Favorite Quick Grip style clamp

So I've been working on a job site where a guy has a pair of Quick Grip style clamps made by Channel Lock (Channellock?). They are light blue with red pads, and I think they are my favorite of the bunch so far. Nice big clamping pads, and they're smooth so glue doesn't fill in the cracks. And pretty strong too - fairly beefy steel bar. They just feel sturdier overall, even in the handles. And they have a slick little pushbutton mechanism to switch them over to a spreader, unlike the Jorgys with a screw that falls out. They don't seem to be widely available though. JP
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I can tell you what's not a favorite clamp... Harbor Freight. They flat won't hold.
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I bought a bunch of their aluminum bar clamps. It's quite frustrating when the business end cracks off and you're racing wet glue. Never again.
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Harbor freight quick clamp, first usage, squeeze, squeeze, squeeze, crumble, parts on the floor. Glad I only bought one on a trial basis. Need to be selective when buying from them. I do like "some" their air parts selection as long as you avoid the stinky chinese rubber hose and oh yeah, the auto drain switch I put on the bottom of my compressor that stuck slightly open after about a week.

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wrote:

Agreed. They're one of the few tools I've returned to HF. The Chiwanese Vise Grip clones are pretty bad. The adjuster bolt is the worst part. Once you tighten it and grip the handles together, the screw bypasses the metal lug and the pliers become useless. http://goo.gl/6xViL (I don't think mine were Pittsburgh way back when)
I like the cheapie quick-grip WW clamps from HF but they're not quite as strong as other brands. They're strong enough about 98% of the time. I think I've had them slip only a couple times in a few years. (They only sell the open-levered type now.)
The Chiwanese channellocks are great, though. Just lube 'em up and adjust (tighten) the pivot bolt. I got the 3-pc orange gripped set and they helped me with the last plumbing job, running the pipes and ends together and tightening the valves while holding the pipes. http://goo.gl/FKtHJ
Jay, which of these were you talking about, anyway? 'Twas vague. "Grip" equates to "vise grip" for me. "Quick" means single-handed WW clamps with pads. and "Channellock" means adjustable-throat-size pliers.
-- Not merely an absence of noise, Real Silence begins when a reasonable being withdraws from the noise in order to find peace and order in his inner sanctuary. -- Peter Minard
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Sort of a mix really - they're single handed ww clamps with pads made by Channellock. Point your browser here... http://www.channellockproducts.com/index.php?sku=360889
JP
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On Sat, 2 Apr 2011 13:07:53 -0700 (PDT), Jay Pique

OK. I was on the site and saw that they call their channellocks which have the extra flats cut into the jaws "griplocks". This is how the HF channellocks are. They work better on plumbing than straight jaws, and the curved jaws (Nut tongue and groove) work even better. http://goo.gl/z92BL and http://goo.gl/rB6Wp respectively.
-- Not merely an absence of noise, Real Silence begins when a reasonable being withdraws from the noise in order to find peace and order in his inner sanctuary. -- Peter Minard
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message wrote:

Since the thread has gone serpentine, I've been thinking on those Knipex "pliers-wrenches" and their "cobra wrenches". If you want to read love stories, check out the reviews of the first on Amazon. There's division in the ratings and discussions on the cobras from the much cheaper Irwin's but people appear to mate forever with the "pliers-wrenches".
See the discussions at:
(Amazon.com product link shortened)
Vise Grip stuff is first class. After an audition, a set of Craftsman competitors that came into my hand soon left it. The Irwin quick-grip clamps are nice.; and their HF rivals....what you all said: pfffft.
Regards,
Edward Hennessey
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wrote:

Ya, I have a number of the smaller Irwins and they work really well. I use them all the time. Also have a number of small Bessey F style clamps, they are more difficult to slide up but when they get gripping, you can put a lot more force on than the quick squeeze clamps.
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wrote:

Ya, I have a number of the smaller Irwins and they work really well. I use them all the time. Also have a number of small Bessey F style clamps, they are more difficult to slide up but when they get gripping, you can put a lot more force on than the quick squeeze clamps.
Rockler has the Irwin SL 300 clamps on sale now for 15 per. "Stock on hand" is the warning and the flier here doesn't clarify whether the sizes are limited.
Seeing a Bessey at discount is always an invitation to an excuse.
Regards,
Edward Hennessey
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Ok so I think that I've found a clone of these available for much less money. I'm almost afraid to say it, but they're CRAFTSMAN brand. <ducks and runs for cover> If they are indeed the same - and I believe they are, they are a quality clamp. You heard it here first! http://tinyurl.com/4xjs447 http://preview.tinyurl.com/4xjs447
JP
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I've got a few clamps that are labeled as "Quick-Grip Quick Change" with no manufacturer's name. That are yellow and black, but look exactly like these Irwin clamps, other than the colors and the label.
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/315BJPZ4B8L._SL500_AA300_.jpg
On my clamp the Quick Change has TM next to it and Quick-Grip has the circled R. There's also some Patent numbers on the clamp, but absolutely no mention of a company name.
I'm guessing that in the years (decade?) since I bought them, Irwin bought the rights from whoever manufactured them way back when.
They have stood up extremely well over the years, although I can't say if Irwin changed anything that would impact the quality.
And now a little bar clamp related tale from my DIY experiences...
"How I almost took my eye out with a bar clamp"
I was building a deck many years ago and trying to figure out how I wanted to attach the stair railing. I grabbed two 36" Jorgensen bar clamps that were nearby and clamped a 2 x 4 to the posts at the top and bottom of the stairs, with the bar sticking out into the yard.
I stepped back to see if I liked the layout and decided to make some adjustments. As I walked back towards the deck, the tiny oval end of the steel bar sort of disappeared into the background and I never saw it. As I walked straight into it, it hit the lens of my safety glasses, knocking them off my face and cracking the lens. The force deflected the bar clamp just enough that it slid up and put a decent size gash along my eye brow.
Based on where it hit the lens, it would have went straight into my eye had I not been wearing safety glasses. I was shaking more from the shock of almost losing my eye than I was from the blood streaming down my face.
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I have a pretty good selection of clamps gathered over 30-40 years. Old pipe bars, Bessey's, Gros Stabils (?), Colombia, etc. My favorite and most used quick grips are a collection of Irwin's ranging from 6" to about 30". They are the ones I usually grab when I want to clamp something quickly and perfect alignment isn't an issue. When I need alignment the Bessey's and Gros Stabils get used.
The only problems I have had with the Irwin clamps are the clamping ability failed on one or two of them. Pads fall off now and then too, but all of the padded ones do that. The inexpensive Colombia clamps are OK to but require more fiddling.
RonB
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