What Are The Different Types Of Wire Cutters? (Explained!)

Wire cutters are hand tools used to cut wire, cable, or other types of conductive material. They consist of two levers that are connected by a fulcrum, with the shorter part being the jaws and the longer part being the handles.

There are several different types of wire cutters, each designed for specific purposes and materials.

There is a wide selection of different types available. They can come in various sizes and feature a range of pincers and joints, with the three basic types being locking, adjustable, and non-adjustable. These tools are typically made from steel.

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Different features of wire cutters

There are several key differences between different types of wire cutters, including:

  1. Jaw shape: The shape of the jaws on a wire cutter determines how it cuts wire. Diagonal cutters have a V-shaped jaw that allows them to cut the wire at an angle, while side cutters have a straight jaw that cuts wire straight across.
  2. Blade type: Different types of wire cutters have different types of blades. Some have beveled blades for precise cutting, while others have serrated blades to grip the wire more securely.
  3. Size and weight: Wire cutters come in a range of sizes and weights, from small, lightweight hand tools to heavy-duty bolt cutters.
  4. Cutting capacity: Different wire cutters are designed to cut different thicknesses of wire. Some are designed for cutting thin wires, while others are designed for cutting thicker materials such as bolts and chains.
  5. Ease of use: Some wire cutters are easier to use than others, depending on factors such as the type of handles, the type of blades, and the overall design of the tool.
  6. Cost: The cost of wire cutters can vary widely, depending on the materials they are made of, the features they offer, and the brand.

Different types of wire cutters

How many types of wire cutters are there? They can come in various sizes and feature a range of pincers and joints, with the nine main types being locking, adjustable, and non-adjustable.

They are useful for a variety of applications, as they can be used with materials that are potentially too small to be worked by hand.

Some examples of the different types of wire cutters include:

Side cutters

Powerful Side Cutter Clippers with Longer Flush Cutting Edge, Ideal Wire Snips for Crafting, Floral, Electrical & Any Clean Cut Needs
Powerful Side Cutter Clippers with Longer Flush Cutting Edge, Ideal Wire Snips for Crafting, Floral, Electrical & Any Clean Cut Needs

Side cutters are used to cut and strip wire and cable, and are often used for electrical work for holding, splicing, or cutting leads and stripping insulation. They have a pointed jaw that is used to indent the wire or cable, and a cutting edge that is used to slice through it.

Specialized Flush Cut: Improved blade design provides a smooth, flat and clean cut. Ideal wire cutters for Crafting, Floral wire, Electrical wire, Artificial flowers, Cable Ties, Plastic, Edge banding, etc.

High Hardness CR-V: Forged from chrome vanadium tool steel, heat-treated and precision ground-angled head.

Labor-saving Tools: Perfect length to provide great leverage with a spring-loaded mechanism to minimize hand fatigue.

Cable cutters

Cable cutters are designed specifically for cutting electrical cables, which are often insulated to prevent electrical shocks, and are commonly used in electrical applications and for cutting industrial materials.

They are often insulated to prevent electrical shocks and have long handles and strong jaws to allow for the easy cutting of thick cables.

Heavy Duty Cable Cutting, High Leverage Cutter for Aluminum, Copper, Wire
Heavy Duty Cable Cutting, High Leverage Cutter for Aluminum, Copper, Wire

The cable cutter is forged with chrome vanadium steel, with high hardness, good toughness, sharp cutting, and strength and durability. High-leverage design, with excellent cutting ability.

The cable cutter cuts 4/0 aluminum, 2/0 soft copper, and 100 pairs of 24 AWG communication cables, and precise, the one-handed cutting action is as easy as cutting butter with a hot knife. Making your work easier and preventing hand and wrist fatigue.

The cable cutters’ heavy duty ensures a better and more stable grip. The handle of this high-leverage cord cutter is covered with a flexible and non-slip PVC material to increase friction and provide a more comfortable grip.

The materials used in industrial-grade tools and the manufacturing process are completely different from ordinary ones. Each industrial-grade tool must be repeatedly tested and carefully checked before it can enter the market after it is confirmed to be qualified.

The PVC dipped handle is not insulated, please do not use it to cut the live wires.

Flush cutters

Flush cutters have narrow, angled pincers and are used for trimming eye pins, headpins, and beading wire.

Flush cutters are used to trim wire or other materials flush with a surface. They have narrow, angled jaws that allow for precise cuts, and are often used for trimming eyepins, headpins, and beading wire.

Precision Electronics Flush Cutter
Precision Electronics Flush Cutter

Flush cutters apply to electrical work, jewelry making, and daily use. suitable for shearing copper and soft wire up to 18 AWG (1 mm). It is ideally sized for working in small spaces and helps you to save force. Suitable for cutting small wire, tie wrap, beading wire, zip ties, plastic, and more. To ensure the durability of the cutters, do not use them to cut hard or big gauge wires.

End cutters

High Leverage End Cutting Nippers
High Leverage End Cutting Nipper

End cutters, also known as nippers, have a flat head and are used for cutting wire, nails, bolts, leads, springs rivets, and other materials. They are often used in electrical and construction work.

Its blades are finely beveled and induction-hardened to HRC 60-63 to produce a refined semi-flush cut. Cuts soft wire like copper, aluminum, brass, and silver (14-38 AWG) and trims plastic parts. The recessed coil spring gently assists in opening to minimize hand fatigue.

