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What is a hand vice?

What is a hand vice?

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hand vice A hand vice is similar in appearance to a pair of tongs, and has a simple design which consists of two connected handles, each with an integrated jaw on the end.

It is called a hand vice because it is designed to be used in the hand.

hand vice holding workpiece A hand vice is probably the most versatile of all the hand-held vice types, as its tong-like structure means it can be used to hold minute workpieces as well as slightly larger ones.

What is it used for?

car model making This type of hand-held vice is ideal for general use in craft work and home DIY.
holding an object while glue guning A hand vice would be useful, for example, when using a hot glue gun. By gripping a small workpiece, the vice allows the user to keep their hands out of the way and eliminates the risk of the user burning their hands on the glue.
workman using a grinding machine Another use for a hand vice would be to hold small objects in need of grinding or sanding. Grinding is a dangerous machining process which uses a grinding wheel as a cutting tool. Similarly, sanding involves removing any small abrasions using a wheel on which sandpaper is mounted.
hand vice holding metal for grinding A hand vice, therefore, can lessen any risk by holding the small workpiece within its jaws when completing these applications, allowing the user to keep their hands away from the wheel.

The portability of a hand vice means the user can move the workpiece into any desired position while completing such applications, making this vice more suitable than other types of vice.

Characteristics

forging steel process Hand vices are often made from drop forged steel for strength, as forged steel parts are generally believed to be superior to metals made by other methods as the forging process often produces a better quality finish.
rusted materials Steel with corrosion resistant properties is often used when manufacturing hand vices, as their portability means they can be exposed to a wide range of substances which could cause rust or damage.
spring catch Hand vices are often designed with a spring-action in-between the handles which pushes the jaws out in opposite directions.

Some models are available with a spring catch…

coil spring …while others have a coil spring.

The spring-action feature widens the jaws and increases their opening capacity, whilst also keeping the jaws from inconveniently closing when attempting to insert a workpiece.

hand vice pin hole Some hand vices also have a pin hole included in their jaws, in order to grip objects with a small diameter, such as metal wire.