Home tools Buyer's Guides from tech enthusiast who loves technology and clever solutions for better living.
Best locking pliers 2018 – [Buyer’s Guide]Last Updated December 1, 2018
Best locking pliers of 2018
Whether you’re looking to upgrade your comfort, style, or accessibility, we have picks to fit a variety of needs and budgets. I have taken the initiative to educate you on the top three best locking pliers that you can buy this year. If you get well acquainted with these basics, you shouldn’t have a problem choosing a locking pliers that suits your need. Here are the customer reviews of some of the best locking pliers of 2018.
Test Results and Ratings
Why did this locking pliers win the first place?
The product is very strong. Its material is stable and doesn’t crack. I am very happy with the purchase. It is definitely worth its money. The product is top-notch! The rear part fits perfectly! It is mounted really tight and reliable. I don’t know anything about other models from this brand, but I am fully satisfied with this product.
Why did this locking pliers come in second place?
Managers explained me all the details about the product range, price, and delivery. I like this product. For such a low price, I didn’t even hope it to be any better. It’s decently made. Seems that the material is good. It has a very beautiful color but I don’t really like the texture. This is a pretty decent product that perfectly fitted the interior of our office.
№3 – Bastex Locking Vise Pliers with Curved Grip Jaws. Size 10” with Grip that Expands up to 2 and ½ inches. Includes trigger Release and Wire Cutter
Why did this locking pliers take third place?
I liked the design. We’ve been using it for 2 months and it still looks like brand new. It doesn’t squeaks nor bents. Looks great in my apartment. This price is appropriate since the product is very well built. I hope that the good reputation of the manufacturer will guarantee a long-term work.
locking pliers Buyer’s Guide
You are likely to need pliers for
Wire strippers use different gauges, depending on the wire, to strip away the rubber or plastic coating from a wire, leaving the metal of the wire exposed.
In general, be careful what you’re choosing to squeeze. It’s easy to damage wood, for example, by squeezing too hard. Fingers and other body parts should also remain on the handle side of the pliers.
The main thing to avoid with pliers is using them as a wrench. This is a common error, borne of laziness and complacency. It’s bad for the nut, and it’s the wrong tool for the job, so please don’t do it.
How we picked and tested
Locking pliers do just that—they lock on to a nut, bolt, or a hundred other small objects with a thick pair of serrated jaws. To use them, the jaws need to be set to slightly smaller than the size of what you’re trying to grab. Then, as pressure is applied to the handles, a series of levers and pivot points tension and lock the jaws in place. In most cases to unlock the jaws, a release lever needs to be tripped, but with some designs, the handles simply need to be pulled apart.
At the most basic, locking pliers are used to grab rounded over and stripped screws and bolts, but in reality they’re much more versatile. As Sawyers told us, locking pliers “are at the center of a million little labor saving shortcuts that you pick up one by one over a lifetime of doing projects.” As an example, he pointed us to this video, which shows Tom Silva of Ask This Old House using the tool to hold up a garage door while he works on the cables. In the same spirit, I recently used them to clamp two fence sections together while I repaired a chicken coop.
I exclusively used our pick for eight months as I wrapped up the full gut and remodel of my 100-year-old farmhouse.
The Grip-On 111-pliers are unique in their combination of finesse and strength. Without question, the high point of the tool is the ease of the unlocking mechanism. The release lever is nested in the lower handle and extends slightly from the back end. To unclasp the jaws, the lever needs to be pulled toward the upper handle. Even when the jaws are locked extremely tight, it’s possible to do this with a single finger. Upon release, the jaws just open with a smooth, low-key pop. Compare that with nearly all of the other pliers tested, which either produced a sudden jolt, a loud springing noise, or some significant clicking or clacking of metal on metal—not here.
With the smoothness of the unlocking mechanism, it’s not surprising that the entire tool has an exceptional build quality. On all of the other pliers, the lower jaw could wiggle back and forth, but on the Grip-Ons, the tolerances are so perfect that there is no movement at all. In addition, even though there is no padded handle like on some models, the rounded-over shape of the handles makes them very comfortable to hold and squeeze.
The jaws of the Grip-Ons are long and capable of maximum grab of about inches. The teeth themselves are deep and aggressive. I tried them out on a variety of bolts and pipes, and once this tool is locked on, it’s not going anywhere.
Because of an epoxy coating, the tool has an interesting orange color that is not only oddly stylish and attractive for a hand tool, but it makes them far less likely to lose. I’ve never had a problem spotting them in a toolbox or on my workbench.
The Grip-Ons are definitely on the high side of the pricing scale, but we’re convinced that the smoothness of the unlocking mechanism, combined with the overall quality of the tool, more than justifies the cost. After using the Grip-Ons, the majority of the other locking pliers felt clunky and cheap.
