20 Feb Two New Locking Vises from Irwin
Among several new hand tools from Irwin are a couple of vises that were designed with welders in mind, but that should find very useful homes in woodshops. They are fast release locking clamps, one of which has swivel pads (bottom in photo) and the other has regular tips (top image). What’s special here is that the larger 11” clamps require 20% less hand span to operate them, so they’re better suited to smaller hands, or for woodworkers with challenges such as arthritis. The reduced handle opening also improves control and helps reduce hand strain. The exceptionally wide-opening jaws provide greater versatility in clamping a variety of shapes, from parts being joined with pocket screws to small assemblies being clamped while the glue cures. A redesigned tactile grip zone on the handle helps to improve user control, and it provides a little protection in high temperature applications. A hex key adjusting screw tightens to adjust pressure when drawing materials together, and it also provides a more controlled release. Both clamps have a one-handed, trigger-less release that is twice as easy to open when compared to traditional locking pliers. These tools are built with heat-treated alloyed steel for maximum durability, and they’re backed by Irwin’s lifetime guarantee. The regular tipped clamps come in 6” (2-1/8” opening) and 11” (4” opening) versions, while the swivel pad models have 2-1/8” and 3-3/8” openings, respectively.