A tool for removing insulation from wires: a variety of devices
To perform any work with electrical wires, you can not do without a special tool designed to remove the braid from them. Such devices should be not only from a professional electrician, but also from a home master who can start repairs in the house. This article will address questions about how to choose the right tool for removing insulation from wires, what types of devices exist, where they are used, and many others.
Why do I need a tool to remove insulation from wires
To connect a switch or outlet in the apartment, it is not necessary to use a professional tool. Here you can use improvised devices that are in the arsenal of any home craftsman. However, it is unlikely to be possible to qualitatively cope with stripping wires from insulation, especially when it comes to large-scale electrical work.
Poor-quality stripping of wires from insulation can lead to negative consequences. When using a conventional kitchen knife, the probability of damaging the cable increases, as a result of which the level of safe operation of electrical wiring decreases. In the case of an incision of the conductive core, the cross-section of the wire will decrease, which can cause a break or burn at the junction. An inaccurate cut often causes a cable fracture when it bends.
When operating high-frequency systems with alternating current, a skin effect may occur, which contributes to an uneven distribution of current in the upper layer of the conductor. Any, even the most insignificant damage to the core will lead to the failure of all equipment.
When performing large-scale electrical work, ignoring the use of a special tool for stripping wires from insulation can cause a fire, equipment failure or provoke electric shock.
Varieties of insulation removal tools
The tool for removing insulation from the cable can be classified depending on the method of its removal, the amount of work and automation of the process. According to the scope of work, there are household and professional devices. The first group includes an electrician’s knife. Professional equipment includes forceps, pliers, strippers and pullers.
Important! The tool for electrical work can be universal or of a specific purpose, which is determined by the diameter of the wire being cleaned.
The insulating shell can be removed mechanically and thermally. The latter option is used for low-power thin conductors, which are used in communication devices, electronics and audio equipment operating from a voltage of 5 V. Thermal exposure can be used for one-time stripping of a small number of conductors. To heat the insulating shell, you should use a soldering iron, a lighter or a heated chrome thread.
Important! If liquid insulation was used for wires, it can be removed only by mechanical means.
Professional methods involve removing the insulation by mechanical means. The process can be based on cutting or tearing the shell. In the first case, the insulating layer is cut in a circle using a tip, after which the current-carrying veins remain intact. Part of the cut-off coating is removed from the wire. The breaking method involves clamping the insulation and tearing it (under the action of forces) from the conductor.
Characteristics of a traditional device in the form of a cable knife
Electricians often use a cable knife with a rubberized handle and an unusual blade shape to remove insulation from wires. The work should be done with gloves to eliminate the possibility of injury. This recommendation is especially important when stripping a cable made according to GOST, in which the thickness of the insulation coating exceeds the same value of wires made according to TU. In addition, it fits much more tightly to the veins.
Important! When performing wire stripping, the knife should be held at an acute angle relative to the conductor, which will eliminate the possibility of damage to the cable made of soft material.
The braid is removed with a light movement, cutting it off from itself. The advantages of the knife include the affordable cost of the tool, practicality and ease of use. However, the process of performing the work requires quite a lot of time. This is especially true for cables of large cross-section.
There are three types of electrical knives, and the tools differ in the tip variant and the shape of the blade. For cable products with double insulation, a knife with a heel is ideal, with which the top layer is removed, and the bottom remains intact. It is represented by a device in which a short wedge is concave inside. To limit the depth of the incision, the heel is perpendicular to the blade.
For a circular incision of insulation, a knife with a beak having a rounded blade is used. The longitudinal incision must be performed very carefully, since this device does not have a depth-of-cut limiter. Such a knife is usually used by experienced craftsmen, since certain skills are needed to work with a tool with a specific wedge shape.
For cross-cutting and longitudinal cutting of the cable, a knife with a hook is used, which is considered a universal device for most types of conductors used by professional electricians. The wire is fixed by means of an upper bracket, and a sharp fang cuts through the insulation. On the device, you can set the depth of the incision using the adjustment wheel. In the case of using liquid insulation for wires (spray, paste), this type of knife is the most acceptable for removing the braid.
Pliers, wire cutters, side cutters and pliers for removing insulation
Pliers or wire cutters are used to break the insulation layer on the conductor. The principle of operation of the device is quite simple. With the help of a control screw, the required wire diameter is selected. The clips wrap around the cable. With a circular scrolling motion, the insulation is tightened and torn off the conductor.
Important! The width of the grip should be slightly larger than the cross-section of the conductor, which will protect the cable and wires from scratches when removing the protective layer.
Wire stripping pliers are made mainly of high-quality steel with insulated handles. There are models that are able to clean the thinnest wiring without breaks. The advantages of such a tool include reliability, durability, the possibility of carrying out work in hard-to-reach areas, performing stripping on live conductors.
Among the disadvantages, it is necessary to highlight the need for constant adjustment of the screw for stripping wires of different cross-sections and the inability to choose the length of removing the insulation layer.
