Best Aviation Snips of 2021: Buying Guide

Aviation snips – a tool that was initially designed to construct aircrafts – are one of the most essential tools of any DIYer’s toolbox. Need to cut plastic, sheet metal, thin strips of wood, leather, or any thin object down to sizeWhip that trusty aviation snip out and get to work!

From its appearance and usage, one might argue that aviation snips and tin snips are one and the same. This is a common misconception that we need to clear right now. Aviation snips are not snip snips. They have a compound system that gives them much better-cutting power while offering a more comfortable grip. If you’re working with thicker sheets of metal, an aviation snip is what you need.

But how do you find the right aviation snipThat’s why we’re here. If you’d like to purchase an aviation snip without reading too much, take a look at our picks of the best aviation snips available today. Keep reading if you’d like to learn more about how to find the best pair.


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Aviation Snips | Bestseller

Bestseller No. 1
CRAFTSMAN Aviation Snips, Straight Cut (CMHT73756)
EASE OF USE: Spring-assisted latch on metal snips for fast one-handed operation; 1/4-inch blade markings for quick precise cuts

Our Recommended Aviation Snips in 2021

8) Channellock 610BS 10″ Heavy Duty Bulldog Aviation Snip

For a powerful and affordable aviation snip, you cannot go wrong with what Channellock offers.

By making use of this aviation snip, you are able to cut through heavy-duty material that is dense and rough. You can create seams, notches, notch cuts, and other types of patterns, with tremendous ease.

Channellock 610BS 10" Heavy Duty Bulldog Aviation...
  • Cuts straight on heavy duty material, thick or multiple layers, seams, notch cuts, etc
  • Cuts 16ga cold rolled steel, and 18ga stainless
  • Forged alloy steel blades for durability and strength

7) Amazon Basics 2-Piece Aviation Snip

A purchase of this 2-piece package gives you access to two aviation snips. Both aviation snips are more than effective for cutting through materials such as aluminum, tin, and metal. You can produce a wide range of cuts, on those materials, with ease.

But, the low-quality materials these aviation snips use is worth noting, since it means that these aviation snips likely won’t last for very long.

Amazon Basics 2-Piece Aviation Snip Set - Left and...
  • 2-piece set of aviation tin snips for easy cutting from either direction (left or right)
  • Cuts through thin sheets of aluminum tin and metal, including up to 18-gauge steel and up to 22-gauge...
  • High-leverage design with serrated-edge blades for efficient cutting; made of premium chrome vanadium steel...

6) MIDWEST Blackout Series Aviation Snip MWT-6510LO

For efficiency and durability, you cannot go wrong with this aviation snip. A combination of cutting-edge blades, steel handles, and weather resistant coating enables you to use this aviation snip on nearly any material in nearly any circumstance, while performing just about any type of cut. Since this aviation snip offers so much, it is less affordable than some other aviation snips.

MIDWEST Blackout Series Aviation Snip - Left Cut...
  • LEFT OFFSET CUT - Cuts straight and tight left curves. Easiest used in right hand
  • LONGEST LASTING CUTTING EDGE - Blades are hot drop-forged of molybdenum alloy steel and austemper heat-treated...
  • STRONGEST HANDLES - High Tensile strength steel will not bend from hand pressure and provides efficient...

5) Finder 12″ Aviation Snip

Ergonomics and length are two traits that many aviation snip manufacturers ignore. Finder, on the other hand, does not ignore those traits. Because of this, this aviation snip offers one of the finest ergonomic designs, you can find, as well as a lengthy blade. Both of these traits make using the aviation snip comfortable, while also giving you the ability to cut anything with ease.

Finder 12" Aviation Snips, Long Straight Cut Tin...
  • STRAIGHT REGULAR CUT: The extra long straight-cut aviation snip is used to cut straight and wide curves to the...
  • LONGEST LASTING CUTTING EDGE: The blades are hot drop-forged of premium CRV steel and austemper heat-treated...
  • ERGONOMIC DESIGN: The ergonomic designed TPR handle with comfortable soft grip, which conforms with the motion...

