Let’s face it, clamps are not the most glamorous of woodworking tools and knowing how to clamp is not usually thought of as an important woodworking skill.
Perhaps that is because most clamping seems fairly straightforward, as in the photo on the right, where three c-clamps and their attendant glue-blocks work with four small bar-clamps to help set the glue joining the sides and “roof” of a tabernacle we are building for the Catholic Ministry at Duke University.
But then again—effective clamping can involve serious creativity. Clamping the wenge through-tenons in this bubinga dining table required clamps not only for the table but also for the MacGyvered supporting structure.
Take a look below.
Take a look at the final result—somewhat cleaner—in the photo below.
Even that clamps-in-action shot pales in comparison to this oldie but goodie [taken in our original studio], which documents the joining of elements in a particularly complex dining table base:
Turned right-side up and joined to the mahogany top, the mahogany and ebonized-cherry base is as impressive as the clamping which made it possible: