The bench vise is found in just about every household across the world because you need a good bench vise for lot’s of different purposes. Whether you’re sawing or grinding, you need a tool to hold your work piece in place. That’s where vises and clamps come into play. The bench vise is actually quite affordable, but there is some variation in terms of quality and features depending on what price range you’re looking at. So, which is the best bench vise in your case will depend on what features you need, and how much money you’re willing to spend. In this article we will go over some of the key points that you should be aware of when you make your purchase. We hope after reading this guide you’re well informed, and able to go shopping to get the best value for your money.
Top Factors to Keep in mind
The Jaws of the vise – The most structurally important part of any vise is the jaws. The jaws are the metal (or sometimes wooden) bits that clamp your work piece in place. You can clamp them in and out using a winding bolt-like mechanism on a handle, this allows you to easily get the object secured very tightly. You should think about how big the objects are that you want to hold in your vise. Depending on how big they are you may decide on a bigger or smaller vise to fit your needs. There are actually several different types of jaws available, fortunately on most models you can switch the jaws to a different type with ease.
Swiveling Base – it’s always good to choose a vise that has a swiveling base on it. Having this feature can be immensely helpful in situations where you need to rotate the vise to an awkward angle. Ideally you should get a vise with at least 180 degrees of rotational ability.
Some Common uses for the bench vise
Holding wood while you saw through it – A bench vise is perfect for holding wood in it’s place while you saw through it. This frees up your hands as you don’t need to use one hand to keep the wood in place as you saw. This is a big energy and time saver. It also makes the job a lot safer, and reduces the risk of slipping and causing injury.
Drilling – When you need to drill holes in material, whether it’s metal or wood, you need to keep the object securely in place and completely still so that the holes are accurate. The best ways to achieve this are with either a C-clamp style device or a bench mounted vise.
Gluing pieces together – Bench vises are great for holding things together as glue sets. A lot of the time when you’re using glue the pieces being attached to each other need something to hold them in place while the glue sets. By keeping the objects (wood or metal etc) securely in the vise until the glue has dried you ensure best results with perfect alignment of the pieces.
Irwin may be the most well known brand, as far as high quality bench vises go. They have many great offerings, from the cheaper end of the spectrum all the way up to very expensive. With IRWIN tools you are certain to get high quality devises that will last you for years into the future. Besides the price and quality, the most important thing to remember when you’re shopping is what size jaws you need. Factor in how large the projects you intend to work on are, to make sure that you find the perfect vise for the job!