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And no, they don’t mean the Miami kind. The long-time vise manufacturer is holding a sweepstakes in which they’ll select their favorite story and bestow its teller with five grand. All “qualified” entrants will receive a “free Wilton C-clamp.” We’re not sure what “qualified” means, but after our quick read of the press release, it looks like you just have to be over 21.

Some of the stuff you’ll be competing with for the grand prize includes a guy from Canton, Ohio, who’s owned his Wilton for 40 years and a gunsmith from Georgia who scavenged his off the rear bumper of a service truck.

So hey: Story = free clamp. The sweepstakes closes September 14th, and you can find out more about the whole thing at the link below.

Submit Your Story [Wilton]


27 Responses to Wilton Wants Your Old Vise Story

  1. Blair says:

    Too bad this only applies to Wilton vises, I have an ancient Massey Vise in the shop that was my grandfather’s, reclaimed from the scrap pile at the NCR . The limited info I have been able to find on the company is that “The company was formed in 1891 in Chicago by Thomas C. Massey” , but it is still doing admirable duty here in the shop.

    I love the old tools I have inherited, there is something about the quality that was inherent in good tools back in the days, that transcends time, and still is evident today.

    Not that I’m against progress, or new innovations, far from it, but I do enjoy working with the older tools in my spare time, and learning their history, I hope Wilton publishes some of the stories on their site, I would love to hear them!

  2. I wish I had an old vise. I’ve had to repair and modify my Harbor Freight vise several times over the past few years. It’s a real drag when I’m in the middle of a project and I have to take an hour to repair the stupid thing!

    Recently, a friend came over, saw my vise from a distance, and said “Wow, that’s a nice vise!” He stepped closer and said “Oh wait. No it’s not.” Truer words have never been spoken.

  3. pherd says:

    That’s just because Wilton is just a bunch of Vise Guys.

  4. Charlie says:

    Anybody have any experience with old Olympic vises or with ProGrade vises?

  5. paul says:

    I have an old Wilton, unsure of its age but it came out of a school being remodeled in the mid 90’s. I guess the shop room was getting new equipment. I’d guess its a 40’s model. Its been good, I did not pay anything for it so that is the right price too.

  6. Hooked says:

    I once sold a vice to finance my vices.

  7. Scott says:

    I have a couple old base/leg vices were going to be scrapped didn’t know much about them I do now can’t destroy them I guess they were made back when things were ment to last

  8. wld says:

    Are you out of business or on a vacation? Come on back, we miss you.

    • BigEdJr says:

      I have been wondering the same thing. I have loved this website for a number of years now. I hope everyone is OK and all that and that toolmonger does not fall victim to our crappy economy.

      Be strong!

      • Ambush27 says:

        I wouldn’t worry about it. There have been large gaps between posts before. I’m sure that there is lots behind the scenes that we don’t know about, and the last few years have been the chuck and sometimes sean show. When you only have two writers with day jobs and numerous projects it is easy to understand why toolmonger can fall by he wayside. I suspect that we will see a series of chuck posts soon.

  9. jbrightman says:

    All i have to say is that almost every story
    i have heard is about where to get a good vise! Does nobody see what web site we are on! Lol! We have had our wilton vise n our family for 52yrs! It’s a 60 model and is still working better than any other Brand! This is a vise that started off as my grandpa’s then my dad’s then my bros andnow my 12 yr old son. He is a “pro mechanic” for every bicycling 12 yr old n our neighborhood!this vise has stood up to the test of time!and the great outside weather of Texas for the last 20 yrs.and is part of our Texas family tradition!I wouldn’t have it any other. Way!!!!

  10. Boss Hogg says:

    My Vise store:

    Me and Roscoe use the vice to crack walnuts at the Boar’s Nest.

    p.s. – The Duke Boys jumped over it with the General Lee

  11. Mike A. says:

    ‘dem Dukes! ‘dem Dukes!

    Hey where is everybody? No new posts? This site could really use a forum…

  12. Greg Imhoff says:

    My vise is not a wilton but I would love to find out what is worth?I was eight when my dad died in 1960. I had the vise all these years. MY dad was a sheet metal worker ,and he made anything you could think of with that vise.It was #206 Pat in 1908,1912,and 1914.Reed with a six inch jaw ,,and opens to nine inches.It weights about sixty pounds .Made in Erie Pa.

  13. Some of those old Wilton vises are absolute works of art. They are also still surprisingly valuable because of the material value alone. Hard to beat an old school Wilton.

  14. Doug reeves says:

    I have a Olympic mutipurpose 5 inch vise # 13-025,
    I was tighting down by hand on a piece of metal that I wanted to bend in a L -shape thin 1/8 x 1″ as I tighten down on the metal the vise didn’t seem to bight in / clamp
    So I gave more arm to it as it began to tighten a large bang / pop / sound came from the vise in the middle of the
    Vise , I was in the middle of a project and needing to finish , so I took the vise apart and found a broken guide nut , poorly cast from the factory , nothing I could do ,,so I drove to my sons house who I had given a Wilton to that I found in a scapyard in a pile of junk they sold it to me at scrap prices , so after 18 miles one way I made the bend and drove home . Thinking man I’m glad I gave my son a great life time tool . By the way Olympic said as new owners they no longer import that vise from China it’s from India and no parts available for the one I have so it looks like this one will go to the scrap yard and never see a bench again .
    Doug R.

  15. Tyler Byrd says:

    Thanks for the adVISE guys

  16. Tyler Byrd says:

    I have the same olympia vise. I was at my great great uncles house picking up limbs for him and saw it outside his shed in the weather so i decided to clean it up and use it myself. I asked him if he would sell it and he said yes and when i asked him how much he wanted for it, he said he cant use the vise any more and he could use the money so he made me an offer for $5. I couldnt rip him off like that so i gave him 10 because thats all i had in my wallet. But imma pay him more when i see him again because its worth about that much in

  17. Bill the Smith says:

    If you really want Wilton vise from “the Good Old days”, go to Ebay. I have a 5” Machinist’s vise that was New/old stock and a beautiful 3” Wilton Machinist model (same condition but different seller) bought from there. I use both for hours every day. Those, plus my 4” Wilton on the corner of my work bench, are the center of everything I do. You’d be surprised how many show up there from bankrupt companies and estates. I’m a full time Gunsmith (FFL) thats been open since 1970. Every couple of months or so, run the movable jaw out till it comes free, ( careful, it’s heavier that it looks,). Clean out the old grease and metal filings and paint a bit of wheel bearing grease on the Acme threads. Apply a tiny smear in the keyway at the bottom of the jaw shaft hole. They’ll last forever.

  18. Donald Hartmann says:

    hello, I have a Massey vise with a patent of 5/11/1880 it is a quick release and weighs about 60 to 70 pounds and the patent # is 227,582 this is a Wilson-Keighley,England Massey vise co, Chicago,IL.
    This vise was purchased by my Grandfather around 1900 as he was a tool and die maker and past it on to my father then to me in 1985 and is in excellent condition just like new and I’m trying to find out the value and it opens to about 11 inches and only takes 1/2 turn to lock item in place very secure.
    Thank you Donald Hartmann

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