Clamp stuff - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 07-09-2020, 10:01 AM Thread Starter
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Clamp stuff

Almost everyone has at least a few of these F style clamps in the shop. This particular model is from the famous retailer of fine tools everywhere. Ok, maybe not so fine, but they're usable and cheap.
Anyway something that always seems to annoy me is when I completely unscrew the screw part then slam em shut for storage only to find out how hard they are to reopen later on. So..heavy mystery time, how to get around it.. Just engage the screw a bit, not much, but just enough that you have somewhere to unscrew it to loosen enough to open again. If the screw is all the way back and the whole contraption slammed shut it becomes a bit difficult to reopen next time around. I always engage the screw just a few turns before storing them. It makes life just a tiny bit easier. So much for one heavy mystery for one day..
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Last edited by allpurpose; 07-09-2020 at 10:05 AM.
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post #2 of 13 Old 07-09-2020, 10:15 AM
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I have a least a dozen of those fine quality clamps and for roughly $3-7/pc you cant beat them. Though I suggest if you ever plan to use them on something you're welding, remove the plastic caps first (guess how I learned that one)
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post #3 of 13 Old 07-09-2020, 10:26 AM
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Leave the screw part "in the middle" when you put F-clamps away. I make it a habit when I put them away.

Leaving the screw in the middle makes it easy to adjust the clamp to fit the next time you use it. It also prevents the problem where the clamp is fully tight when closed, leaving you with no threads left to help open it.
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post #4 of 13 Old 07-09-2020, 10:39 AM
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I don't leave any threads out.
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post #5 of 13 Old 07-09-2020, 11:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rebelwork View Post
I don't leave any threads out.
If that works for you, fine.

The bar clamp shown in @allpurpose's photo has two metal adjustment "lock levers" (term?). They are not quite the same as the Bessey F-clamps that I use. On the Bessey clamps, you "wiggle" the screw section to move it, and it automatically locks in place, grabbing "teeth" on the bar. That makes it harder to release if there are no available threads to provide slack.

I stand by my experience and recommendation. Even with the style of clamp shown in allpupose's photo, I would leave a few threads exposed when putting them away, to make it easier to release and adjust.
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post #6 of 13 Old 07-09-2020, 11:08 AM
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I've used them all.....Here's my point from working in commercial and residential cabinetry. You get those threads out too far and many have picked those clamps up and have bent those threads from a clamped load. We went hough many z Jorgensen from the threads bending under force. Lesson learned not to leave threads out as the clamps get extended too far.. I practice this in my own shop.
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post #7 of 13 Old 07-09-2020, 11:49 AM
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I ran across a 4-pack of Bessey 12" clamps at Home Depot for around $24. I wanted to buy them, but decided against it. No, it wasn't because of money ... had plenty of that in hand. I was afraid I would like them too much and would have to buy more ... then throw out the dozen HF clamps I currently use.

Ken
Everything works out in the end. If it's not working, you're not at the end.
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post #8 of 13 Old 07-09-2020, 12:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rebelwork View Post
I don't leave any threads out.
One revolution is all that's needed to relieve any pressure. One revolution is not going to hurt anything. No clamp is designed to be used as a lifting device. Using any tool in a manner in which it not designed to be used, usually does not end well.

Yes there are specialized lifting clamps , however those lifting clamps are not usually seen in wood shops.
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post #9 of 13 Old 07-09-2020, 12:33 PM
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I store all my clamps hanging on the wall, fully extended with the screw all the way out.
When needed just pick the clamp slide it closed on project with a couple twist. Done.
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post #10 of 13 Old 07-09-2020, 01:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rebelwork View Post
I've used them all.....Here's my point from working in commercial and residential cabinetry. You get those threads out too far and many have picked those clamps up and have bent those threads from a clamped load. We went hough many z Jorgensen from the threads bending under force. Lesson learned not to leave threads out as the clamps get extended too far.. I practice this in my own shop.
Aha! Now I understand your point. Thanks for the clarification.

The reason it was not a concern for me is that I don't do that. It never occurred to me before. I can see how it might be an issue for others. Now I get it.
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post #11 of 13 Old 07-09-2020, 01:34 PM
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Pretender I'm confused.. threaded out which way. All the way on or out?
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post #12 of 13 Old 07-26-2020, 10:44 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hoowasat View Post
I ran across a 4-pack of Bessey 12" clamps at Home Depot for around $24. I wanted to buy them, but decided against it. No, it wasn't because of money ... had plenty of that in hand. I was afraid I would like them too much and would have to buy more ... then throw out the dozen HF clamps I currently use.
I bought the same set with absolutely no regrets. I still have all the HF models, but when my choice is HF or the Bessy's I'm reaching for the Bessy's 99 out of 100 times unless I have to walk an extra 3.2 inches then I might grab the HFers.. lol
My only regret is not buying more of them while they were on sale.
And let's face it..One of these things is not like the others..one of these things just doesn't belong... (sing along if you know the words)
Quite a bit less flex in the Bessys and it's quite a bit easier to advance the moving end when the other hand is busy holding on to something..

I figured it's time to change my signature so hold your breath. This is it.
Impressive, huh?
Marty or Marty Farty if you feel mean.

Last edited by allpurpose; 07-26-2020 at 10:49 AM.
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post #13 of 13 Old 07-26-2020, 10:53 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rebelwork View Post
Pretender I'm confused.. threaded out which way. All the way on or out?
Try somewhere in the middle..I tend to leave just a few threads exposed....but to each his own..
I cramped one all the way down once. I had to use the vise grips to get it open again..

I figured it's time to change my signature so hold your breath. This is it.
Impressive, huh?
Marty or Marty Farty if you feel mean.
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