The Lever Clamp has two jaws with one end fixed at the end of a long metal bar, while the other jaw is adjustable.
There are so many helpful options when it comes to clamps for your project. Each clamp has a specific purpose and function that separates it from the others. I’ve researched through the internet and put together a quick summary on lever clamps.
What are lever clamps used for? The lever clamp can be used for several metal and woodworking applications that include welding, sawing, and drilling.
Keep reading below to learn more about lever clamps and what they can be used for.
What Is A Lever Clamps?
A lever clamp is a fastening device used for holding pieces together in woodworking or metalworking before the permanent attachment is made with glue, adhesives, nails, or screws.
The lever clamp is very similar to the F-clamp, with the main difference being that the F-clamp uses a screw to secure the workpiece whereas the lever clamp uses a trigger and lever to clamp onto the workpiece.
The lever clamp has a quick-release mechanism that allows the user to clamp the workpieces quickly and easily. The lever clamp is relatively light but still retains its strength and sturdiness so it can be used for a wide variety of applications.
The lever clamp has two jaws with one end fixed at the end of a long metal bar, while the other jaw is adjustable. The lever clamp uses a combination of the trigger, ratchet, and lever mechanism.
So after the gap between the jaws has been closed by sliding the moveable jaw towards the fixed one, then the lever can be used to complete the clamping process by moving the face of the pressure plate all the way so the workpiece can be secured. The ratchet device then continues to press on the clamp until the release trigger is then pressed.
What Are Lever Clamps Used For?
The lever clamp can be used for several metal and woodworking applications that include welding, sawing, and drilling.
The lever clamp requires specific parts to carry out these applications efficiently and these parts include:
The bar: The bar of a lever clamp is a long and straight piece of metal that is used to support the jaws of the clamp. The bar is usually made from forged steel which is tempered and increases the toughness of the metal. Therefore, the bar can withstand the high pressure that comes with clamping heavy and large workpieces.
The jaws: The jaws are two parallel pieces of metal that are linked with each other through the bar. One of the jaws is stationary while the other is moveable. Both of the jaws have a clamping face at each end which is the part that performs the function of gripping on to the workpiece and securing it firmly in place.
The moveable jaw is slid along the bar and towards the fixed jaw to adjust to the size of the workpiece, so it can be secured tightly. Once in place, the lever is then used to tighten the clamping face that is connected to the moveable jaw, which ensures that the workpiece has been firmly secured and completes the clamping process.
Because the faces of the clamp’s jaws are typically made of steel or a magnesium alloy, then the clamping faces are usually covered with pads so the workpiece is protected from being damaged or marred during the clamping process.
The Lever: The lever is a part of the clamp that is connected to the moveable jaw. It is used to tighten the jaws around the workpiece by pushing the clamping face of the moveable jaw closer to the clamping face of the fixed jaw.
When the lever has been pushed downwards, the grip of the moveable jaw is tightened because the clamping face pushes against the side of the workpiece. The lever is a very important component of the clamp, as, without the lever, you would not be able to move the jaw to enclose the object.
The trigger: The trigger of the clamp is used to open its jaws. The trigger is simply pressed to release the ratchet and this allows for a quick and easy release of the workpiece. This component serves a great purpose in reducing the time spent clamping and releasing workpieces.
The ratchet: Most lever clamps employ the use of a ratchet device for enclosing the workpiece by holding the jaws in place. When the trigger of the clamp has been pressed, the latch on the ratchet is then released, which in turn, then releases the clamp.
The lever clamp comes in different sizes depending on what task you would like to use it for.
The size of the clamp and whether it would be large enough to work in holding onto a workpiece depends on its jaw opening and its throat depth. These two factors determine the tool’s clamping capacity.
- The Jaw Opening: The jaw opening of a lever clamp is a measurement of the possible maximum distance that the jaws of the clamp can open up to. The jaw opening is mainly determined by the length of its bar, meaning the longer the bar, the greater it’s opening capacity. So if you are working on large-sized pieces, you should look for a clamp with a greater jaw opening capability (one with a long bar).
- Throat depth: The throat depth of the lever clamp refers to the distance from the top edge of each of the jaws to the closest side of the bar. Some models of the lever clamp will have a greater throat depth than others so they can accommodate workpieces of different sizes and shapes. It is not always a great idea to get a lever clamp with a large throat depth, especially if you are working on a workpiece that is relatively small as it could prove quite difficult to maneuver around the workpiece.
The lever clamp seems to be an improvement on the standard F clamp as there is no need for the effort that is used in turning the screw of the clamp either to tighten or loosen it.
Instead, the lever only needs to be simply pressed, and this will result in the workpiece being clamped.
They save a lot of time, ensure your arms do not need to go through unnecessary strain and they also would not damage your work. The moveable parts of the lever clamp should regularly be oiled and it should be cleaned, as well as stored in a dry place.
It should also be frequently lubricated or galvanized to prevent rusting as rust could end up affecting your clamping.