So many clamps – FineWoodworking


Prone to leaving your tools scattered around the shop? This video is for you.

Nov 16, 2022

Sponsored by Bessey Tools

Quick–you get three wishes granted for your wood shop. Is one of those wishes allotted for unlimited clamps? If so, you’ve come to the right place. Clamps are one of those things that you don’t realize you need until you NEED them. And when you’re one clamp short, it feels like the end of the world.

Unfortunately, clamps won’t appear magically at your whim. If they did, we’d be offering you a very different video. On the other hand, having a clamp rack filled with every clamp model and iteration at your disposal might not be the idyllic solution we all believe it to be when trying to make ends meet in a glue-up. For one thing, a clamp rack can take up a lot of space, especially if you’re dragging it back and forth across your shop. Something meant to offer efficiency and convenience could end up becoming a hindrance.

But it doesn’t have to be a toss-up between too many clamps or no clamps at all. The solution? Figuring out what clamps you use, and where you use them. Find your trigger clamps living at the tablesaw more often than not? Leave them there. Defy the voice in your head that advises against clutter. Instead, lean into it.

Now, don’t toss your clamp rack just yet, but consider that sometimes leaving things around the shop may work in your favor. If that’s a particular weakness of yours, use it to your advantage. It’ll make your heat-of-the-moment clamp emergencies that much easier in the long run.

As for those other two wishes … what would yours be?

Video: Hand-Screw How-To

Wooden hand screws are versatile, but they can be confounding to use. We’ll help you eliminate frustration and show you a few tricks to get the most from these clamps.

Versatile Tablesaw L-Fence

Video: How to Use the L-Fence

This simple-to-make tablesaw fence accessory handles a wide variety of joinery cuts.

The woodworking clamps you need

It’s true that you can’t have too many, but you can have too many useless ones. So here’s Megan Fitzpatrick’s take on what clamps you need, in the order that she uses them most.

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