I am about to buy some clamps from lowes. I have a cabinet that is 19"
wide that I will need to clamp when I glue it.
To me it looks like a clamp is a clamp. So I'm considering
2 Columbian 24" SUMOGRUP Bar Clamps @ $12.48 each. Some of the others
are much more expensive and I am wondering if there is anything I might
be missing. Ill probably do one project every 4 months so I don't need
the uber clamps.
The IRWIN 24" quick-grip bar clamp / spreader is $24.
Just checking before I buy these. Don't want to get home to find out I
have "consolation prize" quality tools.
"Then said I, Wisdom [is] better than strength: nevertheless the poor
with all the respect to the Good Tools I do not think expensive clamps are
that much better, easier to use .. maybe, but come on, how much time will
you be spending working on clamps, you set them and they work no matter how
much they cost. For large things i love the pipe clamps, have them on short
30 inch pipes but have some long pipes just in case to use once in a blue
moon, or to scare wildlife.
> For large things i love the pipe clamps, have them on short
In case you didn't know, dnoyeB - the pipe clamps should be there at the
hardware store, but they're hiding in little boxes since you only buy
the ends, then go to the plumbing aisle and get the pipe separately.
In my humble opinion, you'd be better off getting something either
better or cheaper. Amazon has Jorgensen 24" heavy-duty bar clamps for
$13.99 each with free shipping over $25 - I have some of these and
they're very beefy and nice. They have nice wide threads so you don't
have to spin the handle a bunch of times to tighten it, and the handle
is large enough in diameter that you can put some good torque on it.
If you just want something to use 3 times a year and to be functional
but you'd settle for less beefy, I'd go to Harbor freight (if you have
one, or harborfreight.com) and get some of their 24" bar clamps for
$6.99 (or less if they're on sale as they frequently are). HF stuff is
obviously cheap and cheaply made, but from what I've seen on this
newsgroup, I'd be willing to try these clamps, especially at half
price. If you really like the SUMOGRIPs for some reason, and you're
willing to wait a week, Amazon has those for $8.99, again with free
shipping over $25.
Hope this helps,
Sorry for the second post - I forgot to mention that I have some of
these quick-grip clamps and I don't like them that much. They can be
used one-handed, but it doesn't seem like I can put very much pressure
on them, they're somewhat difficult to release, and I've heard stories
of them coming apart. If I were getting more of this style clamp, I'd
look at the Jorgensen ISD line, also available at Amazon. No
experience with these, though.
I'm with Andy.
I would much rather have 8 cheap clamps than 1 uberclamp (yes the price
differnce can be that much).
Harbor freight (Pittsburgh) bar clamps are of adequate quality and excellent
price. They come little plastic pads which are actually quite helpful if you
can get them to stay on (hint-hotmelt glue).
Don't get me wrong, I really like my cabinet masters, and you probably want
at least a few bar clamps to handle large carcass assemblies, but for mnost
things where a 24" or less clamp will do HF is a good value.
I hope nobody beats me to the next one, but I buy older clamps at yard
sales, flea market, and other such. The best by far have a wheel to
turn for great and easily applied pressure. Next after that are two
very solid 4' clamps with a wooden straight turn handle, well designed
and solid, I got the last two for $15 Can. I do a lot of browsing
though, and don't buy anything that's not excellent quality, such as
an old Stanley hand-drill with all the bits for $1 Can at a house
I have a "Quick grip" I'll give away as soon as I find somebody I hate
enough. The damned thing won't spring back for more pressure, then an
hour later I hear a "click" ...but too late.
Most yellow wood glues only need to be clamped for an hour or so. The
glue is still drying for another 4-24 hours, so it still should be
handled carefully and not machined, but the clamps can come off.
I found out long ago that leaving them on longer was usually a waste of
time. Bends and some edge to edge glue ups need more clamp time.
Some people like pipe clamps because they're cheap, versatile, and
super-beefy (at least the 3/4" ones are). You can start with whatever
lengths of pipe you can get (HD etc. will cut and thread them for you),
connect 2 lengths, or get longer lengths as needed. However, pipe
clamps are very heavy and bulky, and therefore less mobile than most
others. I have a couple pipe clamps, but I find I reach for bar clamps
almost all the time since they're lighter and easier to maneuver. Pipe
clamps are especially good for glueing up wide panels like table tops,
especially if you don't have any Bessey K-body or Jorgensen
Cabinetmaster clamps (super-nice, super-expensive, parallel-jaw type
clamps). Your 24" bar clamps were an excellent way (IMO) to start your
clamp collection, but if you ever need more capacity or more clamping
pressure, you can check out some pipe clamps. Note - I've also heard
from various people on this NG that Harbor Freight brand pipe clamps
(only the Heavy Duty 3/4" ones) are decent quality, and if you see them
on sale for $3.49 a set like they were a few weeks ago, they're
definitely worth it.
Hope this helps,
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