DIY Budget Moxon Vise

Introduction: DIY Budget Moxon Vise

About: Follow along as I tackle awesome projects including woodworking, metal working, tool restorations, and more! Sometimes I teach and sometimes we learn together. I hope you learn a new skill, build a new proje…

How to build a Moxon Vise (Twin Screw or Dovetail Vise) on a budget. This handy bench top accessory elevates your work, making hand cutting dovetails and other actions easier to manage. Using materials purchased at a home center, you can build this vise in a weekend.

Step 1: Supplies

2x 3/4" All Thread Rod 1' Long

4x 3/4" Washer

4x 3/4" Nut

4x 3/4" Wingnut

3x 3" Brass Slotted Screw

10ft 1' x6' 4S Popular Board (Cut into 4 2ft sections)

28" 1"x2" or 2"x2" Scrap for Clamping Surface

Step 2: Cut Material to Length

I used a handsaw for this operation.

Step 3: Glue Boards Together

Glue each pair of boards together with wood glue.

Step 4: Trim Boards to Shape

Use a saw to flush the sides and ends of the glued up panels.

Step 5: Edge Plane Each Panel

I used a hand plane to true each side and the ends of each panel.

Step 6: Drill Holes for Threaded Rod

Drill out two holes that are slightly larger than your threaded rod on each side of the vise chop. Go halfway through one side, flip, and finish out the hole form the other side for a smooth hole.

Step 7:

Use a marking knife to scribe a line around the nut that has to be mortised into the chop. Use a square to make sure it's square to the side of the chop.

Step 8: Chop Out the Mortise for the Captured Nut

Use a chisel to chop out the mortise for the nut. Test fit multiple times until nut sits flush with the top of the chop.

Step 9: Add a Chamfer on Each Side of the Front Chop

Pick which face will be the front of the vise. Add a chamfer to each side of this face. This is not only aesthetically pleasing but also gives you more clearance when sawing.

Step 10: Sand Chops

Sand all side of both chops up through at least 220 grit.

Step 11: Add Cork Facing

Adding cork to the clamping side of both chops will increase the gripping power and protect the piece being clamped. I used adhesive backed drawer liner. Just line up your face on the unrolled cork, cut, stick the the jaw face, and trim to fit. Make sure the wood is clean and dust free.

Step 12: Add a Finish

I coated all pieces with a Boiled Linseed Oil and Beeswax mix (making sure to not get any on the cork face).

Step 13: Attached Clamping Board

You be able to clamp the vise to your bench, you'll want to add a small board a little longer than your vise to act as a clamping surface. I used a piece of southern yellow pine attached with three brass screws to the back side of the rear chop. I used a hand drill to pre-drill all of the holes before attaching.

Step 14: Enjoy Your Vise

Assemble everything together and enjoy your vise. Thanks for following along.

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    20 Comments

    0
    socaltoolguy
    socaltoolguy

    Question 10 days ago

    I enjoyed this Instructable and will be making something similar in the near future. I also noticed your "unique" work bench with clamping slots and so on. I went to your website and also researched your Youtube videos but didn't find that you have ever done anything regarding the build of your bench. Could you/would you care to elaborate on how you built your bench and it's features? Thanks for your ideas.

    0
    socaltoolguy
    socaltoolguy

    Reply 9 days ago

    Thanks for that info. I'll have to do some reading and then collect bottles and cans to be able to afford the lumber. Everything has escalated so much that it might be cheaper to make it out of steel. LOL.

    0
    tcs79
    tcs79

    Question 14 days ago

    Excellent work. Did you glued the nut that you leave on the one side of the vise? I understand that when you are applying force to the vise, it will stay put, but when not it will be very loose. Am I wrong?

    1
    crowhollowwoodworks
    crowhollowwoodworks

    Answer 14 days ago

    Thank you! It's captured by another nut on the reverse side. Do these pictures help?

    Photo Jun 03, 18 44 26.jpg
    0
    tcs79
    tcs79

    Reply 13 days ago

    Yeah. Got it. Thanks...

    0
    GordM2
    GordM2

    14 days ago

    I just watched this. Nicely done. I like the slots that you have adopted into your bench top. Great idea.

    0
    AllenInks
    AllenInks

    Reply 13 days ago

    I agree. I'm intrigued by his workbench... how that's put together would be a great instructable...

    1
    DurkVell
    DurkVell

    Tip 14 days ago

    Very nice work indeed!!

    In step 13: please would you be so kind as to add a picture of the back side of the vise, so we can see just how the vise is clamped to your workbench?

    Thanks a lot!

    0
    crowhollowwoodworks
    crowhollowwoodworks

    Reply 14 days ago

    Thank you! Here is a picture of the backside. On a traditional work bench, a hold fast could be used in place of a clamp.

    Photo Jun 03, 18 44 11.jpg
    0
    DurkVell
    DurkVell

    Reply 13 days ago

    Thank you very much!

    0
    SherylS7
    SherylS7

    Reply 14 days ago

    You can see how the vise is clamped to the bench at the beginning and at about 7:10 into the video at the top of the post. Nice job Maker, want to make one for myself.

    0
    AllenInks
    AllenInks

    Reply 14 days ago

    But... doesn't show it awfully well.

    0
    crowhollowwoodworks
    crowhollowwoodworks

    Reply 14 days ago

    Sorry about that, I added a picture above that I hope shows how it's clamped better.

    0
    crowhollowwoodworks
    crowhollowwoodworks

    Reply 14 days ago

    Thank you! Good luck with it, hope this video helps.

    0
    AllenInks
    AllenInks

    14 days ago

    1. Why wouldn't you also glue the clamping board to the back, instead of just relying on 3 brass screws, so as to spread out stress induced in use over the whole contact area instead of just along three contact points (which, being in line, would seem to be more likely to split the wood along the grain line)? Or put the screws out of a single line?. If you did glue, of course do that step before putting finish on these components.
    2. It looks like the clamping board is held to the workbench by clamps that are sticking up through slots in the workbench top. Details of how those slots are constructed, and the adjacent surfaces' structural support can be integrated into a workbench structure would be appreciated by those with less experience. Of course, it would seem that the clamping board could also be held down by dog clamps if the workbench top is provided with dog holes. Or many other arrangements. But I would be interested in seeing how you did it.
    3. Very nice craftsmanship!

    0
    crowhollowwoodworks
    crowhollowwoodworks

    Reply 14 days ago

    Thank you very much! Also, great questions! The work bench was constructed based on these plans from popular woodworking https://www.popularwoodworking.com/projects/aw-ext.... , let me know if that doesn't help explain the workbench structure.
    Hold fasts could also be used to clamp it like you suggested, if you have a traditional work bench.
    I didn't glue the clamp board, but it would certainly help the integrity of the clamping board connection. It hasn't split yet, but I do see your point about the potential.

    0
    seamster
    seamster

    20 days ago

    Very nice work!