Vises (Differences)

Can someone help me understand the vises available?
I was just going to order 2 of the low vises but now they have the SMW vises available.
They look quite nice, but I can’t tell what I need, and the videos don’t seem to explain them. Looks like I still need 2, but what are the additional parts? One is $149 for an extra set of jaws and one for $199 but it looks like a vise with an extra set of jaws.
Can anyone explain what these two additions do and how they differ?
I am confused. Any help or explanation would be appreciated.


I can’t answer your question and I love SMW but losing an inch when you only have 6 in z to start with seems like a lot.

True that! But it seems that the low-profile vise is listed 1.18"
I can’t tell if that is just the height of the base, or the overall height with the jaws.

That too. But the smw has the 1" base, seems that could be halved maybe? Maybe even .25"? Might give up accuracy but nobody is making high tolerance parts on these things

Looking at the vices, the SMW vice does require a 1 inch fixture plate and then the actual vice piece which raises the material what looks to be another 1 in. So the bottom of the work piece will be 2 in above the machine base. However, the Langmuir vice has a base height of 1.1875 inches. So you are losing 13/16 (0.8125) inches in height, but may be gaining multiple station holding possibilities which for some might be a blessing if trying to run multiple parts. The SMW full vice system is also $489.95 which includes everything needed for 1 vice. The extra pieces are additions to the base plate that allow for dual vices on a single plate or a dual station system, which uses a single stop in the middle of two adjustable clamping vices on the outside. I think the picture that Langmuir has is wrong. Look at the SMW website for what a dual station looks like.

Looking at prices, a Langmuir vice would require an extra $50 for the vice clamping pieces, and then maybe another $50 for the vice parallel set. So a difference of only $60 to the SMW system, with more possibilities available for the SMW vice. You can also add up to 3 SMW plates to the MR-1, but I would hope that by the time the MR-1 comes to delivery that they can offer 1 fixture plate that goes across the entire base. I see on the SMW they have fixture plates available for multiple machines.

This is my basic understanding of this but have been researching it all morning. If anything is wrong please let me know. Thank you.


Just to clarify, the SMW vise is only 1" tall off of our base plate. The vise we make is 1-3/16". While the SMW vise is more expensive than our vise, I think folks will find the massive 14.5" jaw opening and the versatility (especially with the extra stations that you can buy) to be worth the expense. The thing that we like immediately about the SMW vise is that with the dual stations setup you can run two part ops at the same time. For example, if you are making multiple quantities of the same part that requires 2 setups (basically machine 1 side then flip the part and machine the other to finish it), the mod vise is great because you can run both ops at the same time which will really save on tool changes.

Obviously there are many other pros/cons between choosing between the two vises we offer but this will really depend on what you plan to do with the machine and this will vary by the customer. We believe that you really can’t go wrong with either vise since they both offer a low profile work holding solution with a very large jaw opening which is is perfect for MR-1.


Thanks! That helps somewhat. I do like the additional options for the SMW vises.

I have trouble figuring out the difference between the SMW 1/2" Mod Vise, Single Station Kit that adds a Second Vise to your SMW MR-1 Pallet for $199.95 and the SMW Dual Station Conversion Kit to Convert your Single Station Vise to Dual Station for $149.99.

What is the difference between adding a second vise to the pallet and converting a single station vise to a dual station? I guess I don’t understand the terminology perhaps. Are they doing the same thing? The pictures appear that they include the same parts. What am I missing?


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I suppose one could alway have a Langmuir vise on one side and a SMW plate/vise combo on the other side and have the best of both worlds. Personally, I like the versatility of the SMW setup, but I wish it had a single plate option to cover the whole table.


Agreed! It would be nice if the base plate could be a vise. That way we could gain an inch. Oh well. Thinking of getting one of each to see how I like them. Can always use and extra vise for other projects . . .

I can see a few options…

Arrange a SMW pallet to either side of an axis, pull your SMW vises from the arrangement as shown on the pallet in the picture, turn them to be along the edges of the pallet facing towards the opposing pallet. You can then use a pair of parallels that are touching off on the stock tooling fixture plate and you can adjust the SMW vices to hold the work piece such that you gain Z-height. You can orient to have a zone that is open between the pallet on the left and right or the top and bottom.

The other option is you get a piece of aluminum and make a new fixture plate that incoporates the .75 in on center 1/4-20 holes that SMW uses for their vices. Making a fixture plate that is based on Langmuir’s base mounting holes to the machine but has .75 on center spacing, or possibpy 1.5 on center should not be too terribly hard to do. A project for sure but these machines appear to have some customization available if you are creative.

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The SMW single station vise kit would include a base plate, one fixed position and one adjustable position vise. If you buy the 2nd station then you get an additional fixed and adjustable station. Essentially two independent vices on the same baseplate. If you chose the dual station option then you have one fixed station that has to be positioned between the two adjustable stations.

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Thanks. I think I’ll have to wait to see what it all looks like and figure out how to do that. It’ll be a while before we get these, so I’ll have time to think about it.

Wow. I would never get that from the descriptions. I have read them many times and still can’t figure that out. The pictures aren’t really helpful.

So, the Single Station Kit gives me a complete second vise (2 pieces), whereas the Dual Station gives me 1 piece to position between the existing vise faces. Am I getting that right now?

Thanks for describing that!

Probably the best info is from Saunders Machine Works. The MR-1 kit isn’t listed but the kits are the same except for the baseplates that are machine specific.

Yes, they have a lot of info (and cool stuff). Thanks for your help!

Buy one vice of your liking and use your new machine to make as many vises as you like!!


How wide are the Low profile vises?

The jaw width is 100mm (slightly under 4”)

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Thank you!!

Something I haven’t seen mentioned are the dowel pins located under the jaws. I guesstimate them to be 1/4” deep. That’s why a fixture or plate needs to be 1” thick to get 3/4” of thread depth.

If anyone’s interested.