Let me guess: if you’re reading this article, you are not a theoretical “tacticool” redditor, sitting in your mom’s basement. Probably you’re a person who is looking for practical solutions in tactical medicine. And my second assumption is: you’re interested in the specifical gear (because trauma shears are), because you may need to use it in real-life situations. And that’s great – today I tell you my personal experience about the best trauma shears.
Speaking about the best trauma shears, I can’t recommend you a lot of options. Why? Because there are a lot of chinese knock-offs and similar crap, that can let you down in an emergency situation. I just can’t recommend you to buy the medical shears that aren’t proven in the battle/emergency situations. However, I have good news as well: there are some awesome options available for buyers, so…
TL;DR: What’s The Best Trauma Shears?
The best trauma shears I can recommend for all kinds of medical personnel (and for all who are looking for the quality gear) are:
- Leatherman Raptor Rescue;
- North American Rescue Trauma Shear;
- SOG ParaShears.
And that’s all I can recommend to you. Of course, you can always buy noname EMT/EMS shears for less than $10, but… It’s all your responsibility for the upcoming consequences of using such kinds of shears.
1. xShear – The Best Overall
Definitely the best of the best trauma shears for now on. Widely used across the world in various war conflicts by combat medics/paramedics, as well as loved by EMS professionals. A few days ago I read an interesting thread on Reddit, and almost ALL of the medical professionals really love this tool most of all.
Why do I love this product? Simple:
- Titanium coated Japanese steel 420J2 – this is a Japanese modification of the American stainless steel 420. Super tough, reliable and safe.
- Blades are 2x more thick than shear blades in other brands.
- Comfort grip handles – I mean, really comfort.
- 5 year warranty.
xShear is probably the one and only durable shears that can easily withstand cutting off any types of materials – denim, canvas, cordura, and through zippers and Velcro. These shears are the best, by far.
2. Leatherman Raptor Rescue
One of the most popular options because of their look and functionality. As for my personal opinion, they’re just… fine. Probably not the best, but not the worst at all. As said by many medical professionals, they already have it, and use it, and these shears are really good.
As for me, this comment is demonstrative: I have had a pair for 7yrs. They’re fantastic, they’ve cut through everything from leather boots to cable tire chains without a problem, the added bonus of the O2 wrench and them folding up to clip in a pocket makes them a great tool.
Another SC Paramedic comment: Everyone in my 911 has raptors or close to it. Almost a promise to have a pair between a truck.
…And another one comment: They cut clothes 10x better than regular shears and I use the oxygen key literally every day.
But speaking about the cons, there are a few points you should be aware of: Raptors are a bit heavy, really pain-in-the-ass to clean, no way to open them with one hand, and they’re expensive.
3. North American Rescue Trauma Shear
Simple, but still reliable option. Yes, there’s nothing special like in the Raptor shears, but they do their job pretty well. In my personal experience, NAR shears are one of the most favorite options around soldiers. Also, rubberized grip is top-notch, and these shears won’t slip off your fingers in emergency situations.
What I really like in the NAR shears:
- Easy to clean;
- Cheap, so you don’t have to worry about loss;
- Reliable – even NAR shears are cheap, it doesn’t mean that they’re low-quality;
- Easy to use, have all the neccessary functions for almost all kinds of situations.
4. SOG ParaShears
This is an alternative option to the Leatherman Raptor. As for me, this is one of the best trauma shears, and many people compare them to the Raptors, and buy them as a good and cheaper alternative for Leatherman shears.
Any reason you may choose SOG over Raptors? Probably no reason, except for the design, functionality and smaller price. Speaking about functionality: Raptor has 6 tools, and ParaShear has 11 tools, including Inch Rule, MM rule, Shears, line cutter, glass breaker, tweezers, #1 Phillips, bottle opener, medium flathead, awl, rope cutter, and O2 wrench.
Any Other Recommendations for The Decent Trauma Shears?
Of course, you can also use other shears available in different stores. As an example, you can take Madisson Supply shears – it’s pretty cheap, but has a lot of positive reviews. Can’t recommend other options, because I didn’t use it (except for the cheap $3 shears that broke after 5 days of everyday usage) for a long time. Same thing can tell you any other medical professional – it’s hard to find someone who names any other best trauma shears except those I already named.