A wire cutter is an essential tool for workers who are constantly exposed to cables and cords. Now, wire cutters can strip, crimp, modify, and cut lines, depending on the job and what needs to be done. However, the cutting tools’ quality often depends on the build quality, capability, and brand recognition as recommended by experts in the field.
For electronic engineers, technicians, and mechanics, having a reliable cutting tool helps ensure their professional projects’ security and stability. Recognizing the importance of having a dependable wire trimmer, I’ve made this shortlist of the best wire cutters available in the market.
I’ve compiled this list of good wire cutters — so that I could help you find the appropriate product for your usage — with the help of my extensive experience as a technician and a mechanic.
Table of Contents
- Best Wire Cutter Reviews
- 1. IGAN-170 Wire Cutter
- 2. Hakko Micro Cutter
- 3. Klein Tools Wire Stripper
- 4. IRWIN VISE-GRIP Wire Stripper
- 5. Bleds BS-8109 Wire Cutter Pliers
- 6. IGAN-330 Ideal Wire Flush Cutters
- 7. BOENFU 6-inch Wire Cutter
- 8. IRWIN VISE-GRIP Wire Stripper
- 9. Klein Tools 11063W Wire Cutter
- 10. Muzata Stainless Steel Wire Cutter
- 11. DOWELL 10-22 AWG Wire Stripper
- 12. Channellock 8-Inch High Leverage Plier
- What to Look for When Buying Wire Cutters
- How Does Wire Cutter Work
- What is the Difference Between Side Cutters and Diagonal Cutters
- What are the Different Types of Wire Cutters
- Can Wire Cutters Cut through Metal or Stainless Steel
- How do You Cut Heavy Duty Wire
- What can I Use to Cut Wire
- Can You Cut Wire without Wire Cutters
- Where to Buy Wire Cutters
Best Wire Cutter Reviews
1. IGAN-170 Wire Cutter
When I thought of compiling this list, I couldn’t help but immediately think of IGAN’s precision wire cutter. I’ve used this wire cutting tool in the past, and I have to say, this product is as dependable and reliable as cutters can get.
For instance, this wire cutter comes with a precise carbon metal jaw that’s engineered with an angled cutter head. I love this product feature, as it ensures accuracy in cutting wires. And before I forget, the jaw of this cutting tool is intensely heat-treated, making it tough and durable.
Moreover, the cutting head’s measured at 11 mm, making it a trusty tool for conducting electric handiwork, jewelry handling, and other suitable uses. The cutter’s snip can also precisely cut light copper wires, thanks to its minute cutting head model.
I also recommend this product if you’re working in tight and enclosed spaces. The precise wire cutter’s compact configuration allows it to be reliably used in cramped areas. Thus, if you have small-scale project assemblies, you may want to check this product out.
I also love that the tool comes with a comfortable and soft grip. The TPE material makes it so that the cutter isn’t difficult and flimsy to handle. Aside from that, the used substance for the comfy grip is non-toxic and environment-friendly.
2. Hakko Micro Cutter
I’ve used this wire cutter in my past projects. Thus, I can review this product truthfully based on my experience.
First off, the angled cutting head of the precision tool makes it so that you won’t have a difficult time cutting wires. Measured precisely at a 21° angle, this product allows you to work on terminal wires up to 16 gauge.
As it’s a flush cutter, you can use this product in modifying, cutting, and crimping pieces of jewelry, small wires, and concealed connections. I wholly recommend this tool for workers who require a hand device that can reach and easily maneuver in tight spaces.
The cable stripper is made with heat-primed carbon material, resulting in a tough and durable tool that can aptly cut cables with ease. Likewise, the cutter’s razor-sharp and robust jaw is reinforced with a spring that enables a much more comfortable and seamless usage.
I also love how comfy the grip of the equipment is. Employing a dolphin silhouette style, slippage during use won’t be an issue for this product. This specific style provides further control and comfort while cutting cables.
Lastly, the tool is made with parkerized alloy. This manufacturing process helps prevent corrosion and promotes wear resistance.
3. Klein Tools Wire Stripper
My colleagues consider Klein Tools to be the best manufacturer of high-quality wire strippers and cutters. I can also attest to the quality of tools the company manufactures.
This reliable wire cutter features a distinct serrated nose that can effortlessly bend, shape, and slit cables. The tool’s nose also displays precision-ground stripping holes, a contraption installed with the device to remove cable insulations easily.
Moreover, the cutter’s nose also features distinct and discernible markings that serve as a guide for using the cable cutter. The said markings aid users unfamiliar with wire cutters.
