New Milling Vice

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Brian Rupnow

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Yesterday, my faithful old "tilt-a whirl" vice broke. The main casting broke cleanly into two pieces. It wasn't perhaps the greatest vice in the world, but it has served me well for 11 years. The moveable jaw kicked up a bit when tightened, so you had to be sure to give whatever it was holding a good whack with a dead blow hammer to ensure that it was setting flat. I very seldom used the vice's ability to rotate, but often used the ability of the tilt function to tilt to whatever number of degrees I required. The vice and it's new replacement are "Groz" and I have no idea where it is made, although I suspect somewhere in Asia. I checked my Paypal account and there was just enough money accumulated in there from selling engine plans to buy my old vices big brother. It too is a "Groz". My old vice had 3.1" wide jaws x 1.5" hi and would open 2.99". It's big brother has 4.035" wide jaws x 1.6" high, and is supposed to open 4" although I haven't tried to open it yet. It normally sold for $600 but was on sale for $480. After I paid the Canadian "Suck your blood dry tax" it cost $547. The overall backing from the top of the jaws to the mill table is about the same, around 5 3/8". The new vice is much heavier than the old one, and I am getting older, not stronger!!! I hope I get as good service from the new vice as I did from the old.---Brian
 

Brian Rupnow

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Well, it looks a bit ahhh--Enormous!! But that's only because I've been used to seeing the smaller vice on my mills for the last 11 years. I was able to re-use the T-slot key from my old vice by cutting it in half and bolting the two pieces individually into the tapped holes in the underside of the vice. The milled slot in the bottom of my new vice was, thankfully, the same width as the old vise, so there was no need to machine a new key. The new vice and the old are very close to being the same height, so I shouldn't suffer from lack of headroom under the quill. I will have to use a while to get used to it, but I think everything is going to be okay.
 

Brian Rupnow

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New vice opens to 4.038", which is great. I can put a 4" flatbar in there if I want to. A lot of the work I do is set down on the "saddle" between the two jaws of the vice, or onto parallels which set on the saddle in order to be "level" before closing up the vice jaws. The "saddle" on my old vice wasn't all that terribly level, and some fool had managed to drill a couple of 3/8" holes thru it--one near the center and one half off the side. The "levelness" of anything registered off the saddle was always in question. The new vice has a wider, unblemished saddle, and I will do my best to keep it that way.
 

ShopShoe

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Looks Good, Brian.

Goes great with your latest and current mill, too.

I'll be interested in how you like it after some time passes.

(I seem to be a vise collector)

--ShopShoe
 

Johno1958

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I like your vice Brian ,makes me want to get one.
I have two but no tilt . A vertex 4" rotatable and a no name tool vice of the same size but opens a lot further and does not kick up like the vertex .Can be fiddly
to use.
 

Brian Rupnow

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I find that tilt option to be very handy. I have a digital angle finder that I set to zero on the mill table, then stick it's magnetic base to the vice. I can then dial in the tilt I want to within 1/10 of a degree, which is fine for the work I do.
 

Cogsy

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I have an unknown brand tilt vice but I'm not overly confident in it's ability to hold it's angle under milling forces. It's never slipped on me the couple times I've used it but it just doesn't 'feel' secure. I'm guessing yours is a lot sturdier given the jobs I've see you doing with it.
 

Rotormac

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"It isn't a vice to use a vise, but it is a vice to call a vise a vice – and vice versa!"
In the words of my countryman GBS "We have really everything in common with America nowadays except, of course, language"
 
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No offense intended but here is the US of A, a vice is a vice and a vise is still a vise. I will never correct anyone's grammer or spelling, especially on a site with as many talented people that post on this site.
Kind regards, Al
 

chrsbrbnk

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The greater mass of the vise/vice should be better at damping vibration and chatter ,possibly helping keep up the buff appearance of tool making crowd.
 

Michael Rosenbauer

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I use this vice at my BF20 as well as you did. My BF20 is now CNC but the diamentions are still the same. And for the small cut deep at the BF20 this vice is perfect.
At my BF20 is a permanent dial gauge arm installed to allign the vice propper. I have this gauge also on my F45.
 

Brian Rupnow

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I love my new vice. I have one discovered one "Gotcha" but it's not major. If I tilt the vice to some strange angle, then set it back down to "level" afterwards, there is no hardstop to keep the vice from actually tilting in the other direction. It will go about 6 or 8 degrees past level. However, there is ample room for me to machine up a solid stop and Loctite it in place under the part of the vice that tilts. That way I don't have to use my digital level to reset the vice to zero each time it is used.
 

doozer

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Busy Bee in Canada sells Groz products. I bought a Groz Toolmakers percision vise. I use it all the time now.
I would like to get a tilting one but they are so expensive in Canada.
I believe Groz comes from India.
 

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