Actually essentially the most fundamental clamps you may make

blank - Actually essentially the most fundamental clamps you may make

When you're working alone, clamps are your extra hands.

Whenever you’re working alone, clamps are your additional arms. (John Kennedy/)

We’re going to come back proper out and say it: These clamps are simply two items of wooden bolted collectively. Not each DIY challenge needs to be elaborate and exquisite—typically you simply must slap collectively one thing that’s purely practical. Want to carry one thing in place? Shortly? Nice, that’s precisely what these do.

When you’re making an attempt to chop an extended piece of wooden by your self, these clamps fill the center floor between screwing one finish of the board to your work floor and truly shopping for clamps. What’s good about these, too, is that should you’ve obtained sufficient scrap wooden and random {hardware}, you may construct them totally free.


  • <b>Time:</b> 5-15 minutes per clamp
  • <b>Value:</b> $10 or much less
  • <b>Issue:</b> straightforward


  • 2 (no less than 16-inch) items of 2-by-4
  • <a href=”” goal=_blank>2 absolutely or largely threaded carriage bolts</a> (minimal measurement: Eight inches lengthy, 3/8-inch diameter)
  • <a href=”” goal=_blank>Four nuts</a> (identical diameter because the bolts)
  • <a href=”” goal=_blank>Four washers</a> (identical diameter because the nuts and bolts)


  • <a href=”” goal=_blank>Round noticed</a> (or <a href=”” goal=_blank>miter noticed</a>)
  • <a href=”” goal=_blank>Drill</a>
  • <a href=”″ goal=_blank>Wooden drill bit </a>(identical diameter because the bolts)
  • <a href=”” goal=_blank>Measuring tape</a>
  • <a href=”” goal=_blank>Sq.</a>
  • Pencil
  • <a href=”” goal=_blank>Sandpaper</a>
  • <a href=”” goal=_blank>Wrench</a>


1. Put together the 2-by-4s. Sure, you would purchase a full, eight-foot 2-by-Four for this, however odds are you will have some scrap items mendacity round from different initiatives. I’ve obtained so many I’m saving “simply in case I can use them for one thing” that it’s virtually embarrassing. You would additionally work with a single piece of wooden, however this challenge is way simpler should you begin with two separate items. When you don’t have two, roughly minimize an extended piece in half. Each bit must be a minimal of 16 inches lengthy, simply to make them simpler to work with—they’ll ultimately be minimize right down to 9 inches every.

  • <b>Tip:</b> When you’re utilizing scrap wooden, it is probably not within the biggest form. Take a minute to select the most effective bits to make use of for the 2 jaws of your clamp, even when it’s a must to minimize each ends. Attempt to keep away from any beat-up sections and search for knots, too. These are arduous to drill via, so it’s essential to make sure there aren’t any within the spots you’re planning to place the bolts (centered, about 1 half and 5 inches from the again finish of every jaw).

2. Reduce the entrance of the clamps’ jaws. When you’ve chosen a nine-inch portion of every piece of 2-by-4, draw some information strains together with your pencil and resolve which finish of every one would be the entrance. If that finish is already minimize, nice, you’re performed. If it’s not, minimize straight throughout the wooden together with your noticed.

  • <b>Tip:</b> The subsequent step entails slicing the entrance of every jaw at a 45-degree angle, and it’s a lot safer to take action with an extended piece of wooden. Cuting a nine-inch piece of wooden will be extra unstable and would possibly imply one among your arms is fairly near the noticed blade. That’s why we’re slicing one finish at a time.

3. Reduce the entrance of the jaws at a 45-degree angle. This may enable you correctly put the clamps again collectively if they arrive aside. They could in the end match collectively in any configuration, but when they don’t, it’s simpler to have a degree of reference like this. Set your noticed at a 45-degree angle and line it up so it’s not slicing on to the underside nook. There must be no less than 1/Four inch of vertical wooden on the entrance of the jaw earlier than the angled minimize begins. Reduce every bit of wooden like this.

4. End the clamp jaws. As soon as the entrance of the jaws are set, return your noticed blade to its beginning vertical place and minimize alongside the strains you’ve marked because the backs of your clamp jaws. Make the cuts. Whenever you’re performed, you’ll have two jaws, every 9 inches lengthy, with angled fronts.

5. Put together to drill. Stack the 2 picket jaws collectively so the angled ends come collectively in a degree. If you wish to lash them collectively someway, both with string or rubber bands, chances are you’ll accomplish that, however it’s best to be capable to maintain them collectively together with your arms. Discover the middle of the wooden (1 3/Four inches on a 2-by-4), and use your sq. to attract a straight line dividing the highest jaw in half, lengthwise. Then, mark the wooden 1 half and 5 inches from the again of the jaw.

6. Drill the bolt holes. Holding the wooden tightly collectively (should you haven’t in any other case secured them in place), drill via each items of wooden on the identical time, precisely the place you marked at 1 half and 5 inches. Doing each directly will make sure the holes aren’t misaligned in any method.

7. Sand down any tough edges. It’s simply a lot nicer to the touch these in the event that they’re not jagged and splintery. You possibly can sand each floor, if you need.

  • <b>Tip: </b>Wrap the sandpaper round a small block of wooden or use gloves to keep away from any sharp items of wooden from puncturing the sandpaper and your hand.

A finished clamp. Simple.

A completed clamp. Easy. (John Kennedy/)

8. Insert the bolts. We’re utilizing bolts which are a minimal of eight inches lengthy so there will probably be sufficient area between the 2-by-Four clamp jaws to carry one other 2-by-4. Shorter bolts imply much less area. Thread one nut onto every bolt, going as far up as you may. Cease when you may’t thread it any additional. Now, put a washer on. Put these via the bolt holes and as soon as they’re via, put washers on the opposite ends. Then, thread on the opposite nuts.

  • <b>Tip:</b> It’s also possible to use <a href=”” goal=_blank>wing nuts</a> on the bottoms of the carriage bolts, as a result of they’re simpler to tighten by hand.

There. You’re performed. The easiest way to make use of these is with the heads of the bolts going through down. You need to be capable to hand-tighten the nuts to regulate the clamp’s jaws, however should you want extra torque, use a wrench. Fast and (very) soiled is how these guys roll.

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