I also love that this stripper can cut strips of 10 to 18 gauge solid cables and 12 to 20 gauge stranded wires. This tool’s versatility and compatibility are remarkable and are an essential factor to consider when looking for dependable wire cutting tools.
The cutting device also features a built-in spring that lets users easily handle the tool. The spring essentially helps in keeping the maw of the wire cutting pliers open while operating it. This feature allows the tool’s cutting experience to be easy and pleasant on the hands.
In terms of grip, the product features a comfortable grip design that’s double-dipped. The curved handle scheme of the stripper makes it so that using the device won’t be that difficult and strenuous.
4. IRWIN VISE-GRIP Wire Stripper
This wire cutter is among the best in the market. I hold this tool in high esteem, given my experience using this product in my past project assignments.
First, this cutting device is certified by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), meeting its rigorous quality standards. This essentially means that Irwin’s wire cutter pliers adhere to the highest caliber of product quality.
I also like that this formidable hand tool is made with solid nickel-chromium material. To illustrate how durable the cutter is, I’ve once accidentally dropped this wire stripper from a ladder — with the product not sustaining any structural damage.
Moreover, the cutter’s jaws are processed through heating induction, yielding a hardened and razor-sharp stripper tip. The product’s longevity won’t be an issue, as the diagonal cutter’s rigorous construction process bears a long-lasting hand tool for everyday usage.
And if you’re looking for a product with a firm grip, then this piece of hardware is for you. Integrated with machined jaws, the clasping power of this tool is not to be understated. You can tightly clutch onto wires and cables even by just gently grasping this diagonal pliers.
And before I forget, this wire cutting device features a ProTouch gripping rubber. Aside from alleviating hand fatigue in usage, the gripping material also prevents slippage when in use.
5. Bleds BS-8109 Wire Cutter Pliers
If you’re no longer satisfied with using substandard wire tools, then you may want to check this product out.
I love that this efficient and effective precision stripper can be safely stored and lugged everywhere I go. Likewise, the small build of the cutter allows it to be used in tight spaces.
I also commend the professionalism that went into designing and building this wire cutter. The manufacturers utilized a heat-treated quality carbon material in constructing the overall product. Markedly, the build is durable and robust enough to last through rough usage.
Aside from that, handling and using the wire cutting device is as easy as it can be. To substantiate, the stripper is lined with a rubber-laden handle, which efficiently prevents hand fatigue from constant and heavy usage.
Additionally, the handheld cutter’s pivot point is spring loaded, making wiring operations much more manageable and pleasant. This feature makes it so that you won’t have to adjust the cutter every time you nip and cut copper wires.
Above all else, I love the manufacturer’s consistent after-sales service. Customers who are not satisfied with the cutting tool are assured a 45-day refund, as long as the product has no damage. Likewise, customers are also provided with an accommodating product warranty lasting three years.
6. IGAN-330 Ideal Wire Flush Cutters
This proficient wire shear is an ideal addition to every workers’ workbench. I can also attest to how dependable this product is.
For instance, flush cutting with this intricate tool is highly effective. Featuring a 13 mm long jaw, this product can access and successfully strip up to 12 gauge soft wires. So if you’re constantly exposed to tiny and easily malleable wires, then you may want to consider adding this to your tool box.
Additionally, the flush cutter’s jaw is made with intensely heated steel composed of vanadium and chrome. Combining these stellar materials produced a durable and rugged metal that can withstand taxing and strenuous usage.
Aside from that, the product’s small design allows it to be carried almost everywhere without hassle. Moreover, the compactness makes it possible for users to nip and modify any cable wire located in hard-to-reach areas. This hand shear has my approval when it comes to nabbing wires in tight spaces.
The pliers’ handle also comes with non-slip grip rubber. This ensures that the cutter won’t slip from your hand even if you’re intensely sweating from working on your projects. Comfortably work with cables and wire connections with the snug grip cover on the product’s handle.
And before I forget, the cutter manufacturer also provides a 12-month warranty period for defective, faulty, or broken precision shears. Though not a lifetime warranty, this is still substantial enough. So should you have any worry regarding the product, don’t hesitate to reach out.
7. BOENFU 6-inch Wire Cutter
While this product may seem a tad bit basic and simple-looking, don’t let its appearance fool you.
To start, this tool can aptly nip, cut, and shear off any wires –whether it be cables, chains, or tiger tails. Likewise, as this wire mesh cutter is made with rugged steel material, it can virtually cut through wires up to 1.8 mm thick. I love the utmost compatibility of this wire shear to a plethora of cables.
