Moxon double-screw vise (for around ten bucks)

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Project by DHS posted 10-25-2011 06:04 AM 14855 views 56 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I had been looking for a double-screw vise for my work bench but did not feel like paying $239.00 for the Lee-Valley version. The Moxon vise described by Christopher Schwarz in his Popular-Woodworking blog looked interesting, but required a $50.00 wood-treading kit. The Benchcrafted version of this vise sells for $339, really pricey for such a simple-looking vise. This is my ten-dollar version. (Actually, $11.85 in hardware after including sales tax.) I used 3/4” threaded rod and a few nuts, some old 7/4” oak I had lying around in the shop, and scrap pieces of cherry for the handwheels. One nut goes into a mortise and the other screws in behind the back jaw to hold each of the threaded rods in place. I cut the hand wheels on a bandsaw. I used epoxy to fix nuts into centered mortises in the handwheels and these stand a little proud of the wheels. The vise is shown mounted flush with the bench, but it can be flipped upside down to elevate the vise and the work above the benchtop. A video of the Benchcrafted version of the Moxon vise in action can be viewed here:

I am now a happy clamper.

- Dave

-- Dave S., Bellingham, WA

15 comments so far

View Nick's profile


87 posts in 4305 days

#1 posted 10-25-2011 06:45 AM

great work. I have been thinking about this sense I saw one of these awhile back.

-- Nick, AZ. Wood is a canvas for God's art work, it is our job as woodworkers to figur out the best way to display it.

View B13's profile


463 posts in 4145 days

#2 posted 10-25-2011 07:03 AM

Great Idea! looks nice! thanks

View tbear's profile


8 posts in 3917 days

#3 posted 10-25-2011 07:39 AM

McMaster-Carr Part No.s

ACME Threaded Rod Steel 3/4-8 tpi / 12 inches long #98935A736 / 2 ea. @ $13.50 = $27.00

ACME Nuts 3/4-8 2G Steel #94815A034 / 6 ea. @ $4.39 = $26.34


Does not include shipping.
The wood etc. is your choice. I think Maple would be best.
I will post mine when it’s done.
They do have cast iron 5in. 3 spoke hand wheels unfinished but the center hub would have to be tapped to 3/4-8 tpi ACME.
I looked at the prices for 3/4-8 tpi taps and they are expensive, around $100 plus change.

View Ken90712's profile


18113 posts in 4640 days

#4 posted 10-25-2011 01:35 PM

Makes sense and great idea. Well done, and should do the trick no problem.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View drbyte's profile


848 posts in 5514 days

#5 posted 10-25-2011 02:47 PM

Great idea! Home built is always better! You could even use acme threaded rod for just a few dollars more and it would be even faster and more convenient!

-- Dennis, WV

View woodzy's profile


418 posts in 4130 days

#6 posted 10-25-2011 02:49 PM

Brilliant !!
Nice work. It looks really nice and hold true to the craft.

-- Anthony

View slickSqueegie's profile


94 posts in 3873 days

#7 posted 10-25-2011 04:58 PM

very very cool!

-- Come check out more of my projects at

View woodism's profile


47 posts in 4428 days

#8 posted 10-29-2011 07:08 AM

I gotta say ,,, I’d get those bolts to thread all the way in before I got nailed walking by… that’s a sooner or later situation , Just sayin,,,,,, that would be a hazard that I’d correct immediately.

View DHS's profile


144 posts in 4675 days

#9 posted 10-29-2011 06:27 PM

Yes, I had the same reaction after looking at the photos I had posted. (They did stick out too far and the wide-angle photo made it look even worse.) Anyway, I adjusted the bolts and they now only stick out a couple of inches. Good suggestion.

-- Dave S., Bellingham, WA

View HighRockWoodworking's profile


182 posts in 4431 days

#10 posted 11-09-2011 06:34 PM

Dave, I just stumbled on your version of the Moxon vise. Looks great and I see we were thinking a like in this project.

I have had a few comments on mine with conccerns with the bolts also, but honestly it has not been an issue so far. But adjusted mine out the back just in case. The nut could always be inbedeed into the back and fixed flush on the handles but the free spin of the handles makes for a quick adjustment.

Nice work.

-- Chris Adkins,

View Skiedra's profile


259 posts in 3743 days

#11 posted 02-16-2012 12:50 PM

Very well done! I’ll be making this same vise for my new workbench

View Gintaras's profile


199 posts in 4372 days

#12 posted 02-16-2012 01:52 PM


-- Gintaras,

View Paul's profile


11 posts in 3480 days

#13 posted 01-19-2013 08:26 PM

I actually did something very similar. I used 5/8-11 rod, two nuts and two pulleys with stop collars on them (built-in, as most pulleys have).

Added a front hole, then added another block in the rear to level and straighten the long rods. Chiseled out a spot for the nuts and glued them in place. The advantage is that, in my case, it is the rod that turns, not just the handles. So when it is screwed in, the rods don’t stick out.

By using pulleys, I also leave myself open to adding a belt for true double-screw movement and even a small motor I have hanging around. And the whole thing cost me less than 40$.

Pictures coming soon.

View DHS's profile


144 posts in 4675 days

#14 posted 01-20-2013 01:07 AM

I look forward to seeing the photos of your Moxon vise. Thanks for the comments. Check out the side vise I built for my workbench. (here). It might be similar to yours. The screws go into the bench so they only stick out as far as you would like the vise to open.

-- Dave S., Bellingham, WA

View Jerry's profile


3577 posts in 3099 days

#15 posted 11-26-2013 02:15 AM

Thanks so much for sharing this highly efficient design. I’ve been wracking my brains trying to figure out how to get a cheap moxon vise., and here it is.

-- There are good ships and there are wood ships, the ships that sail the sea, but the best ships are friendships and may they always be.

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