DIY – Types of Pliers

The art of jewellery making requires the use of pliers. But it can sometimes be confusing for the novice which pliers to use. From Chain nose pliers to Bent chain nose, cutters, round nose, I have set out below a list of pliers and their uses.

Hopefully, you will find this helpful when making your next project.


Chain nose:

These are useful for a range of jewellery making. You can use them to open and close jump rings, for gripping and holding wire as you work and bending wire. It is important to keep in mind these can sometimes mark your wire so if you are concerned with this you would benefit from using nylon jaw pliers instead. You can get long and short varieties of these. Long for reach and short for strength and stability.


Bent chain nose:

Similar to chain nose but the bend, enables you to get a better grip on objects and are great for smaller, more fiddley designs. Used for tight spaces, opening jump rings to bend wire and stabilise your design. They help you access areas without blocking your visibility.


Round nose:

You can get long and short varieties of these pliers. They are great for shaping eyes or loops in your designs. I also find they are less likely to flatter or mark your wire.



Round nose pliers with cutter included.


Flush cutters


There are simple wire cutters or flush wire cutters. Normal wire cutters will give you a clean cut and professional look. If you are working with beading wire like tigertail use an old pair of cutters as it tends to blunt them. Flush cutters allow a flat even cut in the tightest of places, make sure you keep the waste side of the wire towards the concave side of the cutters.



They have two notches. The first is used for the first fold and the second helps round the crimp off for a professional look. They allow for a more flush stronger crimp then simply using chain nose pliers.


Flat nose:

Used to bend wire, hold beads and components without marking or scratching them. Used to stabilise jump rings, flatten wire and create sharp corners.


Nylon Jaw:

Designed to prevent marring the surface of metal. You can use them for forming, straightening bends and kinks in the wire or simply holding the wire.


Wire looping ring:

They are specifically designed to help make loops or eye pins. You place the wire in and close and it causes the wire to curl.

Other tools you may come across include gem setting pliers, loop closing and memory wire cutters.

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