Important! Wire cutters allow you to remove the insulation coating from the conductor as accurately and quickly as possible.
Alternative options that can also be used to remove insulation from wires are pliers and side cutters. The latter option is used to cut the insulation of wires of small diameter. When working with this tool, it is important to control the pressure force to eliminate the possibility of damage to the wire.
For the processing of conductors, universal tools in the form of pliers are also in demand, in which rubberized holes have different diameters. The functionality of the pliers depends on the number of holes. Usually the tool is designed for 3-6 wire sizes. The section parameter is indicated on the handle. The standard range is 0.5-3 mm2. With the help of this device, it is possible to capture and bend the wire, cut the conductor of medium hardness, perform crimping of contact sleeves, remove insulation.
Distinctive features of strippers for removing insulation
The most popular and in-demand device for stripping wires is a stripper. This is a specialized tool that performs cable processing using two movable knives that have a semicircular shape. Based on the size of the wire cross-section, the selection of the required tool caliber is performed, which is a guarantee of obtaining an accurate notch and the absence of damage to the core.
The stripper can be mechanical, semi-automatic or automatic. The first option is represented by a manual device having a simple design, in appearance resembles pliers. Manual cable cutter is used for stripping individual wires. Due to the presence of several holes of different diameters with blades on the inner surface of the clamps, it is possible to process a cable of different cross-sections in the range of 0.25-2.5 mm.
Important! The cost of a mechanical stripper directly depends on the number of sockets on the lips of the instrument and their digital value.
This type of stripper has compact dimensions and light weight, which makes it convenient and practical to use. To remove the insulation, the size of the hole is selected, the cable is bitten, when performing circular movements, the insulation is torn from the wire. The cost of such a stripper for stripping wires is on average 400-1000 rubles.
Semi-automatic and automatic wire stripping tool
To perform large amounts of work, it is recommended to use a semi-automatic version equipped with a special mechanism, thanks to which it is not necessary to scroll the stripper around the wire. It can be used to remove insulation from several cores at once. To remove the protective layer, you should select the necessary recess corresponding to the diameter of the wire section, place the cores in it and remove the insulation by pressing on the handle. You can buy such a stripper for 1200-2500 rubles.
Important! The semi-automatic stripper is equipped with a limiter, thanks to which the insulation will not be removed beyond the selected limit.
The automatic tool for stripping wires and removing insulation simplifies the work as much as possible. To remove the insulation, it is not necessary to select the diameter of the cable section. The device has one socket, the size of which adjusts automatically to the wound cable. The tool can be used for wires with a cross section of 0.2-6 mm.
Automatic strippers have advanced functionality, which involves crimping the tips, trimming the ends of the cable, twisting stranded wires. The device can be used for stripping wires with single and double insulation. One manipulation allows you to remove one layer. To remove the second braid, the procedure is repeated.
Some manufacturers produce a special type of forceps for removing insulation from wires that are used for processing twisted pair. The tool is made in the form of a clamp equipped with a built-in blade. Such a device can perform manipulation that contributes to the accurate and accurate removal of the outer shell of the cable. This tool allows you to process coaxial cables for the subsequent installation of the F-connector.
For optical fibers and power cables, there is a special type of semi-automatic machine for removing insulation from wires, thanks to which high accuracy of stripping the insulation coating is ensured. Such a tool has a fairly high cost and is used by professionals to carry out highly specialized tasks.
Important! This type of stripper allows you to remove the thinnest layers of insulation from a fiber-optic cable.
Stripping options for different types of wires
The complexity of the process of removing the insulation layer from the wires is determined by the type of cable. The coaxial wire has a double protective braid, which is removed in two stages. To remove the upper layer, you can use a thermal method, and to eliminate the lower one, a stripper should be used. There are forceps of a special design equipped with an additional blade and replaceable inserts for wires of different cross-sections. Such a tool allows you to remove both shells.
Important! It must be remembered that the cores of the coaxial cable are quite thin and fragile, so manipulations with the removal of insulation should be carried out extremely carefully.
If silicone insulation is used for wires, you should use only a cable knife to remove it. The wire with a fluoroplastic coating has a heat-resistant insulating coating, which can be removed only by mechanical means. To do this, you will need any cable knife or stripper.
Heat shrink for wires and its use as an insulating material
Classification of products, their characteristics and cost. How to choose and install the handset correctly.
To remove the insulating layer from the enameled wire, you can resort to a thermochemical method using PVC tape and a soldering iron, if the cable cross-section is no more than 0.2 mm2. The conductor is placed on the tape, where it is carried out with a red-hot soldering iron. Under the influence of high temperature, chlorine is released, which contributes to the removal of enameled insulation from the wire.
Useful advice! To remove the insulation coating from electrical cables, you should choose strippers equipped with a handle made of dielectric material, which can provide protection from voltage up to 1000 V.