Also, the steel material used in constructing the tool is reinforced through the inclusion of chrome, vanadium, and molybdenum. This enhances the device’s ability to cut through multiple types of wires. The metal element is highly resistant to corrosion, so don’t expect this wire tool to rust and deteriorate in quality.
I also like how ergonomic the handle of this cutter is. It’s scientifically shaped to provide comfort and prevent weariness when using the wire cutter. Additionally, the product’s handle is infused with a unique gripping material to prevent accidental slippage due to sweat and other factors.
This product is also among some of the best spring loaded wire cutters that you can reliably buy in the market. The blade’s pivot point is built with a spring that helps you perform wiring tasks easier.
And if you’re unhappy with the tool, you can directly contact the manufacturer to settle your issue with the hand shear. The company’s easily reachable, so don’t hesitate to reach out to them.
8. IRWIN VISE-GRIP Wire Stripper
This commendable tool is included in the mainstay of my colleague’s workbench. Well-versed electricians and other experts in the field hold IRWIN Vise Grip in high regard.
This wire stripper is versatile and can be used in a plethora of ways. For instance, the cutter’s serrated jaw can be used in removing wire insulations, scrimping cords, and plying cord connections to specific angles.
If you’re looking for a product that’s certified by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), then you may want to check this tool out. The manufacturers ensured that the stripper adhered to the rigorous standards set by the ANSI.
The cord shear is also compatible with wire gauges from 10 to 22, covering the vast expanse of standard cable types. And as I’ve previously mentioned, the serrated jaw can also work on either pulling rough gauges or scrimping long wires. From solid copper wires to stranded ones, this wire stripper got your back.
In the same vein, the jaw of the wire cutter also automatically adjusts based on the wire’s gauge width. I especially love this feature as you no longer need to press down hard on the tool when holding wires, reducing hand fatigue.
I also like the textured and well-designed handle of the product. It feels soft on my hands, and the grip insulates the hand tool from electricity.
9. Klein Tools 11063W Wire Cutter
Klein Tools did an excellent job creating a dependable wire cutter and stripper that can perform efficiently and amazingly.
I love that you can easily crimp and remove the insulation of the wires with this stripping device. To instantly remove wire insulations, you can lodge the cables directly on the product’s curated holes. And with a single squeeze, the device automatically removes wire shieldings without any hassle.
This is possible because the tool features a compound stripping device attached to the cutter. With a spring loaded pivot point, you can either cut the wire or strip them of their outer layer easily.
I like that the cutting contraption can cut solid 8 to 20 wire gauge widths effortlessly. Moreover, you can strip stranded cords with gauge widths from 10 to 22. I can attest to the tool’s capability to efficiently modify lines, as I’ve also used this product in the past.
The material used in constructing the tool is high-quality alloys and metals. Heavy-duty steel reinforced with an Ecoat finish ensures the durability of the device in day-to-day usage.
Lastly, the handles are comfortable enough that you can use them all day long with only minimal fatigue. I surmise that the spring load also provided further support in supporting the product’s overall handling experience.
10. Muzata Stainless Steel Wire Cutter
I won’t beat around the bush. I rightfully consider this product to be top-notch, competing among the long list of the best heavy duty wire cutters. This wire cutter can proficiently handle cables without any apparent issue.
This product can reliably cut steel wires measured up to 4mm thick. This thick wire cutter has your back, whether it be clipping solid cables, stranded wires, or even fencing wires.
To enumerate, the cutter’s optimized for the following wire diameters: thick and heavy duty wires (4mm), aluminum and copper-containing cables (5mm), and soft material-based cables (6.5mm). As you can see, this product can indeed be used for a variety of wire products.
This tool can efficiently and consistently clip metal wires primarily because of its spectacular engineering and build process. In detail, the cutter’s made with solid chrome vanadium, aptly reinforced by metal quenching. Sharp and durable as it is, this tool can cleanly nip and shear off steel wires without fraying or unraveling.
This tool is often used for cable railing installations, fencing metal wires, managing motorcycle brake lines, and wiring thick power cables. Personally, I’ve used this cutter in setting-up a metal fence around my backyard.
I like that this hand metal shear comes with a safety lock, a prominent feature that precludes any untoward cutting incidents by preventing the device from accidentally opening.
11. DOWELL 10-22 AWG Wire Stripper
I stumbled upon this product while I was scouring for a wire tool to add to my shed. Based on the capabilities and specifications underlined by the manufacturers, I immediately bought it. And I do have to say, this wire shear doesn’t disappoint.
