November 6, 2010

Product Review: Sixth Finger 5.5" Tungsten scissor

It's been nearly six month's since I laid my greasy mitts on one of Singlebarbed's “General Purpose” Sixth Finger 5.5" Tungsten scissors. I figure that's more than ample time behind the vise to give an honest review of what these tungsten laced snippers are capable of. Let's see how they fared.

Sixth Finger 5.5
I'm not gonna sit here and pimp these scissors to you; I'll let the consummate salesman Singlebarbed hock his own products. But I will give a brief rundown on the meat of these scissors. Here are the specs:

Sixth Finger 5.5" Tungsten scissor
5.5" length
Large, heavy jaw
Adjustable screw allows disassembly for blade sharpening or retightening
Tungsten carbide edges

Put into commercial service, these scissors have been put through their paces, seeing more than their fair share of abuse. Feather rachi, chenille, furry foam, latex, heavy wire, these blades have seen it all. No less than a half-thousand flies have passed before the tips of these blades over the past few months. To no surprise, these "GeneralPurpose" scissors have held up to the claim of being beefy, burly and brawny. The tungsten carbide tips have held up beautifully, cutting through 26 gauge wire without consequence. Following Singlebarbed's warning, I have refrained from cutting bead chain with these scissors, as I agree that a heavy duty shears or wire cutters is a more appropriate tool for that task. However, I did test them once to see if they would cut through bead chain, and they cut through a link of #8 bead chain with some flex of the blades. The body of these scissors has just the right amount of stiffness and flex that allows for strain-free use, especially under heavy sessions behind the vise. That's good if you want to avoid carpal tunnel syndrome like me.

still lookin' sharp
The finish of these scissors is what has seen the most abuse. The blue paint that these scissors were coated in has started to chip off the metal in the high wear and exposed areas. Short of anodizing these scissors, flaking paint is difficult to remedy in scissors used heavily or commercially. It's possible that the salt residue from my hands and fingers led to the paint weakening, however, the likely culprits are damage occurring from repeatedly setting down the scissors on my tying tray/table, and the other metal tools I store these scissors with in my traveling fly tying bag bumping against each other. Regardless, the fit and function of these scissors are not the least bit affected, and this is merely a cosmetic issue.

banged up, but not broke
You can pick up the General Purpose or any of the other Sixth Finger scissors over at Singlebarbed's e-commerce site. $29 will get you a pair of tungsten laced scissor goodness. Take it from me, if these scissors can pass the roughfisher test of abuse, then they will surely outperform any other scissors that you currently have at your vise.

Caveat Emptor: Singlebarbed gave me two pairs of "General Purpose" scissors for product testing, free of charge. He gave them to me not because he "likes" me, or thinks that I'm a "good guy", but rather because he knows that my penchant for burritos, malt liquor, and heavy metals will give these badboys the beatings that they deserve. The fact that these scissors were free had no effect on the outcome of this review. On the contrary, this review was completely subjective due to the fact that I had no financial investment in the product and little regard if they would have blown up at the vise.


  1. Salt in your hands affected the finish?

    I think that's more a by product of the deepest part of Winter, where you haven't got bit in a fortnight, and you start gnawing on them.

    My dentist said that's not such a good idea.

  2. The persistently high BAC surely didn't help the finish either.