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MP Vice

Made by Marryat and designed by Marc Petitjean, this travel vice is typical Petitjean design innovative and comprehensive. Typical Marryat build quality top quality, beautifully finished.

So many features where do I start? A compact, heavy black box/base holds the lot three jaws, two shafts and assorted other cunning bits a very neat package. Ail the metalwork is steel, as far as I can tell, and ail coated matt black sober and stylish.

The MP can be configured as a pedestal vice, or clamped to a table. The shafts allow for numerous angles and tying positions. A brilliantly designed head assembly allow the tyer to work at almost any angle, plus this is a true in line rotating vice or not whichever you prefer.

Two sets of hook jaws are designed to hold anything from delicate little #32 dries through to manly #9/0 saltwater irons. Both hook jaws have grooves into which hooks sit, giving exceptionally secure grip while exerting no more pressure than necessary. The tube jaws either clamp a metal tube directly, or, using one of the needles supplied, can take softer aluminium or plastic tubes and is used to make this a twister for dubbing brushes. The parachute tool/bobbin rest is probably the most sane Ne seen, held well out of the way until needed.

In use, I particularly liked the fact that I could clamp the MP and use the more angled of the two shafts to turn the head so that it sits away from my desk. This gives complete working freedom and is easier on the back. As a pedestal vice, a longer less slanted shaft fits snugly and gives a little more height to allow tools and hands to do their jobs, less room than when clamped, but still sufficient. Both shafts are angled and I have to say both give more clearance than more conventional upright equivalents.

Fitting a hook is fairly simple operation: a small screw sets the relative jaw gape, another adjusts the cam setting. Quick and slick once set for a hook size. The smaller set of jaws have relatively sharp fine tips, great to work with. Usually, sharper finer jaws wear out; these shouldn’t, thanks to grooves cut in the face of both jaws so they hold a hook as much as squeeze it. Changing jaws is easy thanks to yet another very clever design feature I could go on and on.

It comes with an instruction booklet and a CD ROM, which has video clips of Marc using ail the important features of his vice a nice touch and very user friendly. The package includes a neat fitted case and full guarantee.

The most innovative vice for many years. Unquestionably a top flight product, exceptionally well designed and made. Priced at £250, this is by no means the most expensive vice around but is certainly the most comprehensive package Ne seen. Overall superb value!

Available from Nomad stockists. In case of difficulty, contact Nomad UK, tel/fax: 01887 830496. MA