American Woodworker

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Deep-Reach Handscrew

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Recently, a friend asked me to reglue the buckled veneer in a tabletop. The problem was located too far from the edge to clamp with my longest handscrew, so I added wooden fingers to nearly double its reach. I made the fingers of 3/4-in. hickory, though you could use any hard, stiff wood. I fastened them with 1-1/2-in.-long No. 14 screws. The fingers reduce the jaw capacity by 1-1/2-in., down to 3 in. on my 8-in. handscrew. Longer fingers on a larger handscrew should be thicker to minimize deflection. To screw on the fingers, I open the jaws wide, like a yawning cartoon alligator.