C-clamps are incredibly useful and strong too, capable of providing thousands of pounds of clamping force with little effort. However, they can be slow to use. The larger a clamp is, the wider its adjustment range, and the longer it can take to open or close the jaws.
Hart’s C-clamps with QuickTight technology address this problem. These clamps have screw release levers that allow you to quickly open and close the jaws without having to twist and twist and twist the handle. Just squeeze the levers and pull back on the screw to open the jaws wider. Closing the jaws is even easier – you don’t even have to squeeze the levers, just push the handle forward.
This mechanism isn’t strong enough to apply thousand of pounds of pressure, so you still have to turn the screw. Hart’s 90° rotating rubber-overmolded handle allows you to quickly tighten the jaws while inline with the screw, and when you really need the torque, you can pull back on the handle to flip it 90°.
Hart makes three different sizes of QuickTight C-clamps: 4″ (HCC0401), 6″ (HCC0601), and 8″ (HCC0801). Each has a clamping pressure of 2500lbs, with throat depths of 3″, 3.5″, and 4″ respectively.
Price: $15.50 (4″ clamp), $17 (6″ clamp)
Above is a quick video I made showing the features of the 4″ Hart C-clamp. I picked up one of the 4″ Hart C-clamps from Acme tools a few weeks ago and have had a few opportunities to use it so far.
I didn’t list the 8″ (HCC0801) C-clamp because I can only find the HCC0802, shown here. The 02 on the end would seem to imply that it is a newer version, but it isn’t listed on the Hart website, only the 01 version.
I did end up purchaing the HCC0802 C-clamp with the push button at an outlet store and I am disappointed that this version doesn’t allow the screw to be pushed forward without pressing the button. I find it more cumbersome to quickly tighten this clamp than the 4″ HCC0401 version I own with the two release levers.
Here I’m using my 4″ Hart C-clamp to hold a stool while I was cleaning all the rust, scale, and dirt off the steel with wire wheel.
I found the quick release very handy because I was repositioning the stool quite a bit to reach all the different areas. If I was using a regular C-clamp it would have taken me much longer.
I have a little concern about using this clamp for welding and grinding, due to its rubber and plastic handle. I’m not necessarily worried about the heat traveling along the screw and melting the handle, but with hot metal sputtering and sparks flying, I’m wondering how long before I damage or even partially melt it.