The upward release lever is the easiest to use and it offers the most control over the tool, so that detail really guided us as we narrowed in on our picks. In this style of lever, once the jaws are locked, just slide your hand back on the handle and simply pull the lever upwards. During the process you can maintain full control of the tool with the one hand. The release is smooth and not jarring. Our recommended Grip-Ons have this style as do our runner-up Blackhawks.
The three styles of unlocking mechanism (from left): no release lever, downward release lever, upward release lever. The upward release lever, shown on the Grip-On, is the easiest to use.
The third unlocking method is with no release lever. To open the jaws, the lower handle is simply opened up. This may sound like the easiest system, but if the jaws are tight (like they usually are), it takes two hands. The other thing is that when the jaws are in the open position, the handles are nearly perpendicular to one another, which means that it also takes two hands to lock the tool onto an object.
The unlocking mechanism also affects how far the handles need to open. Notice that the Grip-Ons (orange) open the least amount, making them the easiest for one-handed operation. The far left pliers are from CH Hanson and have a great self-adjusting feature, but the handles open so wide, they are nearly impossible to grip with one hand.
Locking pliers are a very useful tool to have around, and the ones to get are definitely the Grip-On 111-They’re more expensive than most, but no other pair beat them out in terms of ease-of-use, finesse, and overall build quality. We have a runner-up option, the Blackhawk PT-1110-2, but strongly recommend going with the Grip-Ons for just a bit more. You won’t regret it.
I have a couple of pairs of the old genuine Mole wrenches that have seen tough duty over the years, but the jaws have worn down now so they are on the repairs shelf; I hope to re-cut the jaws using a sharp thin file, when I get round to it, of course.
I have a couple of pairs of Visegrip ones from some years back, and these have done well, too.
I suspect that when buying in a big store in their brand name, you get the same quality as in the £shop, but nicely packeted.
Irwin Tools 192345has a needle nose vice grip which many people do prefer because of its ability to reach into tight areas and clamp down onto small nuts or bolts. It has a stainless steel serrated knife, a screwdriver and all of the other features of the other Irwin Tools vice grip multi-tool set.
Skip to view deals for CP-chain whip pliers tool
A chain whip is a simple tool that’s used solely to hold a cassette in place to stop it from freewheeling while snapping the lockring loose. Nonetheless, it unsurprisingly sees plenty of use in the workshop.
A chain whip is, traditionally, simply a bar with a couple lengths of chain attached to it. Pedro’s changed all that with the introduction of the Vise Whip pliers – which lock onto the cassette, meaning zero chance of slippiage under misuse. For the past few years, Vise Whips have been a popular choice for dedicated mechanics, while Park Tool has stuck with the trusty, albeit dated chainwhip – until now.
Armstrong 67-508-Inch Duckbill Pliers
This could be a crowbar or piece of scaffolding which can then be twisted and with enough leverage will break apart many U-locks. Or it could be a hydraulic bottle car jack, which given enough space, is powerful enough to pop open most U-locks.
While this risk can be alleviated by leaving as little space inside the lock when you use it, it will always remain an issue with the cheaper, standard sized U-locks.
However, because they are smaller than chain locks, U-locks can have thicker shackles without being prohibitively heavy. So even the highest security, New York Fahgettaboudit Mini U-lock, with an 1mm, bolt cutter proof shackle is still portable. A U-lock with a 1mm shackle can only be cropped by the very biggest bolt cutters. And even the smallest, lightest Abus Granit Futura 64 150 U-lock with a 1mm shackle is resistant to most bolt cutters.
What I noticed immediatetly was the old adjustment know at the end of the vise grips was gone and a real nice, ergonomically designed grip release lever replaced the old design. If your familiar with vise grips you had to push against the lever to release the grip. The problem with this movement was that it went against your natural grip and necessitated you to release the tool and then re-group the toll again.
I like the extra thought put into the head design in terms of allowing for different objects and shapes to be held easier. It really does make holding around objects easier, while it still maintains a classic flat grip at the end for sheet metal. Essentially, the head, depending on your specific applications, can be a big help.
Before you can look at trailers, you need to know what tow vehicle you will be using. For safety reasons, finding a trailer to match your tow-vehicle capabilities is most important. To determine the full weight of the trailer, Stanfield says to add the dry weight of the trailer—you can find this detail from the manufacturer—to the estimated weight of the animals you might haul and the equipment, water, hay and feed you’ll need for whatever trips you expect to take. This loaded weight can’t exceed the weight your tow vehicle can handle. Start your search with your maximum trailer size in mind.
