Rated 1.5 out of 5 by 2
Rated 2.0 out of 5.0 by lilrabbit Functional, "Homeowner Quality", recommended, but with reservations
This is a functional drill press vise, and probably as good as you are going to get at this price point. It is good for securing small work that you can't clamp directly to the drill press table. The way you use this is to clamp your workpiece into the vice, then slide the vice around on the drill press table until your hole location is lined up with the bit.
The castings are a bit rough, and the chop wobbles a bit as I turn the lead screw through it's full travel. But the vise does hold the work securely once it's tightened down, and the base is flat, or at least flat enough that it doesn't rock or wobble on the drill press table as you move it around to position your workpiece.
Another reviewer points out that the lead screw is stiff to turn. I found this as well. Apparently the manufacturer sprayed or dipped the entire, assembled vise, including the lead screw, in clear coat. Once I turned the lead screw through it's length a couple of times, which I did by clamping the whole vise into my big bench vise and then chucking the end of the tommy bar into my cordless drill, the clearcoat scraped off the lead screw and it was much easier to turn. I gave the lead screw a light coat of grease while I was at it and now it turns nice enough.
If you are doing machine shop and make your measurements with a set of dial calipers to the nearest 0.001, probably you'll want to spend quite a lot more on a good crosshead vise. But if the accuracy of a tape measure and a center punch is close enough for the work you do, this vise is probably good enough.
June 8, 2014
Rated 1.0 out of 5.0 by GeoWright Heavy, and heavy duty but hard to adjust, nice square-jaws but poorly made
As soon as you pick this up you might think this is old-school heavy-duty quality. Not so fast!
When I tried to open the jaws, i found out why it is so cheap. I could barely turn the screw, and then only with WAY more effort than it should require. The screw seemed like it was bound in the hole or perhaps the jaw-plate was stuck on the way.
So, I looked underneath. This uses an adjustable plate clamp (underneath) that allows you to set the friction of the moving-jaw. I tried adjusting that, but to no avail. That did not help ease the back-and-forth motion.
With good lighting and high-power magnification i found the problem.
The unit I got had poorly machined internal threads and the acme style threads on the screw weren't too great either. They have flat spots and dings. The screw looks like they throw these on top of one-another in a giant bin, thereby damaging the threads. That means it is a PAIN to open and close the jaws.
I relieved that (partially) by coating the threads with valve-grinding compound and using a power drill to rapidly work the screw back a forth for a few minutes. I used a small file to selectively repair the worst flat spots. After washing off the abrasive and re-lubing the threads, it works much better. Still not great, but useable. A professional machinist could easily fix this by re-machining the whole thing, but he wouldn't. He'd buy something better.
Customers should not have to repair new tools, especially something as simple as a vice.
I have used many Chinese-made tools that are of useable quality, some great. This is not one of them.
I like the look of the grey enamel coating on body. It should protect against rust. However, as soon as I attached it to my drill press and torqued down the bolts, some of that nice-looking enamel chipped, leaving nucleation sites for rust.
The surface is ground adequately flat all along the guide-way, but it is not very smooth. That will be another place rust finds opportunity... another place that causes excess friction making this thing a nuisance to use.
Sincerely... I have seen (and used) better vices from that discount store that gets imported freight from the harbor.
May 21, 2014