A handy tool for working with wire, one which sometimes isn't used as much as it could be. I have seen people recommend having a pair of these for straightening wire, a good reason for a pair on its own. However this tool is far from a one trick pony (to use an Alton Brown term). I have used them to shape wire in more ways than simply making it straight. I've done some shaping with my nylon pliers that I've done before with my chain nosed ones, with the added benefit of having the nylon to protect the wire. This means less scratching.
If you look at the close up of the "jaws" of this tool, you can see that the nylon comes to a nice right angle on the sides. Very useful in making a square shape out of wire. Simply hold the wire in the jaws and bend over the side. I have also done spirals with wire using this tool. Round nose pliers are still needed to get the initial curve to start the spiral, but once that is in place, the wire can be held with the nylon jaw pliers while bending it into a spiral shape. Artbeads.com has a handy tutorial on making spirals out of wire, simply replace the chain nose pliers with nylon jaw ones. Depending on the wire, the first turn or two might still need the chain nose. If the start of the coil slips out of the nylon then work with the chain nose for that turn and try again with the nylon.
Sheep & Wool
4 months ago