How to cut wire from 4/0 to 22 awg

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This blog post will teach you how to cut wire from 4/0 to 22 AWG. These are the most common sizes of wires you will encounter on your DIY camper project. Cutting 4/0 to 22 AWG wire is pretty straightforward. Before we get into the meat of the blog post, here is a short three-and-a-half-minute video I’ve made to show you some of the tools I like to use for cutting wire.

How to Cut Wire (Video)

Wire Cutting Tool Cheatsheet

Here is a cheat sheet that will give you a rough guideline of which tools work best for various wire sizes. Remember, this is just a rough guideline. Cutting 22 AWG wire is totally possible with 16″ cable cutters, but it would be like trying to drive a nail for hanging a picture with a sledgehammer. Maybe not the right tool for the job.

Recommended Wire Cutting Tools

How to Cut 22 AWG to 10 AWG Wires

For the small wires you will find on your accessory runs like lights, fans, refrigerators, USB outlets and such, the best tool for cutting wires in the 22 AWG to 10 AWG range is a set of 4.5″ Dikes (https://amzn.to/32WUJPQ). Most of the 4.5″ dikes have spring loaded handles which makes for easy handling.

HOW TO CUT 22 TO 6 AWG WIRES

As the wires get bigger than 10 AWG, I recommend a pair of 8″ dikes (https://amzn.to/2PSQaks). These make easy work of any wire up to 6 AWG (or even up to 2 AWG if you have the hand strength. These are also good for cutting multi-conductor wires as big as 10/3 that you’ll find between a 30A shore power inlet flange and the inverter/charger or between the hot water heater and the breaker box.

How to Cut 10 AWG to 2/0 Wire

As wire gets bigger than 6 AWG, more leverage will be necessary for easy cutting and I recommend a set of 9″ cable cutters (https://amzn.to/2IswKi7). These will cut any wire smaller than 2 AWG with zero problem and will tackle 2/0 wire with little more than a mild grunt.

How to Cut 4/0 Wire

Last on the list are a set of 16″ Cable Cutters (https://amzn.to/2IoWE6i). These are an absolute necessity for cutting the 4/0 wire required in systems including a 3000w Inverter/Charger. They are huge and pretty pricy, but the leverage you can put on these is key for those who take ‘work smarter, not harder’ to heart.

3 thoughts on “How to cut wire from 4/0 to 22 awg”

  1. I’ve been looking and reading …even subscribing to numerous blogs. Your Explorist site site is by far the BEST.
    Your patience in explaining specific systems and components is excellent. You reduce complexity to bight size morsels. Check lists. REAL PRICES!!! (EVEN WAYS TO FIND ALTERNATIVE PRICES)
    Thanks Nate. I’ve learned a bunch

  2. Dikes: I was told back in 1975 it was an old Navy term, got this from an old sailor I worked with in a GM Dealership. Stuck with me and have used it since. As far as the term being used different now, oh yea. When teaching my high school students (1996-2012) I would use the term out of habit and got a lot of snickers from the kids and a few asked me about the name. Not sure why I never got called in for its use, guess maybe my students liked me, because now days it’s sure to piss off somebody. Hope nobody comes down on you.

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