|Moxon's engraving showing vise on front of workbench.|
The recent renaissance of hand tool interest has resuscitated interest in the Moxon vise and many woodworkers and manufacturers have taken a stab at their interpretation of the Moxon vise.
I have looked at most of the designs out there as well as the many individual attempts at building this vise and developed a design that would work for me. I knew I wanted to use my end vise dogs to attach it to the bench and I wanted a small bench-on-bench work-surface, rather than just the two jaws like many designs. I asked my machinist pal Joey to use the same design he used for my end vise handle to make some wheels which would work with some threaded rod that I would build into the vise.
|Wood Parts Layout before final assembly|
I also built a mock-up with some blocks to test the height which would be best for me; I had read the the ideal height for this work is 4" below your elbow; after trying several heights it turned out the 3-3/4" below my elbow was the perfect height - the rule of thumb would likely have been fine!
|Gluing the bench-on-bench "top" piece|
|Picture of vise in use making some drawer sides with prototype wheels.|
I used some Maple that I got from the same mill as the birds eye for my Dad's rocker and built the various components to build the vise. The picture below shows the finished vise. A few test cuts on the new bench have proven its going to be very useful going forward. Since I have already been asked, these wheels are turned from 5" 4140 steel bar stock and are very heavy.
After using the vise on a couple of projects, one thing that has frustrated me is the the chop(front jaw) does not move when I remove pressure from the vise - I am looking for a small spring set-up which will open the jaws for me.
|The finished Moxon.|