4) MIDWEST Aviation Snip MWT-6510L

Another MIDWEST aviation snip, you can use this one to easily cut through any variety of tin. Doing so is easy, too, as a result of the excellent design this aviation snip offers, and the hot-drop-forged and heat-treated blades this aviation snip relies on.

MIDWEST Tool and Cutlery Aviation Snip (Left Cut...
  • LEFT OFFSET CUT - Cuts straight and tight left curves. Easiest used in right hand
  • LONGEST LASTING CUTTING EDGE - Blades are hot drop-forged of molybdenum alloy steel and austemper heat-treated...
  • STRONGEST HANDLES - High Tensile strength steel will not bend from hand pressure and provides efficient...

3) STANLEY FATMAX Aviation Snip

For a good, effective, and affordable aviation snip, you can’t go wrong with these. Serrated chrome molybdenum steel cutting blades, combined with a sturdy design and comfortable grip, make using this aviation snip, and cutting just about anything, a very pleasant experience. That, when combined with the low price, makes for a great purchase.

Sale
STANLEY FATMAX Tin Snips , Straight Cut, Aviation...
  • Tin snips cut up to 18 gauge (1.2mm) cold-rolled steel or 23 gauge (0.7mm) stainless-steel
  • Metal snips are made from chrome molybdenum steel cutting blades for strength, durability and long cutting...
  • Serrated cutting blades of metal snips provide a sturdy bite and helps prevent material from slipping during...

2) MIDWEST Aviation Snip Set MWT-6510C

Just as the title implies, this is an aviation snip set. Purchasing this set gets you two aviation snips; a left cut offset model, and a right cut offset model.

Both of those aviation snips offer durability, efficiency, and comfort. All of the excellent features that MIDWEST is known for are present in these aviation snips. This makes for a reliable product that works very well.

MIDWEST Aviation Snip Set - Left and Right Cut...
  • 2 PIECE OFFSET SET - This set includes both left and right cut offset models for optimal cutting ability
  • LONGEST LASTING CUTTING EDGE - These blades are hot drop-forged of molybdenum alloy steel and austemper...
  • STRONGEST HANDLES - High Tensile strength steel will not bend from hand pressure and provides efficient...

1) CRAFTSMAN Aviation Snips CMHT73756

You can cut through thick sheets of stainless steel and cold-rolled steel with this aviation snip from Craftsman. Doing so is easy, as a result of the strong blade, ergonomic design, and spring-assisted latch on each snip.

For an easy, pleasant aviation snip that allows for efficiency and versatility, you cannot go wrong with a purchase.

CRAFTSMAN Aviation Snips, Straight Cut (CMHT73756)
  • CUT CAPACITY OF TIN SNIPS: Cuts up to 18GA (1.2mm) cold-rolled steel or 22GA (0.7mm) stainless steel.
  • EASE OF USE: Spring-assisted latch on metal snips for fast one-handed operation
  • DURABILITY: Induction hardened cutting edge on snips for sheet metal stays sharp longer (compared to...

Ultimate Aviation Snips Buying Guide

In this section, we’ll go over the most important features in aviation snips. Pay close attention – the last thing you want is tearing a thin strip of steel by using the wring snips.

Color Code Meaning

The first thing you’ll notice when looking at multiple aviation snips is that they’re all color-coded. The three colors are used to distinguish right, left, and center-oriented blades.

Left-offset aviation snips are ideal for cutting in an anti-clockwise direction, right-offset for clockwise, and centered blades for straight cuts. If you plan on using aviation snips regularly, you might want to consider purchasing one of each type.

Offset Handle

Similar to tin snips, aviation snips can have offset handles that prevent your hand from obstructing the view. Offset aviation snips are best suited for making long, straight cuts in wide pieces of sheet metal. A straight-handle aviation clip is best for dead-on cuts into the material.

