Mike Starling's Knife Vise
As one works toward finishing a knife, it gets progressively harder to hold in the variety of positions needed to do work. There are several interesting vises commercially available, but those with real flexibility are darned expensive. So, Starling built one with several design goals:
1. Had to be constructable out of materials that are reasonably available.
2. The materials had to be reasonably inexpensive
3. Fabrication should require no unusual techniques.
4. The vise had to provide 360 degree positioning around the long axis of the knife ... that is, any area around the handle had to be available for work.
5. The vise had to allow a second range of rotation ... around a line drawn perpendicular to the blade.
6. The vise had to allow holding small to rather long knives.
The resulting design is really simple, cheap to build, and only requires only two milling operations ... and they can be done with files if necessary. The stand is made from a piece of large scrap angle iron cut to a reasonable length. Mine is made from angle with 4" sides, and is 7 inches long. The bench side has three holes for bolting to the bench.