KNIPEX TwinForce High Performance Diagonal Cutter

Superbly constructed cutters designed for professional use

Knipex_7371180

KNIPEX TwinForce High Performance Diagonal Cutter



Knipex is one of the world's leading manufacturers of high-quality pliers, with a catalogue of over 100 types of pliers totaling more than 900 different styles.
 
The company recently announced a new unique double hinged axel design - the 'TwinForce' - that produces much greater cutting force with 50% less hand and forearm strain than conventional diagonal pliers currently available on the market. The Knipex TwinForce High Performance Diagonal Cutters come in two styles. The model 7371180, which I tested, has plastic-coated handles, while the model 7372180 has padded, contoured handles.


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Compact and light weight 

The first thing I noted about the TwinForce 7371180 is compact size and light weight. They measure just over 7" long and weigh in at only 9 ounces. The handles are covered with a thin non-slip plastic coating (model 737218 provides a more cushioned grip). I found them to be very well balanced, with the pivoting point just at the top of the handle coating. They feel comfortable in the hand, and slip smoothly into a tool belt or pants pocket.
 
The body is made of chrome vanadium heavy-duty steel, forged and oil hardened. This steel alloy alloy has a number of properties that make it an excellent choice for hand tools, including strength, toughness, and resistance to wear and fatigue.


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TwinForce offset pivot axel           

The polished head on the TwinForce 7371180 is about 1-1/4" wide by 2" long, and has a 3/4" blade length. The jaws open to a maximum of about 7/16", which enables you to cut most standard residential sheathed wiring. The head isn't treated for corrosion, so you would want to wipe the head down with an oil or a rust inhibitor like WD-40's Long Term Corrosion Inhibitor once in a while.
 
It's hard not to notice the unique offset pivot axel. This design has the effect of moving the pivot point (the fulcrum) closer to the cutting edge, which increases cutting force. The head of the axel is flush with the face of the jaws, so it won't hang up on anything.


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There is a pivot axel on both arms of the pliers             

On conventional pliers there is a single axel centered in the middle of the head, just below the jaws. On the TwinForce 7371180 there are two welded forged-in axels, one on each arm of the pliers. This means that the joint connection should have a very high load-bearing capacity.
 
Knipex rates the TwinForce 7371180 as being capable of cutting 7/64" piano wire, 1/8" hard wire, 3/16" medium hard wire, and 7/32" soft wire.


knipexs
Re-cutting is necessary for thick stock  

For thin stock you simply position the material as close to the hinge as possible, and then apply force. When cutting harder stock you need to make multiple cuts. As shown in the illustration above, you insert the stock as close to the hinge as possible, and then apply force until you notch the stock. Then move the stock closer to the hinge, and apply more cutting force. Depending on how hard the stock is, you might have to do this a few times. Once you get the knack of it though, you can do it very quickly.
 

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You can cut mild steel nails up to about 5/32"

I used the TwinForce 7371180 to cut a range of materials. Cutting #8 or #10 copper wire or sheathed electrical cable isn't much of a challenge for these pliers. It's when you need to cut thick wire (up to about 7/32") or tempered high carbon steel, such as high strength wires and springs, that the TwinForce excels. I could easily cut 8d (2-1/2") common nails, which are made of mild steel, with a single squeeze of the handles. These measure 7/64" in diameter. For 10d to 16d nails (3" to 3-1/2"), which measure up to 5/32", I had to re-apply cutting pressure three times. However, I couldn't cut through 20d (4") common nails - which are 3/16" thick. Your ability to cut through round stock will vary somewhat depending on your hand strength.


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You can cut flat stock up to about 3/4" wide

Like all diagonal cutters, the TwinForce 7371180 is meant for cutting round stock. However, you can use it for cutting narrow flat stock, up to about 3/8" wide. In order to cut wider stock, like 3/4" wide metal strapping, cut from both edges and then snap the piece apart.
 
With a suggested retail price of $90, the TwinForce 7371180 isn't likely to find its way into the tool belts of many DIYers. Rather, this tool will be of interest to tradespeople who cut a lot of round stock. I found that the Knipex TwinForce 7371180 pliers cut round stock with noticeably less effort than any other diagonal pliers that I've used with less hand and forearm strain. They're superbly constructed, and come with a lifetime warranty.


KEY FEATURES:

  • 7-1/4" overall length
  • 4" handle length
  • 3/4" blade length
  • 255 gram/9 ounce weight
  • Chrome vanadium heavy-duty steel, forged, oil-hardened
  • Non-slip plastic coating on handles
  • Unique offset double hinged axel
  • Cuts up to 7/64"/3mm piano wire, 1/8"/3.2mm hard wire, 3/16"/4.6mm medium hard wire, and 7/32"/5.5mm soft wire
  • Limited lifetime warranty
 
Manufacturer:Knipex
Available From:Tool and equipment suppliers nationwide
Retail Price:$90.00
Model #:7371180
Made In:Germany
Carl Duguay, May 2012
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