Aviation snips are a useful tool for cutting light metal sheets. The shears are also referred to as compound snips. They resemble scissors with large cutting blades. However, their strength exceeds that of scissors by far. Compound snips are usually color coded. Green snips cut in a clockwise pattern and are ideal if you’re right handed. Red snips cut in a counterclockwise pattern which makes them more suitable for left-handed folk. When working with snips, it is important you uphold certain safety measures. Below are 6 tips.
Use the Right Snips
This is crucial for both greater job efficacy as well as personal safety. Green snips enable cutting of curves in a clockwise direction. Right handed persons will be more comfortable working with these. Red snips allow you to cut in a counterclockwise direction and are better suited for the left handed. It is best to select the snips you feel you’ll be comfortable working with. However for greater flexibility in cutting, you may combine usage of both the green and red snips.
Do Not Use Blunt Blades
Extremely sharp blades are required to cut through metal sheets. These promote accuracy when cutting. They also get the job done faster. Dull blades increase the effort and time required to cut. You are more likely to experience muscle fatigue as well as strain injuries with dull blades. Always make sure your blades are sharp before using.
Use Protective Wear
You are bound to encounter sharp and ragged edges when working with metal sheets. Wear heavy duty gloves to give maximum protection to your hands. A long sleeved shirt will give further protection to your arms. It is also a good idea to wear safety goggles or a face shield. This will give your face adequate protection in the event tiny splinters of metal fly about in the air.
Use Only on Lightweight Material
Do not use your aviation snips on heavy material, hardened wire, cable, nails or rods. Greater muscle exertion will be entailed, which compromises your safety. Your blades are also more likely to get damaged when used on heavy materials. They are better suited for tin, lightweight aluminum, linoleum, canvas and other light yet difficult to cut material. It is best to use shears if you have to cut through heavy material.
Lubricate Pivot Bolt
Always be sure to keep your snips well lubricated. Apply oil to the pivot bolt occasionally to enable the shears to move with ease. You also need to ensure the bolt is well adjusted to give the correct tension when cutting. This makes for a more comfortable working experience. It also promotes safety and accuracy.
Do Not Hammer Handles
Use pressure only from your hands whenever cutting. Do not attempt to use other items to increase pressure on the handles. Never use your foot to achieve greater pressure. Hammering the handles can easily cause the blades to strike the wrong target. You may end up with deep cuts.