Almost all shear cutters are devices with only coarse cutting ability and very limited tool life. This is because the cutting edges do not really meet together for a fine, accurate cut. They pass by each other, moving in planes that are close but separate. Cutting edge motion stops when the two handles come together. This is the action of the stamped cutter. It is also the action of the paper scissors and the garden shears. Effective on large wire and for light usage. When the rivet joint loosens the hand shear must be discarded. Also, since the edges are only case hardened, a dull or worn stamped cutter can not be resharpened. Stamped shears also impart considerable shock and leave a significant pinch reflecting the clearance between the two edges.
There are exceptions to the common variety hand cutting shear. They are the Tronex cutter models 7030 and 5030. They are precision tools made with interlocking threaded joints and heat treated cutting edges. The Tronex standoff shear cutters are designed with a cutting ridge mounted on a stationary leg. The leg is placed next to the lead being cut. A sharpened and hardened cutting edge is then moved through the lead and over the cutting ridge. These versatile tools use the shear cutting principle in order to achieve a predetermined lead length (or “standoff”) to insure that components or solder joints below the lead are not damaged.