If you want to know how to install a woodworking bench vise, there are ways to do it. This article gives you a simple yet effective guide. Check it out now!
How To Install A Woodworking Bench Vise?
A bench vise is a useful tool that any home craftsman must-have. It helps you to fix the wood part during work.
But, how to install a woodworking bench vise so that it provides the full performance you want. First, you need to buy a quality and durable device, preferably cast iron or stainless steel.
To install your bench view, you need to follow these 5 steps:
- Choose A Position To Place The Device
- Make Your Spacer Block(s)
- Vise Rear Joint Inset
- Put The Wooden Cheeks
- Drill Holes And Screw
Instead of spending hours on the forum looking for system information on how to install a workbench vise, read our article for the simplest and easiest to understand the solution.
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How To Install A Woodworking Bench Vise?
The bench vise is a device that is simple in design yet reliable in use. It simplifies the carpenter’s work.
Once you own it, get started with the 5-step guide on how to install a wood bench vise below. During installation and operation, it is necessary to comply with the proper safeguards of woodworking.
#1. Choose A Position To Place The Device
Choose A Position
For right-handers, the most typical locations are either the left front edge of the workbench or the right end of the workbench.
The back vise is most commonly used by cutters and those working with large workpieces such as doors or large panels.
For most standard operations, the front vise is usually used. It would be best to make sure that the tool does not touch the legs or the sides of the workbench during operation.
In addition, it must be borne in mind that the device will have wooden pads on the cheeks that will protrude beyond the metal jaws.
Most craftsmen prefer to have the edges of the wood trims flush with the workbench. And it would help if you also considered this when choosing where to place your gadget.
#2. Make Your Spacer Blocks
Make Your Spacer Block(s)
For most workbenches, you will need a spacer between the carriage and the bottom of the workbench. The cast-iron jaws should be 1/2″ – 5/8″ below the workbench level to prevent accidental contact with the tool.
The accuracy of this measurement is not critical. You can change it depending on the material available for the manufacture of the spacer.
The measured distance between the carriage and the bottom of the bench board will be the thickness of the spacer. We recommend making a spacer made of MDF, chipboard, or hardboard.
#3. Vise Rear Joint Inset
Vise Rear Joint Inset
After you have decided on the thickness of the spacer, you make a notch in the workbench under rear jaws. Place a workbench on its edge and secure it well.
Temporarily clamp the vise and spacer to the workbench, where you will install it with the clamps. Using a pencil, trace the outline of the back jaw on the edge of the bench.
Remove the device. Then, raise the top line 1/25″ – 3/32″ higher so that there is a small gap between the top of the jaw and the groove.
It will provide freedom of movement of the tree when the moisture level changes. The depth of the groove corresponds to the thickness of the rear jaw.
For some models, it is necessary to make additional grooves for stiffeners located on the carriage.
#4. Put The Wooden Cheeks
Put The Wooden Cheeks
Wooden pads expand the vise holding area and prevent parts from being damaged by the cast iron jaws. Any solid wood is suitable as a material for overlays.
The front pad must be at least 8/5″ thick so that you can drill holes in it for the tuning pegs (vertical stops). 3/4″- 1″ thick is sufficient for the rear pad because it rests against the end of the workbench.
For small devices, with a jaw width of 7″, you should have the length of overlays in the range 12″ – 14″.
For medium, with a jaw width of 9″, overlays with a length of 14″ – 16″ are suitable. Longer pad lengths will cause distortion and shorten the life of your device.
The bottom ends of the overlays should be at least 3/32″ above the screw pair to avoid interfering with seasonal changes in size. The top ends of the overlays should be flush with the workboard.
When installing the pads, make sure you can easily replace them if damaged.
After installing the pads, close the vise and make sure that they come together tightly. If necessary, install the spacer washers.
Remember that the jaws of the closed vise are tightly pressed against each other. After installing the shims, this should not change.
#5. Drill Holes And Screw
Drill Holes And Screw
Depending on the thickness of the workbench, you have two mounting options. If it is thicker than 2″, large screws are suitable for installation.
The screws with washers from the bottom go through the spacer and screw directly into the workbench. If the workbench is thinner, punch through holes in it and use bolts and nuts.
For the heads of the bolts in the bench board, it is necessary to make indentations to exclude possible contact with the tool. Fill the holes according to your preference (putty, plugs, etc.).
When using any of the described mounting methods, periodically check the tightness of bolts and screws. Also, periodically lubricate the threads and guides.
Check out the easy-to-understand illustrations in this video:
How The Vise Works?
A Workbench Vise
A workbench vise consists of the following units:
- movable clamping jaw;
- stationary parts;
- two wings for moving parts;
- lead screw;
- a wrench transmits torque to the lead screw.
You can install it anywhere in the workshop, on self-made support, or on a workbench. Once you don’t want to use it, it’s easy to dismantle this device.
It is necessary to ensure safety criteria during work, ensuring the workpiece does not slip out.
It would help if you used the workpieces made of polymers or steel to increase the flexibility of the device. These materials protect soft parts from deformation.
You will also find a spring device in many bench vises. This mechanism makes it easier to grip large wooden workpieces.
Ready-made models on the market give you a full range of features, including holes for fastening to the table, bolts, and nuts.
But, if you cannot afford unplanned expenses, a homemade device will cost. Watch the instructions in this video!
Our instructions on how to install a woodworking bench vise are the simplest approach. By careful planning and meticulous measurement, you will quickly complete your work, and your gadget will last almost unlimited time.
Thank you for reading!