5 Must-have Jewelry Pliers for Beginners and Pro Jewelers

Jewelry making is a type of creative art that involves making ornaments using materials such as beads, wires, strings, metal, and precious stones. To be a jeweler, you need to be creative and at least have the basic jewelry making tools. The tools enable you to convert your jewelry supplies into beautiful and elegant ornaments. They include among them a set of jewerly pliers.

Jewelry making pliers are special types of pliers designed for use in making ornaments. They are not the ordinary pliers you find at a hardware store albeit some look similar. As a beginner in jewellery craft, choosing your first set of pliers can be difficult because there are so many types to choose from. That is why I am sharing with you the first 5 types of jewelry pliers you need to begin making ornaments.

The five important types of jewelry pliers include round-nose pliers, chain-nose pliers, flush cutter pliers, flat nose pliers, and concave looping pliers. Read on to learn more about these pliers and how you can use them to turn your ideas into beautiful jewelry crafts.

Jewelry flush cutters

flush cutter pliers for making jewelry
Cutting jewelry chains with flush cutter jewelry pliers

Flush cutters are a type of pliers for cutting wires and other materials. They cut straight and evenly without breaking the ends or leaving sharp edges.

Flush cutting pliers are very useful in wire jewelry because they cut wires cleanly and flush without leaving sharp ends. You can find them at your local jewelry store or hardware store or on online retail stores such as Amazon.

They are very similar to the side cutter pliers but they are not the same. A flush cutter makes straight cuts into the material leaving a flat edge whereas a side cutter makes angled cuts that leave V-shaped edges.

Side cutters are also heavy duty and are more useful for cutting electrical wires where the shape of the wire edges doesn’t matter so much. Flush cut pliers, on the other hand, are lightweight and are suitable for wire jewelry craft where the shape of a cut matters both for safety and aesthetic reasons. These pliers also cut more precisely and are thus referred to as precision cutters.

Flush cut wire cutters for jewelry have small sharp tips for getting to those tiny spaces. They also have very sharp cutting edges that let you cut wires cleanly without applying too much force. The cutting edges start from the tip of the nose to the pivot. So, you do not need to get the wire deep into the jaws or close to the pivot to cut.   

Uses

Flush cutters are best for cutting jewelry wires but you can also use them to cut plastic and resin models. They are also good for cutting soft and flexible wire connectors in electronics.

Chain nose jewelry pliers

flush cutter and chain nose pliers
Chain nose (left) and flush cutter for beadwork

This is another basic and useful tool in jewellery making. It is a type of pliers that has a fairly long nose and smooth jaws. In fact, it is easy to mistake them for a needle nose pliers. However, the two are different.

Chain nose pliers have smooth jaws whereas a needle nose pliers has serrated jaws. They also have shorter nose and a more tapered tip than needle nose pliers. Another difference is that chain nose pliers are lighter and the edges of their jaws are rounded for making crisp wire bends.

There two types of chain nose pliers: flat chain nose pliers and bent chain nose pliers. The choice of either of the two depends mostly on your preference. However, the straight nose is more common and versatile.

Uses

Because their jaws are smooth inside, chain nose pliers are good for grabbing things without ruining. You can use them to grab and pull jewellery wires. These pliers are also very useful for tucking in wire ends after wire wrapping to avoid poking the skin or snagging. Chain nose pliers are also good opening and closing jump rings.

Round nose jewelry pliers

holding round nose jewelry pliers
Using round nose pliers to loop jewelry wires

In wire jewelry, looping wires is a key part of the craft. It involves bending small wires into loops that can be chained together to make long chains for bracelets and necklaces.  In order to make well rounded wire loops, you need a type of jeweler’s pliers known as round nose pliers.

Round nose pliers have round jaws. In fact, they look like needle nose pliers with smooth circular tapered jaws. These round jaws let you make wire bends for your craft. There are other types of round needle nose pliers that do not have tapered jaws. Instead, they have two or more sections of different diameter sizes on the jaws that help you make loops of different sizes. Others have a round nose of uniform size.

Uses

As I have mentioned. The most common use of round nose pliers for jewelry making is to make wire loops. The loops are a common concept in beadwork and earing designs. You can also use the pliers to do wire wrapping craft.

Flat nose jewelry pliers

Flat nose pliers are much like chain nose pliers except the jaws are tapered from the side and have very sharp edges. They actually look like wedges and they close to make a sharp wedge when you look from the side. The jaws are also smooth on the inside to avoid marring the surface of workpieces.

Uses

Flat-nose pliers have many uses in jewelry making. You can use them to firmly hold wires and metal sheets, open wire chains with the sharp end, and make square bends on wires.

Jewelry round concave pliers

Round concave pliers are a type of wire looping pliers whose one jaw is round and the other is concave shaped on the inside. This type of pliers makes easy the job of making wire loops in jewelry craft. Unlike the round nose pliers that you have to wind your wire around to make loops, the concave pliers makes loops in one step. You just need to place the wire between the jaws and close. The round jaw will press the wire into the concave resulting in a nice half circle loop. Concave pliers are also good for wire wrapping  jewellery craft.