Thursday, December 12, 2013

Manual toggle and bench clamps

These things are very handy around the shop:

Quite a few of mine are made by De-Sta-Co:

The Detroit Stamping Company was founded in 1915 by William H. Roberts to providing stampings to the auto industry. 

 In 1936, they patented the first manual toggle clamp. 

Figure 5 above shows toggle clamps holding down various parts of an automobile chassis.

In 1962, the company was aquired by the Dover Corporation, which changed its name to De-Sta-Co.

I also have a Knu-Vice toggle clamp:

This was made by the Lapeer Manufacturing Company of, strangely enough, Lapeer Michigan.  This company was founded in 1946 to address the clamping needs of the exploding aerospace industry.  (The city of Lapeer is also known for the Vesely Manufacturing Company, which made the popular Apache camping trailer line.)

Happily, both De-Sta-Co and Lapeer are still around and going strong.


Anonymous said...

A modified version of this tool was available as an accessory on the original Black and Decker Workmate. There was a special insert that went into one of the round holes in the work top, then the toggle clamp device went into that. It could be elevated to different levels, before the lever clamp was operated. I still have them, and I use them often to hold awkward pieces.

The Citroen Guy

The Duke said...

Yes, they were called "Gripmates" and sold for $15 a pair.