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Thread: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

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    what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

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    i like fabricating small stuff at home for my vehicles, motorcycles etc. well ive been needing some large throat c clamp pliers (like the photo above) for a long time and finally decided to search around the internet and buy some.
    right away i ran into the popular irwin brand but almost immediatly i discovered their pliers are from china. no thanks ill keep searching.
    i then stumbled on exactly what i was looking for by a brand called strong hand tools. they offer a bunch of cool magnetic holding gadgets as well. with a california adress i figured they must have a nice manufacturing facility there where they make all their great tools so i decided to give them a call. it didnt take long before the fellow on the phone had disappointed me when he said the pliers are from china. i then asked if any of the cool magnetic holders are made in california. nope they all from china he said. thats a shame and have a good day is what i said while hanging up the phone.
    browsing the internet further i found a compny i never heard of but offer the exact pliers i wanted. grip-on made in spain. hmm maybe these are high qaulity but i couldnt find any american distributor.
    so i keep searching for more companies offering the pliers i want and stumbled into proto. looking at the images theyre identical to grip-on and after a phone call to proto they confirmed their pliers are made in spain . so my hunch is grip-on is making pliers for proto and stamping the proto name. they were kinda pricey but i ordered two pair with 10" throat. should be here in couple days and ill report what i think

  2. #2
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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    I found this seller on Google.
    I have no experience with them though.

    https://chadstoolbox.com/grip-on-locking-pliers/

    They aren't out yet, but Malco bought the old Vice Grip plant to manufacture their own line of pliers. Hopefully they will launch soon.

    https://www.malcoproducts.com/news/m...witt-nebraska/

    Zach
    Last edited by WTXBTUMOVER; 02-05-2021 at 09:04 PM.

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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Well Malco makes a lot of good stuff for construction tools, so hopefully they will come through. Tough to pay for the really good stuff for just occasional hobby use.
    -Dave
    XMT304 with: 22A Feeder, or HF251 Hi Freq DC TIG air cooled

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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    I buy older Made in USA Visegrip style C clamp pliers whenever I can.




    Strong Hand are made in China but are probably the most decent quality you can buy for the dollar. If you canít find reasonably priced used then buy this style now and thank me later





    JMHO of course......


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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Quote Originally Posted by WTXBTUMOVER View Post
    I found this seller on Google.
    I have no experience with them though.

    https://chadstoolbox.com/grip-on-locking-pliers/

    They aren't out yet, but Malco bought the old Vice Grip plant to manufacture their own line of pliers. Hopefully they will launch soon.

    https://www.malcoproducts.com/news/m...witt-nebraska/

    Zach
    hopefully they ramp up production soon. as it is right now,i dont think theres a single locking plier made in usa unless you can find vintage stuff on ebay. sometime you need a tool asap from a local store and dont want any of the china stuff they have

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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Quote Originally Posted by Lis2323 View Post
    I buy older Made in USA Visegrip style C clamp pliers whenever I can.




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    ive got a vintage pair of sears chanelocks and theyre from japan. also got vintage husky socket from usa. but those days are long gone. not long ago i found out some williams tools are taiwan branded. its crazy how many american companies have followed suit. i think craftsman is nearly all china and taiwan now
    Last edited by cornchip; 02-06-2021 at 12:19 AM.

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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    If the patents are expired and Malco makes the original style Vice Grips, they should become popular. I think corporate greed plays a big role in moving production to China. If they're saving all this money on production how come they never passed the savings on to the customer? The Chinese product is OK but not as good as the original. I don't know how Irwin can put "original" on the packaging. Back in the day the US built Vice Grip were the only ones to buy. Strong Hand or Grip On aren't bad but not as good as the original US built Vice Grips.

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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Yes, most if not all are made in China. I tried a cheap route once and found bearing down on the lock bent them. These are from BB Home Depot.

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    I’ve gotten excellent performance out of them so I’d highly recommend them.

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    Of course snagging a set of vintage Peterson Dewitt pliers is the best as pointed out by Lis.

    Here are vintage Peterson Dewitt pliers where I modified the jaws, also welding speed cranks. I do this for all my pliers. This particular set is probably 50 years old. They were so worn they weren’t locking so that’s the reason for the sacrificial mod.

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    Last edited by Continuum; 02-06-2021 at 05:34 AM.

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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Quote Originally Posted by WTXBTUMOVER View Post
    I found this seller on Google.

