Jewelry Making Tool Review: 4.8V Automatic Wire Twister

By on February 19, 2010
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Review by Rose Marion

Jewelry Making Tool Review: 4.8V Automatic Wire Twister

One of my friends in high school played the harp, and you wouldn’t expect it (I sure didn’t when she challenged me to a thumb wrestle), but playing the harp gives you very strong fingers! Harpists have to practice plucking a myriad of strings precisely and just hard enough to get the right volume and tone. Well, me not being a harpist, I have weak little fingers, and they just don’t like twisting wire. I lost the thumb wrestling contest, but lucky for me, I found this large automatic wire twister in the office today, so I thought I’d share my thoughts on it with you!

I’m really excited to share my review of our Automatic Wire Twister, one of the many jewelry making tools we carry. We have both the small (3.6V) and large (4.8V) versions in our office. The small version spins easily at 200rpm, but the large version can reach up to 400rpm. Both wire twisters come with rechargeable batteries, and have an average recharge time of 4-6 hours. Although the small one works great, I have to say I think I like the bigger one better!

The small wire twister fits easily in my hand, is fairly light for a machine that’s equivalent to my husband’s power drill, and can even twist itself in half, allowing you to operate it two ways (see below).

However, I prefer the grip of the larger power drill for my jewelry making. It fits snugly in my hand and has good grip-holding texture. Here’s a picture of the larger drill:

This drill has a larger battery pack for longer battery life and more power (twice as much revolutionary power as the 3.6V), so the drill itself has a more traditional “power drill” silhouette. The larger battery barrel at the bottom lets me rest the drill on the desk when I stop working, and it stays put—the smaller wire twister has a nifty rotating handle, but it will roll to one side when you put it on the desk. This way, if I’m working on a delicate piece with my fingers, I know exactly where my twister is when I need it again—I don’t even have to take my eyes off my work. You can even let the twister stay put on the table if you keep your hand steady on it, and feed the wire straight into the bit.

The large 4.8V drill operates by squeezing the on/off switch with your forefinger, regardless of which hand is your dominant hand. This is easier for me than the smaller drill, which operates by pressing the switch with your thumb (or, if you’re left-handed, it might be with your forefinger). I think the drill is pretty easy to use, and I really like the way it feels in my hand!

One last feature of the large 4.8V wire twister I noticed when I picked it up to use it for the first time: like my husband’s power tool, the wire twister has a key to change the drill bit. This key is stored in a snap-in compartment in the base of the battery pack, so it’s always handy and you’ll never lose it! This is helpful if you’ve accumulated several wire twister heads and you like to switch between them, or if you have other jewelry making drill bits that you use for drilling holes in metal sheets, reaming beads, and even unscrewing screws around the house! In contrast, the smaller twister self-locks, so it doesn’t even need a key.

Both wire twisters operate in forward and reverse, so you can twist your wire whichever way you like. Both wire twisters are completely battery operated, so you don’t have to worry about tripping over cords while working on your jewelry, or wasting time searching for a free outlet. Both wire twisters also come with A/C chargers, so when you’re through with your twister, just let it charge overnight, and it’ll be ready to go in the morning.

One of my favorite things to do with a wire twister is take a piece of square wire and wrap it with a ring or bracelet. Simple as it sounds, I love the effect just one piece of twisted wire can add. I also like to make rosettes with twisted round wire and add beads to make elegant necklaces. What are some of your favorite wire twisting projects?

Well, that’s all the scoop I’ve got on our automatic power twisters. As far as our other jewelry making tools, I’ve got my eyes on a new tool kit we’re putting together to review next—I’ve heard it’s got a nice case, a whole set of good pliers, and a ruler. I love being able to measure my pieces as I go, so I love that a ruler might come with the set. As soon as we finalize the set, I’ll let you know all about it!


3.6V Small Automatic Wire Twister

Twists at 200rpm

  • Rotating handle for increased control
  • Thumb operates drill (left-handers may use forefinger instead)
  • Chuck is self-locking

4.8V Large Automatic Wire Twister

  • Twists at 400rpm
  • Flat base to rest on table
  • Forefinger-operated
  • Key operates chuck


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