There are a lot of cables that you’ll need to cut on your bike in the course of routine maintenance. The first impulse many people get when they need to cut a cable is to use any nearby blade. That’s certainly going about it the wrong way. Cable cutters are designed for that particular purpose and would be the best to use. Using any random sharp object can displace the internal structure of the cable and ultimately ruin it. With cutters, the device holds it in place and cuts it cleanly.
To understand this tool well, you need to know the major types available and what they are used for.
These are also known as dikes. They come fitted with a pair of wedge-shaped diagonal cutting surfaces. One of the sides is flat and has an inward scoop to the severing surface. The other side is curved and goes from the severing surfaces to the flat ones at the other side.
This tool is usually made of hard steel and can be used for severing more than just wires. You can use them to cut nail heads and screws. If push comes to shove, you can even use them as pliers to pull out nails and other stuck implements.
Due to this tool’s curved surface, you can use it to cut lines to a wall. They are built for strength as opposed to precision. They won’t serve optimally as bike cable cutters.
You can use this tool to cut through sheathed cables and individual lines. You can use them as bike cable cutting instruments because they are able to cut lines without damaging its inner component. It is also ideal for severing wires because they can cut a line’s plastic insulation without harming its internal wires.
A version of this instrument used by telecom and computer network installers is the network crimper. It has a line severing device inside its handle and a wire stripper that can be used to remove the sheathing and expose a specific length of its inner lines.
You can also use this tool as a bike wire cutting device. The design of ratcheting cutting devices is such that you don’t need much effort to cut a line. The tool doesn’t rely on sheer strength amplified by a balanced fulcrum. Rather to cut deeper you need to apply steady pressure.
The ratchet mechanism makes the cutter’s blade sink deeper with each pressure exerted on the handle. Also, unlike other wire severing instruments, a ratcheting device doesn’t release its pressure when you release the handle. Instead, the ratcheting mechanism holds the blade in position. It waits for you to apply further pressure in order to cut it deeper.
Due to the ratcheting system, ratcheting cutting mechanisms might have a shorter handle, but would have a higher torque and possess more severing power than ordinary cutting mechanisms.