View Full Version : Truing up a vice
02-15-2005, 02:41 PM
Any suggestions on how to true up vice jaws? I've got an old import vice and just looking for hints. Don't have the bucks to buy a cheap one and unfortunately don't have a mill but I've got a Lathe and a drillpress. I've taken a precision square and put it on the vice ways and the unmovable jaw isn't at 90. Looks like their is an Aluminum? jaw protector? Movable jaw is "cocked" at an angle but I'm assuming that's correct in order to grip stuff in the vice.
Hard to say without actually seeing the beast. Is this a mill vise or a bench vise? I first assumed it's a mill vise, but then noticed you don't have a milling machine.
I guess I'd suggest finding out where the non-90 is coming from: wear, or is something bent from excess tightening? If it's wear, figure out how to make that right. If it's bent, you may be doomed.
New jaws can be made from regular steel, or pre-hardened 4142 if you're feeling flush. If need be, face to thickness by bolting to your lathe faceplate; drill the jaw bolt-holes first, and use those to attach to the faceplate.
Not sure about your cocked movable jaw; in the absence of other information, I'd assume it ought to be parallel to the fixed jaw.
02-15-2005, 08:28 PM
Thanks SGW. I'm actually not sure what type of vise it is :-) I think it's a mill vise. It's most likely an import that my Dad has had for many years. I'm going to look at it somemore tonight and see what I can come up with.
02-16-2005, 02:51 AM
ken,if there is an "aluminum"jaw protector,did you remove this before checking the 90 degree angle?the jaw protector is not part of the vice itself.The movable jaw has to be able to move,but not sideways.if you mean it's cocked at a less(or more)than vertical angle when tightened,this is always a problem with a cheap vice.insert a piece of round rod between the work and movable jaw,this will negate the misalignment as much as possible.my apologies if i've misunderstood the problem.
If it is that the jaws are not parallel (cuz movable jaw is cocked), perhaps you can fit new jaws, chuck some scrap as packing in vise below jaws, mill the the jaws parallel w endmill in lathe (vise on cross slide).
Not sure this is the problem, or if movable jaw is too sloppy for this to improve the situation.
just a thought.