Skip to content

Myths busted – Do Quick-Release Vises Work?

DSC_0043Of Course They Do – and Exceptionally Well Too.
Today I read an article that stated that, “We invented iron quick-release vises, which won’t hold much of anything relating to woodworking.” Bemused by this, I wondered why it was said and then I wondered why hundreds upon hundreds of thousands of woodworkers used something that didn’t, according to the author, “hold anything relating to woodworking”. The quick release vise has indeed stood the rigours of testing for a century now and has sold over any other vise ever invented. One of the most noted was of course the Record quick-release vise.
So, I too have used quick release vises for 50 years now, and one of them was almost 50 years old when I got it. My Woden vise opens to a massive 16″ and it too is about 80 plus years old.
I simply don’t want anyone to be put off using cast iron vises that offer quick release options, absolute dependability, functionality and solid safe holding through and through. All of the ones I have used lasted, work effectively, save much time and can be installed in under an hour for a lifetime of us


  1. Andrew Margeson on 10 May 2013 at 10:55 pm

    Generalizations like the one you cite are predictably incorrect. On the other side, there are quick release vises that don’t work well. I had an expensive new one from a prominent manufacturer that was terrible. I think the important thing is to get a high quality old one or buy a good modern one from a reputable manufacturer. Are there some you recommend?

  2. dperrott on 11 May 2013 at 12:32 am

    I just read that article on the subway home. I was a bit puzzled by the statement. I am a beginner and have only used the iron vise with out any problems. Its great with the clamp/dog setup you talked about. I don’t need dog holes and a tail vise. I guess I’m ok since my old vise isn’t a quick release anyway!

  3. Jacob on 11 May 2013 at 8:56 am

    Agree. My Record quick release vice has being working perfectly for 30 years or more. I didn’t know it was defective!

  4. Paul Sellers on 19 June 2013 at 12:36 am

    I missed this. I was surprised that Chris Schwarz said this because his work is quite thorough and fair and whereas I agree some cast metal vises, cheapo’s especially, can and do have problems, most cast metal vises don’t and, as I said, they have been around for a century or more and were actually used more than any other type of vise by craftsmen throughout Britain and North America.

  • John2v on Framings and PanelsHi are doing well with your written English. A large panel in a door or a decorative panelled wall inside a building would be made with vertical and horizontal timb…
  • Tucker Tuck on All in a Day’s WorkoutIt's so hard to be in the present. We tend to spend a lot of time thinking about what's not right in front of us until we learn to see more and more of it with the experience and a…
  • Nick Latraille on Vlog 015 Up!Mr Paul Sellers, thank you so much for being my “mentor” when it comes to woodworking. But your whole outlook on life is truly inspiring, I know for me and probly many others that…
  • Jay Gill on All in a Day’s WorkoutThe photo of the horses is really spectacular. Looking at it snapped me back to countless early morning in North Carolina and Hertfordshire. As always thanks for all you do. The th…
  • Stephen McGonigle on All in a Day’s WorkoutI think you must be one of the most contented people alive. You have work you love, enjoy and are good at. You teach this work to others and receive their thanks. You work with fam…
  • Glenn Philipson on Vlog 015 Up!Funny that since I chose to become a lifestyle woodworker I have no time or interest in the TV. My watching is all related to my wood and the highlight is without a doubt your Vlog…
  • Derick Wallace on Woodworking AlternativesThank you Paul for guidelines. Will seek advice and read your suggested books to try and educate myself. Will hopefully give feedback on my journey in future.
Scroll To Top