Proposal - $300 to Replace the Missing Quick Clamps

Despite waiting for a month, and a couple of appeals, the missing Irwin Medium clamps have not returned to the woodshop. At this point I’d like to buy some replacements.

4x 18" Medium Quick Clamps at ~$35
4x 24" Medium Quick Clamps at ~$40

Proposal: check security footage to figure out where the old ones went.

Vote yes.

I’d usually agree, but it’s not clear when they walked, and it’s been a month or two at this point.

We accumulated those clamps by buying them on sale at harbor freight or home depot with the warden budget. They were much, much cheaper this way at half the cost usually. Instead of a vote, could we try to do that instead? We should be using that budget each month anyhow :slight_smile: Just a suggestion, having done it before.

We accumulated those clamps by buying them on sale at harbor freight or home depot with the warden budget. They were much, much cheaper this way at half the cost usually.

I’m unable to find any record of that occurring in the warden’s spreadsheet, so it hasn’t happened in a year or so. The clamps from Harbor freight don’t appear to be the same thing, and Home Depot doesn’t sell those clamps. Perhaps you mean Lowes? They appear to be in the quoted ball park, which is where I got the numbers.

Instead of a vote, could we try to do that instead? We should be using that budget each month anyhow :slight_smile: Just a suggestion, having done it before.

Right now it’s not possible to do a decent glue up, since all the clamps have been stolen/walked off. Working via the warden spreadsheet, using the ~$40 suggestion, we can buy 1-2 clamps a month, which means we might be able to keep up with the rate they’re disappearing, since we had 4 a month or so ago.

Oh, and to be perfectly clear, I personally own a nice set I’ve been leaving at the Hive, which will be leaving when my project is done. This is not to satisfy myself, but rather so that we can do basic wood working in the woodshop to a level that had been previously established before a large number of the clamps were borrowed or taken.

Regarding budgets: I think you’re right about not using warden funds, we bought them with surplus COO budget each month. Sometimes the COO budget and the warden budget cross over as far as use goes, so it can be hard to remember which was used.

The $40/area is a suggestion so that each space can get an equal share of the collective pot of money (so no one warden expects to buy $100 of improvements at the month start), and also so it doesn’t get used for items that individually are much more than $40. If other areas aren’t using that budget per month, other areas that needs a bit of extra funds can pick up that deficit. It is a guideline, not a hard and fast rule for that reason.

Regarding the actual clamps themselves: While quick clamps are somewhat convenient and easy to use, they are far from the best clamps to use on projects, and in some cases make the glue up worse because of their shifting action and relatively low pressure capability. Quick release bar clamps (looking at the ones at Harbor Freight right now, but we could get them anywhere) are still easy to use, impart an even pressure without shifting and can apply a lot more pressure. These are also wayyy cheaper with 12" ones selling for $4, and 24" ones selling for $6 not on sale. The two downsides are that they can be tricky to use one handed until you are used to them, and they cannot be used as spreaders which many quick clamp style clamps can. We have some of the bar clamps already and probably 90% of the time I would rather use these to glue up my projects than quick clamps.

I personally think buying some more of the quick release bar clamps to stock up our supply would be a great option right now, and then buying new quick clamps at a slower rate per month using surplus budget if we still wanted them.

Just the opinions of the old woodshop warden, and someone who still frequently uses the woodshop.

Sorry, can’t find anything on a COO budget, could you explain what that is? What I’ve seen is that Greg puts things on the warden sheet like the rest of us. It would be interesting to see what had been purchased so that I could check against what we’ve got.

Regarding the actual clamps themselves: While quick clamps are somewhat convenient and easy to use, they are far from the best clamps to use on projects, and in some cases make the glue up worse because of their shifting action and relatively low pressure capability. Quick release bar clamps (looking at the ones at Harbor Freight right now, but we could get them anywhere) are still easy to use, impart an even pressure without shifting and can apply a lot more pressure.

Honestly, that’s what I see getting used the most. A lot of times you just want to hold something together, and they’re quick and easy to use. Really seems like a right tool for the job area, all clamps have their plusses and minuses. They’re also the ones that are missing, so I’m attempting to replace like to for like.

These are also wayyy cheaper with 12" ones selling for $4, and 24" ones selling for $6 not on sale. The two downsides are that they can be tricky to use one handed until you are used to them, and they cannot be used as spreaders which many quick clamp style clamps can. We have some of the bar clamps already and probably 90% of the time I would rather use these to glue up my projects than quick clamps.

Okay, that addresses my big problem with them, which is I’m not familiar with them, and I’d rather not gamble Hive money on something I haven’t used. I just swapped out the Horrible Fright roller stand that’s been borken for the past 6-7 months, I’d prefer to avoid driving all the way up there to do swaps if I can avoid it. It would be one thing if they weren’t a half hour away, but they are, and it seems like a huge waste of time to drive for an hour when they break. The other alternative, which is to leave something broken and unusable for months also seems like a poor idea when we’ve got people paying to use the space.

