Several years ago, I wanted to acquire a ball joint swivel vise to hold violin plates for arching work after having tried one at the Monster Ball Vice Summer Violinmaking Workshop. After considering it for a while, I decided to design one which would have more capability than the smaller ones I had seen and tried, one large enough for cello making. I developed a design with drawings and gave a detailed written description to prototype fabricator. His interpretation of my design and specifications came out so ruggedly built that it became obvious that this unit would also be easily capable of handling bass parts during the making of a bass. And thus was born the Monsterballvise. As shown in the photos of it, the floor model is operated with foot pedals which develop gripping power on the ball of the ball joint by means of hydraulic pressure. One pedal releases the gripping pressure allowing the positioned object to be repositioned and with 3 or 4 quick pumps on the other foot pedal, the gripping pressure is reapplied thus locking-in the selected position to hold whatever projects have been attached to the top attachment plate. The system is quite simple but unique enough to have been awarded a patent by the Unites States Patent Office.
Subsequently, resulting from requests, a bench top version has been developed which is operated with a lever. A quarter turn of the lever in either direction will effect the position locking and unlocking on the Monsterballvise benchtop model.
Additional mechanical clamping systems are currently under development and will be tested and eventually also manufactured.
Semmel Enterprises is the company which manufactures the family of Monsterballvise products. Please visit our website for a much more detailed explanation and contact information.