Sunday, January 27, 2013

Really Bad miter clamps

Last year I bought a set of four miter clamps from a local big box store tool department. (Rona Revy) Yesterday I took them out to help me building two picture frames to house a couple of mirrors I had cut to size. I had no idea until I began using them that they're quite obviously knockoff clamps designed to look like the original ones I once owned that were made in the USA. They certainly weren't inexpensive so I was quite surprised at the lack of attention to detail both by the manufacturer and subsequently by the distributor then the buyers at the big-box store. All  lines of defense protect me from my own stupidity were let down. I found on closer inspection once the joints had failed, in that one set of jaws on the clamp were mounted a good 3 mm higher than the jaws on the adjoining side. I spent a frantic hour yesterday pushing and pulling and wiping and cleaning and re-gluing and pushing and pulling and wiping before I realized that these clamps are junk.

I have no idea what I might have done with the invoice after this long period of time So bringing them back to the merchant would be an exercise in futility. That's why I'm posting this information on my blog to warn my fellow woodworkers once again to be prudent when shopping for woodworking tools. This first picture will give you an idea of just how much out of line to jaws really are
As you can see in the picture, there's a huge gap under the left jaw which should be parallel with the right jaw.

The next picture is a better idea of the type of clamp I was using.
And finally the last shot shows the brand name of this clamp as it was sold to me from the big-box
store.                        TOOLTECH


I couldn't do anything at all with these clamps and, in desperation,I called my wife and we laid out the frames and glued them. She held one end in place and I held the other and we both stood there like dummies until the glue set. Here's what we were trying to glue up.




Here's another shot of the miters. Not perfect but togther finally!
The next step is staining and finish.



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