If you are going to be drilling, planning, or sawing any piece of wood in your workshop or even in your garage, then you need to have a bench vise ready. These come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and even distances that they can open and the sizes of wood they can handle and hold. There are so many options that might become confusing regarding which model you should purchase, so make sure to do your research to find the right one.
Here are just 10 of the top bench vises that we have reviewed, so make sure to use our comprehensive guide to help you with making the final choice.
10 Best Bench Vises for the Job
1. Tekton 8” Bench Vise
This model is an 8″ bench vise, and it is made of cast iron with steel jaws that are serrated to provide a non-slip, secure grip. The swivel base can handle 120°, and it uses dual lock-down based nuts so you can position it where required. There are 3 holes so you can easily mount it securely to your chosen spot on the workbench, and it is easy to use and operate. The jaw opens to 7 3/8″ with a throat depth of 3 7/8″ with a 30,000 PSI tensile strength with a 5 1/2″ x 6″ anvil.
- Easy to use
- Sleek design
If you are looking for something that will hold larger pieces of wood, then this would be ideal to have mounted in your workshop.
2. Wilton 11106 Bench Vise
This is a blue cast iron bench vise with a 30,000 PSI tensile strength and is perfect for light-duty, weekend projects, home shop, or general-purpose usage. The swivel is 120° with a double lock-down style base, and the jaws have grooved steel inserts to keep the wood in place. The anvil gives you a larger workspace without any issues, so you have the area you need, and this will be ideal for your home workshop or even for your professional workbench.
- Lifetime warranty
- Jaw surface texture can be very jagged
If you have a small budget and need something high-quality, this will definitely be the model you need to be looking at.
3. Yost BV-4 4” Bench Vise
For those who don’t need something large, this 4” bench vise from Yost would be ideal. It is created with cast iron, and it is great for your home workshop for working with smaller pieces of wood. The jaw width is 4” with a 3” jaw opening and 2.1” throat depth and the anvil is 2.5 x 2.6” that is great for shaping, bending or tapping metal. It has a PSI of 30,000 and the steel jaws are serrated and can easily be replaced, and the base swivels at 120° and can easily be locked down.
- Well-known brand
- Lighter than other models
- Great for home DIY projects
- Not ideal for professional work
If you are searching for something that would be usable at home for smaller projects, then this might be the right option for all of your needs.
4. Forward 6” Swivel Base Bench Vise
This has a jaw width of 6” with an opening of 5” and 2.7” throat depth, and it is made of polished steel in blue color. It is medium-duty, and it weighs 29.7 pounds, and the tensile strength is 30,000 PSI with a 120° swiveling base. The steel jaws have microgrooves, and they can be replaced as needed and are great for fixing, clamping, and holding the wood without any slippage.
- Ideal for home usage
- Not ideal for professional usage
If you don’t need something heavy-duty, this medium-duty bench vise is going to be perfect for all of your home based projects.
5. Yost ADI-4 360° Swivel Base Bench Vise
For those who want their project to be able to swivel 360°, this is the right model, and this comes in a wide variety of sizes, including 4″, 5″, 6″, and 8″ based on your needs. It is made using austempered ductile iron with a PSI of 130,000, and it is 20 x 10 x 8.5″ in size and weighs only 22 pounds. The pipe jaws and top jaws are made of high-quality hardened steel to allow for a firmer grip to avoid slipping, and the anvil gives you a large space for working.
- 360° swiveling base
- Large anvil space
- Great for professional usage
- Slightly expensive
- Powdercoat can flake off easily
If a full 360° swivel base is what you are looking for, this Yost brand bench vise will definitely be your best option.
6. Forward CR60A 6.5” Swivel Base Bench Vise
Depending on the size of the wood you are using, this 6.5” bench vise might be perfect, and the jaw opening is 6” with a throat depth of 3.8” and a PSI of 60,000. It is made of extremely high strength and durable ductile iron, and the base can rotate 270° with a handle that is resistant to corrosion and a large working area on the anvil. This would be ideal for both professional and home usage.
- Ideal for professional usage
- Great weight
- Doesn’t come with the necessary hardware for mounting
For professionals who are looking for something that they can use easily without breaking their budget, then this is the right model to check out.
7. Pony Jorgensen 23530 Light-Duty Adjustable Bench Vise
If you are doing light-duty projects, then this adjustable bench vise should be on your wish list. The jaw is 3.5” with an opening capacity of 3” and a 270° swiveling base with sturdy jaws that will keep everything in place without slippage. The exterior has a baked enamel finish with a bright orange color, and it is all hardware plated steel so that it will last longer. It is easy to use and great for all home projects.
- Great for home based projects
- Doesn’t come with hardware
If you aren’t going to be using any huge pieces of wood, then this small adjustable bench vise is something you should invest in.
8. Wilton Tradesman 4 ½” 1745 Bench Vise
If you are looking for something with a well-known brand behind it, then this 4 1/2″ bench vise should be what you are looking at. The jaw width is 4.5″ with a jaw opening of 3.5″ and a 3.25″ throat depth. The jaws are made of serrated steel to ensure that they are durable and that they can be replaced as needed. The jaws’ inserts have one that is serrated to give extra grip while the other is smooth to prevent any marring on the softer surfaces.
