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Pipe clamps - 1/2" or 3/4"??

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  • Pipe clamps - 1/2" or 3/4"??

    Finally been spending some time in the shop getting situated and basically buggering around relaxing. Worked on some jigs I have wanted to build and other basic stuff like shelves and a couple of work benches. Now I am eyeing some of the basic implements I have and got to thinking about pipe clamps. I have eight 3/4" that I got from a neighbor in good shape. I had the parts for two 1/2" that I finally bought the pipes for to get them ready for use. This has got me wondering about the advantage/disadvantage of 1/2" vs. 3/4"? I suppose the jaws are a bit deeper for 3/4". Is pipe flex a real issue? Or only if it the pipe is longer (say over 4 feet)? The price difference if just buying the jaws between the two isn't a whole lot, but is some that may be worth saving for other things. Thoughts?
    Still enjoying all 10 fingers!

  • #2
    Re: Pipe clamps - 1/2" or 3/4"??

    The pipe clamps that I have are all ¾". The main reason I went that route was the deflection issue. Now I don't really know for sure if I ever would have had a defelection isuue with the ½" clamps but for the very little extra that they cost the piece of mind with the ¾" is worth it.
    Teach your kids about taxes..........eat 30 percent of their ice cream.

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    • #3
      Re: Pipe clamps - 1/2" or 3/4"??

      I have some of each. The size doesn't make as much difference as the make of clamp. Pony is the best in my opinion. I don't have much luck with the ones that have a "sawtooth" device to grab the pipe.

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      • #4
        Re: Pipe clamps - 1/2" or 3/4"??

        Good to know. I am not sure where the ones I was given came from (brand for the 3/4"), but have no problems with them. The two 1/2" I have I bought at HF some time ago. I used them to clamp some scrap wood I glued up for a shelf and noted the bottom jaw slipped a bit then grabbed. That made also wonder about the size diff or due to them being from HF...

        BadgerDave does make a true point about the smaller price diff between the two sizes. I guess the price between the pipe sizes one needs to buy isn't all that great either.
        Still enjoying all 10 fingers!

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        • #5
          Re: Pipe clamps - 1/2" or 3/4"??

          Originally posted by wwsmith View Post
          Good to know. I am not sure where the ones I was given came from (brand for the 3/4"), but have no problems with them. The two 1/2" I have I bought at HF some time ago. I used them to clamp some scrap wood I glued up for a shelf and noted the bottom jaw slipped a bit then grabbed. That made also wonder about the size diff or due to them being from HF...

          BadgerDave does make a true point about the smaller price diff between the two sizes. I guess the price between the pipe sizes one needs to buy isn't all that great either.
          HF=BINGO!!!!!

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          • #6
            Re: Pipe clamps - 1/2" or 3/4"??

            The only advantage of 1/2" pipe clamps is in weight, which is a worthless concept. You can really only use them if they are fairly short, because of flex. (yes you can combat flex to some degree with shims but why bother with the hassle). So if you can only use short ones, the weight savings is mimimal.
            As has been said, use the better name brand units. The cost difference is mimimal and slipping cheapies are no help. Just like everything else in the "murphy's law" concept, you will get ahold of a bad one when it is least convenient. The pipe costs the same either way.

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            • #7
              Re: Pipe clamps - 1/2" or 3/4"??

              I bought a few 3/4 and 1/2 from Harbor Freight. Out of the 10 sets I bought, only one was bad. The inside was not the right size. I couldn't get the 1/2 pipe to go on it. All the others have worked flawlessly.

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              • #8
                Re: Pipe clamps - 1/2" or 3/4"??

                3/4" pony clamps
                Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
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