The first thing I noticed about this product is the seamless and ergonomically-sound handle. I was amazed at how pleasant and comfortable the handling of the tool is. I didn’t experience any hand fatigue whatsoever during the entirety of my usage. The unique rubber coating essentially does a great job of preventing accidental slippage from use.
A spring also assists users in operating this stripper. It makes it so that it reduces the repetitive movement that may cause wrist and hand discomfort. Likewise, it helps provide a tactile response to every squeeze you give so that you can adjust depending on the rigidity of the wire.
You can also use this stripper for multiple AWG wires. The jaw is capable of accommodating cable gauge widths ranging from 10 up to 22. Now, be it a solid or stranded copper wire, you can use this to strip the cable insulation, allowing you to mend and connect electrical connections.
A locking mechanism also comes along with the product, allowing you to store and secure this tool when in transit safely. Moreover, this safety feature also prevents damage to the jaw when not in use.
12. Channellock 8-Inch High Leverage Plier
I’ve utilized this diagonal cutter in the past while working on a minor fencing project. And I have to say, this is a reliable and trustworthy piece of hardware that you’d like to have by your side when you’re on the field.
This plier cuts better compared to other wire cutters for fencing. Mainly because of the carbon steel material used in constructing the product. The alloy is strengthened by processing it with extreme laser heat. This cultivated and reinforced the jaw of the tool for more challenging and rugged usage.
Moreover, the cutter’s edges are precisely machined to provide a precise and acute shear bite to users. Aside from producing perfectly-paired edge partners, this precise process creates a more long-lasting and sharper jaw bite. I love how you don’t have to file and grind the edges to maintain their sharpness constantly.
Because of the meticulous construction, this hand tool can rend thin instrument wires to medium-hard cables. To be precise, it can proficiently cut wires with a width of 0.047″ to 0.091″.
But what really piqued me the most is the easily-visible blue coloring of the handle. This feature allows it to be seen even in harsh lighting conditions. The handle is also equipped with a gripping rubber that can prevent accidental hand slippage due to sweat.
What to Look for When Buying Wire Cutters
Noted down are some of the essential factors that buyers must first consider before shopping around for heavy wire cutters. These are essential aspects, as the cutters you’re thinking of buying can either help make your wiring experiences pleasant or irritating.
You must check if the cutter you’re about to buy is adaptable and can also be used for other purposes aside from simply cutting wires. Some cutters feature a serrated jaw that can also meticulously remove wire insulation directly. Others can be used for precise usage.
Managing and striking a balance between the types of cutter you’ll get is key to making the most out of your wire cutters.
Always remember that a great cutter is safe and secure to use. I recommend that you stick with some of the well-known and renowned brands, as the products they manufacture are top-notch and well-appraised.
For instance, if you’re an electrician, you may want to get an insulated wire cutter so that you can confidently do wire stripping and perform clean cuts on cables without fear of getting electrocuted.
Moreover, see if the cutter you’re thinking of buying comes with some safety mechanism, e.g., locks, latches, straps, so that you can securely protect not only yourself but also your tools and overall working spaces.
Also imperative to note is the type of material used in constructing the cutter. Remember that elite fence cutters, steel wire cutters, and other large wire cutters are made with some of the most refined metal alloys durable enough for rugged use.
Some of these special alloys include carbon steel, vanadium, and chromium. Additionally, some brands reinforce these already strong metals by treating them with additional substances that can make the products resistant to rusting and corrosion.
Check if the cutter you’re about to buy is compatible with the standard American Wire Gauge (AWG) dimensions. If you’re working in the field, I recommend that you get one covering the expanse of standard AWG wires.
This is the last important factor you must consider before proceeding with your purchase. As a guide, I’ve curated a self-questionnaire that you can refer to before acquiring a cutter:
- Is the cutter proportionally sized with my hand?
- Does it feel pleasant when you’re holding it?
- Can I tolerate the weight of the cutter?
- Does it feel premium? Is it made with high-quality gripping handle substances?
For wire cutters, comfort is king. You don’t want to experience hand cramps while using wire shears on the field, as it may affect your work performance.
How Does Wire Cutter Work
Wire cutters work depending on what the user needs them for. For example, an electrician may primarily use a wire cutter for scrimping and removing insulation from wires. In contrast, other professionals may use it according to their needs.
But generally, wire cutters work by having a sharpened blade edge, a lubricated pivot mechanism, and pleasant gripping handles.
Settle the wire gently onto the cutter’s blade, then simply squeeze the handles, effectively sniping the cable. Universally, this is essentially how wire cutters work.
What is the Difference Between Side Cutters and Diagonal Cutters
While these are two different wire cutters with different usage, side cutters and diagonal cutters fulfill the same goal: snipping, crimping, and modifying cables.
