WoodSkills Issue 02 - Page 60


Ensure the table is adequately supported if pounding with a mallet is a part of your work methods. When building your Moxon vise, use either 8/4 or 2-inch nominal hardwood or laminate (2) 4/4 or 1-inch boards together to create each jaw. I opted for laminated boards since I had considerable 4/4 maple boards on hand. If using a solid 8/4 board, ensure the grain orientation is straight and preferably rift-sawn. Plainsawn boards can cup if not kiln-dried to the correct moisture level.

Plainsawn boards are also susceptible to changes in humidity and temperature. If using 8/4 or 2-inch stock, instead of tangentially oriented plain-sawn boards, use rift-sawn or quarter-sawn boards. Rift-sawn or quarter-sawn boards are dimensionally stable and preferred. If laminating (2) plainsawn boards together, use the opposing grain technique described earlier. This ensures the thick jaws maintain equilibrium and are stable during moisture changes in your workshop space. Above, the completed Moxon vise with table extension components attached.

In an alternative design, the table can be extended along its length and width. I opted for this configuration to save on weight and to provide a small table surface for tasks most often performed. This configuration allows access to the ACME-threaded screws and rear nuts as well as freedom of movement of holdfasts. Over time, I intend to work with this design and determine if improvements are necessary. Although this Moxon vise design is universal, configure your vise to the work performed at your workbench.

Shown, a detailed view of the ACME screw, and rear nut in the fixed jaw. The holdfast and pad that grip the rear stabilizer block are also visible. The holdfasts swing into position to clamp the Moxon vise down. When released, the holdfasts swing back to a less obtrusive position as shown earlier. The holdfasts can also be removed and used elsewhere. Crubber has been fixed to the inside face of the movable jaw. Applying this material to the jaw face is straightforward using wood glue. I applied uniform clamping across the surface of the wood for two hours.

Photo of rear of Moxon vise with additional table support beneath table