Quickgrip Holddown

Jorgensen Clamp 1834

Jorgensen Clamp Co. (312) 666-0640

Circle #601

MapleTek Engineering (800) 425-2677

Circle »602

Mounts In 3/Wn. hole In benchtop, or In T-channel screwed Into slot routed Into benchtop. May also be screwed to surface.

Ust Price: $39.95 Optional l&-ln. T-channel: $10

American Tool Co.

(800) 767-6297

Circle #603

Mounts In 3A-ln. hole In benchtop, wtth support bracket screwed to underside of benchtop.

Ust Price: $30 Additional Mounting Brackets: $8 for 2

Jorgensen Clamp Co. (312) 666-0640

Circle #601

Mounts In 3/Wn. counterbored hole In benchtop.

List Price: $13.85 Extra Bolts: $1.45

As you'd expect from a company that makes high-quality clamps, this cast-iron hold-down (Model 1623) is a solid performer. It grips tightly, and the base is slotted so you can easily slide it off the head of a mounting bolt and remove the hold-down from the bench when it's not in use. (The bolt head then falls into a counterbored hole in the benchtop so it's out of the way.) Jorgensen also makes an industrial version of this hold-down (Model 1834) that sells for $81.11 and has a maximum reach of 2Vi in. and a maximum height of 4lA in.

Bottom Line

This hold-down is a good choice for small workpieces, although its long screw takes longer to adjust to different thicknesses than other clamps I tested. It resists shock and lateral and rotational pressure, but its reach and height limit its use for large or wide work. It is also useful for drill-press applications.

MapleTek Engineering (800) 425-2677

Circle »602

Mounts In 3/Wn. hole In benchtop, or In T-channel screwed Into slot routed Into benchtop. May also be screwed to surface.

Ust Price: $39.95 Optional l&-ln. T-channel: $10

A new addition to the market, this hold-down is easy to operate, instantly adjusts to grip workpieces up to 4 in. thick, and clamps with a simple snap of the lever handle.

The Leverclamp is made of heavy stamped steel and comcs with a replaceable wooden jaw that won't mar workpieces. You can mount it to your bench with a bolt and wing nut, or rout a slot in your workbench, install the optional T-channel and use the hold-down anywhere along the length of the channel. A thumbscrew on the jaw allows you to repeat clamping settings for production work. Plus, you can regulate the clamping pressure with a single adjustment screw.

Bottom Line

With its instant adjustability, this hold-down is particularly useful if you're clamping a series of work-pieces that vary in thickness or height. It resists shock and lateral pressure, but it tends to give under heavy rotational pressure. The Leverclamp would also work well as a quick clamp on the radial arm saw, on the drill press, and on jigs.

American Tool Co.

(800) 767-6297

Circle #603

Mounts In 3A-ln. hole In benchtop, wtth support bracket screwed to underside of benchtop.

Ust Price: $30 Additional Mounting Brackets: $8 for 2

This steel and plastic hold-down is built around the popular Quick-Grip mini-bar clamp and shares both the virtues and failings of that clamp. It's lightweight and easy to adjust; however, it doesn't produce enough clamping pressure for heavy work.

The hold-down fits through a 34-in.-dia. hole and into a support bracket screwed to the underside of your work surface. This means you'd need to buy additional brackets, or move the one that comcs with the hold-down, to use it in more than one location on your bench. A soft plastic pad keeps the metal jaw from marring the workpiccc, but in my tests the pad frequently came loose.

Bottom Line

The Quick-Grip hold-down is built for light-duty work, particularly where you need the flexibility to quickly clamp workpieces of varying thickness. It doesn't withstand shock, nor does it hold well under lateral or rotational pressure. It lacks the reach needed for large or heavy work.

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