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Metalworking (rec.crafts.metalworking) Discuss various aspects of working with metal, such as machining, welding, metal joining, screwing, casting, hardening/tempering, blacksmithing/forging, spinning and hammer work, sheet metal work.

Soft vise jaws -- aluminum vs. brass



 
 
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  #1  
Old May 7th 08, 06:55 PM posted to rec.crafts.metalworking
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Posts: 1
Default Soft vise jaws -- aluminum vs. brass

Are there any serious disadvantages of "soft jaws" made of Aluminum?

The reason for my question is that I have a Wilton tradesman 1765
vise (6.5" jaw width), and I have aluminum angle already. Brass jaws
cost $85 and I thought that I coudl just fabricate something from the
angle.

Any experiences with aluminum jaws?
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  #2  
Old May 7th 08, 07:09 PM posted to rec.crafts.metalworking
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Posts: 9,959
Default Soft vise jaws -- aluminum vs. brass


"Ignoramus18547" wrote in message
...
Are there any serious disadvantages of "soft jaws" made of Aluminum?

The reason for my question is that I have a Wilton tradesman 1765
vise (6.5" jaw width), and I have aluminum angle already. Brass jaws
cost $85 and I thought that I coudl just fabricate something from the
angle.

Any experiences with aluminum jaws?


I've used removable jaws made of aluminum angle for 40 years. They work
fine.

Just clamp the angles in your vise, mark off where to cut them so you'll
have some little adjustable "ears" that you can bend over with a hammer, cut
on those marks with a hacksaw, re-clamp, and bend the ears over so the jaws
don't fall off. When you have to remove them, a screwdriver will pry them
off.

--
Ed Huntress



  #3  
Old May 7th 08, 08:09 PM posted to rec.crafts.metalworking
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Posts: 857
Default Soft vise jaws -- aluminum vs. brass

Ed Huntress wrote:
"Ignoramus18547" wrote in message
...

Are there any serious disadvantages of "soft jaws" made of Aluminum?

The reason for my question is that I have a Wilton tradesman 1765
vise (6.5" jaw width), and I have aluminum angle already. Brass jaws
cost $85 and I thought that I coudl just fabricate something from the
angle.

Any experiences with aluminum jaws?


I've used removable jaws made of aluminum angle for 40 years. They work
fine.

Just clamp the angles in your vise, mark off where to cut them so you'll
have some little adjustable "ears" that you can bend over with a hammer, cut
on those marks with a hacksaw, re-clamp, and bend the ears over so the jaws
don't fall off. When you have to remove them, a screwdriver will pry them
off.

--
Ed Huntress




I'll back Ed up, I use aluminium, aluminum is more expensive in the UK,
angle or L section but don't even bother with the tags to hold them on.
Annoying sometimes when you knock them off. Cheap and easily replaced.
  #4  
Old May 7th 08, 08:17 PM posted to rec.crafts.metalworking
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Posts: 9,959
Default Soft vise jaws -- aluminum vs. brass


"David Billington" wrote in message
...
Ed Huntress wrote:
"Ignoramus18547" wrote in message
...

Are there any serious disadvantages of "soft jaws" made of Aluminum?

The reason for my question is that I have a Wilton tradesman 1765
vise (6.5" jaw width), and I have aluminum angle already. Brass jaws
cost $85 and I thought that I coudl just fabricate something from the
angle.

Any experiences with aluminum jaws?


I've used removable jaws made of aluminum angle for 40 years. They work
fine.

Just clamp the angles in your vise, mark off where to cut them so you'll
have some little adjustable "ears" that you can bend over with a hammer,
cut on those marks with a hacksaw, re-clamp, and bend the ears over so
the jaws don't fall off. When you have to remove them, a screwdriver will
pry them off.

--
Ed Huntress




I'll back Ed up, I use aluminium, aluminum is more expensive in the UK,
angle or L section but don't even bother with the tags to hold them on.
Annoying sometimes when you knock them off. Cheap and easily replaced.


The tabs are good when you find you would otherwise need three hands. g

--
Ed Huntress


  #5  
Old May 7th 08, 08:38 PM posted to rec.crafts.metalworking
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Posts: 89
Default Soft vise jaws -- aluminum vs. brass

Ed Huntress wrote:
"Ignoramus18547" wrote in message
...



Any experiences with aluminum jaws?


I've used removable jaws made of aluminum angle for 40 years. They work
fine.


Ditto. But only for 20 years.... ;-)

If you use thicker stock, you can mill a couple of pockets for a couple
of super magnets in each one to hold them in place.

Pete


--
Pete Snell
Department of Physics
Royal Military College
Kingston, Ontario,
Canada
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
All truths are easy to understand once they are discovered;
the point is to discover them.

