Top 10 Best Woodworking Vises [2020]

A woodworking vise is a tool with clamping abilities and is used for holding pieces of wood when doing tasks such as drilling, planning, filing, sandpapering, or sawing. The vise is typically mounted in front of a workbench. It’s bolted securely on a workbench such that it can allow for heavy-duty work without falling over.

A typical woodworking vise is made of metal and has large jaws for clamping small to large pieces of wood. These vises are available in different types including quick release vises, woodcraft vises, and plain screw vises.

Plain screw woodworking vises have a screw system that is turned by a handle to move the sliding jaw when clamping or releasing wood. The screw system comes with a permanent nut that can’t be opened such that you can close or open the jaws without the screw system coming off. It’s the most traditional woodworking vise and is ideal for both domestic and professional use. However, it’s time consuming when placing a workpiece in different positions.

Woodcraft vises have a light construction and are used for clamping small or light workpieces. Thus, they’re most suitable for domestic use. Woodcraft vises are ideal for creating household items such as picture frames and ornaments. A handyman can also use a woodcraft vise.

Quick-release vises resemble plain screw vises but have a quick-release mechanism that opens and closes the jaws rapidly. This makes it possible to reposition a workpiece without having to rotate the handle. A handle or a lever depending on the design of the vise either operates the quick-release mechanism. Quick-release vises are ideal for industrial woodworking as they save time.

When choosing a woodworking vise, it’s important to go for a high-quality vise for a successful woodworking job. However, this can be quite challenging to choose from the multiple options available. We teamed up with professional carpenters to rank and review the best woodworking vises available today. Read on for the reviews.

Top Pick
IRWIN Woodworking Vise, 6-1/2-Inch (226361)
  • Toe-in toward top jaws helps ensure firm grip on workpiece

Top 10 Woodworking Vises

#1. IRWIN Woodworking Vise 226361

IRWIN Woodworking Vise 226361

The IRWIN Woodworking Vise 226361 is specially designed to handle most light-duty woodworking jobs that require clamping a workpiece with a vise. The vise is designed with features that make it ideal for professional use. You can use it on a workbench, factory floor, or even on your work truck.

The vise is made of heavy-duty iron material. The forged iron material allows for longevity. You can clamp down heavy and large pieces of wood with the vice. Additionally, it features a jaw width of 6½ inches and a jaw capacity of 4½ inches.

You can easily install wooden cheeks when using this vise to keep your workpieces protected. Installing wooden cheeks will protect your workpieces from being marred when clamping them tightly with the vise.

The vise uses a plain screw mechanism that makes it easy to clamp workpieces tightly and secure in place. The toe-in design of the top jaws allows for a firmer grip on a workpiece. Thus, you can work on a workpiece without it moving out of place for more accurate results.

Pros
  • Square body for mounting under a workbench
  • Great for domestic use and amateur woodworking
  • It’s easy to install the vise
  • It’s lightweight
Cons
  • Not large enough for a professional workshop or industrial use

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#2. Eclipse Quick Release Woodworking Vise

Eclipse Quick Release Woodworking Vise

This Eclipse woodworking vise features a quick release mechanism to hold and release workpieces. This makes it quick to reposition workpieces, especially when doing a huge woodworking project. As such, it’s ideal for professional use in a workshop.

The vise comes with an adjustable front stop. The front stop allows for extra clamping when using the vise with a bench stop. Thus, it can be used a tail vise or regular vise depending on the application you want.

Its jaws are made of heavy cast iron whereas the slide rods are made of industrial grade steel. Thus, you can rest assured that it will give you many years of use. Additionally, the jaws are designed in a manner that allows for positive clamping even when applying extreme clamping pressure. Besides, the vise comes with a tommy bar that enhances safety. The tommy bar protects the vise from being over-stressed as it bends first before the vise.

You can easily install the vise on most styles of workbenches. Additionally, you can use it in any configuration you want on your workbench. It comes with two holes that allow for fast and easy mounting on most workbenches. The holes also allow for a more secure mounting.

Pros
  • Has two cast tabs for mounting screws
  • The lever makes it effortless to open and close the vise
  • Features a 7-inch jaw width and a 3-inch throat depth
Cons
  • The front stop doesn’t extend very high

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#3. Pony 27091 Medium Duty Woodworker’s Vise

Pony 27091 Medium Duty Woodworker's Vise

The Pony 27091 woodworking vise comes with a jaw width measuring 7 inches and an opening length of 8 inches. Thus, it’s ideal for most domestic woodworking needs. Its size also makes it ideal for medium duty professional use.

The vise is designed to fit on most woodwork benches. You can mount it on the face of your workbench. The top edges of its jaws should be flush with the top of the workbench upon installation. If your workbench won’t be flush with the jaw edges, simply add wood shims. Thus, it’s extremely easy to mount.

