There are all types of pliers that serve different purposes. A good plier set will be used often. From holding to cutting, these versatile tools perform all kinds of different tasks while wrenching on your motorcycle. As with screwdriver, these types of tools are so common that it is common to overlook the quality. I would bet most people haven't actually used a quality set of pliers. Low quality pliers tend to not open or close smoothly, then jaw teeth don't interface well, and the metal is soft. If this is the type of plier you are used to then you probably aren't impressed by these tools. 

When purchasing a plier set, I would suggest sticking to known name brands like Channellock or IRWIN. These guys have been making these types of tools for decades and they really have perfected the details.  Below is a list of typical plier types that all serve different purposes.

Plier Types
Slip Joint Pliers

This type of plier is probably what you first thing of when someone says pliers. These pliers are called "Slip Joint" because their jaw hinge point can slip between multiple hinging points allowing them to adapt to a large gripping range. These types of pliers are good for holding and gripping  round or flat objects. However, it's usually hard to get a good enough grip or leverage to remove stubborn nuts or bolts.

Long Nose / Need Nose Pliers

This type of plier has a long skinny nose. This allows them to get into tighter spots than slip joint pliers. The serrations or teeth on the jaws are also finer and therefore allowing you to pick up smaller and more fragile objects. Most of these types come equipped with a wire cutting feature as well. Some also are spring actuated. You will need a set of these at some point. There are a lot of small springs and clips inside of a motorcycle where these pliers will come in handy. 

Diagonal Cutting Plier

Unlike the other types of pliers, these pliers serve one purpose and that is to cut. These pliers can be used to cut electrical wire, cable, and even small fasteners in a pinch. The cutting edge of the plier is not in the middle but offset to one side allowing you to cut very close or flush to a surface. When shopping for a pair look for a heat treated cutting edge or else if you cut any type of hard metal it will damage the cutting anvils.

Straight Jaw Groove Joint Plier

Better know by the name "channellocks", which is actually a brand, these types of pliers are hard to beat when to comes to non locking gripping power. These types of pliers offer greater clamping force and more leverage for holding things than other pliers. The are also adjustable so they have a large gripping range. 

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