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Cutting Wire 2

Instructions in cutting jewelry wire using commonly available jewelry making tools:

The jewelry wire cutters that we use for all of our jewelry making projects are a jewelry making tool called "Flush Cutters".  These cutters are specifically designed for jewelry and wire working projects to make a cut that leaves one side of the cut jewelry wire relatively flat or flush and the other side relatively sharp.  The cutters are designed to be used with the flat side of the cutters perpendicular to the wire to be cut and the beveled side of the cutters provides the sharp edge necessary to cut.  The perpendicular or flat side of the flush cutter will cut jewelry wire and leave a relatively flat end on the wire at that side.  The beveled side of the flush cutter will leave the cut wire with a sharp end.  Try cutting a piece of wire and see the two cut ends to understand this better.

Flush Cutter Jewelry Making Tool Flat Side Flush Cutter Jewelry Making Tool Beveled Side
Flat Side of Flush Cutter Beveled Side of Flush Cutter

For your jewelry making and wire projects always cut the jewelry wire so that the flat side of the cut wire remains on the finished jewelry wire component.  This is important so that the finished component won't have any sharp ends to snag or cut.  This is accomplished by cutting with the flat side of the flush cutter toward the finished piece.  As shown here, there are pictures showing how to hold your flush cutter when cutting jewelry wire.  We also have pictures in our online book "Wire Design Basics" . 

Cutting Jewelry Wire Before the Cut Cutting Jewelry Wire After the Cut
Cutting Jewelry Wire After the Cut in Jewelry Wire

Finally, the flush cutters are designed for cutting "jewelry wire".  This is sterling silver, gold-filled, gold, brass or copper wire.  They are not designed to cut steel in any form and may be ruined if they are used to cut steel, including the Soft Flex or Tiger Tail bead stringing wire and/or memory wire.  We try to specify in all our instructions whether the wire used is jewelry wire or beadstringing wire or memory wire.  Beadstringing wire and memory wire require a special cutter that is hardened to allow it to cut this harder wire material. 

Safety Tip #1:  Always hold both ends of the jewelry wire as you cut it.  When the cut is made, the loose end of the jewelry wire tends to fly.  It can be a hazard to your eyes and it can be a hazard to your back as you crawl around on the floor trying to find the small piece of wire and pick it up.  Wearing safety glasses when jewelry making is often recommended, but it is safer still to make sure the loose end of the jewelry wire can not become a missile hazard. 

Safety Tip #2 :  A good habit to have, is when you are cutting jewelry wire from a coil or spool to cut it so that the flat side of the cut remains on the spool or coil of wire.  This way the shorter wire segment that you work with will always have one sharp end and one flat end.  In addition, the wire on the spool with have a flat end so it will be less likely to hurt anyone who picks up that spool later. 

Safety Tip #3  Flush cutters can be sharp and may not be suitable for young children.  Jewelry making is probably not appropriate for young children.

For more information on cutting jewelry wire, please see our video on "Cutting Jewelry Wire" by selecting here.




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