Top 11 Best Aviation Snips (2023)

Metalwork and HVAC ducting projects often require the right tools to cut and fabricate different types of materials. Usually, these tasks come with a range of hassles when you use low-quality tools.

As a craftsman that works with cutting tools for corrugated roofing metals and products, metal roofing, it’s very important to keep a toolbox of functional tin and aviation snips set. Apart from metal-cutting jobs, offset tin snips have serrated cutting edges and blades that can slit plastic, electric wires, and other materials.

Before buying aviation snips set, it’s wiser to consider the thickness of metals that are compatible with these tools. A good pair of aviation tin snips come with well-aligned blades for straight cuts. Usually, quality tin snips have internal locking mechanisms that keep their blades intact.

Some models of aviation snips have spring-loaded mechanisms too. The difference between tin and aviation snips is not much, but their unique advantages are enjoyed by professionals in various industries.

However, the difference between tin and aviation snips is that the latter is suitable for making directional cuts. If you need to make cuts without applying too much frictional force, aviation snips are the ideal tool for this purpose. To cut 24-gauge (0.024 inches) stainless steel plates, use sturdy tin snips with non-slip handles.

While tin snips are designed for long cuts, metal-cutting tools that reduce the user’s fatigue are must-haves for craftsmen. Top-performing snips have soft handles that support comfortable grips. This ease of handling often gives you some leverages when cutting thicker materials.

You must consider different factors when choosing a favorite tin and aviation snips. Some of the top-rated models of these cutting tools have been analyzed in this buying guide, and it will ease your search for a functional tool. metal-cutting tool.

11 Best Tin & Aviation Snips

#01. Wiss Crescent Wiss M3R 9-3/4″ MetalMaster Compound Action Snip

Wiss Crescent Wiss

Are you searching for double-action snips that are suitable for use on metal lathes? Wiss MetalMaster Compound Action Snip comes with a serrated jaw that’s made from molybdenum steel.

These jaws have non-slip edges and serrations that ensure every material is held firmly. Also, the blade serrations can be used for straight and side (left and right) cuts. While this pair of tin snips makes aggressive cuts, the jaws help to distribute the cutting force across serrated blade edges evenly.

When cutting metal pieces, you can avoid tears at the end of these materials. This tool comes with a built-in mechanism that controls its blade bypass and reduces unnecessary folds and burrs.

  • The length is 9-3/4 inches, and it’s made from precision cast materials

  • You can cut 1.5-inch, 18 gauge steel, and low-carbon metal materials

  • It’s designed for single-handed (left or right-handed operators) latch applications

  • It doesn’t make fine curved cuts.

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#02. AmazonBasics 3-Piece Aviation Snip Set


A good 3-piece aviation snip set that makes straight, left, and right cuts can improve the quality of your craftsmanship. This AmazonBasics Aviation Snip Set is ergonomically-enhanced with a blend of colorful handles, and soft grips.

As a 3-piece set with serrated-edge blades, you can make easy cuts from any angle efficiently. Also, the blade serrations contain chrome vanadium steel elements that guarantee precision cuts.

This pair of aviation tin snips is an ideal tool that makes left, right, straight cuts with strength. Apart from ensuring a firm grip with the soft handles, you can protect the serrated-edge blades by locking them with a built-in.

  • An eye-catching design of double-colored handles

  • It comes with a lock mechanism that uses an auto-release knob

  • It provides high-tensile strength for between 18 to 22-gauge stainless steel materials.

  • The lock screw doesn’t seem like a sturdy component. So, you might have to tighten them regularly.

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#03 MIDWEST Aviation Snip Set


Midwest Tool & Cutlery Aviation Snips can provide clean, and fast cut. It provides compound leverages for the easiest cutting operations, and a super-strong handling force. Also, it comes with Kush’N-Power grips the enhances the motion of your hands and prevents the risk of slipping your finger into its sharp serrated blades.

