We have successfully used bolt cutters for years...without chipping the jaws
yet...but it does happen.
The ones we use are cheapo flea market ones, with about 24 or 30 inch long
handles...one thing I always try to do is get the EHS all the way into the
mouth of the jaw, next to the cross piece between the two jaws. This seems
to be a greater "control" area, and you won't have the potential for the jaws
moving sideways, which leads to their failure.
I do not know if it is worth big bux on domestic bolt cutters based on my
experience with these Asian jobs....they are so inexpensive that if they do
fail I doubt seriously it will be worth getting just the jaws....although
they may be available (I know the domestic replacement jaws are - but they
are more expensive than an entire HM or BY tool).
I have used these up in the air when I have taken guys off the
tower....rather than undo the guy grip under stress I sacrifice it by simply
clipping the loop end of it (yes, there is another temporary guy grip down a
coupla feet which has the lowering rope already attached) . . . I would
rather worry about removing the used grips remains when I am on the ground
than at 100 ft.
I don't know how long the handles are on the ones you use, but as always the
old axiom of give me a long enough lever and a fulcrum and I'll move the
world applies here - buy the ones from Big Johnson.
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