If you've ever disassembled your firearms much beyond what is necessary for basic cleaning and maintenance, especially when it requires pushing or punching out a pin, or if you've needed to adjust or drift the sights on your gun... you've probably wished you had a third hand and two extra fingers. You can always use a vise if you're careful not to damage your firearm, but nothing beats the utility of a good bench block.
My first bench block about thirty years ago was a six-inch long piece of two-by-four with a couple of holes drilled in it to punch out pins. Eventually, I made a nice oak bench block with various holes drilled for punching out pins and a groove I routed into it to set and hold a slide in place while I worked on it. Well, a couple of years back I picked up the Wheeler Engineering Universal Bench Block.
This bench block is made of a tough, non-marring, non-scratching polymer that has held up well to quite a bit of regular use.
While it has a lot of features designed specifically for working on the 1911... which is good as it seems a smooth running 1911 needs fairly regular maintenance... many of the grooves, holes, and other molded features work well on other firearms that I've worked on such as Ruger, Glock, S&W, and many others.
A good gunsmithing vise is always handy if you have a regular or dedicated workbench, but this handy little bench block can go right into your range bag and be used on the go.
So if you find yourself needing a third hand or driving a pin or punch into the palm of your hand while working on your firearms, you might consider picking up a... Wheeler Engineering Universal Bench Block.
On a side note... blogging might be light this next week or so due to my surgery.