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capt jake

Woodworking vises

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I picked up two nice woodworking vises the other day for a song. Being as I have never actually had one to use (always improvised with a meta working vise) I need some advice. Is there really any need to install two of them on a bench? I am contemplating selling one to recover the investment of both of them.

Is one typically sufficient or should I install them both?

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I have two wood vises on my work bench. The trouble with them is where I mounted them, one on the end and one on the side. Should have placed both on the same side to hold long stock.

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99% of the time you will only use one. Two is really redundant and if you don't really need but one, sell the other one. A clamp can sometimes be used as a vise in a pinch, like clamping one end to a sawhorse while the other end is in the bench vise.

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I guess the answer is "it depends". :lol:

I have two on mine and use them both. But I have my bench set up for the two.

bench_front.JPG

As you can see, I use an old leg vice on the front but it could be a regular vice too. I have a sliding deadman on the front to support the end of longer boards. As it's name implies it slides in a dado and the support is held in place by a couple of dowel pins. So I could put a wide board up there if I need.

bench_back.JPG

My table has dog holes in it that line up with the end vice. I attached a large block with a dog hole to the vice. I can clamp boards flat on the bench to work on. After using this bench for a few months now I love it and can't imagine not having a proper bench to work on.

If I were to build another I would build it with the two vices setup like this one. I find them extremely useful and use both of them all the time. But you may work different them me and this might not suit your work style.

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I use the shoulder vise on mine (on the front) the most but the end vise is useful also. Put in a row of dog holes down the bench. then you can clamp stuff between the vise and a bench dog to plane, sand etc.

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How does one post photos with a reply? I tried to add them in a reply to this thread, but got an error message. Is it because this is such an old thread? Would I be able to post the photos if I started a new thread?

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Okay, here goes another attempt to teach my self to post photos to a thread. This is my Emmert Patternmaker's Vise. They haven't been made since the 1960's, but are available on eBay for a few hundred dollars. If you had one, you'd agree it was money well spent. There is a modern smaller, made in China or Thaiwan knock off available from Woodcraft.

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