out my clamps are not long enough. I just took it for granted that they would be, but of course their not!! LOL….So i have three sections about 9-10” wide to glue up and was curious if anyone had any thoughts on how i should go about this. i’d rather not spend any money on clamps that i’ll only use occasionally. First thing i could do is glue two of them up, still need a solution to glue the last section on.

thanks L_Jocks..

9 replies so far

View Gshepherd's profile


1727 posts in 2194 days

#1 posted 11-22-2012 03:56 AM

You would make sure one side was secure and use wedges to force them together…. Keeping weight on top of course….

-- What we do in life will Echo through Eternity........

View derosa's profile


1577 posts in 2829 days

#2 posted 11-22-2012 04:47 AM

Borrow some from a fellow woodworker. Also 36” clamps aren’t a bad size to have a half dozen of, sounds like that’s the size you need. Head to home depot and pick up at least 4 of the heavy duty clamps at 18.00 each. You’ll need them if you ever build a crib, cradle, kids bed, dresser, medium sized panels, or a whole host of other projects and they can always substitute for shorter in a pinch.
Final option is to put a board at the middle location and run the clamps to that, pairing up opposite clamps, this has the downsides of needing twice as many clamps and not being quite as strong but I’ve done it.

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

View RussellAP's profile


3104 posts in 2280 days

#3 posted 11-22-2012 05:09 AM

I bet you could afford two or three of these.

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

View a1Jim's profile


117085 posts in 3570 days

#4 posted 11-22-2012 05:12 AM

View Cosmicsniper's profile


2202 posts in 3151 days

#5 posted 11-22-2012 05:33 AM

I couldn’t live without the four 40” parallel clamps that I have, and honestly, I’d love to have about a dozen more. They get used all the time.

-- jay,

View cathyb's profile


768 posts in 3237 days

#6 posted 11-22-2012 07:25 AM

Pipe clamps. You can buy an 8’ long pipe and have in cut down to whatever size you need. I have eight 3/4” pipes in various lengths from my local hardware store and only four sets of Rockler’s “sure foot” pipe clamp jaws. They are fabulous for gluing up panels. You don’t have to wrestle with the Jet or Bessey bar clamps, which are grossly overpriced and contemptible at times. Good luck…....

-- cathyb, Hawaii,

View FirehouseWoodworking's profile


706 posts in 3266 days

#7 posted 11-22-2012 07:50 PM

Since you did not mention what types of clamps you own, I can’t make a specific recommendation. Some of our fellow LJs have already mentioned a number of very useful solution. However, here are a few additional ideas that I have come across over the years.

One trick, though I don’t think it will work well enough in this case because you might not get enough clamping pressure, is to use ratchet straps. This works well enough for edge gluing flat panels, but I’m not sure you’ll be happy gluing up a bench top.

Try hooking your available clamps jaw-to-jaw to extend their collective length. If you can’t get the jaws to hook up, try a steel ring or possibly a link of strong chain.

If you have pipe clamps, there are two tricks. One is to buy longer lengths of pipe and just switch out the jaws. But the one I like best is what I do. I have a “union” screwed onto the exposed ends of all my pipes. This serves two purposes. First, it protects the exposed threads. Second, it allows me to screw another pipe or even another clamp onto the first clamp. Now I have longer clamps.

Another, non-clamp option for you in this case, might be to drill through each of your three sections with a long spade bit or twist bit. Counterbore a hole on the two outside edges (once you glue up all three sections.) Add some appropriate lengths of all-thread, add washers and nuts, and let the glue dry. Once dry, add some plugs to cover up the holes. Just make sure the all-thread will not interfere with the locations of your bench dog holes, vise mounting, etc.

Good luck. Cheers!

-- Dave; Lansing, Kansas

View Rookie702's profile


43 posts in 2270 days

#8 posted 11-22-2012 09:05 PM


You have some good ideas, i like the ring method…and also the rachet method as well… i didn’t realize they larger clampsl were only 18 bucks, i might just go that route..

thanks all for the suggestions..

View derosa's profile


1577 posts in 2829 days

#9 posted 11-23-2012 02:19 AM
I use these a lot, they’re plenty stiff enough for a lot of jobs. I just placed an order with them a couple days ago and after lots of searching managed to find the code FSCLUB for free shipping on orders over 25.00.

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

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