DIY version of Rockler's Pock-it Hole Clamp

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Forum topic by mikedrums posted 02-09-2010 02:01 AM 26629 views 10 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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102 posts in 4009 days

02-09-2010 02:01 AM

Topic tags/keywords: pocket hole pocket hole clamp

Rockler has a cool new pocket hole clamp that I think you can make on your own, better and cheaper.

I decided to throw one these together in the shop and made a video to show.
It’s obviously a very rough prototype, but it worked very well and took less than an hour to build. I also used a cam toggle clamp so it is a lot faster than tightening a knob screw.

I found that I still had to exert a lot of pressure down, as I drove in the screws, to keep the pieces from steady. I generally clamp both pieces down to the table when driving pocket hole screws, so this was something I hasn’t foreseen. I suppose I could’ve clamped them down to the table, after clamping them together.

In any case, I think you could build your own with little effort/time and make it better than the Rockler version.
Sorry for the lousy video quality….

22 replies so far

View SteveinDC's profile


2 posts in 4465 days

#1 posted 02-09-2010 02:11 AM

Great idea – and your video is short and really clear – thanks for posting.

View a1Jim's profile


118153 posts in 4551 days

#2 posted 02-09-2010 02:37 AM

Good idea. To fancy looking for me LOL


View Broglea's profile


693 posts in 4064 days

#3 posted 02-09-2010 03:29 AM

I’m going to knock one or two of these out this week end. Thanks for sharing.

View rosewood513's profile


36 posts in 4294 days

#4 posted 02-10-2010 06:15 PM

First I think this is a great idea, but that is if you have a toggle clamp, which I don’t.
I will try to find something to mimic that, but for me to buy one it is not cost effective.
But that is one handy tool.
Thanks for sharing.

-- If you always do what you always did, then you will always get what you always got!

View mikedrums's profile


102 posts in 4009 days

#5 posted 02-10-2010 07:51 PM

I had the toggle clamps sitting in the shop, so yes, it was cheap me. I figure most woodworkers have an assortment of clamps for jigs and such, but maybe not the forward motion toggles.

What most of us are certain to have sitting around, is an assortment of knobs, threaded rod and t-nuts, with which it would be very easy and inexpensive to make a hand crack version, just like the Rockler.

Like I wrote in another forum, Rockler has a brilliant way of pricing their proprietary jigs and such at a price that is juuuuuust high enough that you want to go out in the shop and build your own.

If they ever a 50% off sale on these with free shipping, it would be silly to build your own.

Here’s what we usually don’t figure into the equation, however…
So you pay $4.50 each, for a couple toggle clamps and $7 shipping to you to make your own version of Rockler’s pocket hole clamp. That’s still less than the price of one Rockler clamp…. and here’s the kicker… you have two toggle clamps you can use for any other homemade jig.

Those Rocklers are UNI-taskers. Maybe it’s just me (and Alton Brown), but uni-taskers frustrate the crap out of me. You pay $40-60 for some clamps that only do one thing. If you’re going to be doing pocket hole joinery all day making decent money from it, I will say right now, it would be stupid not to just buy the Rocklers.

But for a lot (dare I say, most) of us, these would get used once a year. :-) How many of us have paid several bills for a shiny new uni-tasking thingamawidget and not only does it sit there in a drawer for 11-1/2 months out of the year, but it also gets in the way or takes up valuable shop space 90 percent of the time.

If you assemble your own jigs out of reusable, multi-tasking “modular” parts (toggle clamps), then those parts get used all year, for several different tasks, and suddenly 16 bucks for a couple toggle clamps seems like the deal of a century.

View rosewood513's profile


36 posts in 4294 days

#6 posted 02-10-2010 08:09 PM

I already figured out how to make one without the toggle clamp. I am aiming for the same thing they made but in wood. The only challenge is the screw, I had one on a kitchen gadget, if I could only find it. I even had the rubber head and a knob. I am a fairly new woodworker since i came from a condo, I now own my own home and I have collected my share of shop tools, more that most men I know.
This is a challenge I am going to take on. I love Alton Brown
He has given me the desire to use multitaskers, or make a cheap version of whatever.

I am coming up with a tool that will help me make the table legs I am trying to create. It is so simple, if you haven’t thought of it yourself you will hit your head when you see it.
Sometimes the inexperienced have a lot to say. Call me cheap but 19.99 the price they are now is a bit too much for a unitasker I will only use for a few projects a year.

I looked for a sale, but the best is 19.99 and free shipping, don’t hold your breath for 50% off. :)

-- If you always do what you always did, then you will always get what you always got!

View clieb91's profile


4166 posts in 4908 days

#7 posted 02-10-2010 08:26 PM

Neat clamp and a good idea on the make your own. May have to think about that. My wife will tell ya I like the Kreg Jig…
Thanks for sharing.


-- Chris L. "Don't Dream it, Be it."- (Purveyors of Portable Fun and Fidgets)

View sIKE's profile


1271 posts in 4727 days

#8 posted 02-11-2010 03:02 AM

very nice looking jig!

-- //FC - Round Rock, TX - "Experience is what you get just after you need it"

View brandonsommer's profile


33 posts in 4010 days

#9 posted 02-11-2010 03:11 AM

Good idea, very handly little jig. How much fancier do you really need to get for a jig though? :)

View mikedrums's profile


102 posts in 4009 days

#10 posted 02-11-2010 03:17 AM

You know Brandon, every time I make a jig “prototype” that works well, I never end up making a pretty version… why? I’d rather spend time making pretty stuff, instead of making pretty stuff used to make pretty stuff. :-)

View Jeison's profile


968 posts in 4081 days

#11 posted 02-11-2010 03:23 AM

but shiny new uni-tasking thingamawidgets make me happy :D

-- - Jei, Rockford IL - When in doubt, spray it with WD-40 and wrap it with duct tape. The details will attend to themselves.

View Robert Herring's profile

Robert Herring

38 posts in 4353 days

#12 posted 02-11-2010 03:30 AM

Where would you buy the type of toggle clamp shown in the video?

-- Robert M. Herring

View mikedrums's profile


102 posts in 4009 days

#13 posted 02-11-2010 03:48 AM

as for the exact clamp I used, google: destaco

But I don’t recommend those. They are expensive and have a design flaw. The fact that they are plastic helps if you accidentally run a blade into one, but other than that, I much prefer the cheap metal ones.

These are much cheaper, have a much smaller footprint, and shorter throw.

View Mary Anne's profile

Mary Anne

1058 posts in 4182 days

#14 posted 02-11-2010 03:52 AM

Thanks for the kick in the head reminder that simple thingamawidgets are often simple to make. I confess I was oohhing and ahhing at the Rockler model thinking how much more handy-dandy it would be —and less expensive!—than the official Kreg face clamp that I already paid way to much for.

View JJohnston's profile


1622 posts in 4265 days

#15 posted 02-11-2010 04:02 AM

I’m thinking for clamping a face frame to a carcase, you’d build something with more throat depth, C-clamp style, but the concept would be the same.

-- "A man may conduct himself well in both adversity and good fortune, but if you want to test his character, give him power." - Abraham Lincoln

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