Making a bench vise is a procedure that can save you a lot of time in the long run. A bench vise is handy if you are making simple repairs around the home. It also comes in handy for other home improvement projects. Say you are installing a new sink in the bathroom, and you need to cut a new length of pipe for the sink. You can try and cut the pipe by hand and have an uneven cut, or use a bench vise to hold the pipe in place so you can make the cut evenly. A bench vise is essentially an extra pair of hands that can help out with any job.
Step 1: Set Up
Your initial board surface will be your flat work area. This area needs to be free of debris, durable and wide enough to give you an appropriate area to work. This is why most people use a cleared off section of their usual tool bench to form their vice area. The bench itself is more than wide enough, as you need an area of at least 12 inches by 18 inches. Laying down a metal board can act as your surface area as well. The more of an area you can clear, the better.
Step 2: Creating The Jaws
Some bench vises can be purchased pre-made out of cast iron. These can easily be bolted on to the end of a work bench and provide you with what you need. When forming your own bench vise, however, you need to make your own jaws. You need to cut a 24-inch long 2 by 4 into four equal pieces. Two pieces will then stand vertically while the others will lay horizontally, perpendicular to the vertical pieces. Use the wood glue to glue these pieces together into two L shapes.
Step 3: Use The Brackets
After you have glued the wood together, use the metal brackets to reinforce the wood. The brackets should fit easily into the L-shape and will make the wooden jaws more firm for their purpose.
Step 4: Finishing The Vice
Now that you have your wooden jaws for the bench vise it is easy to finish it off with the metal clamp vises. Use two of the metal clamp vises on each of the horizontal 2 by 4 boards to hold them in place. Since they can be adjusted at any time, you can move the wooden jaws into any position desired by simply repositioning them. Be sure to tighten the metal vises when in the proper position.
Now that you have your bench vise, you have that extra pair of hands needed to help finish many jobs around the home.