A wire stripping tool is a name given to a small device that is used for the removal of insulation from electrical wires. These handheld and easily portable tools are in common use among electricians as they make it easy to remove the insulation when replacing or repairing wire.
A wire stripping tool will come with a series of labeled holes that match the wire gauges of a particular type of stripper. When the wire is inserted into the right holes and the handles of the wire stripping tool are squeezed, it will result in a precise slice right through the plastic insulation that does not cause any damage to the wire.
How to use a wire stripping tool
Although there are many different types of wire stripping tools that are available on the market, the actual way in which a wire stripping tool is usually the same or most similar.
The first step to using a wire stripping tool is to work out the wire type and gauge. The wire gauge will be printed on the insulation in the form of a number, and users should also take note of whether the wire is stranded or solid copper.
The next step is to match the wire gauge with the hole that corresponds to it on the wire stripping tool. This is an important step due to the fact that if a hole that is larger than the wire gauge is chosen, the insulation will not be properly cut in full, making it harder to strip, but if a hole that is smaller than the wire gauge is selected, the wire could be nicked and end up being compromised.
The next step is setting the wire into the wire stripping tool on the blade side of the right hole, and pressing the handles together slowly. The wire stripping tool will then cut through the wire’s insulation.
It may sometimes be necessary to twist the tool if the wire insulation has not been completely cut. Rotate the wire gently inside the hole or, if easier, move the wire stripping tool around the wire. There is no need to rotate very far – a simple quarter turn in the same direction and then back again should be sufficient.
The next step is to actually strip the insulation. Pull the wire stripping tool toward the end of the wire that has been cut in order to remove the insulation. Sometimes it can make removing the insulation easier to push against the tool with the thumb of the hand that is holding the wire, while the handles of the tool are being held firmly shut by the other hand.
Wire stripping tools can be found in a wide array of different shapes and sizes and normally come with serrated teeth that assist with stripping the wires. It is vital to make sure you have the right wire stripping tool for the wire gauge that you are planning to strip.