There is a certain comfort bred of familiarity. For instance, I know when I reach for my brad nailer or Skilsaw exactly how it feels in my hands from every angle. I don’t have to look — I know. It’s something that’s been trained into me for the past six years, and it frees me up to think about how the cut is going to line up or where the brad’s going to go. It sounds funny to some, but tools like that become extensions of your will rather than clunky objects. It’s this kind of familiarity Milwaukee is now working against in the snip market. Klein and Wiss are, for all intents and purposes, the standard in snips and have been for decades. However, Milwaukee thinks there’s room for improvement.
The new snips have features like a switch lock on the top handle and forged cutting heads. They conform to the standard system of yellow for straight, green for right cut, and red for the left curving cuts — so a pro can still look down into a pouch and grab the right tool the first time without thinking. The lock along the top and inset a shade won’t bump loose in a belt or toolbox. All these traits are dead-on for the tradesman that would need to have one at the ready, day in and day out.
We got a chance to play with the new snips at the Milwaukee event earlier this year, and they seem both sturdy and no-nonsense. The handles were at least as comfortable as others we’ve used and cut just as accurately. They’re as easy to cut with as the Wiss or Stanley models we have in the shop, and the 48-22-4030 here will cost about the same on the street as the competitors’ at around $18 per pair.
Really, the question is whether Milwaukee can convince tradesmen who’ve used a different product since Reagan was in office that this tool’s better than what they already know works. After seeing the snips and trying them out, we think they have a shot, but we’re not the tradesmen Milwaukee’s trying to convince.
What do you think? Let us know with your comments.