    They aren't out yet, but Malco bought the old Vice Grip plant to manufacture their own line of pliers. Hopefully they will launch soon.

    https://www.malcoproducts.com/news/m...witt-nebraska/

    Zach
    That’s pretty slick. Quite a bit of revived history.

  14. #10
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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    The Milwaukee pliers are nice. I have a few pairs and I really like them. They seem to be well built. The adjusting screw turns smoothly and the flat end makes it easier to turn, even under a slight load.

    IIRC, they are made in Taiwan though.

    Zach

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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    I have a decent assortment of the pliers.
    Blue Point, Milwaukee, Strong Hand, and Irwin, and Pittsburgh.
    The Blue Point were bought from Ebay as a group of six. These were most likely factory seconds since it turns out they don't like to open up on thier own. I need to go through and lube them and use them more so maybe they will loosen up.
    The Milwaukee Torque Lock are very nice.
    The Strong Hand feel like the best quality.
    The Pittsburgh long reach are poor quality.

    Edit: The Blue Point were made in Spain. With lube and use they will be good.





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    Last edited by psacustomcreations; 02-06-2021 at 10:07 AM.
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    what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Quote Originally Posted by psacustomcreations View Post
    I have a decent assortment of the pliers.
    Blue Point, Milwaukee, Strong Hand, and Irwin, and Pittsburgh.
    The Blue Point were bought from Ebay as a group of six. These were most likely factory seconds since it turns out they don't like to open up on thier own. I need to go through and lube them and use them more so maybe they will loosen up.
    The Milwaukee Torque Lock are very nice.
    The Strong Hand feel like the best quality.
    The Pittsburgh long reach are poor quality.

    Edit: The Blue Point were made in Spain. With lube and use they will be good.





    Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk
    Pat I just got a few new Strong Hands like yours but havenít actually used one yet on an actual project. How do you like this feature ...?





    I like the look and finish of the Blue Points.


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  19. #13
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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Quote Originally Posted by Lis2323 View Post
    Pat I just got a few new Strong Hands like yours but havenít actually used one yet on an actual project. How do you like this feature ...?





    I like the look and finish of the Blue Points.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    I have not really used that feature on them so can't comment on that. The times I really needed a lot clamping force, I just used two hands to close them. In general, I really like the Milwaukee and they were my favorite before I got the Strong Hand.

    I just spent the last 5 minutes or so on the Blue Points, lubing them and working them back and forth. They are much better now.

    The chrome on the other models limits the amount of slag that gets stuck to the clamp. I might be concerned with the paint on the Blue Point. Once the bb burns through the paint, would it stick to the clamp.

    Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk
    Millermatic 252 MIG
    Miller Dynasty 200DX TIG
    Miller Spectrum 625 Plasma
    Altas 12x36 Metal Lathe
    Bridgeport Milling Machine
    www.psacustomcreations.com

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  21. #14
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    what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Quote Originally Posted by Continuum View Post
    Yes, most if not all are made in China. I tried a cheap route once and found bearing down on the lock bent them. These are from BB Home Depot.

    Name:  39B5354E-C88F-4E17-BAC2-550B486FF992.jpeg
Views: 705
Size:  59.5 KB

    Iíve gotten excellent performance out of them so Iíd highly recommend them.

    Name:  0EB08169-5C36-42FE-A826-1B1B1708E3B3.jpeg
Views: 701
Size:  192.3 KB

    Of course snagging a set of vintage Peterson Dewitt pliers is the best as pointed out by Lis.

    Here are vintage Peterson Dewitt pliers where I modified the jaws, also welding speed cranks. I do this for all my pliers. This particular set is probably 50 years old. They were so worn they werenít locking so thatís the reason for the sacrificial mod.

    Name:  CC54B43B-7028-48BC-A335-22F46CD414F9.jpeg
Views: 693
Size:  285.8 KB
    Those speed cranks are a nice mod


    I buy cheap clamps for incorporating into fixture jigs. They provide greater clamping power than toggle clamps and I donít feel TOO bad chopping and modifying them. (Donít forget to remove the spring before welding on the clamp)

    This one is permanently welded to the I-beam.....




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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Quote Originally Posted by psacustomcreations View Post
    I have not really used that feature on them so can't comment on that. The times I really needed a lot clamping force, I just used two hands to close them. In general, I really like the Milwaukee and they were my favorite before I got the Strong Hand.

    I just spent the last 5 minutes or so on the Blue Points, lubing them and working them back and forth. They are much better now.

