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Workmate improvements #2: Doe's foot and drill press clamps

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Blog entry by shawnSK posted 03-28-2020 02:29 AM 427 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: A Grain of Salt Part 2 of Workmate improvements series no next part

My Workmate is my only bench, so I am always looking for ways to expand its usefulness.
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Over the past month, I’ve added two nice tools to make it work better.
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First is a drill press clamp or a vice grip clamp. I first saw these on Retired Guru’s Woodworking on a Half-Shoestring blog as a way to add “holdfasts” to a thin bench. I found a couple at Princess Auto and they work really well. Good pressure, and once I secure them (sometimes the Workmate frame gets in the way of key positioning) I can clamp from the interior of the Workmate instead of trying to clamp from the outter edge.
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RG’s review is here: https://www.lumberjocks.com/retired_guru/blog/130743
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The other improvement is a Doe’s Foot, which I saw over at Richard Maguire’s site. Just a thin piece of poplar with a notch. It works beautifully for planing. I made mine really small because I run out of real estate quickly.
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Here’s a video of Richard describing it: https://www.theenglishwoodworker.com/the-holdfast-and-the-batten-video/

EDITED to add Retired Guru’s link.

-- Shawn, Saskatchewan



4 comments so far

View retired_guru's profile

retired_guru

838 posts in 2170 days


#1 posted 03-28-2020 06:53 PM

Thanks for the referencing and credits, Shawn. They really are a winner on the Workmates, aren’t they? I’ll be using them on mine outdoors once the weather breaks.

I see the heads are different than on the Harbor Freight units I have. Have you tried adding rubber pads to the heads? The self-adhesive furniture feet pads might add grip and keep them from marring the wood.

-- -- Paul: jack of all dreams, a master none.

View JCinVA's profile

JCinVA

218 posts in 1641 days


#2 posted 04-05-2020 05:32 AM

Thanks for the info and links. I will be making a Doe’s Foot tomorrow and sizing it for my Workmate.

View shawnSK's profile

shawnSK

39 posts in 169 days


#3 posted 04-07-2020 01:54 PM



Thanks for the referencing and credits, Shawn. They really are a winner on the Workmates, aren t they? I ll be using them on mine outdoors once the weather breaks.

I see the heads are different than on the Harbor Freight units I have. Have you tried adding rubber pads to the heads? The self-adhesive furniture feet pads might add grip and keep them from marring the wood.

- Retired Guru

I use them for almost everything now. A bit fiddly, but much much better than c- or f-clamps. I looked for the rubber pads that you use, but couldn’t find them locally. I will say the clamps get good pressure without denting the wood, even pine. But I might just be lucky so far. Sometimes I put a little shim between the clamp and the wood.

-- Shawn, Saskatchewan

View shawnSK's profile

shawnSK

39 posts in 169 days


#4 posted 04-07-2020 01:55 PM



Thanks for the info and links. I will be making a Doe s Foot tomorrow and sizing it for my Workmate.

- JCinVA

Let me know how it goes.

Shawn

-- Shawn, Saskatchewan

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