July 23, 2009

Wire Hand Tools & Me

I'm a tool junkie, I can admit it. I have so many tools in my drawer and each one has a special place in my heart (and hand). Writing about them is like taking a trip down the Lost & Forgotten Love Memory Trail.

Take my roundnose pliers for instance. My first pair was bought in Boston at Beadworks when I was 20 yrs old. I worked at this beadstore for about a year and it was a slice of heaven for a new beader. The pliers are German with a red rubber coating on the handles. One may think I am fancy as my first pair were German pliers but alas, before this tool was welcomed into the fold I was using a serrated chainnose plier to make "triangles" on the top of my earrings. I still have both of those tools.

Then came the German Ergonomic handles. At first sight I was excited by their sexy red and black striped handles, teasing me to hold them and spin then about inside a loop of wire. These I picked up about 9 years ago at my local store. They are still my favorite for working wire that is 20g or heavier.

Next came the Lindstroms. When you read Lindstrom think diamonds. This lovely tool features a light weight, cool-blue and black ergo handle with such fine tips on the jaws that wire wrapping with 28g wire is a miniature lovers dream. These are my babies, they are always in play for wires smaller than 20g.

Of late I have developed a secret lust for a 1/2 round-1/2 chainnose plier. I know, I know it's not a "normal" tool but I just love how that chainnose jaw keeps me from dinging the outside of my loops on heavy gauge wire. Mock me if you will, this tool will one day be a hot ticket item.

But this is just a list of my roundnose; let us not forget the wire cutters, nylon-jaw flat nose and chainnose (with it's bent-nose cousin in tow.) Move aside files and hammers, this post is about Wire Hand Tools!

What kind of hand tools do you love and why? I'd love it if any reader would like to share your tool stories via comments.


  1. I have to admit that I'm as hooked on the tools as I am on the beads!!! haha. Currently, I am waiting on a really cool tool to arrive in my mailbox. It's a special all-in-one tool that Stephanie Eddy (stephanieeddy.com) developed to use with Viking Knit. She even created a way to use the tool to make specially sized bead caps that finish off a piece of Viking Knit. How great is that?! As my darling husband always says, "you can do any job well, so long as you have the right tools." :)

  2. Let us know how the Viking Knit All-In-One-Toolkit works out, it looks too good to be true!