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Tips on How to Make Homemade Clamps

Sometimes a work piece is too awkward to hold in place with conventional clamps. But it's easy to make custom clamps to fit any work piece using materials that are probably lying around the workshop.

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turn pair of pliers into spring clamps

Use a clothespin with the spring removed to clamp small cylindrical items such as wooden dowels in a bench vise.

To turn a pair of pliers into spring clamps, tie a strip of rubber cut from an inner tube around the handles. Pad the jaws with scraps of inner tubing to prevent scratching your work piece.

Use the clamps from an old pair of jumper cables to hold small objects upright for projects such as spray painting.

When gluing wood trim to a flat surface, extend the reach of a C-clamp with a short strip of scrap hardwood and a small wood block the same thickness as the trim. Place the block close to the edge of the work piece, then position the strip so it bridges the space between the block and the wood trim.

A sawhorse stirrup can hold long work pieces in place, with the aid of a bicycle inner tube. Slide the inner tube over the work piece, and use your foot to stretch the tube and hold the lumber in place while you work.