The Snip – by Boomerang
Last year, whilst on a trip to the States, I found myself in the BassPro shop (How did that happen !!). I was looking at getting hold of some stainless steel pliers to use on the kayak, but like a kid in a sweetshop, I got side tracked by a gadget I hadn’t seen before. It was called The Snip, and it was made by a company called Boomerang. As I was looking at it, an American fisherman came over and started chatting to me. He told me that the gadget was really popular with anglers in the States and that they were great for cutting braid. They were reasonably priced, and quite light (to bring back on the plane), so I bought one.
Since I got back, I have used the snip for a good few months on the kayak (including saltwater) – and I have been impressed with its performance. Recently, I was contacted by Andy Richardson of yakgear.co.uk who asked me if I would review one. Given I had been using it for a while, I agreed. Rather than just my hearsay based on use, I thought I would set up something a bit more scientific…
The main use of the tool, for me, is for snipping the tag ends of braid and mono when joining sections of braid to mono line (especially when creating leaders for lure fishing). In the past I have used braid scissors or fly fishing nail type clippers – but the scissors were generally too cumbersome to get in close to the knots and clippers very often left a frayed bit of braid behind.
So I got a range of nylons and braids and put the snip to the test. Before we get into the details of the test, let’s have a closer look at the operation and specification of the tool.
- Boomerang Snip tool specification:
- Dimensions: 3.25 x 1.25 x 0.75? (8 x 3 x 1.5cm)
- Weight: 1.25oz (35g)
- Jaws: 420 Stainless Steel
The jaws of the snip can be closed and locked in place to avoid them sticking in anything (or anyone !). You can push the side plates to lock the jaws shut…
If you squeeze the sides and push them forward, the jaws open and the same sides can then be squeezed to operate the jaws
The snip also has a retractable cord which stops you losing it over the side of the kayak (although having said that, I might be a little bit reluctant to clip it to the front of my PFD, as it might catch on the kayak on self rescue – and knowing my luck, it would hit me square in the eye !). The retractor is 36 inches long, and a good idea.
The jaws are serrated, and made from 420 stainless steel – which should resist corrosion. When you look at the jaws close up, you can see why they are so efficient at cutting braid…
Okay, so back to the test – I had selected 3 different types and strengths of braid and nylon, and would tie leader knots in each one and see how the snip coped with cutting as cleanly and as closely to the knot as possible.
The braid/mono under test:
Varivas Super PE 0.15mm 9kg
Berkley Whiplash 0.10 inches 30lb
Spiderline 36Kg (80lbs)
Berkley Trilene 12lb flurocarbon
Red ice 15lb co polymer
Penn Sovereign 20lb mono
Test 1 : 20lb mono with 80lb braid
The spec of the snip states it will handle braids up to 60lbs, so I thought I would go one step further ! (apologies for the low quality of the knot – not my best effort !)
The snip coped with the 80lb braid and mono no problem – you can see how close I got to the knot – and no fraying.
Test 2 : 15lb mono with 30lb braid
Again, the snip got very close to the knot – a tiny bit of fraying on the braid, but not much.
Test 3 : 12lb fluro with 20lb braid
For me, this was the most interesting test – this is the sort of combination I use for my lure fishing when using braid, so I was interested in how well the snip would cope.
The snip allowed me to cut really close – and a very clean cut. I have had a fair bit of fraying when using cutters with the varivas braid – so I was quite impressed with the snip.
All in all, it confirmed what I already knew, but at least you can see the results for yourself, rather than listening to me drone on about it !
+ Performance – it cuts braid (and mono) cleanly and lets you get in very close to knots, and the blade can be easily locked closed
+ The retractor is a nice touch, and will stop it from going walkies
+ The price – a very reasonable £12
+ Blades are made of 420 stainless steel
+ One handed operation
– Its not the smallest braid cutter (then again, its very light)
Summing up, the Snip from Boomerang is a great little tool, especially for lure fishermen and braid users. There are plenty of other tools for cutting braid (clippers/scissors etc), but this is the most efficient tool I have seen (so far). It is now available in the UK from the following site for £12…