What is a vice?

     
     
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 Wonkee donkee's guide to a vice 

A vice is a mechanical apparatus used to clamp an object securely in order for construction to be completed on it.

 

There are different types of vice, including metalworking, woodworking, hand-held and machine vices. For more information on these types, visit  What are the different types of vice?

 
    
Donkee says 'In American terms, a vice is known as a vise' 
     
 A vice is used in many industries to clamp a workpiece A vice is a tool used on a regular basis by workers in industrial trades such as engineering, construction and manufacturing. However, it is also an essential tool to many DIYers and non-tradespeople.  
     
 Use a vice to hold an object All vices work in a similar way - holding a workpiece in position by clamping it in-between its jaws. This then allows the user to complete a number of tasks, for example chiselling, sawing, etc. 
     
 A vice leaves the user's hands free It is a tool that offers greater strength and stability to a user, compared with holding an object by hand. 
     
 Vice attached to a workbench 

Vices are often referred to as 'bench vices', as they are designed to be mounted to your workbench. 

 
     
 Vices can be permanent or portable Vices are available in either portable or permanent versions. Portable types can be moved and then quickly clamped to any convenient work surface, whereas permanent types are attached securely to a worktop by screwing bolts into the provided holes.  
     
 Vices can hold large and heavy objects 

Permanent vices are most commonly used, as they are capable of clamping large or heavy objects safely without risk of the vice falling off the workbench. 

 

For more information on the pros and cons of both permanent and portable vices, visit Portable vs. permanent vices

 
     
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