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MetalArtisan

Fixing Pliers

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So, here's my problem. I now have over half a dozen pairs of pliers where the springs have cracked and broken. About half of them are TRL brand pliers, the other half are miscellaneous hardware store pliers.

I want to fix them. Replacing the spring is *not* hard; I've done it many a time, transferring springs from less ergonomic to more ergonomic sets. Thing is, I cannot for the life of me find anyone seling replacement springs, and it's driving me nuts. This should not be difficult; it's just two little bits of spring steel. I emailed TRL customer service about the broken springs, and they suggested trying out using rare earth magnets instead of springs to keep pliers open; this turned out not to work.

Does anyone know where I can buy replacement plier springs? Or how to make them?
Thanks,

~Alex

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Most large hardware stores and/or automotive locations will have small compression springs.  The Home Hardware store in my home town does.  Usually in the same aisle as their bolts and screws.  Small engine repair shops should also have them.  Bring your pliers with you though..its amazing how what looks right in the store turns out to be completely the wrong size.

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Currently my TRL pliers have a broken spring.

One I removed after it wore out the other is still in the grip and works just enough for me.

It should be possible to use something like pallet banding to make a thin leaf spring.

I would likely use fish line to hold the spring in place, then coat the handle with plastidip or wrap the handle tightly to keep the spring secure.

Some brands have a warranty, my craftsman pro minis have been replaced 6 times now due to worn out springs and damaged jaws.

It can be easier/cheaper to replace some pliers instead of adding springs depending on budget and shop skills. I'm some where around 5 miles of galvy for armour and nearly 50 lbs of aluminum.

And pliers will get some slop in the joint and wiggle back and forth.

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Another idea is to glue small magnets so that they repel onto the insides of the handles.  That way it will open via magnetic repulsion.  If you do a lot of work with steel it may get annoying, but it is an option.

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Another idea is to glue small magnets so that they repel onto the insides of the handles.  That way it will open via magnetic repulsion.  If you do a lot of work with steel it may get annoying, but it is an option.

Interesting idea. Have you done this; did it work well?

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It does work but the exact nature of the gluing can be tricky. I usually mill/grind a couple of pockets into the handles to hold the magnets then epoxy them in to be sure that the bond lasts. They feel much softer than a physical spring and I definitely prefer them for long weaving sessions.

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Thank you.  I might consider that because I have a pair of pliers that don't have springs but I would love them if my little finger didn't get so sore from opening them.

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I take my needle files to each new pair of pliers that I buy. I use the cheapy Home Depot Husky brand. I just file the teeth off and use them til they no loner align. I'm on my second set in 6 years, only because I lost my tool bag one eventful evening.... but that's another story LOL.

 

The springs broke in my bent needle nosed ones, I just slipped the rubber grips down, slid a scrap piece of brass bracelet blank in them with a bit of JB Weld. *Poof* they're a little stiffer, but work just as well as before.

Edited by Pammy

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It does work but the exact nature of the gluing can be tricky. I usually mill/grind a couple of pockets into the handles to hold the magnets then epoxy them in to be sure that the bond lasts. They feel much softer than a physical spring and I definitely prefer them for long weaving sessions.

 

How strong of magnets do you use in your pliers?  I have a couple of pliers with broken springs that I love but have not been able to find the right spring to fix them.  This sounds like a good way to repair them.

 

Thanks,

Fatiallians

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I have made leaf springs for my pliers many times - here's how:

 

Take a 12 inch (or even 6 inch) stainless steel ruler from the office supply store and cut it up into pieces the right size for leaf springs.  File the sharp edges.  A stainless ruler is pretty clost to spring hard, which is perfect for making leaf springs.  A little filing and hammering to shape and you will have just what you need.  5 bucks worth of ruler should make a dozen or so leaf springs for use on your favorite pliers. 

 

To install them, I file the attachment place on the plier arm to get a clean flat connection.  Use epoxy to glue the leaf spring into place, and use the side of the leaf spring with etched numbers and lines for the glue (the groves help it hold better).  Wrap it up tight with electrical tape, stretching it as you go and let it dry overnight. 

 

I have done this on all my pliers now and have a few years of regular use on them so far, and plenty of spare leafs ready to go when needed.

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I use neodymium magnets, about 1/4" round and 1/16" thick. I prefer magnets that are just strong enough to open the jaws about 1/16".

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1: lose the index finger of whichever hand will be holding the pliers.

2: get some confortable, close fitting leather gloves

3: invert the glove finger for the missing index finger so that it lies inside the glove across the palm of your hand.

4: silde 1 of the reins of the pliers into the inverted finger.

5: wrap a small rubber band (or poney tail hair tie) loosely around the end joint of your pinkey finger.

6: slip the other rein through a loop of the rubber band.

  

You no longer have to hold the pliers as they are now holding you. They will open and close with zero effort as you open and close your hand.

Edited by knuut

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1: lose the index finger of whichever hand will be holding the pliers.

2: get some confortable, close fitting leather gloves

3: invert the glove finger for the missing index finger so that it lies inside the glove across the palm of your hand.

4: silde 1 of the reins of the pliers into the inverted finger.

5: wrap a small rubber band (or poney tail hair tie) loosely around the end joint of your pinkey finger.

6: slip the other rein through a loop of the rubber band.

  

You no longer have to hold the pliers as they are now holding you. They will open and close with zero effort as you open and close your hand.

 i dont know about losing appendages as being progress .

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Personally, I just keep using the  pliers without the springs. I find that I can open the pliers with my pinkie just fine.  It doesn't slow me down any, and it's a lot less hassel than trying to replaace the springs and more affordable than buying new pliers.

 

The only time I have really broken a pair of pliers, I snapped one side of the jaws clean off.  Now that's a broken pair of pliers! :biggrin:

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