When you think of insulated tools, a torque wrench isn’t the first tool that comes to mind. Yet there must be a need for them, because several companies sell insulated torque wrenches. Knipex has sold their model 98 43 for a while, but is obsoleting it in favor of two new models.
Besides now making both a 1/2″ drive and a 3/8″ drive, the only real differences seem to be a slightly tweaked handle design, a 10 oz. weight increase to 43 oz., and a torque range change from 8-54 Nm to 5-50 Nm. All the models are reversible to tighten both right-handed and left-handed threads.
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These Knipex insulated T-handle nut drivers might not be the most practical nut driver for everybody, but they meet IEC60900 and DIN EN 60900 standards and are rated for 1000V, so if you need them, you need them.
Knipex manufacturers the drivers from special tool steel and oil-hardens them. Available in 8mm, 10mm, 13mm, 17mm, 19mm, and 22mm sizes, most of the drivers are 155mm (6″) long. We can’t find any pricing on them yet, but with their electrical ratings, expect them to be expensive.
Nut Driver [Knipex]
When you’re working around high voltage, you shouldn’t be using a tool that feels awkward in your hands. In redesigning their cable knives, Knipex focused on ergonomics to make their tools more comfortable to use.
They added a “slip-proof,” soft grip material to the handle, gave it a thumb recess and finger hook, and angled the slip guard to make this 1000V rated knife fit better in your hand and easier to pull when cutting. Oil-hardened to keep it sharp, the blade also comes with a transparent cap to protect it (or maybe protect you from it).
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Knipex designed these slightly odd-looking cutters to cut up thin-walled plastic pipes and hoses. They cut from the middle of the hose out, so you don’t need to reposition or make more than one stroke with the blade.
The blade point hits the hose or pipe from the center and cuts cleanly through with both edges of the blade as you apply pressure. It cuts hose or pipe with exterior diameter up to 1”. In a pinch it could probably handle something like copper pipe or wire cable, but smaller auto hoses or garden hose will part like butter.
The electronics geek in me got giddy when I saw this picture of Knipex’s ribbon-cable cutters. OK, so not everybody is going to get as excited about this tool, but next time you have to cut ribbon cable, you’ll remember this tool exists, and you’re going to be bummed that you don’t have one.
Knipex’s cutters cut ribbon cable up to 56mm — that’s 2.2″ for you metric-impaired readers — without crushing the conductors. The integrated fence in the base allows you to make perfectly rectangular cuts, and you can replace the blade with a conventional, trapezoidal, utility-knife blade.
Knipex makes the handle and blade mount of these 8-1/2″-long cutters from high-strength steel. A spring returns the handles to the open position when they’re released, and a locking lever keeps them closed for storage.
Look to pay anywhere between $60 and $100. If you don’t have that kind of money burning a hole in your pocket, or if your employer can pinch a penny so hard that Lincoln cries, UltraShear makes a cheaper alternative — albeit without the fence — the Superknife.
Cutter For Ribbon Cables [Knipex]
Street Pricing [Google Products]
The upper jaw on these pliers looks like the beak of a bird of prey — it’s not hard to see why Knipex calls the pliers Raptors. As you squeeze the Raptor’s handles the jaws remain parallel, which allows them to grip hex bolt heads and nuts sized 3/8″ through 1-1/4″ perfectly, without rounding. Since the pliers grab the flat sides, they work especially well on fasteners with rounded edges.
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