When choosing a device for removing insulation from wires, it is necessary to take into account for which wire section the device can be used. The cable knife is a universal element in terms of dimension, and pliers, pliers, mechanical and semi-automatic strippers have a limited gripping range.
Overview of the best models of strippers for removing insulation from wires
The tool for removing insulation of the domestic manufacturer KW is very popular. The company offers high-quality models of strippers at an affordable cost. One of the most popular models is the WS-04A insulation removal tool, which is designed to remove the braid from wires with a cross section of 0.05-6 mm2. With the help of a micro-adjustment screw, you can adjust the diameter of the hole to the size of the cable. You can buy a stripper for 1.2 thousand rubles.
The KBT WS-11 model can be used to remove the insulating braid from the flat conductors of the PNP and VVG-P and clean the sheath from the cable with a cross section of 0.05-10 mm2. The insulation removal tool has a micro-adjustment screw, which allows you to select the required hole diameter for a certain cable size. For convenient operation, the tool is equipped with two-component handles and reinforced pressure lips with a grip width of 13 mm.
This model of stripper allows you to simultaneously clean several wires in one movement, which is carried out thanks to wide pressure lips. The tool is equipped with the option of partial removal of insulation. The cost of the stripper is 1.4 thousand rubles.
Another good model of domestic production is the KBT WS-12 insulation removal tool, which is used for multi-core and multi-conductor cables with a cross section of 0.05-10 mm2. The device is equipped with a built-in module for cutting wires. The tool blades are made of stainless steel. They have guides that protect against loosening and oblique cutting. The tool can remove the insulation from the middle of the wire. With the help of a removable all-metal regulator, you can set the distance required to remove the braid. The cost of the tool is 1.5 thousand rubles.
A sought-after tool for removing KBT insulation
Compact and easy–to-use tool for removing insulation – KW X 25. It is designed for SIP cables with a cross section of 4.5-25 mm2. The stripper has a rotary, length-adjustable knife that removes a 3.5 mm thick braid. Insulation cuts can be made longitudinally, transversely and spirally. The housing of the device is made of impact-resistant plastic, which guarantees the reliability and durability of the device.
To perform manipulations with wires, the tool can be mounted on a table and fixed with a spring-loaded bracket. You can buy a stripper for 1.5 thousand rubles.
The KBT WS-06 insulation stripping tool is an automatic stripper that adjusts to the required insulation diameter and thickness. It is designed for stranded wires up to 2 mm in size. Removes the braid with a cross section of 0.2-6 mm2. The housing of the device is made of fiberglass, which gives it strength, reliability and ease of operation.
Important! This model has narrowed ends, which allows you to use the device in hard-to-reach places.
The tool is equipped with a length limiter for removing insulation. The handles have a lock in the folded position, which ensures convenience and safety when storing the device. With this stripper, you can perform V-shaped cutting of cable edges when stripping wires from insulation. The tool can be bought for 1.3 thousand rubles.
The best models of the tool for removing insulation of German brands
One of the best manufacturers of hand tools is the German company Knipex. The brand specializes in the manufacture of strippers with unique design features.
Noteworthy is the Knipex KN 1262180 insulation removal tool, which can be used for single-core, multi-core and thin wires with a cross section of 0.2-6 mm2. When removing the braid, the tool automatically adjusts to different cable sizes, which eliminates the possibility of damage to the integrity of the cores. Thanks to the special design of the head, which has an elongated design, it is possible to work with the tool in hard-to-reach places.
The case is made of impact-resistant plastic reinforced with fiberglass. The knives are made of stainless steel, they have been precision processed, which improves the quality of the work performed. You can buy such a tool for 3.9 thousand rubles.
Knipex KN-166005SB is a good model for removing insulation from coaxial cables. It is able to remove the outer braid, screen and insulation in one step. The stripper is equipped with three built-in knives, for each of which you can adjust the depth using a hex key. The insulation is removed by scrolling the stripper 360°.
The process is performed quickly and conveniently due to the presence of a finger hole in the device body. The tool body is made of shockproof plastic. You can buy this device for removing insulation from wires for 2 thousand rubles.
Another popular German manufacturer producing hand-held electrical tools is Jokari. The products are distinguished by ergonomics, reliability and safe operation.
Jokari JK 30140 insulation removal tool is in great demand, which is used to work with round and flat cables with PVC insulation. The special design of the tool allows you to work in hard-to-reach places. The automatic stripper independently adjusts to the cutting depth depending on the conductor cross-section. The tool can be used when working with branches and camshafts. The cost of the stripper is 1.3 thousand rubles.
Important! The tool allows you to remove the braid from individual cores of the longitudinal cut.
To perform the processing of electrical conductors, you can not do without a specialized tool for stripping insulation. The selection of a specific model should be based on the type of cable and its diameter. To ensure the safe performance of work, it is better to give preference to a tool equipped with handles with a dielectric coating.