Snap Off Ends of High Tensile Wire (No Cut Method)

When you’ve finished tying a knot in wire, you can snap off the ends instead of cutting them with your pliers. It’s quicker, looks neater, and the end isn’t sharp so it won’t cut you or your animals. See how in this video from Tim Thompson.

Video starts playing at 4:20, just as he’s finishing the knot

The Technique

  • Finish your knot with 3 to 4 tight wraps around the wire.
  • Twist the tail of wire 90 degrees and crank.
  • The wire should snap without leaving a tail or a sharp end.
  • It seems to work best if you crank towards the body of the knot

I’ll confess I had a lot of trouble wrapping my head around this trick. It helps me to imagine that I’ve got another length of wire teeing in to my fence wire. After my 3 to 4 finishing wraps, I then take an imaginary wrap or two around the wire that’s coming in perpendicular.

Or you can think of it like you’re cranking a fishing reel and the fence wire is the rod.

It doesn’t really seem to matter which way you crank. Down the line or back toward your knot. In the video, Thompson cranks back toward the knot.

This works on softer wire, too. I’ve done it successfully on a Red Brand woven wire fence. It just takes a few extra turns of the crank.