Irwin Quick-Grip Handi-Clamp vs. Milwaukee Hand Clamp


Bessey is a family-owned company founded in Germany in 1889. They make a variety of clamps - various styles and qualities. Some are aimed at DIY users and sold in big box stores - but they also make industrial grade clamps - priced accordingly. Over the years I’ve bought hundreds of their clamps for both business and personal use - and have been pleased with many (not all of them). Some of these were produced in the USA, others in Germany - and more recently lots of what they sell are made in China. they had the patents on the first parallel jaw clamps. I still use my original ones (have 36 in different lengths) - and recent reviews in woodworking magazines give their newer models top grades. Later this year they will be introducing what they claim to be an improved design REVO parallel jaw clamp to address feedback they’ve gotten from users.
I have a number of their CDS, TG series, J-series (stepover), one-handed edge and solid-surface seaming clamps that I really like.

I’ve never tried their EZS quick clamps - they get some mixed reviews on Amazon - but Wood Magazine liked them:

and there is a “review” on YouTube

The also sell a different style quick clamp that looks light-duty:


I’m holding my breath for the return of the gear clamp, the greatest clamp ever invented. Right now you can still get the eight inch on Amazon, but you’re gonna pay; over 30 bucks each shipped…ouch!


The Jorgensen Gear Clamp - made in Taiwan - had some reported issues with failure gear teeth:

Maybe Bright Star - the new owner of the Jorgensen/Pony brand name will bring it back from their factory in China.

Meanwhile - there is the Bessey Klik Clamp:


Failed teeth, my word! I did something quite crazy with four four inch gear clamps. I made a 3’ x 4’ platform and clamped it to a four-pitch standing metal seam roof, then placed a 40’ ladder on it while building a chimney chase 60’ off the ground. They held tenaciously. I think back on that sometimes; a mixture of dumb and crazy. I won’t dissect how many parts of each it took to bake that cake. However my love for these clamps goes deeper than the preservation of life and limb. Any stubborn twisted board or two pieces of anything that won’t come together, well, the clamps will not be denied.

I had high hopes for the Bessey kliklamp. Alas, Bessey let me down again. It’s really kind of cheesy and poorly built; lighter weight metal bar, plastic parts and those stupid pads fall off it you look at them sideways. I have a lot of Bessey clamps and can’t understand the fan base. Every clamp they make is made as well or better by someone else at the same or better price point. I mentioned the pads, I also find the handles to be undersized (I don’t have large hands), the K-bodies don’t stay parallel, I have lamented on other posts the blood blisters from K-bodies. All indications the clamp is locked closed and good to go. I hang the clamp up. Next time I grab the clamp by the end to lift it off the rack and the lower jaw lets go, comes sliding down 30 some odd centimeters and youza!


Good to know - I’ve never tried either the Jorgensen Gear Clamp nor the Bessey Klik Clamp - and I’m not likely to buy any more clamps at my age and foreseeable future needs. I thought that I was careful saying that the Gear clamps had “some reported issues” - but I should probably have said that issues reported in Amazon reviews should be taken with a grain of salt. Amen about K-Body clamps proclivity to slide open - but I guess that I’ve learned to live with the issue. The K-Body bar is also a bit too “flexy” especially for long length clamps. I always thought that my Jorgensen I-Bar clamps were better in this regard and I see that Bessey is making ones that look similar.

I don’t know how the Bessey variant performs:

Bessey has announced that they purportedly will be offering a newer and hopefully better version of the Revo clamp later this year. I guess time will tell if these claims are true