Approximately 124mm. tall or 4.88 inches for all you damn imperial users and 53.5mm at the widest point with the tool closed.Weight
Blades. Stainless steel, but unknown/unconfirmed grade/composition. One side is serrated, the opposite is a smooth knife edge.
Handle. Injection molded plastic. Unconfirmed.
Spring. Press fit stainless wire. Unconfirmed.
Each of the two main metal shears/legs are secured by a pivot screw and locking nut, very similar to the reel clamp assemblies we see on current conventional reels. The legs and handles are keyed and press fit, so very unlikely to rotate. Further secured with a type of glue or epoxy (unconfirmed) to prevent handle slip out. The spring mechanism is a press fit wire, and unlikely to fall/slip out in the tool's normal use life cycle. It functions to keep the cutting jaws/tool open. Finally, there is a locking metal clasp on a rivet that allows the tool to be "locked" closed. The clasp is firm and doesn't flop around swinging wildly even when open.
- Separate area near the pivot to be used for cutting mono/flouro. This is to extend the life of the main blade section, which should be used exclusively for braid.
- Metal clasp to keep tool closed.
- Advertised as "Non-Slip Handle"
- Lanyard attach point.
My hands are a bit on the smaller side, and I wear a medium sized glove for context, but I was still surprised at the size of the tool. I suppose the smaller size would offer better control of the tool, easier to pack, lighter in weight, etc, but I frequently found myself grabbing the ends of the legs when using this tool. Trying to grip any other way was just not satisfying. If you happen to have larger hands, this will be more noticeable.
Aside from personal preferences on ergonomics, the tool works very well cutting both 80lb solid core and 100lb hollow core braid. With limited usage, each and every cut was clean and didn't have any fuzzing, fraying, or loose threads. Cuts were made both under tension and completely slack, and the performance was identical to the naked eye. Further, it didn't seem to make a difference whether the serrated side was on the top or the bottom. Clean cuts either way.
For fun, I dunked the tool in tap water to test out the "Non-Slip Handle" feature. It was good. The "dry" grip was a bit better, but post dunk, it was still quite usable without slipping around. A slightly different handle material or texture in the mold would have been better, but still adequate as is. Unknown if wet and a bit of fish slime would affect the grip enough, but I imagine that would be a worst case scenario.
For me personally, I don't see the value of the lanyard attach, but for those that may find utility in this feature, the aperture is small (approximately 2.5mm in diameter and 3.15mm depth) and not reinforced within the handle material. Hence, this could be a failure point as the extrusion is just part of the handle.
The spring force is good. Difficult to quantify, but isn't too soft and isn't too hard to compress. It's in a nice sweet spot providing very good feedback to the user when using the tool.
The assembly is solid. The main pivot screw securely maintains both metal pieces firmly against the flat surfaces and has solid tension and zero slop. Very nice. The tips of the jaws line up perfectly at the peak, but my unit has the ever so slight, fraction of a millimeter gap toward the very tip of the cutting surface, which suggests the metal arms are very flat, but not perfectly flat. For high volume manufacturing, and this class of tool, this is more than acceptable and is made to very tight tolerances. As long as cuts aren't made at the very tippy top of the tool, there would be no problems, but realistically, who would do that? This is a non issue.
Limitations of My Usage/Experience
- Only did one cut of 15lb and 100lb monofilament. Not surprisingly, they were both very clean cuts.
- Tool was used perhaps a couple dozen times, so it's still very new and I don't expect any issues so early in its lifecycle. However, I am very aware that this will change dependent upon use/abuse, hence difficult to forecast the lifecycle.
- Tool was not exposed to outdoor elements such as salt water, rain, heat, UV, etc. Always indoors, so without extended usage and exposure, difficult to forecast functional reliability at this time.
Some details and specifics could not be confirmed as Pitbull doesn't answer their phones despite repeated attempts. Further, it would be nice if they had more details and specifics on their website.
As this is my first braid cutter, I don't have anything to compare against or experience with competitive products, so will refrain from commenting on the cost to value proposition.
Despite the smaller size of a hand tool, it does what it's supposed to do and does it well. Most notably, there were zero problems repeat ably and cleanly cutting 100lb hollow core and 80lb solid core with zero tension on the line. In total, I must have made about a couple dozen cuts thusfar, and have been very pleased with the performance. Perhaps if I'm bored and lonely one day in the future, I'll revisit this review with an update on the tool's cutting performance and how well the tool is holding up.
Overall, this is a simple to use, well made, and effective tool, that I would be happy to continue owning if it maintained performance in indoor conditions for 3-4 years with light usage, or 60 days of light usage (non deckhand use) in open water ocean conditions with minimal corrosion.
Thanks for reading.