If you think that the Hazard Fraught bar clamps are nearly as good, I’d rather save money if possible. I’ve just seen reviews like this one, where the stuff breaks almost immediately.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ow0JWrtctRE
https://softsolder.com/2015/09/13/harbor-freight-12-inch-bar-clamp-handle-failure/
https://jayscustomcreations.com/2016/02/tool-talk-8-clamps/

The better reviews generally say things like “Okay for the money” and “make sure you inspect each and every one”. I’ve just been assuming that something that costs less than what I can buy cold rolled steel cut offs from AMS is going to have quality and durability issues.

The Irwins OTOH, are a known quantity, and get nothing but good reviews.

4 years ago in January 2013 we voted in a recurring $100 monthly budget for the COO to help maintain and improve the space. This was for general consumables, improvements, small tools, fixes, etc.for the whole Hive. When the warden program was proposed, tried out and voted in, we decided it was important to keep the COO budget, especially for overarching things: like lighting, electrical work, etc., and the remainder of that budget that was not used for projects in that month was used to buy small tools etc. at the end of the month. The details of the proposal and vote can be found on the wiki and in minutes.

http://www.harborfreight.com/quickview/index/index/id/3427/ These are the clamps I am talking about in the previous email, that apply better/even pressure and more pressure. Those were also the prices I quoted. We’ve had this style (still do) and many are from harbor freight and have held up very well to years of typical “hive use”.

Ah the harbor freight roller stand was broken a long time ago (years possibly) and could have been repaired with a pin given the time/energy to do so (which was why it sat not repaired for awhile haha :P) glad we are back up to two fully functional ones.

Yeah, those don’t seem to get used, and I’m not trying to replace them, since they weren’t the ones that walked away. What you’re talking about are F clamps, and it’s not really comparable, IMHO. You’re correct they’re a better deal, but they’re a better deal in either case. The comparable models from Lowes are about $10, so $3 from HF doesn’t seem unreasonable. OTOH, I’ve also heard the cheap metal in them bends, but I’ve seen that happen with 3/4" pipe as well. “Cheap” clamps get REALLY expensive when you ruin a project because the clamps failed.

Rather these are the ones that appear to have disappeared:
https://www.amazon.com/IRWINQUICK-GRIPOne-Handed-Bar-Clamp-Medium-Duty-1964718/dp/B001I6BUK4/?_encoding=UTF8&th=1

Thanks, that’s very helpful. Do you have any records of what clamps were bought under that program? Like I said, I’d like to double check what we’ve currently got on hand to see if anything else has grown legs and walked out the door.

The only records are the copies of receipts that Jim gets for reimbursement. I know we bought/had several of the “grey harbor freight ones” and also some of the blue and yellow “quick clamp” brand.

Yes, I know that you are trying to replace what we had in the past, but I think my point has not been communicated very well. Please don’t take this with any disrespect or negative tone, not my intent at ALL, this is just my opinion, and I’m trying to break it down.

The Hive has type A, B, C and D, etc. woodworking clamps (A= quickclamp style, B = quick release bar clamp style, C = C clamp style, D = pipe clamps). A and B clamps do relatively the same thing and are compatible for the same types of projects, while C and D clamps do different things. So the total number of A and B clamps determines the capability for doing projects that are similar.

Most serious woodworkers have the opinion that when given the choice, type A clamps are inferior to type B clamps for a few reasons including pressure ability, throat depth and cost, however type A clamps are still useful and very widely used. Per clamp, type A clamps can be 8 - 10 times the cost of type B clamps.

Some type A clamps have disappeared, meaning that not only are we down type A clamps, but the total number of clamps in general for making projects where type C and D clamps don’t make sense.

Right now, it makes the most sense to me that we buy some type B clamps to get our total clamp capability back up, spend less money, and obtain better clamps. Then use a surplus budget each month to slowly buy type A clamps when they are on sale at 50% off if those are still needed/wanted, as we have done in the past.

Anyhow just what I personally think makes sense for us. Love to hear some other opinions. And we can totally and respectfully agree to disagree, too :slight_smile:

Elly

Sure I see you point.

However I was looking pretty close at Quick Clamp prices during Black Friday, and the sale prices I saw were pretty poor. I think $3-4 off $35 clamps. So I don’t think we’re going to get 50% off, or even 25% off. I’m going to ignore comment about HF specials or coupons because the reviews for their racket clamps are pretty bad (like they all broke on me bad) Maybe somebody knows something I don’t. It doesn’t sound like you’ve got an specifics here. If there was a concrete example of this hitting 50% (or even 25% off) I’d be all for it. 'Course we probably wouldn’t be able to do much more than buy a few, since they’re so expensive in general.

If you, and other people think the HF models are enough, I’m fine with that as well, I can definitely bring in my own clamps when I’m working on something. We’ve got more than enough of those to last us for a while, I just don’t think they’re the same, and from what I’ve seen of usable, they’re not what’s getting used. I hate to leave things in this state for months because somebody walked off with a lot of clamps. OTOH, if we don’t replace them, they can’t walk off, right? :slight_smile:

And I agree, maybe Clay, Will or Tiffany could add another voice here.

Had a nice chat with Elly and some of the other members tonight. I’ve decided that unless somebody else comes forward with an interest in this going forward, I’m going to retract the proposal, and buy new clamps through the warden budget.

Since I’ve gotten no feedback from other members, I’m going to do it the slow way Elly requested.

I withdraw the proposal.