17 January 2014

Zyliss vise

I got hold of a Zyliss vise. As usual for those vises, it is unused.  Upon checking on the web I think I have a complete  4x1=1 version.  If I go for Scott Landis description of the Zyliss vise in his Workbench Book it dates back of the late fifties and was developed as a field vise for the Swiss army.

This could solve my winter quarters woodworking problem.  If I add a hardboard cover to my most stable table, I have  something to work on. For those unfamiliar with the product the workpiece is mostly supported by the table and held by the jaws and it can also work as a tail-vise with benchdogs.  Of course things are never simple, the table is rounded and the vise only works fixed in the corner of a table.  Later models avoid this problem with a quick release system allowing to work without much cranking,  not this one. That's the curse of most Zylisses: Unused by design.  For a functional description the siren song of the Zyliss is still available on youtube.

After some internet research I found different names for the vise: z-vise, vunder vise, grip master and swissrex

In picture:

An original from the fifties with wooden handle, used and maybe still under guarantee

The Vunder Vise,  looks similar but also distinctive from mine, the lettering on the parts is for example different.  I also see an extra jaw allowing to put a jaw to the extension piece and go for any jaw width.  Maybe I miss the extra jaw.

The Zyliss Profi-King Plus,  I think it was later or elsewhere called the z-vise 2, with added quick release and numerous extra's.

The Clark National Grip Master has replaced red for black,  but for the rest it looks the same.

The Swissrex, Swiss, but probably from a different stable,  dates back from 1984. The Swissrex also sings its own song. It is a more-with-less-parts solution, so it looks interesting and it is still sold on shows in Switserland. But maybe it is technology from another age, looking too flimsy for our heavy tastes.