The humble plier is an essential tool in any workman’s arsenal, whether you are a plumber using a Channellock to tighten bolts, or a mechanic with a pair of circlip pliers adjusting c-clip rings. The correct plier for the job will make any tradesman life easier when cutting wires, tightening bolts or gripping and turning a lever.
To set up your plier set, consider what each plier is designed for.
Pliers on the wires
The Long Nose plier is used by electricians and telecommunication technicians for cutting wire, pulling wires through wall panels and power points and holding or positioning wires. They will also pack a Bent Nose plier which has a curved nose and is handy for prying open jump rings, shaping and twisting wire, as well as getting into tricky spots or picking up small items like screws.
The flat nose plier is chosen when the electrician needs to crimp a right angle or sharply bend wire. They are also utilised for straightening wire that has been bent and gripping flat objects.
Created during the days of the telegraph, the lineman’s pliers have become another essential tool for electricians and telecommunication technicians. These flexible pliers can be used to work with wire in a range of ways such as twisting, pushing and pulling, cutting, gripping, and straightening. For protection from live wires they have an insulated handle. Stripping pliers are used by electricians to strip wires of different diameters.
Moving on to the automotive or manufacturing workshop you will find the circlip pliers which have been specifically designed to remove and install circlips or C-Clips. Engineers, mechanics and factory linemen need the right pair of circlip pliers according to whether they are working with internal or external c-clips. External clip pliers have a long nose with fine tips. Internal circlip pliers are fitted on the ends with tips that will fit exactly into the rings of the C-clip. For more industrial scale retaining rings, a heavy duty circlip plier is used by the mechanic or technician.
The tongue and groove pliers, or Channellock (also known as water pump pliers) has a long handle, angled jaws and can be adjusted to the desired size. Plumbers rely on the speciality design of the tongue and groove plier for turning or holding nuts and bolts, clamping and gripping odd shaped materials. This plier often replaces a complete set of different size pipe wrenches in the plumbers’ tool kit.
For such a necessary implement as the plier, manufacturers have spent time developing high quality materials and construction methods to ensure your plier will perform at any time, under any conditions.
For reliability, look for laser heat treated cutting edges and teeth for a sure grip and a longer lasting plier. High carbon C1080 stainless steel will provide strength for tightening or loosening the most stubborn nut. Pliers are also available with titanium coating for extra protection against rust and oxidation.
With all this considered, the best approach is to ask your plier specialist to set your tool kit up with the most appropriate plier for any job.