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Clamps are often more commonly used in woodworking than any power tool, and are indispensable for many projects. However, clamps come in many different types, sizes and materials, and it can be a challenge to choose. No need to worry, this guide from SINOTOOLS will provide you with the answer.
When a woodworker or DIY enthusiast buys woodworking tools, woodworking clamps are almost the last item on the list. They don't look impressive, but they are often more commonly used in woodworking than any power tool, and are indispensable for many projects.
However, clamps come in many different types, sizes and materials, and it can be a challenge to choose. No need to worry, this guide from SINOTOOLS will provide you with the answer.
In fact, it is too difficult to list all the clamps because there are so many of them. Therefore, for this list we will include just a few of the most commonly used and essential clamps for woodworking projects.
1. Pipe Clamps. Just like its name, this clamp has the shape of a pipe with jaws. Pipe clamps are one of the cheapest clamps available, and both the clamps and the pipe can be purchased separately as accessories for adjusting to different sizes.
The jaws screw onto the pipe and an adjustable second piece slides along the pipe to the desired position, providing the right fit for your project.
2. Bar Clamps. Bar clamps have adjustable arms that can be easily moved to fit the project at hand when gluing pieces together. As a result, they are well suited for woodworking projects such as doors, flat panels and furniture.
They have a long metal bar with two adjustable jaws that grip the side or end of the workpiece being clamped. The long metal bar allows them to be used on long/wide workpieces, thus making them very versatile.
Bar clamps are measured by their jaw opening, which determines how large a workpiece can be effectively clamped.
3. C-clamps. They look like the letter C in shape - just like their name. The wide jaws of the "C" can sometimes be very handy, but the screwing mechanism that tightens them can be time-consuming and not very powerful. As a result, many woodworkers prefer pipe vise or bar vise because they are both easier to handle and more friendly to large workpieces.
4. F-Clamps. This type of clamp is similar to the C-clamp, but has a much greater opening capacity. Again, their name comes from their shape, which looks like the letter F. It is used for the same purpose as the pipe and bar clamps - to hold long/wide work pieces in place during gluing or screwing.
5. Spring Clamps. These are small clamps that look a bit like the clothespins used in life. Spring clamps are not used to hold wide/long workpieces because they do not provide enough force. And because they have springs in them, the larger the clamp the more hand force is required to adjust it. Spring clamps are better suited for temporarily holding small workpieces.
After reading the previous section and understanding the types of woodworking jigs, it was time to choose. Start by figuring out the following questions.
-What projects do you expect to handle?
-How big a clamp will you need?
-How many clamps will you need?
Larger projects such as tabletops and doors, and some furniture pieces, will require a wider “mouth,” and thus, some pipe clamps will come in very handy for you. The black pipe usually associated with pipe clamps can be lengthened simply by adding another length of pipe with a coupler. Of course, the longer the span to be clamped, the more clamps you will need.
Bar clamps come in various sizes, and again, your needs will depend on the projects you're likely to tackle. Furthermore, the longer the boards to be clamped, the more of them you will need.
Here are the Common Clamps For A Beginner Woodworker:
For pipe clamps, have 8-10 clamps, several 24" and 36" pipes with threads on both ends, and several couplers. The couplers can be used to make the clamps longer when large pieces (such as flat panels and doors) need to be handled.
For bar clamps, there are a variety of sizes to choose from, starting at 12" and going all the way up to 24". These will be useful for smaller workpieces.
For F clamps, either as a supplement or addition to pipe and bar clamps, they are also a good choice. Again, they come in a variety of sizes, from as small as 2 inches to as large as 2 inches.
For C-clamps, a few will suffice. There may be a few smaller pieces that would be best to clamp with them.