To add to that, the jaws come with drilled holes that make it easier to attach wood facings. Wood facings will keep your workpieces protected from damage when tightening them in place. Additionally, the front jaw is made of a steel dog for enhanced strength. You can secure large workpieces by using the steel dog with a bench stop.

The vise features an acme thread screw and guide bars to clamp workpieces securely. Additionally, the stainless steel lever handle is strong enough to tighten workpieces securely without bending.

Pros
  • Strongly built for longevity
  • Plated steel twin guards
  • Very sturdy and reliable
Cons
  • Doesn’t come with installation screws

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#4. Yost M7WW Rapid Acting Wood Working Vise

Yost M7WW Rapid Acting Wood Working Vise

Yost has designed this M7WW woodworking vise for both professional and domestic use. It’s designed for optimal performance. It features a rapid nut mechanism that makes it faster to clamp and reposition workpieces. You’ll simply pull the vise nut lever upward and hold it to disengage the vise nut. You can thereafter adjust the vise jaws as needed and release the lever. Upon rotating the main handle, the vise nut will be engaged and the jaws will be tightened.

The vise features a buttress thread in the main screw. The buttress thread design allows for tighter clamping. It also makes it smoother to open and close the jaws. Additionally, the vise comes with an end stop that ensure you don’t open the vise excessively.

Another top feature of this vise is that it comes with pre-drilled holes for faster and easier mounting on a workbench. It also comes with pre-drilled holes on the jaws on which you can mount wood facings to keep your workpieces protected.

The vise features has a 7-inch jaw width, an 8-inch jaw opening, and a 3-inch throat depth. Thus, it’s ideal for most light duty to medium duty woodworking jobs.

Pros
  • Heavy-duty steel and cast iron construction
  • Comes with a bench dog that assists in gripping large parts
  • Has an adjustable bench dog
Cons
  • The top jaws are not perfectly parallel

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#5. TEKTON 6-1/2-Inch Woodworking Vise

TEKTON 6-1/2-Inch Woodworking Vise

Looking for a woodworking vise that is made for durability? If so, you’ve landed on the right vise. The TEKTON 6-1/2-Inch woodworking vise is specially designed for durability and reliability. It’s made of cast iron material with a powder coated finishing. This material has high tensile strength such that it’s able to handle heavy-duty work.

Additionally, the handle features a T-bar design for smoother operation. Besides, the handle is made of chrome plated steel for enhanced durability without wearing out. Also, the guide rails are also made of steel. They don’t bend easily, thereby allowing for more accurate alignment of workpieces on the jaws. The screw comes with acme threads for smoother gliding.

You can mount the vise on a workbench face. Its screw mechanism is able to clamp workpieces tightly. You can also add jaw pads to protect the fine surfaces of your workpieces from getting damaged. Besides, twin rails that distribute contact between the workpiece and jaws evenly for a maximum yet safe grip guide the moving jaw.

You can secure the vise on your workbench using a flush or simple mounting position depending on your requirements. The jaw face comes with screw holes that make it easier to mount the vice.

Pros
  • Easy to adjust the clamping
  • Versatile installation options
  • Very lightweight
Cons
  • The jaw opening is not large enough for large workpieces

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#6. Shop Fox D4328 9-Inch Quick Release Wood Vise

Shop Fox D4328 9-Inch Quick Release Wood Vise

The Shop Fox D4328 woodwork vise is designed to offer trouble free woodworking services for several years. It’s constructed using heavy-duty cast iron material for durability. The vise features a maximum jaw opening of 10 inches, with a jaw width of 9 inches. This makes it ideal for use in a professional workshop.

You can mount the vise on a workbench measuring 2¼ inches thick. You can also use a shim to install it on a workbench measuring 1½ inches thick. Its jaws come with pre-drilled holes for attaching non-marring jaw pads to keep the surfaces of your workpieces protected.

The vise uses a quick release mechanism for fast clamping and release of workpieces. Moving the lever towards the main handle to disengage the screw and move the sliding jaw effortlessly activate the quick release mechanism.

Also, the vise features sliding stop dogs that make it possible to work with workpieces that are longer than what the vise can clamp. You can hide the stop dogs when not using them by loosening the vise finger bolt.

Pros
  • It’s capable of holding large workpieces
  • The guide rods are perfectly polished
  • The screw features acme threads
Cons
  • You need to buy mounting screws and bolts separately

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#7. Sjobergs SJO-33274 Woodworking Portable Smart Vice

Sjobergs SJO-33274 Woodworking Portable Smart Vice

If you’re handyman who’s always on the move and needs to carry your specialty tools from one jobsite to another, or you’re a DIY woodworking enthusiast, then this vice is specially made for you. The Sjobergs SJO-33274 is designed for portability.

Just likes its name suggests, this woodworking vise is smart. You can use it to clamp your workpieces quickly on most mounting surfaces. It supports three mounting options including mounting it with clamps, screws, or dowels. Thus, you can mount it on a picnic table, sawhorse, workbench, or any other possible mounting surface.

