Welcome to the workshop, Kowa Spoke Cutter. One tool we have been wanting to purchase for a while was a commercial spoke cutter. We carry a large inventory of spokes in a variety of sizes but we find on occasion we don’t have the right length in silver or black. So you then need to order a pack of 20 CX Rays or 100 Race to complete the build. This is costly financially and in delays to a build and can lead to odd lengths being leftover on the shelf. Enter the Kowa spoke cutter. We had a simple spoke cutter which got us of trouble a few times but as we have got busier it has become logical to purchase a commercial spoke cutter to help reduce delays and minimise spoke inventory. We looked around and there are a few options, the Phil Wood – a 2 action chop then roll device, the Morizumi (another 2 action) the gorgeous German made 1 action Cyclus and finally the Japanese made 2 action Kowa. We would have liked to go with the Cyclus but it was really expensive and as it would not get repeated daily use we opted for the Kowa as it is available from within the EU easily and seemed good value for money compared with the other options.
The day it arrived we were like kids in a sweetshop. The ability to cut spokes down to size is a big asset to us and we are very happy with it. The photo shows a spoke in the cutting position with the ruler indicating the length of the cut required visible. Pulling the rear lever operates the shear action which leaves a flat clean cut and the offcut drops into the base of the unit. The thread roller action needs to be adjusted for the size of the spoke before use and is then locked in place permanently. The cut spoke is then inserted into the holder (just above the “O” on the Kowa logo) which traps it in place. Pull the lever down smoothly, the spoke rolls up the milled plate and it leaves a perfect thread on the end. It is quick and easy to use. We will mount the cutter onto a wooden (bread) board as it needs a wider base for stability.