The molybdenum alloy steel has a high tensile strength that delivers enough cutting power for a range of materials. There’s no risk of fatigue during repetitive motions and excessive hand pressures during operations.

With this austemper heat-treated steel, you can enjoy the maximum strength to make either left and right cuts.

  • A durable set of forged blades

  • Non-slip ribs and strong handles that ensure the safety of your fingers

  • It requires less hand force.

  • It doesn’t have a locking latch and an auto-release mechanism to secure the serrated-edge blades.

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#04. CRAFTSMAN CMHT73756 Aviation Snips


Do your metal-cutting operations require aviation snips with sturdy, and sharp shears? This CRAFTSMAN Aviation Snip offers straight cuts, and it’s a durable tool.

It’s ideal for cutting thin sheets of aluminum, 22 gauge (0.7mm), and 18 gauge (1.2mm) steel plates. The non-serrated blades are marked with 1/4-inch measurements for precise and fast cuts. Also, this tool has a spring-assisted latch that allows one-handed operations.

With this pair of easy-to-use CMHT73756 Aviation Snips, you can make straight cuts without deforming the induction-hardened blades. Also, there’s enough clearance of the edge of these blades and they can stay sharp for a long period.

  • A lightweight (15.2 ounces) that’s convenient for one-handed operations

  • It’s suitable for cutting stainless and cold-rolled steel plates with a range of thicknesses levels

  • Multi-colored handles with anti-slip pads

  • It’s a straight-cut aviation snip that only makes one-direction cuts.

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#05. FINDER 12-Inch Aviation Snips

FINDER 12-Inch

This 12-inch Finder Aviation Snip is a 300mm pair of scissors that are designed to make straight cuts and wide curves in different directions. It comes with a thick serrated jaw and rust-proof CR-V steel blades. With a hanging hole attached to the tail of its TPR handle, you can organize this work tool conveniently.

These TPR handles are designed with soft covers that allow comfortable grips, indented ribs that reduces any risk of finger fatigues during operations. Usually, austemper heat-treated steel blades are versatile. They can make cuts on vinyl tiles, shingles, plastics, and other hard materials.

Finder cutting shears are powerful, and this pair of aviation tin snips have a double-lever design that’s very durable. Another important benefit of buying this aviation snip is that you can make long and straight cuts on materials with either the right or left hand.

  • The TPR conforms with the motion of your hands

  • It comes with a metal safety lock for safe operations

  • It has efficient serrated cutting edges that prevent the slippage of materials during operations

  • This tool’s lever points require consistent lubrication to ensure seamless cuts.

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#06. Hurricane 02-024 10 Inch Aviation Tin Snips

Hurricane 02-024

Hurricane Aviation Tin Snips come with Chrome-vanadium steel that has great tensile strength. This cutting tool is designed for straight, left, and right cuts. Its serrated-edge blades can handle copper (17 gauge), carbon steel (18 gauge), aluminum (16 gauge), and stainless steel (22 gauge) materials.

With a 10-inch aviation tin snip, it’s convenient to cut 1/16-inch (1.7mm) cold-rolled steel plates. Also, this tool comes with a bi-color TryeGrip handle that can be used with wet hands.

After using this cutting tool, you can activate its locking latch to protect its serrated-edge blades from impact damages. This safety mechanism is a surefire way of enjoying the long-lasting CRV blades.

  • The steel cutter is a premium material with sanding finish

  • You can make extra-long straight, left, and right cuts

  • The dual-color rubber handles offer comfortable grips

  • These rubber handles don’t seem to have durable anti-slip materials.

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#07. IRWIN 21304 11-3/4-Inch

IRWIN 21304

This IRWIN 11-3/4-Inch snip is a cutting tool for versatile operations. It comes with drop-forged steel blades that cut sheet metals, plastic, and vinyl materials with maximum strength.

