Piano wire for snare

Discussion in 'Hunting, Fishing & Gathering' started by tomme boy, Jan 10, 2017 at 8:50 PM.

  1. tomme boy

    tomme boy Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2015
    Messages:
    376
    Likes Received:
    428
    Location:
    iowa
    Has anyone used or tried piano wire for making a snare? I have rolls of it left over from when I used to install windshields in cars. We used it to cut out the glass and save the glass. The wire acted as a saw and cut through the sealant that was used.

    Anyway like I said I have about 500' of this wire left over. I have never tried to use a snare before and would like to know if it will work. It is basicly 2 wires twisted together if you don't know what it is. The type I have anyway.
  2. ozarkhunter

    ozarkhunter Hobbyist Hobbyist

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2014
    Messages:
    653
    Likes Received:
    1,218
    One way to find out...
    80mtn, 2jka, Makarov and 1 other person like this.
  3. woodstalker

    woodstalker Tracker Minor age 16

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2016
    Messages:
    177
    Likes Received:
    258
    Location:
    Ft. Towson, OK
    What diameter? The only other thing I can tell you is try it or send one of us some and we will.
    80mtn likes this.
  4. GKiT

    GKiT Supporter Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
    Messages:
    3,003
    Likes Received:
    1,855
    Location:
    rural America but not as far out as I would like
    Post a photo. what gauge or size is it? Depends on how stiff it is, how strong it is and what you are trying to snare. A good snare is a balance between strength, suppleness/rigidity and speed, all with a target animal in mind. You want it ridged enough to hold a good loop but supple enough to still close easily. You want it strong enough to prevent easy escape from twisting, abrasion or chewing. If you can fatigue the wire easily to the breaking point by bending it back and forth at the same point a few times, it is too weak. For small animals it may be ok if it meets the above requirements. I would imagine piano wire to be strong stuff but it may not hold a loop well or fire/close fast. The speed of your snare will depend on what kind of snare lock you use and how you build the snare. I could tell you more if I had a piece in my hand. Check your state regs as anything other than multi strand cable may not be legal. There is really no way to know without doing it and testing it but that info is a start. Free is good but it is not worth using if it is not the right stuff.
    tabasco_joe, 45jack and 80mtn like this.
  5. Haggis

    Haggis Guide

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2014
    Messages:
    2,535
    Likes Received:
    3,057
    Location:
    Northern Minnesota
    I'd imagine most any sized wire would work well as a snare some critter. That's what snare-folk do,,, match to snare to the to be snared,,,
    80mtn likes this.
  6. tomme boy

    tomme boy Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2015
    Messages:
    376
    Likes Received:
    428
    Location:
    iowa
    I'll get some diameters in a little bit. It is fairly stiff.
    Haggis likes this.
  7. Mukluk

    Mukluk Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2011
    Messages:
    234
    Likes Received:
    222
    Location:
    Canada
    I can't see why not...it just might be harder to make the little loop but maybe if you use those little metal clamps like those used in picture wires you should be good to go. They're called aluminum sleeves but we called them chokers, they come in common wire sizes.
    80mtn likes this.
  8. 80mtn

    80mtn Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2016
    Messages:
    247
    Likes Received:
    585
    Location:
    Silver City, New Mexico
    I use 80# test spiderbraid in green for a lot of things. I'm usually snaring ground squirrels or packrats. Holds a loop all by itself.
  9. tomme boy

    tomme boy Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2015
    Messages:
    376
    Likes Received:
    428
    Location:
    iowa
    Here is the wire. It is a 3 strand. I always thought it was 2. It has a diameter of 0.0316"

    [​IMG]
  10. GKiT

    GKiT Supporter Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
    Messages:
    3,003
    Likes Received:
    1,855
    Location:
    rural America but not as far out as I would like
    It looks quite stiff but it is hard to tell from a photo. Make up a snare and set an appropriate loop size for what you are wanting to use it for then test with your hand to see if it closes easily. Work with the memory of the cable (the natural lay of the cable from being on the spool) not against it when forming your loop. If the wire is as stiff as it looks, a small loop for small animals is not going to give you the speed in closing that you want. As a snare loop is closing, it encounters more resistance to close as the loop gets smaller. In other words if you made a big loop out of that wire, it may close fine for the first half of its travel but become too stiff and slow down too much as the loop size decreases. It may require too hard of a tug to close the loop and you don't want that. Good snare material will be stiff enough to hold the ideal loop size without closing or sagging on its own weight but be supple enough to close very easily once the animal enters the snare. The speed at which the loop goes from its fully open set position to the point where it tightens around the target animal is critical, especially with small, sleek animals as the target. Too slow and stiff and the animal can slide through without the snare closing around it.

    Multi strand cable generally has the right characteristics to make a decent snare but the small size of the individual strands gives the needed flexibility. It feels like "wire rope" more than like wire. Those three individual strands making up that wire look to be pretty stiff. Again hard for me to say for sure without holding it but I am guessing it might make a decent large animal snare but will be unsuitable for small stuff. If small stuff is your target, that material is overkill on the strength side and that will effect the way it works as a snare.

    You really have two major factors to deal with when making snares. One is simply the strength and being able to hold the animal and minimize escape once it is snared. You match the strength against your largest target catch, keeping in mind its power and how it often reacts when caught such as chewing/fighting/rolling etc... Bigger material is not better if smaller stuff holds the catch fine. The second is the mechanics of how the snare operates when an animal enters the loop. Both are important to make catches. In addition to this, it is a general rule of thumb that the smaller the animal is, the more difficult it is to snare and the mechanics of the snare become more critical. Imagine a large heavy beast can lumber through a big loop and easily close a stiff snare around itself. A small, slender and dainty animal that is used to weaving in and out of holes and such is a different target entirely.

    This is another topic but this difference in small vs. large targets is one of the reasons I don't understand the almost exclusive interest in squirrels and rabbits from the bushcraft/survival community when it comes to snaring. The room for error is more in your favor with bigger targets and beginners need room for error. Lets face it, most bushcraft/survival people will be throwing these into an emergency bag and are not running extensive snare lines every year. If they are ever in a situation where they need to feed themselves with snares, they are going to be making mistakes for sure and targeting only the little stuff is asking for even more problems. Beaver, raccoon, opossums and other medium sized animal as well as much bigger animals are far easier to catch consistently with snares in my opinion. It depends on where you live I guess and what animals are in your area in good numbers.
    aaronu and Bitterroot Native like this.
  11. Bitterroot Native

    Bitterroot Native Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2016
    Messages:
    288
    Likes Received:
    644
    Location:
    Oregon
    What are you planning on targeting with the snares? Any wire that holds its shape will do the job provided that it's slick enough to slide on itself, and it's strong enough to hold the animal you plan on targeting.

    If it's a larger animal I suggest making some swivels to put on your snares. When an animal is caught it will spin and spin and spin sometimes breaking the wire completely.
    I snare fox on a regular basis during trapping season, its surprising the amount of damage an animal can do to some strong wire!
  12. tomme boy

    tomme boy Scout

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2015
    Messages:
    376
    Likes Received:
    428
    Location:
    iowa
    I was going to try for rabbits. But I don't think it is going to work. It is really springy or stiff as was mentioned. Oh well I was trying to find a use for what I had. I am cheap and never throw anything away. It drives my old lady nuts!

Share This Page