Anyone working with wires and cables knows that a reliable cutter makes or breaks the job. If your cutters are not sharp, durable and well made, cutting through metal or stripping and cutting wire becomes difficult and can cause a hazard in the workplace. When deciding whether a cutter is good quality, experienced tradesmen take several factors into account. The cutters should be the right design for the job, constructed out of durable and hardened material, have a sharp, clean blade and a finish that will make the job easier. Your cutters should also be completely functional and smooth to operate.
High carbon steel is a stable construction material that provides strength and durability to your cutter. Added hardness comes from alloys such as chrome molybdenum steel. Any kind of hardened steel adds toughness to the stability of the metal and reduces corrosion. Look for blackening treatment and precision forging for higher quality tooling.
Cutters are engineered to suit the purpose so make sure you choose the right design for your task.
- End cutters are used for flush and close slicing. End cutters or nippers come in different styles including flush, bevel, working from heights and long reach for specific jobs.
- Side-cutters and linesman pliers are used for electrical wire cutting without splaying.
- Wire rope cutters have crimping dies for a clean cut.
- Bent nose cutters are applied for twisting wire or creating angles.
- Hydraulic cutters are used for chopping aluminum and copper power cables.
- Diagonal cutters are for stripping wire insulation and gripping and splicing wires.
- Snipe nose cutters are popular with jewellers and other fine metal workers.
Modern finishes help you complete a quality job. Anti-reflection phosphating surface treatment or other non-reflective polishes allow a clear view of the work you are engaging in.
Your cutters should be lightweight, compact and handy. Spring designs help prevent fatigue with long use. You can also look for an automatic rebound and suitability for one handed operations.
There is a simple test for quality nippers or cutters. Pick up the cutters and gently close them until they stop then hold the blades up to the light. Quality cutters will be perfectly parallel and separated just enough for a minute shard of light to shine through. When the handles are squeezed the light will disappear as the blades close completely together.
If the blades pass muster, check to see how the cutter operates. It should open and close easily, without slipping to the side or dragging.
Once you find the cutters that match your quality standards make sure you have a suitable tool box or bag that will keep your tools dry and secure. Foam padding or individual slots prevent damage caused by colliding with other tools.
Cutters come in a wide variety of styles and need to be matched to the function for which they are for. For more information about cutters for your business speak to the experts at RSOnline.