It’s an amazing experience to use snips with Pro-Touch handles because the grips enhance your comfort during operations. Also, this pair of textured-grips resists twisting, fingers’ and hand slippages.

While the flat blade 26-gauge stainless steel, they also offer enough force for cutting cold-roll steel (24-gauge) materials. IRWIN multi-purpose snip has jaws with precision-ground edges that are held by a sturdy spring washer.

  • The flat blade ensures a tight grip on materials

  • A set of drop-forged steel blades that guarantees premium cutting quality

  • Durable construction

  • The E-Z close latch might require0 consistent lubrications to work very well.

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#08. BONSWAGOO 3-Pieces Aviation Tin Snips


Do you want to enjoy superior cutting quality with durable aviation tin snips? BONSWAGOO 3-piece Aviation Tin Snips is a 10-inch cutting tool that’s made from premium chrome-vanadium steel. This tin shears have passed through high-frequency heat production processes.

This BONSWAGOO snip model is a dependable tool for a range of metalworking, PVC, and wire mesh cutting operations. The non-slip handles offer stable grips when you use them with wet hands.

It’s easy to make left, right, and straight cuts with different angles on respective metal plates. Also, it comes with a thick serrated cutter that’s ideal for 26-gauge (stainless steel) and 24-gauge (cold-roll steel) materials.

  • A 3-piece set of aviation tin snips for multiple applications

  • The flat blades cut smoothly

  • It has an easy-to-latch lock for the serrated-edge blades

  • Sometimes, the shear’s lever point might be hard to open and close.

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#09. Bastex Straight Left and Right Aviation Tin Snips


If you have tough sheet metals, Bastex Aviation Tin Snips are designed to slice through them like butter smoothly. Usually, aviation tin snips with hardened steel jaws are more impact-resistant than regular cutting tools.

This pair of aviation tin snip is safe to use because it has a built-in latch and lock knob. With this safety mechanism, you can keep your fingers and hands safe during cutting operations. Apart from tough metal sheets, Bastex Compound Scissors Shears can make straight, right, and left cuts on thin aluminum tins.

It allows you to apply some amount of hand force during heavy-duty cutting operations. However, this shear aviation tin snip has 2 pivot bolts. With this design, you can apply a minimal amount of pressure to cut the recommended sheet metal.

  • It’s suitable for cutting 18-gauge wires, and metal screens,

  • It has a space-saving design that ensures the ease of storage in toolboxes and drawers

  • Apart from its compound scissors design, it comes with durable rubber handles.

  • It might not cut through a 2mm aluminum plate very well.

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#10. Stanley FatMax 14-563 9-7/8-Inch Straight Cut Aviation Snip

Stanley FatMax 14-563

These Stanley FatMax Aviation Snips are built for straight-cuts. When you need extra leverages to cut thick materials for arts and crafts projects, aviation snips with serrated-edge blades are preferable options.

This model has a compound action that ensures straight cuts with ease. Also, the well-designed serrated edges ensure precise cuts and avoid slippages during operations. Apart from the compound-cutting action, Stanley 9-7/8-Inch Aviation Snip is designed with chrome-molybdenum steel jaws.

These forged pieces of metal alloys can resist wears and tears from impacts. It’s the right material that can handle any snipping job that involves 23-gauge stainless steel materials.

  • It provides a high-leverage to cut 18-gauge (cold-rolled) steel plates

  • It comes with as bi-material handles that cushions your grip

  • The serrated-edge blade deliver sturdy bites on metal plates

  • These padded handles are color-coded for easy identification of this tool

  • You might need to grease the springs consistently for the lever points to open and close freely.

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#11. MIDWEST MWT-6516 Offset Tin-Cutting Shears


This model of Midwest MWT-6516 snips is designed for cutting materials with thin and irregular shapes. You can deliver the cleanest cuts with straight-cut offset shears that have sharp serrations.

Another impressive design that will improve the quality of metalwork is a pair of KUSH’N-POWER Grips handles. They contain high-tensile steel rods that are covered with non-slip rubbers.

