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Is this vise OK?

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  • Is this vise OK?

    I'm having trouble finding a decent vise at a price under $100.00 US. It will be a present for my son. He just needs a general purpose one to bang, bend and hold stuff in. Iv'e got a Craftsman ( Sears) that is 20 years old, made here in the states for general use. He tried to break it when he was a teenager with no luck. I've had two freinds that have had bad luck from chain store vises. I won't mention the store they bought it from, but it starts with a H and ends in Depot.
    Anyway Enco has this one on sale http://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INSRIT?P...AKA=TK426-1020 It's a wilton, Have you guys seen one of these? Any good for homeonwers?
    Thanks,
    Ted

  • #2
    I think that this series of Wilton is Oriental-made. I would take a look at the Yost vises on the next page...they do advertise as USA made, and I've got a friend with one of their vises who is quite happy with it. My shop has three vises, a 5" Columbian non-swivel that's probably fifty years old, a 6" Chinese and Brownells copy of the Versa-Vise that's not as good as the Chinese copy that Grizzly sells for 1/10th the price.

    David
    David Kaiser
    “You can have peace. Or you can have freedom. Don't ever count on having both at once.”
    ― Robert A. Heinlein

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    • #3
      Bummer 38-cal
      I loked them up and the Yost brand shows that they are discontinued
      Thanks for the input. I like that free shipping from Enco, but will look at Grizzly's vises as well
      Thanks,
      Ted

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      • #4
        There's a vice that has just taken my fancy - Sealey CV125MAV.

        I've no idea about the quality, but it looks as if it will solve a perennial problem - working on the end of pipes and rods, and letting you saw down the length of pieces.
        Richard - SW London, UK, EU.

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        • #5
          Sealey CV125MAV

          I had a vise similar to that one many years ago. At first blush is looks convenient having the two heads you can swivel around and use, but the locking mechanism on the spindle is really weak. When loading the vise in the vertical plane it would swivel in the horizontal plane. There is only one pressure lock on the spindle, so I added another on the opposite side and that helped, but then the jaws fractured and I had to weld them.
          Its a great vise for light duty work IMO.
          This was about 25 years ago, so they may have improved the design since then.

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          • #6
            A good complement to a bench vise that gets banged on a lot is a small bench anvil that can be held in the vise. They're dirt cheap and easily replaced if they crumble. Mine hasn't yet but it takes a good beating. As a result my more expensive vise is still in excellent condition.

            Example:
            http://www.grizzly.com/products/G8070

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            • #7
              Originally posted by mototed
              I'm having trouble finding a decent vise at a price under $100.00 US.
              Many machinist vises as have been made in the US over the years, and are still in working condition. Have you looked locally for a used one?

              metalmagpie

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              • #8
                I have been looking at the used option also. Almost too late to find one. My son would'nt care if it was new, used or not. My better half might have another opinion though. Think I might wait, mabe good one will show up for his birthday in Feburary. I was just wondering, if this one was a total POS.
                Ted

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                • #9
                  I have it:

                  It is not the top of the line, but it works. It hasn't broken, and I've banged on it pretty hard; cheater bar'd the lever etc. As you can see, I replaced the jaws with brass ones I made. The originals are still fine, I just preferred the soft jaws. The only thing I've had happen with it was an easy fix. There is a circlip that locates on the leadscrew and it popped off. Hence, IIRC, you could screw it closed, but then not release it unless you pulled up on the entire moveable jaw piece. I took it apart, reset the circlip, and it's been going ever since. I'll admit, I wouldn't be opposed to it breaking because I have a nice Wilton Tradesman 1750 in another area of the shop. The difference I notice the most is: jaw movement is pretty "wiggly" while you're closing the less expensive one. The screw/nut fit is looser as well. The 1750 sorta glides closed, keeping the jaws nicely parallel. The one pictured is more loose. That said, there is a big price difference. ...and it hasn't nudged yet---even with my wishing for it too! It has worked hard for me. I would give it my vote as a practical tool. (I have the 5-1/2" jaw version marked "4500". Yes, Made in China.)

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                  • #10
                    My vote is Columbian I have a 5" on my welding bench and a 3 1/2 as well as a 4 1/2 in both with swivel rear jaws on my work bench. Ive used these since 1960 as a profesional gunsmith they are fantastic. From 1947 to 1960 I had a variety of vises that never held up. Schools used to use columbian in their shops sometimes they are available at school auctions. Paul J

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                    • #11
                      I got this one and like it

                      http://www.harborfreight.com/8-inch-...ise-97100.html

                      nothing like having 11" opening capacity; every other vise I've had (6" before this) has come up short at some point
                      Last edited by noah katz; 12-14-2010, 09:13 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by paulj84003
                        Schools used to use Columbian in their shops sometimes they
                        are available at school auctions.
                        I will second the suggestion of shopping commercial/industrial auctions
                        for vises if this is feasible for you. I have watched as countless vises sold
                        for pennies on the dollar.

                        For an example, I paid $20 last year for a No-6 Mechanics' Vise by Gray Tools,
                        a 70 lb chunk of cast iron that was just one of ten similar vises available at
                        the sale. This is a model that sells for something approaching $200 at new
                        trade price, someone currently has an unused one on CL in Vanc for $125.

                        .

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by EddyCurr
                          I will second the suggestion of shopping commercial/industrial auctions
                          for vises if this is feasible for you. I have watched as countless vises sold
                          for pennies on the dollar.
                          .
                          +1 more. I've seen some stout old vises go for opening bids, sometime they get no bids at all.

                          Shame really, I assume they go straight to the scrap yard with all the old metal shelving and nuts and bolts swept up off the floor!

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                          • #14
                            I've got two Columbian's in my shop... both I picked up in antique shops... Just a thought.

                            V/R

                            Mike
                            Mike Hunter

                            www.mikehunterrestorations.com

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                            • #15
                              Im also a big fan of buying used. Some things like vises and anvils may get abused a bit, but never really wear out. My rule of thumb is to pay a max of $0.50/lb of vice and $1.00/lb of anvil. If you want a "little" vise - one you can lift yourself without much effort look at yard sales. If you want a real vise look at industrial/farm auctions.
                              "I am, and ever will be, a white-socks, pocket-protector, nerdy engineer -- born under the second law of thermodynamics, steeped in the steam tables, in love with free-body diagrams, transformed by Laplace, and propelled by compressible flow."

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