Diagonal cutters

Diagonal cutters, which provide a diagonal cut, are often used on soft copper or aluminum electrical conductors and for stripping insulation from cables.

diagonal cutter
Diagonal Cutting Pliers with Angled Head are Heavy-Duty to Cut ACSR, Screws, Nails

Diagonal cutters, also known as diagonal pliers or wire stripper pliers. They have angled jaws that allow for diagonal cuts, and are often used for cutting soft copper or aluminum electrical conductors. Diagonal cutters are also commonly used for stripping insulation from cables, as the angled jaws can easily grip and remove the insulation without damaging the conductor inside.

Diagonal cutters are typically forged by High-Carbon Steel, solid and durable. And snips cutters with plastic-coated handles for comfort and grip in the daily use time. Edge is high-frequency processing, sharp and durable, and suitable for plastic flash, electronic circuit welding thread pruning.

They are commonly used by beaders, jewelers, electricians, and crafters. Suitable for cutting plastic or soft electrical wire, but not suitable for hard electrical wires.

Wire rope cutters

Wire rope cutters: Wire rope cutters are used to cut wire rope and other types of strong, flexible wire. They have strong jaws and long handles to allow for the easy cutting of thick wire ropes.

Stainless Steel Cable Cutter
Stainless Steel Cable Cutter

Cable cutter works excellent in cutting up to 5/32″ wire rope cable of all kinds. It is widely used in industrial and home applications like cable railing, fencing, bike brakes, and other DIY projects. Recommend using with 1/8″ stainless steel wire rope WR01 and hydraulic crimper CR09.

Bolt cutters

Bolt cutters: Bolt cutters are heavy-duty tools used to cut through bolts, chains, and other types of hard metal. They have long handles and powerful jaws that allow for a large amount of cutting force.

Bolt cutter
Bolt Cutters Heavy Duty for Locks, Screw Cutter

The bolt cutter is made of high-quality T8A steel, which has high hardness and excellent cutting performance. It is not easy to break or deform. The blade can be used for a long time.

The bolt cutter has a cutting capacity of HRC≤42:7/32-inch; HRC<25:1/4-inch, making it perfect for cutting through bolts, chains, and other metals.

Bolt cutters can tackle a variety of cutting tasks, suitable for cutting chains, nets, wires, poles, screws, and other metal materials. The bolt cutter is widely used in industrial job sites or home improvement projects, repair jobs, and more.

Lineman’s cutters

Lineman’s cutters are used in electrical and communication work and have pincers with a shorter gripping surface at the tip and a cutting surface in the middle. They are used for grasping, splicing, or chopping leads and stripping insulation.

High Leverage Linesman Pliers Cut Copper
High Leverage Linesman Pliers Cut Copper

Lineman’s cutters, also known as lineman’s pliers or combination pliers, are hand tools used in electrical and communication work. They have a distinctive pincer design, with a shorter gripping surface at the tip and a cutting surface in the middle. This allows them to be used for a variety of tasks, including grasping, splicing, or chopping leads and stripping insulation.

Lineman’s cutters are typically made of nickel chromium steel with ProTouch grips for extra comfort and reduced hand fatigue. With an induction hardened cutting edge and machined jaws for maximum gripping strength.

In addition to the pincers, lineman’s cutters also have a set of jaws at the back of the tool that can be used for gripping and bending wire. They also usually have a built-in wire stripper, which can be used to remove insulation from wires.

Hydraulic cutters

Hydraulic cutters use hydraulic pressure to cut through a variety of conductors, wire ropes, and even solid bars. They have a guillotine-style head shear that minimizes jams and are often used in the power utility and electrical work.

Hydraulic Cable Cutter Hydraulic Rebar Cutter

The Hydraulic Cable Cutter adopts a high carbon alloy steel blade, has high strength and is specially used to cut the copper aluminum wire and steel core aluminum stranded wire. Hook-type Knife Head is easy to open and close and can be placed in any position. The blade can be replaced by opening the knife edge.

The handle of this hydraulic wire-cutting tool uses a ring-shaped rubber handle to increase friction and provide a comfortable grip. Tighten (ON) when pressurizing and turn off (OFF) when releasing pressure, which is safer and more convenient.

It can be used to cut copper aluminum cable, armored cable, ACSR, wire rope, steel strand wire, copper wire, aluminum wire, steel rope, etc. But NOT SUITABLE FOR submarine cable, screw-thread rebar, iron chain, or aircraft cable. Shear range: wire rope/ copper aluminum cable≤φ4/5″, ACSR≤φ3/4”.

How to select a wire cutter tool?

Wire and cable cutters are essential tools for professionals working in the construction, marine, telecommunications, aerospace, and locomotive industries, as well as for hardware enthusiasts.

These tools are used to quickly and efficiently cut wires, metal, and aircraft cables of different diameters. There are many different types of cable and wire cutters, each with its own unique benefits and drawbacks depending on the specific task at hand.

It’s important to choose the right wire cutter for the job at hand. Different wire cutters are designed for different types of wire, and using the wrong tool can result in damage to the tool, the wire, or both.

Cutting

For example, if you need to cut guy wire or ASCR (aluminum conductor steel-reinforced) cable, you will need a wire cutter that is specifically designed for these hard materials. Standard wire cutters, which are designed for soft copper or aluminum, may not be able to handle these types of hard wires and could become damaged or wear out quickly.

On the other hand, if you are working with soft copper or aluminum wire, a standard wire cutter will be sufficient. In general, it’s a good idea to choose a wire cutter that is specifically designed for the type of wire you will be working with. This will ensure that you get the best performance and longest life out of your tool.

Summary

Cutters are typically made of steel and are used in various industries, including construction, electrical work, and manufacturing.

These specialized tools are used for specific tasks, such as cutting wire rope, cutting through thick chains or leads, and cutting through a variety of conductors and materials using hydraulic pressure.

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