Super Strong Machinist Vice

I have a mini mill but my existing vice is just junk. This Machinist Vice is a highly functional and was in my budget (a real one will set you back $250!).

3D printer parts and enhancements

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The part that makes this design strong is the steel plates cut to size and glued in plate to distribute forces. Check out the picture of the tin can I was able to smash. I've attached a printable layover sheet for the face plates.

Another cool thing about this vice is that you can use in reverse for inside clamping of large objects.

Also, the main lead screw doesn't move in and out as the slide moves which makes the mill handle underneath more accessible.


I printed all parts at 30% infill with ABS. I used ABS glue to hold all the parts together.

Painting this thing was a lot of work. I was just trying to cover up the red portions of abs glue but I stupidly painted onto surfaces I would later attempt to glue metal plates to. On the bright side, using abs glue and sandable primer to build up surfaces I was able to get a nice finish.

If you just want to have plastic faces I have included models for those. You don't need to print the 'face' parts if you are going to use steel plates.

Do everything you can to prevent warping on the base parts. The bottom of these parts will be a working surface so if they warp the slide will wiggle in use.

During final assembly of the lead screw I threaded the nylock nuts onto the rod past the ends and use a hammer to mar up the threads on the outside. Then I unscrewed the nylock nut until it got stuck on the marred end, locking it in place.

The vice mounts are designed for 5/16" bolts.

Shopping List:

Materials and methods

(2) Nylock hex nuts 1/2"-13
(1) 12" of 1/2"-13 threaded rod
(1) 16 ga, 6" x 18" steel plate (was available at Lowes.)
(1) Jam Nut 1/2"-13
(1) 2.5" long 5/16-18 bolt (for handle)
(2) 5/16"-18 nuts (for double nutting the handle)



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