Galileo Galilei (1564-1642)
  #6  
Old May 7th 08, 09:04 PM posted to rec.crafts.metalworking
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Posts: 9,959
Default Soft vise jaws -- aluminum vs. brass


"Pete Snell" wrote in message
...
Ed Huntress wrote:
"Ignoramus18547" wrote in message
...



Any experiences with aluminum jaws?


I've used removable jaws made of aluminum angle for 40 years. They work
fine.


Ditto. But only for 20 years.... ;-)

If you use thicker stock, you can mill a couple of pockets for a couple of
super magnets in each one to hold them in place.

Pete


Aha! Good trick.

--
Ed Huntress


  #7  
Old May 7th 08, 09:33 PM posted to rec.crafts.metalworking
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Posts: 3,148
Default Soft vise jaws -- aluminum vs. brass

On May 7, 1:55*pm, Ignoramus18547 ignoramus18...@NOSPAM.
18547.invalid wrote:
Are there any serious disadvantages of "soft jaws" made of Aluminum?

The reason for my question is that I have a Wilton tradesman 1765
vise (6.5" jaw width), and I have aluminum angle already. Brass jaws
cost $85 and I thought that I coudl just fabricate something from the
angle.

Any experiences with aluminum jaws?
--
* *Due to extreme spam originating from Google Groups, and their inattention
* * * to spammers, I and many others block all articles originating
* * * *from Google Groups. If you want your postings to be seen by
* * * * *more readers you will need to find a different means of
* * * * * * * * * * * *posting on Usenet.
* * * * * * * * * *http://improve-usenet.org/


Aluminum will distort if you clamp narrow work like a bolt but
otherwise it's fine. You can make jaw covers out of scrap sheetmetal
and hammer the ends or the top to clamp around the back of the jaw.
The thicker ones with magnets are convenient but reduce capacity.

Some vises have reversible jaws with one side smooth, or you can make
them out of aluminum or steel bar stock. I have a couple of sets of
aluminum and copper jaw covers and snap on whichever set is
appropriate, the good ones for filing nice work or the most beat-up
ones to grab bolt threads.

Jim Wilkins
  #8  
Old May 8th 08, 12:30 AM posted to rec.crafts.metalworking
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Posts: 4,567
Default Soft vise jaws -- aluminum vs. brass

Ignoramus18547 wrote:

Are there any serious disadvantages of "soft jaws" made of Aluminum?

The reason for my question is that I have a Wilton tradesman 1765
vise (6.5" jaw width), and I have aluminum angle already. Brass jaws
cost $85 and I thought that I coudl just fabricate something from the
angle.

Any experiences with aluminum jaws?


Either works. A nice piece of hardwood can work too. Depends on what you
are trying to hold.

The most important thing is to make sure crap isn't embedded in your soft
jaws.

Wes
  #9  
Old May 8th 08, 02:31 AM posted to rec.crafts.metalworking
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Posts: 1
Default Soft vise jaws -- aluminum vs. brass

I would recommend the aluminum jaws over the brass. The brass will
chip off easier than the aluminum. Meaning if you hit it with a hammer
pieces of the brass can come off. The aluminum can bend but can be
bent back into shape also.
If you are holding a specific object the brass will be a bit softer
and not mark your work as much as the aluminum. If you can get some
rubber or soft plastic and hot glue it to some metal or aluminum jaws
that could help you if you have pieces that you don't want to mark up.
  #10  
Old May 8th 08, 02:52 AM posted to rec.crafts.metalworking
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Posts: 73
Default Soft vise jaws -- aluminum vs. brass

On Wed, 7 May 2008 14:09:38 -0400, "Ed Huntress"
wrote:


"Ignoramus18547" wrote in message
m...
Are there any serious disadvantages of "soft jaws" made of Aluminum?

The reason for my question is that I have a Wilton tradesman 1765
vise (6.5" jaw width), and I have aluminum angle already. Brass jaws
cost $85 and I thought that I coudl just fabricate something from the
angle.

Any experiences with aluminum jaws?


I've used removable jaws made of aluminum angle for 40 years. They work
fine.

Just clamp the angles in your vise, mark off where to cut them so you'll
have some little adjustable "ears" that you can bend over with a hammer, cut
on those marks with a hacksaw, re-clamp, and bend the ears over so the jaws
don't fall off. When you have to remove them, a screwdriver will pry them
off.



One comment. Aluminum being softer is a bit more likely to have chips
embed themselves into the jaws so they probably need to be changed, or
inspected, more frequently.

Bruce-in-Bangkok
(correct Address is bpaige125atgmaildotcom)
 




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