I am looking to buy a 4ft bar clamp for cutting sheets of plywood.
Anybody have any experience with the MLCS Boomer Red Bar Clamp?
- Is $36.95 a good price?
- Does it pay to buy the back-to-back model for $60 which is
essentially two back-to-back bar clamps, allowing you to clamp the
piece to the table?
Any other recommendations on reasonably priced quality bar clamps?
Speaking of clamps, what is the difference between "good" clamps and cheap
clamps? I have been using bar and c-clamps that I picked up at Big Lots for
about $5-$10 each (a lot of different sizes) and they have worked fine for
Having never really used high qaulity clamps, what is a clamp that costs 5x
as much going to do for me?
I don't know what it would do for you, but I think it depends on what
you are clamping. Like most here, I probably have about 80 - 100
clamps. Some of them I use a lot, some not much at all.
I have some cheapo clamps, and they are good for some things. But what
I noticed about my cheapies compared to my pipe clamps, Besseys or
Irwin bar clamps is the flex. When I really clamp down on something
with cheap bar, squeeze or C clamps, there is a lot of torsion rotation
in the clamp body.
This rotation as the body of the clamp flexes makes it a lot harder to
clamp. If you are doing a large glue up, the torsion created by the
body flex of the clamps will make it hard to keep the clamps in place,
and worse can make it move after you have carefully glued, placed and
clamped the pieces exactly where you want them.
I use the cheapies as needed, but if I am glueing up anything large
that I really need to be exactly right I use the good clamps.
I had the opposite experience. I made the mistake buying a couple
clamps Made in China. The cap fell off, the jaws are not parallel,
binding, etc. No more! Now I look for USA, Canada, Germany. I
guess it depends on what you are clamping.
I know, I know. Not so cheap. But the difference is that if you use a
tool a lot, the higher-quality tool pays for itself in ease of use,
longevity, and pleasure in ownership. I have a pile of little cheapo
clamps that I still use, and I bitch about them every time. I always
go through my Jorgensens first, then reach for the cheepies when I run
out of high quality clamps.
A while back I bought some Bessey K-Clamps. Very nice. I also have
some Jorgensen Cabinet Master clamps. Also very nice.
Also: Jorgensen made in USA. Once your job is outsourced, how are you
going to buy any clamps, let alone high quality clamps?
MLCS is a great company with good prices. I have bought lots of good
quality cutters for way less than anywhere else. But when it comes to
clamps, I would go cheap..... Like a local Harbor Freight..... But that's
just me. I would rather put my $$ into good tools.
I've bought a few Penn State Industries clamps and haven't had great
results. The jaw of one of their quick-grip style clamps broke, and
the (plastic) handle on one of their heavy-duty deep-reach bar clamps
broke. The handscrews have been great though. Just be sure to wax
them before you use them.
I buy my bar clamps at Harbor Freight when they are on sale. (Can we
say cheapscape?) While they are not as nice as the ones I used in a
Woodcraft class (Bessler, I think), they work as well and I have had no
problems with them.
I've been using pipe clamps for a long time, until last year when I took
advantage of Bessey's clamp sale and bought a set from Lee Valley Tools.
What a spectacular difference! The only thing the Bessey's can't do compared
to the pipe clamps is apply sheer clamping force, but that little used
advantage is nothing compared to what the Bessey's can do.
Just my luck!!!!
The latest Fine Homebuilding (November 2006 = #182) that arrived
yesterday had an article on the Edge Guides for guiding a table saw or
Exactly what I wanted.
They (as always) gave the $500+ Festool the Best Overall though it is
really a system that also includes the table saw.
Best value went to the $110 Red-Line Cutting Guide that includes two
55inch lengths that can be screwed together rigidly to give a single
110 inch guide.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.