    The chrome on the other models limits the amount of slag that gets stuck to the clamp. I might be concerned with the paint on the Blue Point. Once the bb burns through the paint, would it stick to the clamp.

    Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk
    I was thinking that feature would be good when you have an assembly all clamped down and you are hesitant to remove the clamp in case the parts move. Now you can leave the clamp in place and use a small piece of round stock to tighten.


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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    I don't know if this is a good deal or not, but it looked interesting.



    https://www.trick-tools.com/Welders-...l-Kit-WSK-7314


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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Quote Originally Posted by Lis2323 View Post
    I was thinking that feature would be good when you have an assembly all clamped down and you are hesitant to remove the clamp in case the parts move. Now you can leave the clamp in place and use a small piece of round stock to tighten.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    That would be handy if it works right... I know usually I try to just 'barely' unclamp them while trying to turn the screw a bit... then clamp them back up again... sometimes it works... other times... not so much

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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    I just took Continuum's great speed handle idea and made my own.

    5/16" bolt, regular nut shaved down to half depth and a nylock.












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  30. #19
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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    What about the original Vise-Grips?

    IDK about all models but the deep throat swivel pad models are still made in USA according to them.

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0011361PS/
    Last edited by Mike_L; 02-06-2021 at 03:19 PM. Reason: Link Fixed

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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike_L View Post
    What about the original Vise-Grips?

    IDK about all models but the deep throat swivel pad models are still made in USA according to them.

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0011361PS/
    While weíre on the subject of ViseGrips... You can purchase the various sizes of replacement springs for all Vise Grip tools from their website and various vendors. They ((used to) come in packs of five.

    HOWEVER* if you send them a request they will send you up to ten replacement springs free of charge. FREE!!!

    * warning this was last year and they may have changed their policy.


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  33. #21
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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Quote Originally Posted by psacustomcreations View Post
    I have a decent assortment of the pliers.
    Blue Point, Milwaukee, Strong Hand, and Irwin, and Pittsburgh.
    The Blue Point were bought from Ebay as a group of six. These were most likely factory seconds since it turns out they don't like to open up on thier own. I need to go through and lube them and use them more so maybe they will loosen up.
    The Milwaukee Torque Lock are very nice.
    The Strong Hand feel like the best quality.
    The Pittsburgh long reach are poor quality.

    Edit: The Blue Point were made in Spain. With lube and use they will be good.





    Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk
    Those Blue Points look just like Grip-On pliers to me. Sounds like Grip-On probably makes them for a few different distributors.

    I have several pairs of Grip-Ons and they needed the same lubrication and Ďworkingí to loosen them up.

    I really wanted to like the Grip-Ons but Iíve been using the Irwinís for years and I just canít get used to the reversed release lever on the Grip-Ons.


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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Quote Originally Posted by djd775 View Post
    Those Blue Points look just like Grip-On pliers to me. Sounds like Grip-On probably makes them for a few different distributors.

    I have several pairs of Grip-Ons and they needed the same lubrication and Ďworkingí to loosen them up.

    I really wanted to like the Grip-Ons but Iíve been using the Irwinís for years and I just canít get used to the reversed release lever on the Grip-Ons.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Iíve only used Irwin (Vise Grip) and I really donít like the release levers. Iíd like to give the reversed ones a try. They ďlookĒ more ergonomic.


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  36. #23
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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Quote Originally Posted by Lis2323 View Post
    Iíve only used Irwin (Vise Grip) and I really donít like the release levers. Iíd like to give the reversed ones a try. They ďlookĒ more ergonomic.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    Yeah, Iím probably a** backwards, but I just find I can grab the release side handle with one hand, pinch the release and have the pliers nicely manageable in one hand. Any way I try to release the grip ons with one hand, they either pop out of their track (the toggle comes out and they spring apart) or they fly onto the floor. Likely my own fault but....... And I find the smaller diameter screw in the grip ons doesnít work as nice for me.


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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    Quote Originally Posted by cornchip View Post
    ...grip-on made in spain. hmm maybe these are high qaulity ...
    You be they are! I live in Spain and I have a couple. They work great. I hope you like them when you get them!

    Mikel

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  39. #25
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    Re: what i learned about locking c clamp pliers

    i don't remember if i saw it here or on youtube but the person used a channel lock or another regular vice grip and after getting the clamped vice grip attached as tight as possible on work piece, then tighten adjusting screw some more which tightens clamped on even harder. also unloosen adjusting screw with another to easily remove. clear as mud but it works. some adjusting screws have that built in handle also.
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