Making a DIY gun vise is inexpensive and allows you to perform various actions on your gun while saving you time and money on a gunsmith.
After reading this guide, you should be able to identify a gun vise and understand the benefits of making one.
It is not a problem to take your firearm in for a professional repair. However, services such as maintenance and cleaning will not necessitate frequent visits to a gunsmith. It is quick and straightforward to use a gun vise.
What is a gun vise?
Gun vises are simple tools that aid in the cleaning, maintenance, and repair of firearms.
The machine is also helpful for sighting in the scope and is an excellent starting point for determining the accuracy of a range.
When working with a firearm, a gun vise provides a stable workstation known as a machine rest, a shooting sled, or an iron monster.
Although a gun vise is unnecessary, it is always a clever idea to have one on hand. Using this device frees up your hands, making it easier to repair or clean a firearm.
A loose-fitting ring that only contacts the barrel under recoil holds the forearm in place. A hand-wheel adjusts the back, which tilts from side to side. You can comfortably service, repair, or clean your weapon after placing it on a vise and configuring these components to fit.
Benefits of making your own gun vise
There is nothing wrong with having your firearm cleaned and maintained by a local gunsmith. It simply demonstrates that you take pride in your weapon and want to ensure that it’s always clean, maintained, and ready to use.
However, if you made a DIY gun vise and a simple cleaning kit, you could save quite a bit of money instead of paying a gunsmith.
An excellent homemade gun vise will help you extend your weapon’s life while also lowering the cost of cleaning and maintenance. And, given the current price of firearms, it makes sense to extend their lifespan as much as possible.
As a result, instead of taking your gun to a local gunsmith every time it needs a good cleaning, you can do it yourself from the comfort of your own home.
All you need is a DIY gun vise and a rifle cleaning kit, which will pay for themselves after a few uses.
As a gun owner, having your gun vise is essential because it makes cleaning your firearm easier.
It makes applying lubricant and oil quick and easy, and because these tools are so versatile, you can bet that a DIY gun vise will work with a wide range of firearms.
You can even use a gun vise to repair your gun or to zero in the sight on your rifle. Learning to clean and repair your weapon will also familiarize you with the inner workings of your rifle, putting you among the elite shooters who prefer to service their guns.
How to make a DIY gun vise
Several commercially available gun vises are on the market, but if none of these meet your needs or you don’t have the money to buy one, you can make your DIY gun vise with a few standard tools.
There are two approaches to the DIY gun vise project. One is quite simple, and one is more involved.
The simpler gun vise holds the firearm’s receiver, whereas the more complicated vise holds the forearm rests and rifle butt on a V-shaped pad in front.
This guide focuses on how to make the simpler gun vise. Check out the materials and tools you’ll need as well as the step-by-step guide for the simpler vise. Remember not to rush this project, especially if you intend to use the vise for a long time.
1. Materials and tools
You can purchase all the materials at a hardware store. Pine or fir are the most common woods found in handyman stores for around-the-house work; either is suitable.
Harder woods, such as ash, oak, or maple, are even better if reasonably priced. Using particleboard isn’t recommended. It simply will not withstand this application.
The home handyman store can supply the hardware you need:
- 1/4-20 all-thread rod
- Carriage bolts
- Rubber or neoprene appliance feet
- 1/4-20 wing nuts
- 1/4-inch flat washers
- No. 8 by 11/2-inch-long particleboard screws
- 5/16-inch-diameter by a 3/4-inch-long roll pin
- Self-adhesive weather stripping or leather padding
Rubber or neoprene appliance feet are also available as rubber bumpers, and any four of the same size will suffice.
Four squares of rigid neoprene foam glued on with contact cement will make an excellent substitute for the feet of the DIY gun vise.
Those who have used particleboard screws are already aware that they outperform both woodscrews and drywall or sheetrock screws. Particleboard screws are more robust, easier to drive in, less likely to strip the wood, and the head sinks deeper than other screws.
Furthermore, if you choose to use it, leather padding is more aesthetically pleasing than weather stripping.
2. Step-by-step guide
Measure and mark all eight pieces of the wood you’ll be using for this vise. There will be four uprights of “one by” thickness, measuring 0.588 inches thick. The plywood base can be from the same material as the rest of the structure.
The simple vise’s one 3/4-inch-thick spine comprises three pieces of 0.588-inch-thick wood laminated together to approximate that thickness.
This measurement is not critical to the vise’s operation and can be adjusted as desired. Some fitting will almost certainly be required because of the varying thicknesses of the lumber available in separate locations.
If you have a saber or band saw, you can cut the spine much faster. It’s not strictly necessary to have the cut relief curved, except for the sake of clearance when removing some guns’ magazines, and it is more visually appealing.
For rigidity, the spine only connects the two active sections of the vise. When a gun’s receiver’s clamped in this vise, it will be impossible to install extended magazines.
Leave the hole drilling for after assembling the other parts to make the fit tighter and minimize the rocking motion of the two floating uprights.
After cutting the pieces, sand them to whatever degree of smoothness your patience allows and deburr the drilled holes. For this job, use a jitterbug sander with 100-grit white sandpaper followed by 320-grit white paper.
With plenty of carpenter’s glue between the contacting surfaces, assemble the base, spine, two quarter-inch spacers, and two of the uprights. Begin by securing the spine and base and three 2-inch-long No. 8 flathead woodscrews or particleboard screws.
Glue the two quarter-inch plywood spacers and two uprights to the base and spine assembly and clean up any extra glue with a wet cloth.
To reduce the fuzzing caused by the water, followed by wiping down with a dry cloth. Clamp the two remaining upright pieces into place, with the uprights’ butts firmly against the base plate and the sides aligned with the spine’s ends.
Drill quarter-inch holes through the stationary uprights so that the spine and holes line up with the floating uprights in a more stable stance when they move in and out.
You can insert six-inch carriage bolts through the spine from the glued upright side, and then you can check the floating uprights for smooth movement. If they become tangled in any way, carefully sand a small amount of their bottoms for unrestricted movement.
Then, remove the carriage bolts until the vise is complete. You may paint or finish the main assembly and the two loose uprights once the glue is dry.
Ideally, use a urethane varnish or other paint that is resistant to the majority of the solvents you’ll use on your gun. It should also have a gloss finish to make it easier to keep clean. If you use beautiful wood, you might want to use clear urethane to show it off.
Otherwise, use an opaque color to seal the wood. After the finish is dry, contact-cement the six neoprene pads into place.
You can now glue the carriage bolts in place to keep them from coming unstuck too quickly. To avoid getting glue into the carriage bolt threads, insert at least three inches of the threaded end into the stationary upright before applying glue to its shank.
Tighten the clamps after adding the floating uprights, flat washers, and wing nuts to allow the glue to dry around the carriage bolts.
If you already have an “Acra” product, such as Acra-Weld, Acra-Glas, Acra-Gel, or J-B Weld, you can use that around the carriage bolts instead. Adding soft leather over the pads gives them a more refined appearance.
Making your DIY gun vise will save you a lot of time and money. Furthermore, learning how to clean and repair your weapon will also familiarize you with the inner workings of your rifle.
However, there are a few questions you need to ask yourself before considering a DIY gun vise.
Have you thought about where you’ll keep your new piece of equipment when it’s not in use?
A gun vise is a relatively large accessory that takes up a lot of room.
Are you self-assured in your ability to work with tools?
If you aren’t, you should instead take your rifle and scope to a qualified gunsmith.