An ideal woodwork clamp defines your work rate, efficiency, and speed. However, finding one is often mind-boggling for most woodworkers, especially if they’re only getting started. It’s incredibly challenging to cherry-pick the best if you aren’t well familiar with exactly what you’re looking for. To help you out, here are the things to consider before buying a woodworking clamp.
- The Metal Used to Build It
It would help if you had a strong clamp having incredible structural integrity. Therefore, your best pick should be anodized aluminum, high carbon steel, or ductile cast iron. Besides, the type of plating determines how durable your F clamp or any other will be, so opt for chrome and zinc plating. That helps keep moisture and air from contacting the surface; hence highly destructive rust won’t form. Although stronger material will give you a good run for your money, it’s worth the bang of your dollar since you’re guaranteed a long time of service.
- The Task at Hand
Clamps come in handy during your woodworking, and it’s best to understand what type of work you’re doing. Various clamps serve different suited purposes, and while they can substitute the other, it’s ideal defining the task. If you’re doing some essential wood touches, such that clamping wood to a bench is necessary, an F Clamp will do better. Alternatively, a C-clamp can still do as much work as an F clamp. Defining your task will narrow down your options to choose the most suitable tool.
- How Ergonomic is Your Clamp?
If you’re going to handle your clamp for hours on end, comfort when using it should be your utmost priority. Therefore, go for clamps with more ergonomic handles, so you have no chance of blistering while doing what you love. Proper handles having the right plastic casing, surface ruggedness to prevent slips, and durability will serve you best. Besides, if your clamp feels comfortable in your palms, unleashing your art and skills would come in naturally.
- The Type of Wood Used
Clamps can be wooden, integrated with metal in screws. Therefore, the type of wood used determines how efficient and workable your clamp will be. Most particularly, hand screw clamps usually integrate more wood than any other type, and you should check if it’s solid and rigid. Oak or maple wooden clamps would be best since they don’t easily scratch compared to other wood types. But depending on your work’s level of intensity, you can go with other wooden clamps as long as they can hold.
- The Force Amount You Need
Applying the right clamping force for impressive woodworking results is always good. Therefore, it’s good that you find an ideal type to work with, either a hand screw, F clamp or C clamp. Remember that various woods need different clamping forces; hence, knowing which clamp suits best will yield better results.
Since there are numerous clamps you can find useful, it’s best to know which suits your task better. Therefore, understand your task requirements and know the amount of pressure needed and the metal used to build it for better structural integrity. Besides, how comfortable it feels in your palms goes a long way into helping you with efficiency, hence viable to consider.