They suck

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Review by Woodknack posted 05-09-2013 07:19 AM 3032 views 0 times favorited 37 comments Add to Favorites Watch
They suck No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

Not very descriptive title but accurate. Around Christmas I bought a bag of these for $5 and feel I was ripped off. I didn’t even open the bag until a month ago and three have gone in the trash. One was clamped to a wood extension on my miter gauge, came apart and flew into the blade, no damage except to my wits. Another was clamping my drill press fence and suddenly exploded, again my wits took a beating. On another, the spring just broke through the handle. Quite a few more feel like they only have minutes to live. The orange jaw pieces do not want to stay together for some reason, their default position is flipped over backwards. These are horrible, horrible, shop clamps; though they might, and I mean might, hold potato chip bags shut.

-- Rick M,

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13442 posts in 3188 days

37 comments so far

View oldnovice's profile


7599 posts in 4176 days

#1 posted 05-09-2013 07:37 AM

I feel your pain as I have found very few of the plastic variety to be any good.
I have some steel ones that I have had for years and, other than a few rust specks, are holding strong!

-- "It's fine in practise but it will never work in theory"

View LoriF's profile


119 posts in 2685 days

#2 posted 05-09-2013 07:47 AM

@Rick M. “Not very descriptive title but accurate.” I like your title “They suck” it is clear, concise and enticed me to read the post and isn’t that the point?

-- There's a crack in everything that’s how the light gets in - Leonard Cohen

View Tedstor's profile


1691 posts in 3441 days

#3 posted 05-09-2013 10:17 AM

I was tempted to buy a bag of those clamps a while back. I figured they’d be good nuff. Guess not.
I have bought a dozen or so of the metal spring clamps from HD for 99 cents each. They are solid.

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4168 posts in 3665 days

#4 posted 05-09-2013 10:31 AM

Rick, I’ve a few dozen of these lying around, just in case.

In case of what I don’t really know. Cable tidies has been

there most use so far and two have broken from that. :(


-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View Odiferous's profile


105 posts in 2999 days

#5 posted 05-09-2013 12:28 PM

Thank you for posting this—I was strongly considering the same bag since the spring felt stronger than the HF metal version.

View ChuckV's profile (online now)


3319 posts in 4335 days

#6 posted 05-09-2013 12:43 PM

Thanks for the warning Rick.

If you try them on a potato chip bag, be sure to check for spontaneous clamp self-destruction every day. You don’t want any chips going stale on you.

-- “Big man, pig man, ha ha, charade you are.” ― R. Waters

View sgmdwk's profile


308 posts in 2681 days

#7 posted 05-09-2013 02:00 PM

Just to provide an alternative viewpoint: I have had these cheap spring clamps for several years and have not had any of the problems mentioned. They do a good job as a third hand to hold small pieces in place, and that is all I ask of them. None of them have broken or surprised me in any way. I haven’t sprung (ouch) for any of the metal spring clamps, so can’t offer a comparison.

-- Dave K.

View lepelerin's profile


498 posts in 3133 days

#8 posted 05-09-2013 02:03 PM

I bought a bag of 22 of them at HD for $1.50 the other day. At that price I knew what to expect. Have used some so far and they were OK. I do not have any metal or other model to compare. However they feel “cheap” and not very robust.

View Bill1974's profile


139 posts in 3793 days

#9 posted 05-09-2013 02:04 PM

I have some Irwin clamps like these and they work pretty well

View Planeman40's profile


1502 posts in 3569 days

#10 posted 05-09-2013 04:29 PM

I use these little clamps frequently with no problem. Yes, they are light duty and don’t offer heavy clamping power, but they have their uses. It appears you are expecting too much from them and are probably using them when you should be using something that offers more strength and clamping pressure like steel spring clamps.


-- Always remember: It is a mathematical certainty that half the people in this country are below average in intelligence!

View Johnny Boy's profile

Johnny Boy

76 posts in 4027 days

#11 posted 05-09-2013 06:13 PM

I have a bunch of them (from Canadian Tire but these are the same cheap plastic clamps) and they work really well for me.
Not a huge clamping power but to clamp small parts or shoes during glue-up, they are perfect.

Take care.

-- Johnny Boy

View crank49's profile


4032 posts in 3779 days

#12 posted 05-09-2013 07:00 PM

”The orange jaw pieces . . . . , their default position is flipped over backwards.”
Don’t you hate when you are trying to clamp something and the stupid clamp does that.

View doubleDD's profile


9544 posts in 2851 days

#13 posted 05-09-2013 07:26 PM

I have to agree, these plastic ones are not of great value. I had some from way back and don’t use them anymore. Sticking with the metal ones from now on.

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

View Woodknack's profile


13442 posts in 3188 days

#14 posted 05-09-2013 07:53 PM

It appears you are expecting too much from them

Truer words were never spoken. I did find a good use for them one day… I clamped one to a piece of paper and hung the clamp from a wire so the paper would be out of way but readable while I worked.

-- Rick M,

View doubleDD's profile


9544 posts in 2851 days

#15 posted 05-09-2013 08:01 PM

I use them like a potato chip clip, for the big bag of dog food. Hey, works great for that.

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

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