Our editors at Finn’s Fishing Tips independently research, test, and recommend the best products to help you make purchase decisions. You can learn more about our review process here. We sometimes get a commission through purchases made via our links.
Fishing pliers are an invaluable tool when out on the water, especially in saltwater fishing situations. Many saltwater fish (like sharks, barracuda, bluefish, mackerel, and yellowfin) have extremely sharp teeth and very strong bites, which makes unhooking them with your bare hands dangerous. Wahoo have been known to chomp the inexperienced fishermen’s fingers clean off with their double-hinged razor-sharp jaws.
So what’s a saltwater fisherman to do? Get a pair of saltwater-approved fishing pliers. Fishing pliers are not only useful for unhooking feisty saltwater fish, but they’re also helpful for cutting lines and fixing mechanical problems while you’re out on the water.
A good pair of saltwater pliers will come in handy more than you would expect. That’s why we’ve put together this useful buying for the experienced saltwater fisherman looking to buy a pair of saltwater pliers.
In this buying guide, we reviewed all levels of saltwater pliers and picked out the best options at different price points and feature capabilities. Ready to learn more about the best saltwater pliers for 2020? Let’s dive in!
In a Hurry? Here’s Our Top Picks…
KastKing Speed Demon Pro Saltwater Fishing Pliers
The KastKing Speed Demon Pro Saltwater Fishing Pliers are our winner for the overall best saltwater fishing pliers. It has more positive reviews online than any other pair of saltwater pliers and is time-tested in the most intense saltwater fishing conditions.
KastKing pliers are 46% harder than aluminum pliers and nearly 3 times stiffer than other plier options available on the market today. Designed for utmost performance, these saltwater pliers work well in freshwater situations as well. The jaws of the pliers have many different uses and are able to cut all types of fishing line. They even stand up well to metal leaders!
KastKing has really made its’ presence know in the fishing world the last few years, and the brand has become very popular with anglers of all kinds.
The KastKing Speed Demon Pro Saltwater Fishing Pliers are cast out of corrosion-resistant 420 stainless steel. The stainless steel is then coated with a tough Teflon coating for added protection against the elements.
They utilize tungsten carbide cutting blades on the side of the pliers that will cut through all types of fishing lines. They’re side-mounted for easy access and for flush cutting when tying knots or using a light fishing line.
Their multifunction jaws work perfectly will all types of fish hooks and include crimping slots for securing split shots or constructing a steel leader. They’re also available with both a straight nose and split ring nose design.
The KastKing Speed Demon Pro Saltwater Fishing Pliers come with a rubber handle that prevents slipping even when wet. The grip is ergonomically designed and provides both comfort and control when battling a saltwater fish.
They also come with a fabric belt sheath and stretchy lanyard to prevent dropping while out on the water. The sheath has a clip on the side that works perfectly with belts or waistbands. This gives the pliers easy access and improved usability.
- Great for new fishermen or veterans.
- The best combination of features, durability, and value for the price.
- Slightly more expensive than the most economical options.
The KastKing Speed Demon Pro Saltwater Fishing Pliers are our choice for the best saltwater fishing pliers for the money. They’ve been bought by thousands of fishermen (expert and novice) and won’t disappoint.
Gerber Magniplier Saltwater Pliers
The Gerber Magniplier Saltwater Pliers are the prestigious knife brand Gerber’s answer to saltwater fishermen looking for the best saltwater plier no matter the cost. And they’ve delivered. The Magnipliers have been optimized over years of testing for the harshest saltwater fishing conditions.
They are designed so the space between the pressure-applying handles is optimized to engage when grip strength is at its highest. You’ll be able to yank the deepest hook sets out of the most aggressive saltwater fish. For the fisherman looking to have the best and will to pay for it, the Gerber Magniplier does not disappoint.
As with all Gerber metal products, the company has spent thousands of hours designing and building the design in-house with custom engineering. The finger coil is oversized and integrated into the handle to add extra control over plier movement.
The spring has also been designed to lessen hand fatigue and can be locked in place by a plunge lock built into the handle.
The nose of the pliers is off axis for improved line of sight while using the pliers to remove a hook are snip line. Their trigger grip has Gerber exclusive BearHand control grip which ensures the pliers stay steady in hand while removing hooks.
The Magnipliers are designed with Salt RX corrosion-resistant metal alloys which offer superior protection against corrosion, wear and tear, and extreme shock.
The Gerber Magniplier Saltwater Fishing Pliers are 7.5” long and 3.5” wide when closed. They weigh 12 ounces and come with a grommet for lanyard attachment.
- Its unique design provides ultimate performance
The Gerber Magniplier Saltwater Fishing Pliers are perfect for the saltwater fisherman who demands the best. While they may cost double or triple what some of the other options in guide cost, they are packed with professional-grade features and will handle the most intense saltwater fishing situations.
Most Economical Winner
Rapala Salt Angler Fishing Pliers
The Rapala Salt Angler Fishing Pliers are perfect for the saltwater angler whos on a budget. Costing much less than other saltwater pliers we reviewed, the Rapala Salt Angler Fishing Pliers have everything you need to keep your hands away from hooked saltwater gamefish. They also have a longer length than other pliers, which helps with hooks that fish have swallowed or when there are teeth you don’t want to deal with.