Multi-piece Aviation Snip Set

Which brings us to the next consideration: multi-piece sets. These sets can either include 2 or all of the aviation snip types. Purchasing in a bundle is more cost-efficient than individually but only if you need to produce more than one type of cut.

Blade Material

The most commonly used material in aviation snip blades is high-speed steel. Tougher than most materials you’ll ever work with, it’s the best starting point for those aiming for versatility in their snips. However, the most durable material is HSS-TiN, which is HSS coated in titanium. To chomp through stainless steel, you’ll need HSS-TiN aviation snips since everything else will not hold up. “Weaker” types of steel are cheaper and work great on softer materials like aluminum, plastic, leather, and wood.

Serrated or Smooth Blades

If you’ve looked at hundreds of different aviation snips, you’ll notice a majority of them have serrated jaws. The serrations in the blades add gripping power to the snips, helping you cut more accurately with little effort. However, serrated teeth do have a maximum life expectancy, and using them on abrasive objects could wear them down much quicker. Smooth-blade aviation snips don’t have this problem.

Cushioned Grips

Aviation snips, unlike most tin snips, are made to bite through thick, tough metal sheets. But this is only achievable if the snips have cushioned grips. Without such a thing, you would probably end up with sore hands and wrists within the first few cuts. Other than preventing calloused fingers and palms, the cushions serve to improve the user’s grip and prevent slippage.

Size

The size of the aviation snips refers to two things: the actual size of the entire snip and the maximum distance between the blades when opened. When looking at aviation snips, they should fit comfortably in hand and accommodate making tight turns at awkward angles. As for the blades, aviation snips come in various sizes, usually measured by how thick the metal piece – measured in gauges – it can cut.

Built-in Spring

The best aviation snips have built-in springs that pop the blades open after each cut. This makes for efficient work since you won’t have to think about pulling the jaws apart after each snip. Not all springs are effective, so try and give the snips a few practice squeezes like you would with kitchen and BBQ tongs.

Locking Latch

The locking latch is usually found on the ends of the handles. These locks keep the jaws shut when not in use, preventing damage to the edge of the blades during transport. Many of the model we tested come with latches, but surprisingly, most of them would easily unlock with the slightest bump in the toolbox.

Aviation Snips FAQ

Can these snips cut through 18/20/24/26-gauge sheets?

Depending on the aviation snip model, you should be able to. Pay close attention to the maximum size that can fit between the snip’s blades – the higher the gauge count, the thinner the material. Also, as long as the object can fit in the mouth clearance, you should be good to go.

Do aviation snips leave smooth edges?

It depends on the type of blade used. Earlier, we talked about serrated (better grip) and smooth (longer life) blades. Smooth blades, without serrations, will produce smooth edges, albeit with a very slight curve depending on the material. On the other hand, serrated blades will leave a rough edge which can be smoothened out with a power sander or a seamer tong.

Can I use aviation snips to start cuts in the middle of material?

In things like drywall, you could use the blade to puncture a hole and begin a cut in the middle, but for denser materials, you’ll have to drill a hole first.

Closing Remarks

Aviation snips are like tin snips but much more durable and better equipped for heavier-duty cutting. In any situation where tin snips can be used, an aviation snip with the right mouth clearance and blade type could easily take over. If you need a snipping tool to make a watch band or modify the length of downspouts, an aviation snip is a perfect tool to use.

In this article, we’ve provided you with several aviation clip models that have passed our quality tests. We have also included a buying guide that should help you find the best pair in your local hardware store.

Aviation Snips | Bestseller

Bestseller No. 1
CRAFTSMAN Aviation Snips, Straight Cut (CMHT73756)
EASE OF USE: Spring-assisted latch on metal snips for fast one-handed operation; 1/4-inch blade markings for quick precise cuts


This website is supported by readers. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.



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Last update on 2021-04-15 / Most affiliate links and/or Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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