Bumper-pull trailers and gooseneck trailers are the two typical hitch options. Larger trailers might have a fifth-wheel hitch. “Bumper-pull trailers are typically a lower weight,” Stanfield says. “They just can’t haul as much,” though you typically don’t need as large of a vehicle to tow them.
Gooseneck trailers tend to be easier to maneuver, as they have a tighter turning radius. They generally have larger stock space, too, and many have storage area in the neck of the trailer or a whole living-quarters area up front.
Trailer frames are generally made from one of two materials: aluminum or steel.
Aluminum frames have one main downside, according to Ron Gill, associate department head for Extension Animal Science at Texas A&M AgriLife Extension: the instability of the welds. “Aluminum welds have a tendency to break in repeated high-stress areas,” he notes, pointing out the axle mounts in particular. Rivets are now often used in trailer construction rather than straight welding.
On the East Coast, you’ll most often see trailers with solid tops. Out West, you’ll find bow-top trailers: those with tarps or with a frame overhead but no roof. “The main reason we use them in the West is that they are lighter in weight and not as hot as solid-topped trailers,” Gill says. While bow-top trailers are safe, old or homemade trailers with no top are not, as animals can jump or climb out.
Trailer flooring is a major consideration, as a slick or weak floor can lead to a disaster. Wood-plank floors are common and usually come with rubber mats, as bare wood is slippery when wet. Wood planks can deteriorate and rot and need to be inspected regularly. Rubber planks—like wood planks but made from recycled rubber—are a newer flooring material. Gill says these have a cleat to reduce slipping.
Aluminum floors with a nonslip surface “are very effective at reducing slipping but can be hard on hooves when new,” Gill says. Aluminum floors don’t absorb road heat or vibration, which can put stress on animals.
Another positive for ramps, Gill points out, is that small animals might be able to make an escape under the trailer. “That can be fixed by proper construction of the loading area,” he says. But unless each loading and unloading area you go to is constructed with a trailer ramp in mind, it’s difficult to maneuver one into place, and step-up trailers are the better option.
Secondhand & Safe
When it was time for me to upgrade my livestock trailer, I purchased a used gooseneck for my 3/4-ton truck. I asked a friend to look it over—wiring, flooring, tires, plus any other safety-related items I didn’t think of. He did, said it was good and sent me on my way. On my first trip, I got a flat tire due to dry rot. This is typical of what you can get yourself into by buying second-hand.
Have The Trailer Inspected
As my story suggests, have a professional look at the rig before you purchase it. “Regardless of where you purchase a trailer, unless it is new, take it to a trailer-repair shop and have it thoroughly inspected and repaired before you start using it,” Gill says. Wheel bearings, hubs, spindles and lugs need an inspection, too.
Ensure It’s Safe
Check the flooring from the inside and underside of the trailer. “Make sure the metal is sound and all welds/rivets are intact,” Gill says. “Particular attention should be paid to the metal supporting the floor, axles, and their hangers and springs, as well as the tongue and hitch. Additional scrutiny needs to be paid to the gates, hinges and latches on the end gate and partition gate.” Watch for protrusions and sharp edges that could injure an animal.
Shop ’Til Ya Drop
Shop local, too. The trailer dealers in your area can offer a wealth of knowledge about the models and features that are out there, and they’re likely to know about new models coming out soon or specials that will be offered down the road.
Get your perfect trailer picked out and learn to operate it safely from someone with experience before you attempt it on your own. With the confidence to safely load and haul animals on your own, your trailer purchase can be something to look forward to.
This article originally appeared in the September/October 201issue of Hobby Farms.
Easy and safe to use
The best Multi tools are great products because they can help you finish any job you may be working on, even when you do not have access to a standard workshop or toolbox. Whether you need a good set of pliers while on the go, or you need a knife that can cut through anything, this type of tool can be the perfect accessory for anyone who is working on the go. The best part about this type of tool is that you are not restricted to any tool set for your use.
Compact and easy to carry around
Sets of the multi tool will provide you with essential working accessories to assist you with completing your toughest jobs. Therefore, whether you need to tighten a bolt while you are working, or you need to file your nails down quite a bit simpler, you can utilize the tools on your multi-tool products to complete any job you may face.
Comes with many tools
One of the main reason why this multi tool is a favorite among very many professionals in various fields is that it comes with every tool you may need when sailing, repairing a bike, hunting or doing general repairs. This multi tool has about 2tools including screwdrivers, hex drives, a carbide glass breaker, box wrenches, and a SIM card pick that can also serve as a hook-style box cutter.
Wearable and customizable
Solid construction and customizable
Another impressive feature that comes with this multi purpose tool is that it is constructed using high-quality materials to ensure high performance and durability. Additionally, you do not have to worry about having the right fit, as this multi tool is easily customizable to fit your wrist size.
