Does a good, but inexpensive wood vise exist? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 28 Old 02-13-2012, 04:32 PM Thread Starter
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Does a good, but inexpensive wood vise exist?

I'm looking around for a couple of wood vises for my bench and see prices ranging from $20 to over $200. Now obviously I'll get what I pay for, but is there a vise out there that's a good value? For example, H.F. has a 10" for $40, but how good is that thing? Any tips would be appreciated.

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Kevin
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post #2 of 28 Old 02-13-2012, 04:40 PM
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I had one of the small $15 ones from HF...it worked OK but not as well as my Record 53. I now have a small $10 Wilton that was on sale from Woodcraft a year or so ago...better than the cheap HF, not as good as the Record.
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post #3 of 28 Old 02-13-2012, 04:41 PM
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Can't recommend the 10" HF. Wasn't worth the money to me.

I'd like to recommend to you the 9" HF, which was an awesome purchase on sale and with a 20% off coupon. Adjustable square dog, quick release. Unfortunately I have not seen this one in my store in awhile. If you can find it, it's #94386 and was $59.99 regular price. Not much else at this price range gets good, consistent reviews.
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post #4 of 28 Old 02-13-2012, 04:51 PM
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I bought a vintage one on ebay for 20 something. Works good for me.
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post #5 of 28 Old 02-13-2012, 04:57 PM
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You might check the small one at Peach Tree, though it seems to be sold out at the moment: http://ptreeusa.com/woodworking_vise.htm

Lee Valley has a good selection. Here's one that's not too expensive:
http://www.leevalley.com/US/wood/pag...659,41661&ap=1
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post #6 of 28 Old 02-13-2012, 06:30 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cocheseuga View Post
Can't recommend the 10" HF. Wasn't worth the money to me.

I'd like to recommend to you the 9" HF, which was an awesome purchase on sale and with a 20% off coupon. Adjustable square dog, quick release. Unfortunately I have not seen this one in my store in awhile. If you can find it, it's #94386 and was $59.99 regular price. Not much else at this price range gets good, consistent reviews.
The 9" isn't listed on their website. Maybe they discontinued it.
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post #7 of 28 Old 02-13-2012, 06:35 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shop Dad View Post
You might check the small one at Peach Tree, though it seems to be sold out at the moment: http://ptreeusa.com/woodworking_vise.htm

Lee Valley has a good selection. Here's one that's not too expensive:
http://www.leevalley.com/US/wood/pag...659,41661&ap=1
It sounds like a lot of people like the Record vises. I couldn't find and prices, but I did find an article claiming they're moving from England to Taiwan and they're out of production for the time being.

So with the Lee Valley vises, it looks like I would need to custom make the clamping sides for these. Not a big deal, just want to make sure I got that right since most others have steel front and back faces.

Last edited by blue sky; 02-13-2012 at 07:17 PM.
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post #8 of 28 Old 02-13-2012, 06:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blue sky View Post
It sounds like a lot ofpeople the Record vises. I couldn't find and prices, but I did find an article claiming they're moving from England to Taiwan and they're out of production for the time being.

So with the Lee Valley vises, it looks like I would need to custom make the clamping sides for these. Not a big deal, just want to make sure I got that right since most others have steel front and back faces.
Right, use maple or whatever suits you. Should be videos around on the subject but not difficult compared to what you have already done. If you want to get really fancy you can add leather to the face. I believe with the metal-sided vises most people add a wood face anyway to protect the workpiece.
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post #9 of 28 Old 02-16-2012, 10:27 AM
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My Solution!!

I've wondered the exact thing and I've stalked ebay like it was an addiction. One day a few weeks ago I was watching a StumpyNubs woodworking video, and he recommended Jorgensen Medium Duty vise. I just ordered it and love it. 7" undermount, and it's orange. I think with shipping I paid just under $42.00. Here's the link.

http://www.tools-plus.com/jorgensen-27091.html

I just got it two days ago and it feels solid, but I haven't used it or even mounted it yet. Hopefully this weekend!!

I've not used the HF one, but for the price of the Jorgensen, I'm not tempted too.

Last edited by ccrow; 02-16-2012 at 10:43 AM.
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post #10 of 28 Old 02-16-2012, 10:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blue sky View Post
The 9" isn't listed on their website. Maybe they discontinued it.
Unfortunately I believe this to be the case. It's possible one could find NOS in a store.

Seems like they discontinue the actual good products people like.
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post #11 of 28 Old 02-16-2012, 11:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccrow View Post
I've wondered the exact thing and I've stalked ebay like it was an addiction. One day a few weeks ago I was watching a StumpyNubs woodworking video, and he recommended Jorgensen Medium Duty vise. I just ordered it and love it. 7" undermount, and it's orange. I think with shipping I paid just under $42.00. Here's the link.

http://www.tools-plus.com/jorgensen-27091.html

I just got it two days ago and it feels solid, but I haven't used it or even mounted it yet. Hopefully this weekend!!

