Holdfasts are an age old way to secure work to your workbench. In use the slightly undersized holdfast goes into a hole drilled in the bench top. By giving the holdfast a firm blow with a mallet it locks into the hole holding the work in place. A firm blow from the rear of the holdfast frees it for repositioning.
My most popular holdfast is the leaf variety made popular by Phil Koontz. I reproduce his design with his permission.
Leaf holdfast, 3/4″ $50 each
Leaf Holdfast, 1″ $75 each
I also offer a simple holdfast that is essentially the same, but without the leaf
Simple holdfast, 3/4″ $45
Simple holdfast, 1″ $60
My Traditional style holdfast features a heavier square corner and is more in keeoping with historical styles of holdfasts.
Traditional holdfast, 3/4″ $100
Traditional holdfast, 1″ $150
These heavier holdfasts are a bit easier to set.
My holdfasts are designed to work in benches up to 4″ thick. For thicker benches I need to adjust the arm length for more holding power. If your bench is thicker than 4″ please let me know, so I can make the adjustments. Another option for thicker benches or simply to improve hold in benches near the 4″ thickness, is to counter bore the bench from the bottom to effectively reduce the bench thickness at the hole location. I have found that the largest reason people have trouble with hold ois that they oil or wax their holdfasts, while this makes them look good it also reduces their ability to hold.