There are a great deal of supplies and equipment that is required to set up a fully functional workshop. It can be a nightmare deciding which tools and machinery you need to prioritize based on your budget. However, you can never go wrong by purchasing a trusty bench vise. When it comes to bench vises, Wilton makes the finest around. Wilton has been manufacturing quality engineering products since 1941. The make excellent quality stuff, which is reflected by the fact that they offer a lifetime warranty! One particular Wilton vise that is especially good is the Wilton 63200/1755 Tradesman Vise 5½” Round Channel Vise. Wilton’s Tradesman line is a professional quality line that is made in the USA with extremely nice build quality. We are excited to review the 5.5″ version because we think it’s an awesome bench vise.
Let us delve into the features of the Wilton 63200 Tradesman Vise by first talking about the jaws. The Wilton 63200 is equipped with main jaws and pipe jaws. The serrated main jaws have a width of 5 ½”, which allows for a greater clamping surface, ensuring easy griping on larger parts. They have an opening capacity of 5” and a throat depth of 3 ¾”, which is ideal for most clamping needs. The grooved pipe jaws aid in providing a better grip when using rounded material. They have a unique design that can interchange between clamping larger and smaller material. The pipe jaws are removable, which is a somewhat rare feature to find on a bench vise.
The round channel design of the Wilton 63200 completely hides away the spindle and the nut assembly. This prevents debris from coming into contact with the mechanism and also keeps the system well lubricated, reducing the need for maintenance and ensuring the 63200 vise lasts forever. The vise is made more durable as the nut is anchored at the rear. This provides a straighter pull and more even pressure, improving durability.
A great feature of the Wilton 63200 is the precision slide bar, which ensures that there are no dodgy movements or play with the front jaw. This makes sure that the clamping process is always steady even when the jaw is opened to the max, so it’s easy to avoid movement while clamping material.
The base of the 63200 vise is built with 4 lugs to allow it to be firmly screwed into any work surface. There is an open locking design that gives the vise the ability to swivel a complete 360°, which is accompanied by two locking nuts to keep it locked into place when the desired angle is achieved. This allows you to avoid contorting your body to adjust to awkward vise positions as you would be with a vise that does not spin all the way round.
A great quality vise is not complete without an anvil. The Wilton 63200 round channel vise comes with a large anvil work surface, suitable for molding metal parts into shape without having to risk damaging any other section on the workshop.
The Wilton 63200 is a beast of a vise, weighing in at a whopping 50 lbs, but that is expected as it can withstand stress of up to 60,000 psi thanks to its high quality cast ductile iron construction. To put this into perspective, the average vise you would find in a home garage is made from grey iron and depending on the manufacturing process, this vise has 2X to 3X the strength of a grey iron vise. Fit and finish is outstanding, which is no surprise from Wilton. This 63200 has been engineered to the highest quality with strength, durability, and smooth precision operation.
When it comes to quality as great as the Wilton 63200, you have to be willing to dig deep into your pockets. If you are looking for a cheap vise to use in your home garage, look away now! This is not an amateur vise, and you should not expect to pay an amateur price. The 63200 was definitely manufactured for heavy and constant usage, which makes it perfect for professional workshops or building sites. That is why you will spend some considerable coin to get your hands on the 63200, but it’s worth every last penny. We recommend Amazon.com as they typically have one of the better prices around. If you are setting up a business, and can afford to throw down the coin on a damn near perfect vise, we highly recommend the Wilton 63200 1755 Tradesman Vise 5½” Round Channel Vise. It will probably be the best and last vise you ever buy!