Twin screw vise #7: Getting it working

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Blog entry by Dave Polaschek posted 12-10-2017 07:37 PM 1081 reads 0 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 6: Both jaws on Part 7 of Twin screw vise series Part 8: Cork jaw liner »

I’m a little light on pictures in this post, as I got excited that I was almost done, and didn’t want to stop to take pictures as I went. Sorry in advance for that.

When I left off in the previous post, the dowels that will hold long pieces off the vise screws were binding and wouldn’t allow the jaws to close.

So my first order of business was to open up the holes in the front chop a little with a tapered reamer. I did that slowly, sneaking up on the fit, repeatedly holding the front chop up to see how I was doing. Once I got close enough, I bolted the front chop on, and figured I’d go from there.

With the front chop in place and both vise screws bolted to it, I tried the chain. It was a few links too long (I expected that – I put the vise screws about 23¼” apart, and the chain was sized for 24”) so I got out a file, filed off the pin holding the last five links in place, and removed those five links. Put back the “full link” connector that Veritas supplied, so I was now four links short of the full length, and since each link is ⅜” long, and you have to count them twice, that made ¾” and the chain fit perfectly.

With that done, I put the ends on the handles and got out the planes to dress the top of the vise chops. Things were close, but I’ll feel better with them completely aligned, so I planed off a 32nd here and there and made them perfect. I’ll need to go back with another coat of linseed oil, but that’s no problem. I had already planned for that.

At this point, all that remains is cutting the cover plate to length (I have a friend who does metal-work who can saw off the extra ¾”), put the cover plate on over the chain, put the cork drawer liner in the jaws, and then hit the wood with a coat or two of linseed oil. Easy work, and no hurry at all on it. The vise is fully usable today.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

6 comments so far

View duckmilk's profile


3933 posts in 1928 days

#1 posted 12-10-2017 10:07 PM

Nicely done Dave. Congratulations!

-- "Duck and Bob would be out doin some farming with funny hats on." chrisstef

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

4444 posts in 1186 days

#2 posted 12-11-2017 01:38 AM

Thanks, Duck. Feels good to have it mostly wrapped up.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View doubleDD's profile


8959 posts in 2647 days

#3 posted 12-11-2017 03:43 AM

It does look great Dave. I would be proud to have it in my shop. A job well done.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View Ron Aylor's profile

Ron Aylor

2649 posts in 1251 days

#4 posted 12-11-2017 11:51 AM

Congrats, Dave, you did it. Looks great!

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

4444 posts in 1186 days

#5 posted 12-11-2017 11:52 AM

Thanks, Dave!

It took a lot longer than I initially though it would, but it turned out nice, and I had time to think my way out of any big mistakes. That said, I was surprised at how little I used the installation instructions from Veritas. I read them through twice before starting, and then consulted them mostly to figure out which screws or bolts got used at the various points.

If I were doing it again, the main thing I would change is that I’d make sure I had 8” stock, rather than 6”. As it is, the chamfer in the front chop is going to be reduced in usefulness by the chain cover on the vise. I don’t think it’ll cause me any huge problems, but we’ll see. I might end up modifying the cover.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

4444 posts in 1186 days

#6 posted 12-11-2017 11:52 AM

Thanks, Ron! Got there in the end, yep.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

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