My online friend and fellow woodworker Andrés Montes lives in Spain. He currently does not have a shop, so he does most of his woodworking in the kitchen — with his wife’s full support. In the latest article in his blog he shows his working modern-day Moxon twin drive vise. Notice I said “twin drive”, not twin screw. This is because Andrés has developed a gear drive mechanism to open and close the moving chop on a Moxon-style vise.
What will Christopher Schwarz think? Schwarz is the (ex)Popular Woodworking Editor who popularized the 17th Century Moxon twin screw vise in recent times.
What would Moxon think? Maybe it’s time to “…kiss his dessicated worm-eaten corpse…” one more time.
Note: Photos published here with permission of Andrés Montes. Thank you, Andrés!
The following is the heart of the design of this variation on the Moxon vise — three gears, two threaded rods, two nuts, one stationary jaw, one moving jaw, and a couple of springs:
The twin drive vise at work:
The components are assembled into a working twin drive vise, at the ready to hand-cut dovetails, for example:
In the article, Andrés mentions that the current model allows him maximum allowable width of only 8.25 inches (21 cm). In my book this means many, many dovetails for drawers. However, he suggests it is possible to insert additional gears between the main drive gear and the two on the ends, to allow much greater working widths.
A significant advantage of the mechanical drive system: Much greater speed opening and closing the moving jaw. I can see how the geared mechanism is a huge advantage when using threaded rod for this application.
The Andrés Montes blog
Andrés publishes his musings on DIY work at the Brico-Carpintería blog, on Blogger. From the French bricolage, Brico literally refers to the Do-it-Yourself carpentry and home renovation now popular not only in North America, but also in Western Europe. I invite you to read the article by Andrés Montes. If you are not fluent in Spanish, simply submit the URL to Google Translate, and the entire article will be translated for you. However, if you use the Chrome browser, it will automatically recognize the language; it will ask you if you wish to read a translated article.
If you have already made a portable twin screw vise based on the Moxon 17th C. design, is the Montes design one you might now consider?
— Al Navas