SAK vs. Leatherman

Discussion in 'Edged Tools' started by jordanzwon1, Jun 17, 2019.

?

If you would only carry one:

  1. SAK (of your choice)

    48.1%
  2. Leatherman (of your choice)

    51.9%
  1. BradGad

    BradGad Supporter Supporter

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    À chacon son goût, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

    I am firmly in the SAK camp.
    • I have carried one pretty much every day since I was seven, long before the days of the Leatherman and its ilk, and I am just so used to them.
    • I like the way they fit in the pocket and the hand.
    • I use the toothpick and scissors a lot. The Leathermen don’t have toothpicks and I have never seen scissors on an LM-like multitool that I like as well as the Victorinox scissors.
    • Most of the time, I am using such a tool either around the house or in the kitchen, or out in the woods. I think the balance of tools on the SAKs is better for those, while the Leatherman is better for projects and repairs... but when I am doing those things, I am usually in my shop where I have every tool needed.
    I get antsy if I have to go to the bathroom without my SAK, much less go out into the world.
     
  2. Brommeland

    Brommeland Scout

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    I only own one Leatherman product at the moment - a Squirt. I cannot get the little knife blade to take much of an edge or to keep it. I solved the problem by buying a Victorinox Spirit X - it is excellent in every way. I consider it to be the King of SAKs.
     
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  3. Paulyseggs

    Paulyseggs Supporter Supporter

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    SAK.
    I have a couple of Leatherman tools. But every day I grab a SAK. Very rarely do I find my self wanting more.
     
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  4. BlueDogScout

    BlueDogScout Where is all the shelf stable bacon??? Supporter

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    This completes me lol... I hate work travel because I fly. I always know the closest knife shop to the airport though. Then I mail it home on the last day. Dunno what I’ll do when I go to Japan.
     
  5. kronin323

    kronin323 the barbarian Supporter

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    Eat sushi?

    Seriously though, if I'm checking baggage I'll put a SAK or something in there, that's allowed. Only when I'm carry-on only do I have to travel entirely blade-free. Almost. Instead I'll carry a 58mm SAK "jetsetter", which doesn't have a blade per se but does have scissors so you still have some cutting ability.

    upload_2019-6-18_12-57-14.png

    But, from what I read, in Japan specifically you can still carry pocketknives if the blade's under 6cm, so if you check one in your bag you should be okay.
    Source: https://www.tokyoweekender.com/2018/12/cutting-chase-knife-laws-work-japan/

    A minichamp like this would do the trick...

    upload_2019-6-18_13-5-31.png
     
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  6. BlueDogScout

    BlueDogScout Where is all the shelf stable bacon??? Supporter

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    I don’t normally check a bag so I guess for Japan I will lol nice option though, can you have those scissors on a plane?
     
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  7. kronin323

    kronin323 the barbarian Supporter

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    Yep.
     
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  8. BlueDogScout

    BlueDogScout Where is all the shelf stable bacon??? Supporter

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    Nice! Also, yes I will eat my body weight in sushi! Lol
     
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  9. squishware

    squishware Troubleshooter Supporter

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    I have never owned a SAK. I cannot make it two minutes without my Leatherman. I just typed this post with it!

    [​IMG]
     
  10. marbleman

    marbleman Supporter Supporter

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    Wave + both bitkits, on my belt nearly every day for 20 years.
     
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  11. CaliforniaCanuck

    CaliforniaCanuck Guide

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    I own several multi-tools and never warmed up to carrying one. I just don't need pliers very often and if I need a wrench (or screw drivers) I'm going to go to my tool box and grab the right size tool, and for wrenching most likely I'll grab my knipex pliers wrench to get the job done without marring the bolt head.

    This brings up a question for the EDC multi-tool people, what do you use the pliers for that you wouldn't go to the tool box for to get the proper wrench or wire snips?

    Are non-multi-tool people just too disciplined to use the pliers to turn a bolt head?
     
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  12. squishware

    squishware Troubleshooter Supporter

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    Men without multitools are okay with not being useful (I guess). I taught my sons if you have testicles you need a Leatherman on you at all times.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2019
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  13. Bdug

    Bdug Scout

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    SAK, currently the alox farmer or rescue tool. With that being said I carry a leather man everyday at work. I don’t need a ton of tools but the pliers are really handy. IMHO I don’t believe the SAK pliers can even compare to leathermans.
     
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  14. Tdr

    Tdr Scout

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    For when you don't have your toolbox close, up in an attic, in a soffit of a commercial building, thru a building , across a field, many situations when you just want to assess a problem without lugging a tool box with you.
     
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  15. BradGad

    BradGad Supporter Supporter

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    Gee... and everything was so civil up to this point. But perhaps you jest! Perhaps there is no need for us SAK aficionados to get riled at what seems like an imputation on our manliness and virility, or start pointing out your spelling errors.
     
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  16. Tdr

    Tdr Scout

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    I'm one up on that, I taught my daughter to carry a Leatherman and where to use the pliers if a man gets out of line!
    Actually I didn't, but I should have,
    Too late now since she already knows everything.
     
