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cutlass1972 October 08, 2002 12:20

Homemade barrel vise
I am thinking of making my own barrel vise. Does anybody have any plans? I am thinking of either using a threaded rod or a small bottle jack, any thoughts?

scout762 October 08, 2002 12:30

Go to and look in their index to the left side of the screen as they have plans for a barrel vise and an receiver wrench. I built a variation of the barrel vise and it works great. I had access to pure lead as I have made cast bullets for years and I used scrounged up scrap metal so the only cost was for the 6 half inch bolts. Actually it is so sturdy and over engineered I think most could do with a shorter set up and maybe 4 bolts.

I like to scrounge or make the toolrather than buying the high priced pre made items. It is the old time vs money deal with me and I have more time than money.

FAL guy October 08, 2002 13:19

Re: Homemade barrel vice

Originally posted by cutlass1972
I am thinking of making my own barrel vice.
Barrel Vice? You better use lots of KY!! That is just wrong!!:devil:

Now ...if your making a


You could probably use a 'bottle' jack like a press does.


ratas calientes October 08, 2002 13:38

Briefly -

I use a pair of aluminum barrel blocks that I purchased from Gunplumber. I clamp them between two steel plates using 6 ea. 9/16 socket head cap screws. Generates more preload than any normal bottle jack - on the order of 30+ tons. Bolt the whole thing to the workbench. Works like a champ. Nothing has slipped yet.

Someone else on the boards posted some pics of a similar setup using some large steel angle. Do some searching.


ps - My wife owned a '72 Cutlass 2-dr hardtop when we married. I finally sold the car in '96 when I needed to get a large-type family vehicle. It was well worn. I used to claim that I could "drive offensively." :p Over 165k miles, and still did not burn oil. Later . . .

ricochet October 08, 2002 19:39

I made my first from 2 lead blocks, clamped'em together and drilled down the center just a little smaller than the barrel. It usually worked ok, but usually required rosin to really hold. Even then, this setup does not work as well as Jen's barrel blocks (her's are aluminum from Gunplumber), I believe aluminum is my first choice from now on. I have one of the steel clamping (using aluminum inserts) that are really close to Casey Elliots in looks, but the inserts I have are for Mausers and other military barrels (too large for FALs).
Whatever you build, make it really clamp with pressure, sooner or later you may need it. I tried aluminum angle in my vise (too soft-boogered the barrel) even steel angle in the vise (this rounded the flats a little) on removing some really stubborn stubs. Maybe I have just had a few determined barrels with stubs, a few I had to Dremel off. I find building an FAL requires less tourque- ie less barrel vise needed.
Good luck- my last attempt was using a cut conduit bushing in my clamping barrel devices- that worked great. For the damage I caused a couple barrels, I should've bought a set of Gunplumber barrel blocks...

omar October 08, 2002 20:06

I've done five rifles with this rig including a DSA heavy barrel with no ill effects. Barrelled&headspaced it Saturday and shot it Sunday.

I plan on another on Saturday (my shorty, WooHoo!). I'll probably barrel a few more next month. No need to use angles like I have, although it is easy to clamp to the bench. Just get two pieces of 1/2"x6"x8" slabs of steel, and sandwich two pieces of oak pallet between 'em. Drill four 11/16 holes and run four 5/8"x8" bolts through them and through the bench. The FAL habit is spreading fast in El Paso. Lots of interest at the range.

Here are more pics

Apollo October 08, 2002 21:31

Oops ,you said "barrel vice" I read "reciever vice. Deleted irrelevent text:


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