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The vise can be tilted upward a full 90° so it's parallel to your benchtop. To do this, simply reach underneath the workbench to the back of the vise and loosen the cam lever that locks the tilting bar. And, if you need to, you can lock the vise, along with the workpiece, anywhere along the way.
Rotation. Besides tilting the vise, you can rotate the vise a full 360° at the same time. For example, you can rotate it 90° to let the jaw's long edges grip a vertical workpiece (top left photo) to handcut dovetails for a drawer. Or, you can tilt and rotate the vise to position a complex workpiece like a cabriole leg for easy access (main photo on opposite page).
Little Jaws. The extra-wide jaws can open as much as a foot and are great for large work-pieces. For smaller workpieces, you can rotate the vise 180° to use
a pair of smaller jaws. These 2" jaws have the advantage of holding workpieces above the benchtop (see top right photo).
Heavy Metal. But all this versatility comes at a cost. First, these vises are made of cast iron and steel and can weigh 50-55 lbs. So, you'll need a heavy-duty workbench to mount this vise.
Second, the vise you see here sells for $200. Other vise makers add features and refinements that can push the price to as high as $650. So, shop around and get what's best for you.
When all is said and done, though, a patternmaker's vise is the top of the line when it comes to woodworking vises. &
▲ Small Jaws. Spin the vise around to use a pair of 2" jaws that hold small workpieces above the benchtop.
If all the tilting and rotating aren't enough, there are a couple of accessories that make a patternmaker's vise even more versatile.
Vise Dogs. The top photo at right shows the two pairs of spring-loaded dogs. Two dogs are located on the front jaw and the other two are in the rear. These dogs allow you to clamp odd-shaped workpieces. Or, you can just use the dogs on the front jaw with your bench dogs to help hold wider workpieces.
To use the vise dogs, just push up on the round extensions that stick out from underneath the jaws. Springs hold the dogs in place, and all you have to do then is tighten the vise to secure the workpiece.
Swivel Jaw. The bottom photo shows an auxiliary swivel jaw that mounts to the right side of the rear jaw. This auxiliary swivel jaw can tilt as much as 30° in either direction (top to bottom) to hold work-pieces that have steep tapers.
The auxiliary jaw is designed to be attached and removed quickly and easily. It has a tongue that inserts into a square hole in the rear main jaw. A ridge along the back of the auxiliary jaw fits into a groove in the rear jaw. This gives the auxiliary jaw its ability to easily swivel up and down.
Swivel Jaw. Attaching a thin leather pad to the auxiliary jaw prevents the workpiece from '\ slipping. f\