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The only vise I use

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  • The only vise I use

    My frien's I have received several requests about the carving vise I use. Although I have quite a few, the one I use most often is in the attached file.

    Carving Vise.pdf

  • #2
    That's a pretty neat vise. I like the vertical extension.

    Suppose you mount a block of wood on it, ready to carve.
    Suppose you sit to carve ( do you?)
    What is the height of the block?
    Is it up to your face level or do you lean over the block and carve downwards?
    Brian T


    • #3
      That is a neat setup, but I still hang on to my block of wood, never tried a vise, but I've got one, just never used it
      . . .JoeB


      • #4
        Nice! I've used some similar, but haven't seen one with the ball on the end.
        'If it wasn't for caffeine, I wouldn't have any personality at all!"


        • #5

          That is a fine looking unit.

          Local club


          • #6

            Brian, You asked, "Suppose you sit to carve (do you?)" I was very fortunate to have lived an active life as a Park Ranger. It was well worth the price I paid of bad hips and knees. Usually I sit to carve. I do stand occasionally to reach a particular spot.

            "What is the height of the block?" Since the vise has to be made to your specifications ~ the height will be determined by the length of the two pieces of tubing. Mine are about 2' each and the solid rod about 6 inches. This puts the maximum height at about 4 1/2 feet. Even standing I do not find this height too low. One caveat ~ the higher and heavier the carving block, the more unstable the base. My base is about 16" and occasionally I have to put a foot on it to make a particularly hard, hammered cut. That disk plow share is the heaviest part of the vise.

            "Is it up to your face level or do you lean over the block and carve downwards?" I have an eye problem and like to have the carving at face level, just above, or just below. I use magnifier glasses and reposition the carving a lot ~ height and rotation. This totally adjustable vise allows the block to be changed as needed and as the hidden grain requires to put in the detail I require. I carve up, down, and to either side as I find it convenient and the grain allows.

            Vise disadvantages:
            • It is quite heavy to move around even aided with the rounded disk base.
            • Heavy wood and heavy blows with a hammered tool can make the vise tilt.
            • Should have two plates for attaching carvings. One large and one small. I don't carve small so no small plate for me.
            • Set screws will not hold well hand tightened. A light hammer tap will fully secure/loosen.
            • Takes up room if in a small carving area.
            • Very difficult dust control if sanding or using power burrs.
            • A small carving would require attention to prevent a knife or gouge encountering the metal holding plate.

            Vise advantages:
            • Totally adjustable to any desired position.
            • Carving is held very securely.
            • Allows the use of both hands to control carving tools.
            • Especially useful on large carvings. I have a 6"x6"x12" block currently on the vise.


            • #7
              Thank you very much, Paul. Much appreciated observations.

              I carve mostly down to lean into a gouge but in front of me with the crooked knives.
              I try to avoid ever holding a carving in my hands.

              Little pole carvings, 5" x 5" x 64", can lie down with some strap clamp to keep them from jumping around.
              Brian T


              • #8
                Think I need to get one of these to take the load off my left hand that has issues. Thanks for posting.