The woodwork vise features four ¾ inch bench dogs for enhanced clamping. It come with a clamping width of 4½ inches. This makes it ideal for clamping small to medium workpieces. Besides, you can move the bench dogs to clamp odd-shaped workpieces. Thus, you can also use it as a carving vice.

Pros
  • It’s easy to carry around
  • Can be used as either a portable or permanent woodworking vise
  • Heavy duty 1-inch MDF top
Cons
  • It’s a little pricey

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#8. Olympia Tools 38-736 Woodworker’s Vise

Olympia Tools 38-736 Woodworker’s Vise

The Olympia Tools 38-736 woodworking vise features a jaw width of 6 ½ inches, a jaw opening of 7 ½ inches, and throat depth of 2 ½ inches. Its jaw pad measures 6 ½ by 2 ½ by ½ inches. Thus, it’s ideal for domestic, workshop, and contractor use.

Additionally, the vice comes with pre-drilled holes that make it possible to attach wood facings. It also comes with counter-sunk holes that make it easier to secure it onto a workbench. Its screw clamping system allows for smooth operation whereas the metallic dog makes it possible to clamp larger workpieces.

The sturdy spindle and strong handle construction makes it easier to clamp workpieces securely in place. Additionally, the vise is made of cast iron and a powder coated finish. Thus, it’ll hold up well when used with heavy woodwork.

Its jaw travel is perfectly guided by twin steel rods. The rods are aligned parallel to each other such that they distribute even contact between the clamped workpiece and the jaws. Consequently, surface damage on workpieces is prevented.

Pros
  • It’s specially built to last long
  • It’s one of the most affordable woodworker’s vises
  • Only weighs 7.72 pounds
Cons
  • You need to acquire a bench dog separately

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#9. Yost Tools 10WW-CA 10″ Woodworkers Vise

Yost Tools 10WW-CA 10

Are you in search of a woodworker’s vise for industrial or professional use? If so, this is a great vise for you. The Yost Tools 10WW-CA woodworker’s vise is specially built for heavy-duty woodworking applications. It’s made of industrial-grade ductile iron that makes it withstand heavy-duty use.

The vise can be mounted on workbenches with a thickness of up to 3 inches. It has a jaw width of 10 inches, a jaw opening of 13 inches, and a throat depth of 4 inches. This makes it ideal for clamping heavy and large workpieces.

Its tapered jaws allow for a tight grip. It’s designed to allow for even pressure across the surface of a workpiece. Its opening guide rail is fitted with an end stop that ensures the opening jaw doesn’t come off when opening it to its maximum width.

Also, either sides of the handle comes with a rubber washer to prevent it from accidental sliding when rotating it.

Pros
  • You can adjust the height of the lift dog
  • Comes with pre-drilled holes for easier mounting
  • Mounting hardware is provided
Cons
  • It’s quite hefty

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#10. Mophorn 7 Inch woodworking bench vise

Mophorn 7 Inch woodworking bench vise

This woodworking vise from Mophorn is entirely made of cast iron. The guide rods are polished for a smooth finish and parallel alignment. The rest of the vise is painted to make it rust and corrosion resistant.

It comes with a quick release mechanism that makes it possible to open or close the vise quickly. This is made possible by its rapid nut feature. Thus, it’ll save you a lot of time when clamping or removing workpieces.

The vise can be mounted quickly on a workbench. Its 7-inch guide bar allows for easier mounting of workpieces. It’s capable of mounting workpieces firmly in place for easier and more precise woodworking.

Pros
  • Strongly built for durability
  • Lightweight for effortless mounting
  • Professional grade design
Cons
  • Lacks user instructions

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Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the ideal woodworking vise?

It should at least have sturdy guide rails, strongly built jaws, a smooth operating clamping system, a sturdy handle, and is easy to mount.

What’s the role of guide rails on a woodworkers vise?

Guide rails, also known as guide rods, align the jaws of a vise accurately on the workpiece. The guide rails should be parallel to each other for more precise alignment.

How can I protect my workpieces from being marred by the jaws of a woodworking vise?

You can install jaw pads or wooden cheeks on the jaws of your woodworking vise to protect your workpieces. However, this is only possible if the vise has pre-drilled holes on the jaws for installing wooden cheeks.

What’s a woodworking vise?

A woodworking vise is a tool used to clamp a wooden workpiece when sanding, sawing, drilling, or planning the workpiece.

What are the different types of woodworking vises?

The most common types of woodworking vises include quick release, woodcraft, and plain screw vises.

Final Words

The kind of woodworking vise you choose should mainly depend on the kind of woodworking job you want to do. Also, ensure the vise has all the features you want to get your job done successfully.

For instance, if you’re a professional carpenter, then you should go for a heavy-duty vise. If you want a vise for DIY, then a small, lightweight vise will suffice. Nevertheless, ensure you choose a top-quality woodworking vise.

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