The Rapala Salt Angler Fishing Pliers have all the features you demand in a pair of saltwater pliers at a fraction of the cost.
They have a side cutter for clipping fishing lines, ergonomic rubber handles to prevent slipping, and extended reach for deeply hooked saltwater fish.
The pliers have been forged from nickel-plated carbon steel that is resistant to corrosion and intense saltwater fishing situations. The plier’s spring is hidden between the grips and has a simple design that won’t wear out after years of use.
Each plier handle end has a hole for lanyard connections or a simple string if you’re being economical.
The Rapala Salt Angler Fishing Pliers are 8.5” long which gives them an extended reach compared to other saltwater plier options. They weigh 9 ounces and are 4.8” wide when closed.
- Much cheaper than other high-rated options.
- Longer reach than other pliers
- Not as feature-rich as more expensive options
If budget is important to you, the Rapala Salt Angler Fishing Pliers are your best bet for economical saltwater fishing pliers. They have all the features you’ll need while out on the water, but don’t cost nearly as much as the other pliers we reviewed. If you’re cool with the simple design, then the Rapala Salt Angler Fishing Pliers are for you.
Piscifun Aluminum Saltwater Fishing Pliers
The Piscifun Aluminum Saltwater Fishing Pliers are another great option that’s slightly less expensive than our overall best winner, the KastKing Saltwater fishing pliers. They have many of the same features as other more expensive models but aren’t as economical as the Rapala saltwater pliers.
Piscifun has been making fishing accessories and equipment for many years and their level of fit and finish reflects their expertise in the industry. They’ve designed the jaws of their pliers to work in many different situations – from removing hooks to crimping steel leaders. The Piscifun saltwater fishing pliers can do it all!
The Piscifun Aluminum Saltwater Fishing Pliers are built out of corrosion-resistant aluminum that’s anodized at an aircraft-grade specification. This helps prevent all forms of oxidation and is great for long-term use.
The handles are CNC milled for precision and aluminum is used to keep weight down.
The pliers are spring-loaded which helps them open freely. The steel jaws are titanium coated for hardness and come with a split ring tip for removing hooks and splitting rings.
The replaceable tungsten carbide cutter is perfect for cutting all types of fishing line and are sharper than other models on the market.
The Piscifun Aluminum Saltwater Fishing Pliers are 7” and weigh 8 ounces. Replacement blades for the cutter can often be bought at your local hardware store. The Piscifun Aluminum Saltwater Fishing Pliers come with a fabric carrying case that attaches to a belt or waistband via a side clip.
- A great option for saltwater pliers that can do it all.
- Less expensive than some options.
- More expensive than some of the budget options.
The Piscifun Aluminum Saltwater Fishing Pliers are a great choice for anglers looking to save a little money compared to the KastKing pliers. They come with all the features you’re looking for in a pair of saltwater pliers, and are easily maintained by visiting your local hardware shop.
We wanted to highlight a few overarching features we looked for when picking the saltwater pliers we reviewed above.
When you’re out on the open water fishing for saltwater fish, you need a pair of pliers that serve as a multi-tool as well. There are many different tasks that can come up when fishing: cutting lines, crimping rigs, and unhooking deep-hooked fish.
We’re looking for pliers that can do all of these things and do them well. These pliers also are great for toothy freshwater species, like pike.
Author Note: Probably the most important requirement of saltwater fishing pliers is that they are corrosion resistant/proof. They’re going to be constantly bombarded with saltwater spray, and the last thing you need is your pliers to wear out from rust.
So we only reviewed pairs of pliers that were saltwater rated and had anti-corrosion measures in place. This could be due to using stainless steel, anodized aluminum, or tungsten carbide. Any of these options helps with corrosion and was something we specifically looked for. Looking for saltwater spinning reels too? Check out our saltwater spinning reel buying guide too!
A good pair of pliers as mentioned earlier should have several different features that we can use for many things on the water.
Wire cutters work great for cutting leaders or fishing lines like monofilament and fluorocarbon, and some may be able to cut braided fishing lines.
Crimpers also are great additions if you regularly build your own leaders when on the water for saltwater species, or pike and musky angling.
Another awesome feature many pairs of pliers will have slots to tune lures like crankbaits and glide baits, this allows you to tune lures that don’t run correctly in a pinch.
A tooth for the opening split rings is essential, this allows you to change out hooks quickly or add split rings to the front eyelets easily.
Grip and Jaw Length
The comfortability of the plier’s grips was also another important factor we looked into when picking out the best saltwater fishing pliers for 2020. We wanted to recommend pliers that would be comfortable to use after hours of fishing, and didn’t sacrifice strength or jaw pressure either.
We also took into account the length of the plier’s jaws. Many saltwater gamefish have dangerous mouths that you don’t to get your fingers close to at all. We wanted our reviewed pliers to be able to reach the deepest hooks safely and efficiently without putting anglers in danger.
Pro Tip: Longer jaws also keep your hand further away from hooks, and when a big mean fish is thrashing around in a net or along the side of the boat, a hook could easily find its way into your hand, while still being attached to an angry fish.