To see EAA's library of Hints for Homebuilders videos visit SOFT VISE JAWS. BY JOE NORRIS. High Performance 406MHz. PLBs and ...
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THERE ARE MANY TIMES during the course of a project when a builder needs some sort of “third hand” to hold something. This help can come from a family member or friend or possibly a jig or clamp. However, sometimes the best helper you can have is a bench vise. Unfortunately, to increase holding power, bench vises come with steel jaws that usually have crosshatching or serrations, which, while increasing the vise’s holding power, will likely mar your component when you clamp it in the vise. There are a couple different ways to alleviate this problem. One solution is to completely replace the steel vise jaws with jaws made of aluminum. If you are only using your bench vise for your aircraft project, this might be a good

way to go. The aluminum jaws will be a lot friendlier to your aircraft components. If you use your bench vise for more than just aircraft projects, you may have the need for the serrated steel jaws on occasion. If this is the case, you can make aluminum covers for the steel jaws that can be easily installed and removed. Some scrap aluminum angle is all you need, and making these will give you a chance to practice your aluminum welding. Having a set of these aluminum covers for the vise will make it a “convertible” that can be quickly switched to soft or hard jaws as needed. To see EAA’s library of Hints for Homebuilders videos visit

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