Unlike poorly-designed tin-cutting shears, no amount of hand pressure can alter the shapes of these handles. Instead, these handles will provide swift conversion of hand forces during cutting operations. The MWT-6516 long-cut aviation snip comes with Glide-Tech blades. These blades can cut metal roofing sheets, and vinyl tiles smoothly.

  • It comes with an 8: 1 power ratio

  • A very durable construction

  • Ideal for straight cuts of 2-3/8 inches (66. 3 mm)

  • The jaw is designed with 40 serrations per inch

  • This tool is easy to use

  • The locking latch knob is made from low-quality material.

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What To Consider Before Buying Tin And Aviation Snips

Good craftsmen or avid installers often considers the requirements of any project before choosing their tools. It’s a frustrating experience to use poorly-designed models of tin and aviation snips.

If their blades don’t become dull quickly, the screws in their lever points could become slack after consistent usage. These are some useful tips that help to pick the right cutting tool.

The Cutting Direction

If you are ambidextrous, it’s very easy to use models of tin and aviation snips to make irregular cuts. However, these tools are designed to make cuts in specific angles and on straight lines. You must understand the right cutting tool that is suitable for folding, and shaping different gauges of metal sheets.

Usually, aviation (compound ) snips have color-codes, and the shape of their pointed noses are shaped to indicate their respective directions. Right offsets cutting tools often have green handles.

A Sturdy Construction

Regardless of the lightweight of any model of tin and aviation snips, they should have strong and wide blade-opening designs. Also, impact-resistant and forged materials like molybdenum alloy steel often have tough cutting-edge blades.

When these types of cutting tools drop on hard surfaces, you are very confident in picking them up in one piece. Consider offset-snips that can grip irregular materials securely. This factor determines how consistent your cuts will be during operations.

The Ease Of Use

Don’t forget to check the ease of opening tin cutting shears. Since they use pivot bolts as lever points, you might need to apply lubricating oils after buying an

inferior model. However, most premium models of tin and aviation snips use grade-8 blade pivot bolts and heavy-duty spring. These designs ensure that operators can optimize the functions of their tools easily.


Hand tools that can hold up very well are often durable. One of the ways of ensuring durability is by checking customers’ reviews and the components of these tools.

Normally, experienced tin and aviation snip users consider the sturdiness and qualities of their favorite tools. Also, they compare these features with other models of cutting tools. If you need tools that can handle thicker sheets of metal plates, choose high-quality cutting tools that have tough bites and wider jaws.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

As a beginner metalworker, how do I know when to use tin snips?

It’s very easy when you know the thickness of the sheet metal. However, you shouldn’t use tin snips to cut 2-inches sheets.

If you force the (serrated or non-serrated) blades to cut these types of sheets, you’ll have rough and uneven cuts. In worse conditions, you might compromise the blade’s integrity, and dent the serrated blades.

What is the difference between right, left, and straight offset cutters?

As their names imply; straight offsets make long lines of cuts on sheet metals. While right offset cutting tools cut in clockwise directions, the left offset snip makes counter-clockwise cuts.

Can I sharpen tin snips?

Usually, hand tools that have sharp blades can be sharpened. It’s a regular maintenance routine to sharpen your tin snips. While you can sharpen ground edge snips, it might be counter-productive to sharpen cutting tools with serrated edges.

However, the best method of filing tour tin snips is in a single direction. After grinding the edges of these blades, polish them with whetstones.

Final Verdict

As a competent workman, you shouldn’t be ashamed of your tools. It’s unfortunate to use low-quality tin and aviation snips because you might spend more time laboring without results. However, we have taken the responsibility of comparing well-designed cutting tools.

These 11 products are must-haves for avid installers and craftsmen. With any of these tools, you can cut the recommended materials easily and improve the quality of your expertise.

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Last update on 2023-09-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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