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A game-changing workbench idea

a while back we built a compact work area that's meant to take up one wall of a standard garage i call it the one wall workshop and i will make a full video about it and some plans for those who want to build it down the road probably sometime this winter when that happens i'll link to those plans below this video so if you're watching it after that happened check those out this video though is about a homemade vice that i designed for the flip up workbench portion of that it's called a wagon vise and it's a traditional way to secure project parts flat on a bench top so you can cut or route or sand or drill or chop or whatever you need to do without things moving around on you there are a lot of different ways to make a wagon vice and i'm not saying mine is the best by any means in fact it was sort of an experiment that i think turned out really well so in this video i'll show you how it came about and you can either copy it as it is or just use some of the ideas to design and build your own version either way i think you're going to find this really interesting it started with some three and three quarter inch wide strips of three quarter inch thick oak laminated together these are wider than the finished vise required but for alignment purposes and clamping it's just easier to make them oversized at the start after the glue dries they're trimmed down to their final width of three and a half inches that evens out and squares up the edges at the same time then half inch deep three quarter inch wide grooves are plowed right down the center of each edge next a three quarter inch dog hole is bored in the center an inch and a half from the end a drill press was the best tool for this job because it had to be nice and straight the whole assembly was also made about eight inches longer than the bench itself so i had a little extra to use for other purposes including a three inch segment which incorporated that hole and another two inch segment which was trimmed off while the drill press was still set up a full row of dog holes was bored down the remaining length we spaced them three inches apart and they go all the way through remember that two inch segment well it needs a hole in its center end grain can be hard to drill so a sharp forstner bit was used and the work piece was secured with more than just a hand grip now i know what you're thinking what size is that hole well that depends on what you use for your clamping mechanism and this is where it got interesting i had a veneer screw much like this one laying around my shop for years and that's why i decided to use to make my vice because it's relatively inexpensive i'll link to one below this video if you want to do the same thing unfortunately i don't have any footage of actually attaching it i don't know what happened to that video so we're going to have to improvise i'll explain it the best i can the veneer screw comes apart in three pieces there's a little set screw at the end that once removed releases the foot from the threaded shaft then the movable flange can be twisted off the shaft as well that flange is what slips inside the hole that we board in that end grain now it's slightly tapered so the hole has to be sized to its widest diameter you don't want to create a wedge that splits the end grain when you pound in an overly tight hole now once it's in two screws are driven through the tabs to secure it in place this footage was taken after everything was assembled but you can see one of the screws through one of the tabs on the top during use all the pressure will be towards the block of wood essentially pressing the flange deeper into its hole so the screws are not going to rip out the foot portion of our screw assembly will be attached to the center of that three inch segment no hole through the wood is needed here instead a small pilot hole is drilled inside the foot through the cast iron then a screw is threaded in to attach it to the block of wood a little filing was also done to the edges of the foot because it was slightly oversized again during use all the pressure will be toward the wood block the foot is not going to pull away from the screw holding it in place to create the tracking mechanism three quarter inch strips of oak are used as rails here you see the first one being aligned with two stationary portions of the vise we have the two inch block with its threaded flange and the longer section with its multiple dock holes brad nails were used to hold the strip to the face board then screws were added for a more permanent connection the bench that this vise will be attached to is simply a two by four frame with a hardwood top it's small but it's built for a confined space remember this idea is scalable to any bench of any size you'll see what i mean later but for now just imagine this is being attached to the front of a larger bench with one rail attached to the bench itself the other is now attached in a similar way to another face board the same vise components are used to align that three-quarter inch rail as it's temporarily secured with nails then screws note that this face board has another piece attached on the end in an l shape this part is going to wrap around the end of the bench top it's connected with a single dovetail joint because this joint may be stressed a bit when the vice is tightened notice that there's also a hole through the end panel for the vise screw's shaft to pass through once it's installed before the final assembly all the sharp edges of the movable foot block are sanded so it'll slide freely in the wooden track now the flange block is glued in place on the wooden track in the corner of the l the long portion with all the dog holes in it is also glued in place there's a nine inch space between these two these parts are not intended to move on that track they were built as if they would because that makes everything easier to get all aligned but now the glue locks them in place permanently and only a nine inch section of open track is remaining for the movable portion of the vise before everything is attached to the other track on the front edge of the bench top that movable foot block is set in place without glue then the final assembly is completed an end cap is attached to the other end of the bench top giving the appearance of solid oak the vise screw can now be inserted and it's done i prefer to leave my bench tops unfinished so they aren't slippery but that's just a personal preference as i explained this small bench is intended to hinge down to save space but it could be made larger in fact this vise could be attached to the front of just about any bench you don't need a longer screw or a longer gap where that movable block slides you just need a longer end portion the stationary portion where all the dog holes are make that longer and add more holes to make it the full length of whatever bench you're attaching it to when i do make plans for the one wall workshop

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