I am building a pneumatic shear to cut .135" C1018 round wire. We will be holding the wire in a hardened thimble and using a heat treated beveled cutting knife.

How much force do we need to be able to produce?

  • $\begingroup$ Is the diameter 135 inches or 0.135 inches ? i see a dot before number one! because the force i calculated is unbelievably big, and ingot is the correct name for 135 inches not wire. $\endgroup$
    – user14407
    Sep 26, 2018 at 16:36

1 Answer 1


I use to build a very simple model first, then try to expand it. Here i try to find the minimum, force require to cut the wire, by using Tresca criterion:

Yielding starts when the maximum shear stress in the material $\tau_{max}$ equals the maximum shear stress at yielding in a simple tension test $\tau_x$. You can verify the final result with the Mohr's circle: $$\tau_{max} = \frac{\sigma_y}{2}$$

Here $\sigma_y$ is the yield strength of your material. A quick google search, i find the yield strength of $370 MPa$.

Now, the force: $$\tau_{max} = \frac{F}{A}$$

$\tau_{max} = 185 Mpa$ and the section area of the wires are about is about $37 m^2$. The require force is about $6845 MN$.

I worked so far conservative, by using other criteria, you may find much lower values for the force, i think, but you have to make sure if the force is enough to cut through the wires.


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