This review is in response to the Source Wanted post Garry Shirts submitted seeking a simple and reliable PVC pipe cutter to cut schedule 40 pipe. Although I admire the elegant simplicity of Garry’s tool, which lacks moving parts, I believe the Klein PVC cutter offers a couple of advantages.
I was introduced to this tool when I hired a friend who’s a professional landscaper to install a sprinkler system on my three-acre property. I was amazed at how quickly and efficiently the Klein tool was able to cut 3/4 inch PVC pipe as well as flexible 3/8-inch sprinkler pipe. The end cuts were clean, burr-free and square, which is helpful when gluing sections of pipe and fitting sprinkler heads. This tool was in constant use, and when it wasn’t in his hands it was light and small enough to be placed in his back pocket. The spring that opens the jaws and the ratcheting mechanism allow for easy one-handed operation. My friend also had an older, simpler model that I used that didn’t have the spring to open the jaws or the ratcheting mechanism that this Klein Tools model has. That older model wasn’t as efficient and required me at times to set down my work and use two hands to open the jaws.
My friend said this tool’s only drawback was that his crew often loses them as they are working in trenches with a lot of loose dirt around. At least they’re relatively inexpensive to replace. A safety orange-colored model might be an improvement. I liked this tool so much I bought my own and use it to cut just about anything that will fit in its jaws.