I bought this pair of Gibraltar adjustable c-clamps from MSC back in 2013. While all c-clamps are adjustable, these feature an added extension mechanism that essentially converts them from 2″ clamps into 3″ clamps.
After 6 years of intermittent use, I have found that they are handy, but far from being workshop must-haves. These clamps have a 1-3/4″ throat depth and 800 lb max clamping capacity.
It’s easy to switch them from 2″ to 3″ clamps and back, via a large ball detent-like mechanism.
You can’t buy these anymore – Gibraltar is an MSC brand and this model (60691995) has been discontinued – although there is a 6″ model (60691946) that offers greater adjustability.
I came upon my clamps yesterday when doing some much-needed workshop cleaning/decluttering. I can’t say I’m personally attached to them, or that I’d be upset if I lost them forever tomorrow. I have some other c-clamps that I use more often, and if needed, I could replace them with Tekton or Irwin clamps.
I remember the mindset when I ordered them too. “Ooh, that’s neat, I wonder how well they work, maybe they’ll make for an interesting review.” As it turns out, they’re well-made and work exactly as intended. But they’re a solution to a problem I don’t find myself having very often.
We previously posted about Irwin’s adjustable G-clamps, and also Hart quick-adjust c-clamps. I think that the Hart might be a much more convenient design than these Gibraltars, since you also have a quick-adjust mechanism that allows for much quicker opening and closing than using just the clamping screw.
I don’t regret buying the Gibraltar clamps, although I haven’t been taking full advantage of them. I tend to treat them as spares, and really only dig them out when my other clamps are also in-use or temporarily misplaced. At the time, they were $7.69 each, which is roughly what it would cost to get a comparatively sized and spec’ed clamp, so it’s not a big deal.
Despite my limited appreciation for these clamps, I still think they’re interesting. The concept is neat, and for the most part they feel just as strong in either length setting.