Moxon Vise – Part 2

It was a beautiful sunny President’s Day here is San Francisco so we decided to make a family trip to the zoo, unfortunately so did several thousand other people and that plan was changed to a hike through Land’s End which is a hidden gem. Long story short, no progress on anything during the day but I did sneak in an hour working on the Moxon Vise before bed.

After checking the epoxied handles it became clear that the screws and wood were out of alignment so I checked each facet against the bench top and marked which end needed to be shaved down.

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This is the first time I have used African Teak so I am not sure if this is normal but this stuff loves to tear out and there are a few places with severe grain direction changes so the oscillating spindle sander got some more use (have I mention how much I love this thing?). I squared up the facets by eye then measured each one to ensure they were all close to the same size; then I made a line along each one with my marking gauge, adjusted the sander top to 45 degrees, and added a nice bevel to each facet.

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I then slid the handle threads through front jaw and then threaded them through the nuts held on the rear jaw (these are not attached yet) and tightened the jaws together. I then marked out the edges of the front jaw so I could cut the clamping notches. My Bad Axe carcass saw is filed with a hybrid tooth which should work well for both ripping and cross cutting and while it cross cut the hard maple like it was butter, it bogged down a bit on the rip cut. I laid out the notch to be half of the height of the rear jaw however; the height of my saw plate is slightly less than that meaning I had to finish the cross cut with a backless pull saw. My sawing skills are still developing, the first notch went a bit out of square but the second is dead on, I think I saw better when the line is on the right side of the saw.

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The top edge of the front jaw did not line up exactly with the rear jaw so after using the newly cut notches to attached the vise to the bench-top I planned down the front jaw until they met up perfectly. Now I need to attach the back support blocks where the holdfasts will eventually be used to secure it to the bench-top; cut the bevel on the front; attach the nuts to the back; and put some suede between the jaws.

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I am very pleased with how the handles came out. I had planned to bore a ½ inch hole through each one for a cross piece but I think I will leave alone for now; I can always add one later if I change my mind. Also, planing the top edge showed the limits of the my sawhorse supported bench-top and the milled legs along the wall are practically begging to be finished.

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