- Grips in jaws are both smooth and serrated
- Ideal for industrial or professional work
If you don’t have a budget and if you want something of the highest quality, then you should definitely consider spending some money on this bench vise.
9. Capri Tools Rotating Bench Vise
This model has a simple design, which means that you don’t have to worry about its looks, but rather just how it performs. The jaws are 6″ wide with a 5.7″ jaw opening and 4.2″ throat depth, and 60,000 PSI tensile strength. The head can rotate 360° along with the base, which means you can get whatever angle you need no matter what you are trying to do. The anvil is also overly large, and the jaw grips have a diamond pattern on the grips to help it hold the wood better. This model is heavy and heavy-duty, and it is durable and will be great for any home or professional workbench.
- 10 year warranty
- Great for home or professional workbench
- Easy to use
For those who want something with a long warranty this model is great since it has 10 years and you won’t regret spending the extra money on it.
10. SunXuan Portable 360° Rotating Bench Vise
If you don’t want something that you have to mount to your workbench but that you can take with you as you are traveling, this is ideal. The jaw opens to 3,” and it is made of cast aluminum to keep it from rusting and deforming under any pressure. This is ideal for anyone who loves to make jewelry, model makers, craftsman, or even those working with electronics. The jaws’ interior has a non-slip texture that will keep everything you are placing inside the jaws from slipping or moving while you are working.
- Can’t be mounted to the bench
No matter what type of material you are working with, if you want something suited to smaller items or moving around, this will be perfect.
Bench Vises for the Job Buying Guide
Before you start looking at the bench vises, you need to know exactly how they work and what they are used for. If you don’t know this, you might not need one in your workshop, so make sure to be informed about their use. You need to be aware of everything, including how it works, what they are used for, and even what you need to be looking for when making your purchase.
How Does a Bench Vise Work?
These work quite easily, and the jaws would open up to a specific limit depending on the size and the model. Once these are opened using the handle or the lever attached to the lead screw, you can place your wood inside. You would need to tighten it until the wood is firmly held between the 2 jaws, and then you can get started on your project.
What are Bench Vises Used For?
There are numerous uses for a bench vise, and the main one is to hold the wood or other material inside the jaws. This would make it easier for you to complete your project no matter what it might be, and you can easily use the base to change the directions as needed. This would be great if you are working with wood and need to cut it, sand, or even smooth it out without keeping your hands tied up.
Who Makes the Best Bench Vise?
There are numerous brands where you might find the best bench vise, and you would need to consider a few things, including the size, usage, and much more. However, some of the top brands you could look at, including YOST, Irwin, Milton, and Tekton since they are the most popular options. This doesn’t mean that you have to go for those brands, but go ahead and try a few others to see which ones work for your needs.
How to Install a Bench Vise?
It would help if you first considered your dominant hand since that would determine where the bench vises will be placed. After this, you should ensure that they are properly screwed down on the workbench ends to secure. This is important since you want them to be able to hold the wood securely and without issues.
Bench Vise Materials
These are most often made using malleable cast iron or just cast steel, but the majority are created using the highest-quality cast iron. Some heavy-duty bench vises are available, and they are made using 55,000 PSI cast based steel or 65,000 ductile based iron. Make sure that you are looking out to see what your chosen model is made of.
What to Look for When Buying a Bench Vise
- There are numerous factors that everyone needs to consider when it comes to buying a bench vise. Some of the top ones include:
- Throat depth of the vice – You should make sure that you are thinking about how far it is between each jaw’s topmost edge to the guide rods and main screw. The ideal distance is around 3” to 4”.
- Size of the objects used with the vice – You are also going to want to think about the size that the bench vise will be able to hold and the objects you are going to be using.
- The overall weight of the vice – Ensure that you are considering how much the vise will weigh and how much you will be able to support it and if your bench can handle it.
- Use of the vice – The final thing to consider is your vice and if the chosen model would support that usage.
The more you know about these factors, the easier it will be for you to use them when making the final decision.
What are the main factors that I need to be aware of when looking at bench vises?
If you are just a beginner and don’t know what to look for in your bench vise, then the main things to consider are the jaw width, jaw opening, mounting, and more. Ensure that you are picking one that fits your requirements and what you would be doing with it, and the size of wood you most commonly use.
How do I properly maintain my bench vise?
You should always ensure that after you are using it that it is wiped down and kept dry. You also need to lubricate it so that the screws don’t get rusted and that they can move easily. This doesn’t have to happen often, but if you are using your vise outside, you need to cover it when you aren’t using it to keep it dry.
What is the best location on my workbench for the vise?
The best place on your workbench will always be the corners, and you need to make sure that you are using the right corner based on what hand is the dominant one. If you are right-handed, then it should be where you feel comfortable using it and the same for left-handed users.
What are the main parts of the bench vise that I need to know about?
There are numerous parts of a bench vise that you need to know the names of, and these include the screw, handle, sliding jaw, static or stationary jaw, anvil, slide, and base. Make sure you can name each part and that you know what each part does.
Go ahead and look at all of the options and models available for bench vises, and then choose the one that would fit all of your requirements. You should consider the weight of the vise and if your bench can support it and the usage. These are just a few of the top models that you should be looking at, so make sure to check everything out before you make any decision.
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