One-handed bar clamps and clamping accessories make assembling and securing jobs a whole lot faster and easier.

We’ve all been there…working hard to finish a job and suddenly we need an extra pair of hands. That’s where bar clamps come in, and over the past few years they’ve become more flexible, durable and easier to use.

There are many products out there but none have managed to capture the attention of tradies more than the IRWIN range of one-handed bar clamps (OHBC). These beauties are capable of tackling just about any job, big or small, and to get our heads around it Tool Torque spoke with one of the brains behind the OHBC, Justin Goode from IRWIN.

“IRWIN QUICK-GRIP is known for creating innovative clamping solutions, and by talking to our users, we’ve understood how important it is for them to be able to use one tool for various tasks on the job,” said Justin. To this end IRWIN has updated its line of one-handed bar clamps and introduced a new range of clamping accessories. The new units feature upgraded clamps for improved ease-of-use and a complete line of accessories that extend the functionality of the redesigned heavy-duty (HD)* and medium-duty (MD)** OHBC.

According to Justin, “The new accessories extend the functionality of the OHBC and allow tradespeople to accomplish more tasks without the added cost and need for additional storage that comes with purchasing a brand-new clamping tool.” So you can now transform your OHBC into a specialty clamp and tackle multiple tasks.

What’s it look like?

The new clamping line includes a QuickChange push button for easy conversion into a spreader or for quick installation of the new accessories. The swivel jaws are now removable to allow modifying the jaw position based on the job. Just like the past generation of OHBCs we trust today, the new heavy-duty and medium-duty OHBC can sustain 272kg and 136kg of clamping force respectively. The entire range also includes redesigned Mini and Micro*** clamps.

Included in the new line are:

  • Edge Clamp: Converts OHBC into an edge clamp to easily hold trim and edging on materials
  • Wide Pads: Doubles the width of the OHBC pads for even distribution of clamping force over a wider surface area.
  • Corner Clamp: Transforms OHBC into a corner clamp for easy clamping of 90-degree angles.
  • Clamp Coupler: Increases the bar length of OHBC by joining together two smaller clamps to make one larger clamp for tackling large projects.
  • Hold-down Jig: Turns OHBC into a table clamp for firmly holding items in the middle of a worktable.
  • Deck Tool: Changes OHBC into a tool for lining up, spacing and holding boards in place for easy, accurate deck building.
  • Stand: Expands usage of one-handed bar clamps to allow level clamping applications for projects like frames, boxes and drawers.

Here at Tool Torque we reckon Justin and his mates at IRWIN have improved on something many of us thought were spot-on. The new designs are comfortable and intuitive just like always. The great part is the accessories which mean you can use the clamps on things you couldn’t before, making the clamps all the more useful on site.