I've not used the HF one, but for the price of the Jorgensen, I'm not tempted too.
I have one of these on my bench and one on my sons bench. They work well for the price, but they do rack and sag a bit. They are strong and have an excellent screw, but they are not high end. I've been using mine for about 3 years now and it's a good vice for $35. My local Menards carries them in store so if you have one of them around you could save on shipping.
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post #12 of 28 Old 02-17-2012, 08:28 PM
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I would suggest an Emmert, but that would probably blow the budget out of the water.
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post #13 of 28 Old 03-22-2012, 09:34 PM
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The least expensive 9" vise I found when needing one was a Grizzly. And it's a pretty good vise.
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post #14 of 28 Old 08-14-2012, 03:30 PM
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I have 2, both were less than $70.

I have the HF 10", it works, but it is not the best.

The I bought the WC single screw large vise, and that works great. I added a dowel to help stablize the clamp when closing, which worked out great. Both were easy to install, both seem sturdy. I prefer the WC one, however. Nothing wrong with the HF one, works great, but the WC one is just bigger and opens wider.

You can return the HF one for 90 days, so if you buy it locally, a quick trip back to the store if you don;t like it.

Dave
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post #15 of 28 Old 08-14-2012, 03:57 PM
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They seem to have dropped the 9" Quick Release vise from the Harbor Freight website, and none in store. BUT if you can locate one, they are a great buy. I have been beating the snot out of mine with no problems. Just clean the cosmoline off of the mechanics of it, coat the stuff that needs lubed in dry lube, double check and tighten any fasteners, especially in the release mechanism, and get after it... The features are great, Pop up dog, quick release, heavy well cast construction, smooth advancement, and assuming you can keep the bench from racking (I had a bench problem that I have since fixed) the quick release operation is nice and smooth. I did have some casting slag that wasn't well ground off that I had to take care of out of the box, but that took all of literally 2 minutes with a file. No big deal. If HF started selling them again, I would get in line to buy a second one as I have a face vise, but no end vise... And I am finding projects where an end vise would be VERY helpful...

I also have a Wilton 7" woodworkers bench vise. I despise it. it is very lightweight, no quick release, no dog, the advance screw operation is very rough. The only positive thing I can say about it is that the powder coated finish on it is very nice. Not worth the money, or space in my shop.

I have heard excellent things about the Anant 9" vise, but it comes in at a price point over $100.00 higher than the HF... Kind of hard to swallow...

Interested in my woodworking, workshop and whatnot? See http://daves-workshop.blogspot.com, want to see my other interests such as hunting, fishing, off roading, and camping? See http://wildersport-outdoors.blogspot.com
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post #16 of 28 Old 08-15-2012, 11:15 AM
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I've been thinking about this while planning ahead for a bench build, as well. Would you think this would make a good inexpensive quick release vise or is it likely to be a little wonky?

I like the idea of being able to make it release with a foot pedal, as I've got a Jawhorse and have enjoyed the foot pedal on it being the clamp and release when dealing with awkward pieces.
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post #17 of 28 Old 08-15-2012, 01:01 PM Thread Starter
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I ended up buying the Woodstock vise (included link below). I made the clamping faces from maple and made the crank handle from a 1 1/8" poplar dowel and capped the ends with wooden balls. I used a spade bit to bore out holes in the balls and glued them to the handle. There's a little racking, but not too bad.

The vice didn't come with any mounting hardware or instructions, so I had to do a little planning before I installed it to my bench. It was fairly easy to install. Also, it doesn't have a quick release, but I only paid $65 for it from Amazon and most vises with the quick release were much more expensive. I'm really happy with the quality; heavy gauge steel, opens over 15 inches, and doesn't feel cheap at all like some others I've looked at. I've used it for a few projects already and happy so far.

http://www.woodstockint.com/CABINET-...S-VISE-/D4026/


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post #18 of 28 Old 08-20-2012, 06:27 AM
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I'm considering this one:

http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?p...3&site=ROCKLER

The price seems reasonable and the reviews are good.

I considered the Lee Valley pipe clamp vise but for a few dollars more I'd get a larger clamping surface and a large handle.

I do like the portability aspect of the Lee Valley vise for field applications though.

When I die, I want to go peacefully like my grandfather did in his
sleep. Not yelling and screaming like the passengers in his car.

Jack Handey
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post #19 of 28 Old 08-20-2012, 06:36 AM
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I might get this instead of the aforementioned Rockler vice.

http://www.grizzly.com/products/Cabi...nt-Vise/T24249

It looks sturdy, and the maple jaw with dog holes is included but it isn't quick release.

When I die, I want to go peacefully like my grandfather did in his
sleep. Not yelling and screaming like the passengers in his car.

Jack Handey
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post #20 of 28 Old 08-21-2012, 12:45 PM
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For what it's worth. I have a quick release vise, and a non quick release vise. The non quick release vise is in a box somewhere... I hate using a non quick release vise, and any more just wouldn't consider them... If you want a Wilton 7" non quick release and are either somewhat local, or willing to pay shipping I will let you have the *#$% thing...

Although you would need to make faces for it, the Woodcraft Economy Quick Release vise gets good reviews. (with one notable exception)

http://www.woodcraft.com/product/200...ront-vise.aspx

Interested in my woodworking, workshop and whatnot? See http://daves-workshop.blogspot.com, want to see my other interests such as hunting, fishing, off roading, and camping? See http://wildersport-outdoors.blogspot.com

Last edited by dbhost; 08-21-2012 at 12:52 PM.
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