Nevertheless, I’ve outlined the difference between diagonal cutters and side cutters below.
Wire cutters that fall under this category are often used for precise and accurate wire crimping and cutting. They’re designed with a small jaw that can wedge and fit into tight spaces. Diagonal cutters are ideal for jewelry making, handling delicate cables, and stripping layers of cable insulation.
On the other hand, wire cutters under this classification are typically used for general wire projects and maintenance. They can cut wires cleaner and neatly compared to other types of cutters. Side cutters are perfect for holding and sniping cable filaments.
What are the Different Types of Wire Cutters
Before becoming a proficient mechanic and electrician, I’ve always thought there is only one type of wire cutter. However, as I learned more and delved deeper into my field, I’ve come to recognize that wire cutters are categorized according to their specific usage.
I’ve outlined the different types of wire cutters directly below.
As I’ve previously mentioned, these types of cutters have refined cutting edges that cut the wire with a clean finish. They’re perfect for either holding or removing wire insulation. Take note though that this wire cutter is different from needle nose pliers.
These types of wire cutters have a distinct design that people can quickly identify. Cable cutters are commonly utilized for tinkering with electrical applications and wirings. The handles of these wire cutters are often insulated to prevent electrocution.
Unlike any of the other wire cutters here, flush cutters’ structural design allows them to be used for trimming and holding material components. The cutting edges of this wire cutter are uniquely angled with a spaced handle.
Also called nippers, the jaw design of these hand tools is easily identifiable, as they come with a flat-head. They’re often used for nipping nails and cables close to the surface without the need to take up space.
These types of wire cutters are commonly used for acute wire cutting and crimping. The jaw design of diagonal cutters is specifically made for the accurate handling of types of wire.
These are often wire cutters for thick wire. They generate tremendous torque to cut through thick metal cables. The jaws of these wire cutters are durable and rugged to handle steel wires without breaking. On a side note, these types of wire cutters can often handle 16 gauge wires.
Can Wire Cutters Cut through Metal or Stainless Steel
Yes, they can, given that they’re specifically designed to handle such materials.
Notwithstanding, several factors also determine whether a wire cutter can cut and break through metal and steel. For instance, the gauge of the wire comes into play. Moreover, it would be best if you also consider the metal integrity to ascertain whether the cutter can handle it.
If you need to cut metals, either get fence wire cutters or a durable bolt cutter that’s tough and strong enough to handle steel alloys.
How do You Cut Heavy Duty Wire
Cutting heavy-duty wires can be difficult and challenging. To successfully snip and shear heavy-duty wires, I recommend that you buy from the wide selection of heavy duty wire cutters to make this arduous task easier.
I’ve laid out some tips that you can follow, so you can safely cut heavy-duty wires:
- Wear eye protection, preferably a pair of safety goggles, to protect your eye from any particulates, dust, and flying metal parts.
- Identify the appropriate angle to line the wire along the cutter’s edge. Avoid wobbling both the wire and the cutter to prevent accidents.
- Firmly grasp the handles of the wire cutter so that the tool won’t accidentally fly off.
- Make sure that the wire cutter is well taken care of, that it’s oiled and well-lubricated so that it could optimally cut wires.
What can I Use to Cut Wire
You can use wire cutters to effectively sever and modify any type of cables, cords, and chains. A wire shear is a tool that is specifically made to deal with any type of wire modification.
However, do keep in mind that there are several types of wire and that they all must be dealt with according to their material integrity and specifications. Hence, the reason as to the varieties of wire cutters.
Can You Cut Wire without Wire Cutters
Yes, you can. However, for you to effectively and neatly cut wires, I recommend that you buy the appropriate wire cutter for your use, whether it be for your home, work, or hobbies.
Where to Buy Wire Cutters
You can buy and scour functional, durable, and reliable wire cutters at Ace Hardware, Lowe’s, Home Depot, and other renowned hardware shops. Likewise, you can also pick from the expansive selection of wire cutters on multiple shopping platforms online.
There is a wide assortment of the best wire cutters in the market, with each of them constructively performing the specified jobs set for their categorization. Hence, shopping and picking a suitable wire cutter can be difficult and complicated.
Because of this exact reason, I curated this list of wire cutters that I’ve used in the past. I hope that I could help you in picking the right product.
And as a reminder, before you set off and begin your search for wire cutters: always remember to consider the various details outlined within this article.
I am Andrew Wright. I established this blog after eight years of experience designing, installing, and maintaining electrical power systems. I love my job, and I have always wanted to offer others the necessary help so they can take care of their houses.