Quick Vise

What is a Quick Vise?

A vise, or a vice, is a device used to clamp workpieces for machining. In this article, we are going to specifically look at one type of vise called the quick vise. A quick vice, also known as the rapid vise, is a type of vise that applies the ‘quick-release’ mechanism to open and close rapidly. By turning the vise screw attached to one of the two jaws, the jaws can move away or towards each other. Generally speaking, any type of vice that is designed to be able to open or close quickly can be called a quick vise. Just like a standard vise, a quick vise is usually made to be attached onto a workbench or desktop.

How Does a Quick Vise Work?

A quick vise may be designed to incorporate the principles of other vises such as being able to hold different sized and odd shaped work objects; the application can be for woodworking and metalworking. Although most quick vises are made to fit on the surface of the workbench, you should choose a quick vise that is big enough to accommodate the scale of projects.

The bottom of a quick vise usually has built-in holes or brackets which can be used to secure the vise onto the workbench with screws or bolts. This allows the user to have a sturdy workstation that holds the work piece in place while it is being machined. The vise can also be removed easily should it need to be moved from one surface to the other. Moreover, vise screws are specifically designed to allow the jaws of the vise to open and close with minimum rotations. This means that the quick vise is able to open and close quickly while allowing work objects to be repositioned without taking too much time to adjust the jaws. Most quick vises utilize a ratchet or pawl to make the opening and close of the vise faster. In some cases, hydraulics are incorporated to open and close the vise jaws for larger scaled projects.

Construction and Application of Quick Vises

The jaws for quick vises are generally made of robust material such as iron. This type of material provides superb strength to clamp onto objects with tightly, which is why you need to be careful during woodworking because it may potentially damage the wood piece. This can however be managed by placing a padding around the jaws of a quick vise to prevent the object from being dented or cracked.

The construction of a quick vise however makes machining tall and vertical object difficult. Just like a stand vise, a quick vise is designed to have two parallel jaws that can be opened or closed as needed, but the part of the vise that holds the two jaws is located at the bottom of the device which does not provide much vertical space below the vise. Therefore, it is more ideal to use a quick vise to work on small objects that can be held horizontally.

A Closer Look into Quick-release Feature

As mentioned earlier, quick vises generally incorporate the quick-release mechanism so that the jaws of quick vises can be opened and closed in one simple movement, which is why a quick vise also gets the name of quick action vise or a rapid action vise. These types of vises are perfect for metalworking and woodworking thanks to the additional quick-release feature. A vice with quick-release mechanism also includes a split nut. The split nut can be removed using a lever of a handle, thereby unlocking the main screw allowing the jaws to be quickly adjusted. When the jaws are in intended position, both the nut and screws can be re-engaged in place. The quick-release feature greatly speeds up the machining process which saves a lot of time for users from having to constantly tighten and loosen the jaw manually.

Furthermore, some vises with the quick-release feature incorporate a simple spring-loaded lever that is attached to the bar which releases the nut and unlocks the threaded screw. This allows the jaws to be opened quickly. Such design is also known as the trigger-operated mechanism. 

Last but not least, other quick vises incorporate a handle for operation. Users can use one hand to rotate the handle to adjust the jaws while holding the work piece in one hand. This design is meant for one-handed operation as the screw nut is either engaged or disengaged based on which direction the handle is rotated. Normally, a 180 degree in anti-clockwise direction will allow the jaws to be opened quickly, and vice versa.

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