If you’re reading this article you already know, it is important to have a good tool to carry out your wire stripping task efficiently. Although having the right tools won’t save you having occasional difficulties, it can help you tackle problems which may not be possible without the proper tools/equipment. It will increase your tolerance level and you will be able to handle things much more effectively. On the other hand a bad tool can destroy your work completely, no matter how carefully you work. Every electronic instrument is made up of a variety of wires. These wires come in a number of sizes and having a wire stripper with you while working with these wires is an absolute necessity to be able strip wires of all different sizes. Wire strippers come in large variety of models. These strippers may be of different shapes, sizes and colors. The cost too varies a lot. Some of these may cost much more than the others. The cost of the strippers depends completely on their specifications and how efficiently and effectively they carry out the work.
You may be thinking, why do we need to have specialized tools? well you don’t have to, you can actually use a knife but it may cause problems and injury. you may end up cutting the wires as the knives are sharp. Your knives become blunt and it may also cause your fingers to bleed. The wire strippers are specially meant to strip the wires and the work done by these is much more precise and tidy. You can see the difference between a stripper cut and a knife cut yourself. People also make use of their teeth to strip the wires apart. These also have adverse effects on your teeth. Teeth can be used to strip the wires easily but, it is certainly not advisable to do so. Stripping wire using your teeth may cause your teeth to get chipped. The dental treatment cost much more than the expensive wire strippers. Obviously, the enamel on your teeth is much more precious right?
Parts of a wire:
The conductor is surrounded by the insulator which acts as a protective covering. There are two types of conductors in a wire namely the stranded core and the solid core conductor.
Solid core-The solid core is rigid and is easily breakable if bent a number of times. If stressed the conductor in these solid core wires break and the insulation remains intact. You cannot see any problem in the wire easily.
Stranded core– the stranded wire finds application where there are chances of more number of deformations. The wire is flexible and is more in use.
Every wire comes with an insulation which prevents external flow of current. These insulators include materials like Teflon, plastic etc. PVC is the most commonly used material as it is non corrosive and resistant to oil and water. It is flexible and is suitable for applications.
Types of strippers
The strippers also come in a number of varieties. There are a number of good brands, such as Klein. These strippers are an important part of any electronic project. Now, as we know the importance of the wire strippers, let’s talk about the various strippers that are available in the market. You need to match the strippers to the wire. It is the most important aspect to consider for selecting a stripper. The strippers come in two types of wire gauges-Thin gauge and Thick gauge. The only difference in the two gauges is that each of these have a different hole size. These strippers are inexpensive and used for general purposes. Read more here, for a more comprehensive list of the top 5 wire strippers for your electrical needs.
The main categories of wire strippers available
Adjustable strippers– it is also a general purpose stripper though. These look like scissors except for the notch. You can easily adjust the notch according to your requirement. These adjustable strippers are suitable for cutting all sorts of wires. All you need to do is to make sure that you cut the insulation and not the wire. These strippers are inexpensive but need close adjustments to work properly and accurately.
Gauged strippers– it is the most common stripper that you will find in the market. It is a perfect balance between performance and price. The stripper is cheap and requires no adjustments. You simply need to place the wire in the slot and pull it. These strippers work with specific gauge sizes only and may damage the wire if you are not careful. The blades cannot be sharpened or replaced once they become blunt.
Self adjusting automatic wire strippers– this is the best out of the lot and does your work effortlessly. It is like you put the wire in the slot and get a wire that is perfectly stripped without any imperfections. These are super easy and fast to use. Some models also come with inbuilt crimpers. The stripper ensures cutting equal depth in each cut. Although, these strippers are quite expensive unlike the other manual strippers, they make your work easier and effortless.
Gauged automatic wire strippers– this stripper is a combo of gauged and automated wire strippers. They are fast and easy to use and are extremely handy. You can easily replace the jaws when they become dull. This feature makes it unique. The manual strippers come with irreplaceable jaws. The gauged automatic wire stripper will not cause any damage to your wire. These strippers are fun to use. These are also the most expensive out of the 4 strippers mentioned. You need to fit the wire in the exact slot to get your work done.
You should select your stripper wisely according to your needs, if you are not too much into electronics, or are only a hobbyist. A simple stripper will be sufficient for your needs and you need not spend extra cash on the expensive strippers.