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As soon as I saw this, I thought, “why didn’t I think of that!?” Thingiverse user Brian Beebe designed an Electro Wire Stripper, a wire stripper that indicates when you’ve cut through the insulation. As soon as each blade comes into contact with the wire, it closes the circuit to turn on the LED, letting you know you’re ready to strip. The design files are available for download and 3D printing, you supply the plastic and components. How well does it work? According to Brian, it’s one of the best wire strippers he’s ever used. [via MakerBot]

Matt Richardson

Matt Richardson

Matt Richardson is a San Francisco-based creative technologist and Contributing Editor at MAKE. He’s the co-author of Getting Started with Raspberry Pi and the author of Getting Started with BeagleBone.

  • salman sheikh

    i uploaded the file to one 3-D printing co and its like $143 just for the 2 pieces..I could get a much nicer stripper for a fraction of but no good unless you already own a printer…

    • discutons

      Or you could drill a few holes in a piece of wood …

      • Tim

        That’s exactly what I was thinking. People get so caught up in the 3D printer, CNC or laser cutter concepts that they lose sight of what the thing is that they are making. In this case it’s just something to hook the circuit and razor blades to. If you really wanted it to be fancy you might try a printed circuit board.

        However, as Paul says, if the blades come in contact with the metal, you’ve cut too far. I have around 40 years of experience stripping wires. The right way to do it is to stop with the blade most of the way through the insulation. If you nick (touch) the wire you’ve done it wrong and ruined the wire.

  • Paul Howard

    I might be a bit anal here, but if you make contact with the metal conductors (with whatever you are stripping with), then you have gone too far.

  • Nick Stanton (@NickStanton)

    It looks lethal. You may have to factor in the Band-Aid costs too.

  • John Pattillo

    I think you could make one of these from regular wire strippers if you put some kind of insulating washer at the pivot point of the strippers.

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  • RoBoBaLLS

    “why didn’t I think of that!?”

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  • Linus Bravenius

    I made my own which sandwiches a pair of model knife blades between two 50x130x2mm pieces of plastic. It uses m3 screws and two nuts as spacers in between the two pieces of plastic, the blades are held by two screws each and hot glue is used to fix the components in between. With some macgyvering I got the blades very stable, the space between the sandwiched boards makes it incredibly safe, only way I could cut myself is if I forcibly stuck my finger in there.

    Also the red light DOES indicate when you’ve gone too far, if you pull when it lights the blades grip into the copper wire making it very hard to pull, the correct method is to back up a tiny bit, twist 90 degrees and it comes off effortlessly.

    If anyone’s interested in pictures, e-mail me at

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    You really make it appear really easy with your presentation however I in finding this topic to be actually something that I believe I’d never understand.
    It seems too complex and extremely wide for me.

    I’m having a look forward for your subsequent put up, I’ll try to get the hang of it!

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