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Having run into mechanical problems in the past, it’s not too often that I’ll set out in the dinghy empty handed. Even for a short trip to shore, I’ll typically have my waterproof bag with me, and inside it will be my wallet, a portable VHF radio, and my Leatherman. In fact, I carry my Leatherman with me in my Camelbak even when we go hashing. You never know when you might get stranded in the jungle! 🙂

Is it time to upgrade?

Yesterday, while catching up on the “news” on Facebook, I saw a post by Leatherman touting one of their newer models, the Signal. As I own one of the very original Supertools (image at top of post), I have to admit to being somewhat intrigued by the new features. The question is, do they make them as good as they used to, because my multitool seems pretty bombproof!


  1. The built in sharpener is a good idea.
    What do you do to keep the blade sharp?

  2. Happy Birthday Bro’.
    Wish we were there to raise a glass with you but be sure that you are in our hearts.

  3. Hi Guys,
    Totally agree on the usefullnes of a Leatherman… When sailing in Nordics i use my Leatherman Charge TTi and have been so for 20 years. It even has a slot for different bits which is handy too. A cpouple of years ago I misused it and broke the pliers and even though it was 15/18 years old then Leatherman repaired it for 10 $ by giving me a brand new. THAT is good service!

  4. For many years I worked in the theatre. I spent a lot of time up ladders hanging from ropes and generally working in a one handed environment. (You need one for the drink. Obviously! It’s the theatre, lovey.) The Gerber was always less hassle with one hand pliers operation. It also makes a very satisfying sound when you open it.

    All the best for the new year. 🙂

  5. In my experience the newer Leathermans are made with lower quality stainless steel and tend to be heavier. By way of example I bought a Leatherman Wave when the model first came out. I took it sailing and fishing in the Carribean, English Channel, Atlantic and Great Lakes. It never developed anything more than a superficial, surface-bloom of rust, which was easy to clean off. Then one day I broke the can opener and had to send it back for repair.
    After a bit of a battle (emails to Leatherman Canada, followed by emails to Leatherman USA, followed by a call to Leatherman USA) Leatherman finally agreed to honour the warranty. They replaced my Wave with a Wave2. The Wave 2 doesn’t fit the old quality leather sheath, the new sheath doesn’t come with a warranty, the Wave 2 is noticeably heavier, but most damming is that in one three week trip it completely rusted. I have made attempts at cleaning it and soaking it in WD40 over two days and polishing it but it is always going to be a bit rusty around the edges and the hinges aren’t smooth anymore. In short, if you are going to buy a new Leatherman do so through a company with a no-quibbles return policy like REI or MEC. My bet is that you will be returning it after a month or so. It is a shame, but Leatherman appears to have moved from being an innovator to a profit-centre.

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