Well-built and easy to use
When you have the first glance on this multi-tool, you will notice that it is well built to ensure long-lasting performance. The main blade construction is of steel to ensure that it offers you with dependable service for many years to come. Additionally, this multi tool is one of the best to use the model as it operates smoothly.
Although Leatherman 830850 Skeletool CX Multi tool does not feature very many tools, it gives you the necessary tools that you need on your daily basis. This means that you will have basic tools such as bottle openers, pliers, and steel blade.
Compact and lightweight
Another reason why we consider this tool as one of our best multi tools is the fact that it is lightweight and compact. This means that you can carry it easily in your pocket or simply hang it on your waist belt. Since the model comes with only the most usable tools, it is very useful in your workshop in home remodeling projects.
This is one of the popular multi tools when it comes to both form and function. Since this multi tool comes with contoured handles, you will complete some of the stubborn tasks easily without harming your hands. The model comes with various tools such as scissors, knives and saw that held up fairly well and their stainless steel construction play a major role when it comes to strong performance and durability.
Practical and easy to use
As previously mentioned, this multi tool comes with seventeen tools that are not only simple to use but also practical. You will have every tool that you need on your day-to-day activities, making your operation straightforward. We also love the fact that it is lightweight making it easy to carry around.
All the features look perfectly
Another great feature that comes with this multi tool is all looking functions that ensure that all the devices will lock into place safely. This will not only make it compact and easy to carry around but also ensures that it remains locked inside the pocket to avoid injuries.
You can operate each tool using one hand
This multi tool also comes with every tool that you can work efficiently using one hand. The handles come with good contours to ensure a firm grip. This will not only offer you better efficiency but also makes the tools easier and safer to use. The ability to operate with one hand also allows you to keep the other hand free for situations that may require you to multitask.
Comes with exceptional features
Unlike other multi tools on the market that come with basic features, this seems to be the most wanted multi tool that comes with features that tend to favor tactical or people with a military background. Some of the feature includes the replaceable bronze scrapping tool that is useful for removing carbon buildup on a firearm. Additionally, it is a great tool for electricians as it comes with an excellent wire cutter.
This best multi tool also comes with an excellent feature that allows you to store the tool bits in the handle allowing you to access them easily in the middle of the job while still ensuring that they are locked away when they are not in use. Additionally, this best multi tool comes with a replaceable pocket clip that assists you to wear the tool while attached to a belt loop or your pocket using the sheath.
This best multi tool is well built to ensure long-lasting performance. The main blade is solid to ensure that it offers you with dependable service for many years to come. Additionally, this multi tool is one of the best to use the model as it operates smoothly.
One of the best features that come with this best multi tool is the solid steel construction. This makes this tool not only sturdy but also very durable. This multi tool stems steel construction can withstand daily abuse without any problem. Additionally, the steel has great coat avoid scratching and rusting keeping the product in top condition for a long time.
Versatile to Use
Various things make this multi tool easy to use and comfortable. First, this best multi tool comes with comfortable handles that allow you to have firm grips. This will not only make them comfortable in your hands but also allow you to use for a long time with minimal fatigue. Additionally, all the tools fold well making sure that they are safe to use, as they will not open unless you want them to.
Unlike any other product from Leatherman, this is yet another best multi tool constructed using high-end materials to ensure that it lasts for a long time without any problem. Its solid construction also allows it to handle repeated use without wearing out quickly. Additionally you this multi tool comes with a long-term warranty.
Come with better-inbuilt tool
Unlike other product on the market, this multi tool comes with 2tools which are more than in most models available on the market. Besides having more tools, the tools are well built and designed to offer more functionality. We also love the fact that this multi tool is made of stainless steel making it rust free.
Effective and easy to use
Another great feature that comes with this multi tool is all looking features that ensure that all the tools will lock into place safely. This will not only make it compact and easy to carry around but also ensures that it remains locked inside the pocket to avoid injuries.
First of all thanks for reading my article to the end! I hope you find my reviews listed here useful and that it allows you to make a proper comparison of what is best to fit your needs and budget. Don’t be afraid to try more than one product if your first pick doesn’t do the trick.
Most important, have fun and choose your locking pliers wisely! Good luck!
So, TOP3 of locking pliers
- №1 — Best Choice 3-Piece Curved Jaw Locking Pliers Set with Storage Pouch – 5”
- №2 — WORKPRO 5-Piece Locking Pliers Set
- №3 — Bastex Locking Vise Pliers with Curved Grip Jaws. Size 10” with Grip that Expands up to 2 and ½ inches. Includes trigger Release and Wire Cutter