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  • Linesman pliers

    There are a myriad of lineman pliers and a wide variation of prices out there.
    I'd really prefer to update with a "made in USA" model....

    I currently have a plain Jane style. All it offers is a wire cutter/stripper
    I see new models offer fish tape pullers, crimping, better grips, various weights and lengths etc.etc.

    So what do you professional electricians use and prefer?

    I noticed an interesting unit from Klein tools kln-j215-8cr [$37.00].....but yikes it's expensive and even with
    some poor reviews looks interesting....any users?

    Also some linesman pliers offer the ability to use it as a hammer.....of sorts....many do not have that ability.

    Cactus Man
    Last edited by cactusman; 08-27-2018, 01:01 PM.

  • #2
    maybe your not interested in my view since I am not an electrician, only play one on tv,

    I have a pair in the work truck that I use for fencing, from time to time, I have hardly ever used them in the electrical aspect,

    I really do not find them the better in cutting wire, electrical or steel fence (electric or non electric fence), and the plyer aspect of them there are better ones out there for use as gripping or pulling things,
    it is like most tools some have favorites of the type of tools they use,
    I have a pair of channel locks (brand), I see retail about $60. and have a few other brands but on a five star rating for the type of player, I would only rank them about a 2 star, for the type, the channel lock brand for quality I rank at a 4 or 5, but but as for the use of the plyers I use them little for cutting (think there are better ways and easier ways to cut wire),
    and better ways to grip wire or other,


    Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
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    • #3
      I'm around tradesmen all day long and the preferred tool brand for them seems to be Klein though I do see Greenlee and Channnellock. I see them useing Klein 9" linesman pliers which for knocking out slugs on boxes, pulling fish tapes and making up connections but ive never seen them used as a hammer to drive a fastener although I suppose you could in a pinch. Most commercial electricians don't even use hammers most the time since all the fasteners are mechanically fastened. Residential electricians use an electricians hammer which has a longer head to get into tight spaces or drive fasteners right in the box.

      On site I use the Channelock 350s, they have a spring which opens the jaws, a hooked end which makes pulling wire or metal fish tapes much easier. These are very comfortable to use all day when your working with wire and under $20. They are meant for tying and cutting tie wire for reinforced concrete steel assemblys which we often have to deal with. I also use them for making up wire and knocking out slugs on boxes and they work great.
      Last edited by Mightyservant; 08-29-2018, 11:19 AM.

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      • Bob D.
        Bob D. commented
        Editing a comment
        Klein is my favorite. Probably have 4 or 5 pair between various tools bags/boxes.

    • #4
      After the arduous task of looking at the selection of linesman pliers I made a decision.
      I ordered the Channel-lock 369CRFT model.

      I did want the tool to be made in USA.
      I did want the convenience of a crimper.
      I also wanted to be able to pull a fish tape, although not something I'd use
      but nice to have when the task is called upon.
      Finally I am very comfortable with the Channel-lock brand and its quality.

      thanks to the two folks who responded to my question.

      Cactus Man

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      • #5
        I don't think you will disappointed with Channelock, the brand is a trade(s) favorite for its pliers. Every fitter in our shop has at least 2 different sizes which are used to install pipe supports and make up all sorts of fasteners when a socket isn't handy at the moment. Those of us that have to work on poured in place concrete projects use the 350s to install steel sleeves in decks and walls for our pipe to pass thru.

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        • #6

          i have kleins.....knipex...tools... but i like CE.. lineman pliers.

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          • #7
            After taking a very long way from North Dakota to Phoenix AZ...I finally received the pliers [7 days].
            Acme tools offered the best price. [Not the Acme Tools of the roadrunner]
            Here is my first impression.....of the Channel-lock 369CRFT linesman pliers.

            The pliers is much longer than I thought..I did not realize my "old" linesman pliers was so short!
            The blue rubber grips are nothing special just their standard blue vinyl...I will never use this tool with
            power applied as the grips are not meant for that type of use, they are not insulated.

            It does have some weight to it but it's well balanced. I believe if needed you will be able to
            use the side as a hammer to bang in wire staples.

            The cutters opens wide and does a nice cut...
            The crimper works nicely with uninsulated or insulated crimp terminals...just don't over squeeze.

            I have not tried the ability of the pliers to pull a fish tape.

            I note there is a slight space at the tips area but that allows you to easily twist wires without
            mashing them.

            The only thing I would have liked would be at least the ability to strip 10,12, and 14gauge wire.
            You can use the cutters but be careful or you may nick the wire.

            This will be a linesman pliers in my tool box for a long time

            cactus Man

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            • #8
              Glad your satisfied with them. My house just happens to have all the overhead wire in threaded conduit and I needed to use a fish tape a couple of times and the gap also makes it easier to grip a steel fish tape which which occasionaly might come up in a crowded conduit. The truth is I used the fish tape once 15 years ago to pull wire for an exterior receptacle at a previous home. I used it a couple of times since then but it'll gather dust again soon.

              The coating on the handles will harden over time, as it does the grips will split when you drop them. I think a similar coating can be bought but I've never used it. I generally replace the pliers when the jaws are worn flat and usually by then the grips are half peeled off from droping or useing the ends to pound something out.

              Most electricians on site have separate tools for stripping wire. There tool bags are packed tight with drivers, pliers, cutters, strippers, which they wear or wheel around in a utility cart. Most them have backup tools or lesser used but important gear in there vehicles. I was surprised one day when I had to move an electricians tool bags to place a ladder just how heavally laden with tools they can be.

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