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  17. BradGad

    BradGad Supporter Supporter

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    This is a totally lousy hack work around... BUT... if your SAK doesn’t have pliers but you are using a Victorinox belt hanger, it can be used to turn a nut or bolt. (But if you are carrying a SAK big enough to need the hanger, just get one with pliers. They’re damned good pliers. Will handle a car battery, but so nice and precise on smaller tasks.)

     
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  18. 45jack

    45jack Supporter Supporter

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    I carried a Victorinox Champion for years, now usually an Explorer.
    And maybe a huntsman or ranger in my bag. That covers most of the SAK tools and if I lose the one in my pocket I didn’t lose my only tool.
     
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  19. riokid87

    riokid87 Scout Banned

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    If I really could only have one, leatherman for sure.
    The pliers are handy for so many tasks like removing and rebending hooks, grabbing a hot pan, smashing a split sinker, many other possible uses.
    I have a huntsman, farmer, and Spartan. Like all 3. But for a basic camp multifunction bsa/sak style knife I prefer the blade steel in the old camillus bsa and army 4 blade knife and find the claw type can opener much more usefull for other tasks than the sak can opener.
    But those old ones are getting hard to find while saks are everywhere. If I dropped my farmer in the lake that wold be a shame. If I dropped my Case or Ka Bar in the lake that would be a crying shame.
     
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  20. Tdr

    Tdr Scout

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    This pole kinda reminds me of other poles that are taken by bushcraft members.
    Usually the thread dies and everyone just moves on.
    Like a fixed blade versus a folder pole that was taken months ago. I expected the fixed blade would win.
    It wouldn't be bushcraft forum otherwise.
     
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  21. marbleman

    marbleman Supporter Supporter

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    I use all the other Leatherman tools much more than the pliers/bolt scenario. A Wave has (mostly) proper wire snips/strippers, without additional pocket baggage. I always carry more tools in my vehicle, but I work indoors. A Leatherman Wave (with both bitkits) is a reasonable alternative.

    I also carry a flashlight on my belt, and another sharp thing in the watch pocket. Zero actual pocket-space is used. No matter which pants I wear, as long as I have a real belt, the EDC layout is identical.

    I work on computers. Your Mileage May Vary.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2019
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  22. CaliforniaCanuck

    CaliforniaCanuck Guide

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    It sounds like you need the 7" knipex pliers wrench, and a 6-way screwdriver on you when doing inspections or service calls!

    Those two professional grade tools and the small pocket knife would have most bases covered and you wouldn't be buggering up any fastener heads.

     
  23. Stophel

    Stophel Scout

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    I've carried (and USED) a Leatherman Wave for many years. I would not go anywhere without it. Swiss Army Knives just never did anything for me. I mean, I've never needed a corkscrew or a bottle opener... I've used almost every tool on my Wave, even out in the woods... well, except for the bottle opener.
     
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  24. JGB

    JGB NO SIGNAL Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Let’s ask this guy what he used to disarm it...
    19B87F2C-C2A8-4216-A6A6-45206E0746FA.jpeg
    Although it may have just been a paperclip
     
  25. Jim Farkle

    Jim Farkle Scout

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    Leatherman. But if anyone has a huntsman they liked to trade. im more than willing to try one out. Have never had one since my 5th christmas, when my aunt got me one as a gift and i sliced my finger pretty bad on the snowy car ride home.
     
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  26. kronin323

    kronin323 the barbarian Supporter

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    Those are interesting. Pricey, but interesting. Wish list added.
     
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  27. Wil

    Wil Scout

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    I never carry my SAK. My Wave gets carried and used when fishing.
     
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  28. MJGEGB

    MJGEGB Bushmaster

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    I don't know, I feel bad for a guy who needs a Leatherman to be a useful person. I took no offense at all.
     
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  29. Swampdog

    Swampdog Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    When out in the woods hunting, fishing, or working, I have a Leatherman Wave on my belt and a SAK alox Farmer in my pocket.
     
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  30. 45jack

    45jack Supporter Supporter

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  31. lil'mike

    lil'mike Scout

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    For me in my daily run around and work I carry a sak (Explorer model) and that tool set works perfect for me. That said when I do go hiking/biking or whatever I will add a Leatherman to my bag so I have just a few extra tools including pliers if I need them.

    I carry the Explorer so I have the mag lens which I use from time to time but if I didn't use it, I probably would be fine with a MT as long as one is equal in weight to the Explorer and fits in a pocket. I don't like carrying/wearing belt sheaths.
     
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  32. JasonJ

    JasonJ Supporter Supporter

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    I'm not so sure it was ever meant to be.
     
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  33. JasonJ

    JasonJ Supporter Supporter

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    So I hesitated deciding whether to pitch in my two cents here...

    These sorts of things can be divisive... and are personal, especially as to what we need to do, what we prefer to use, professions, all that. It's like choosing any knife, hatchet or tomahawk, hatchet or big chopper, boxers or briefs, 9mm or 40s&w?

    I like and use and own both... Victorinox SAK's, and LM tools. So some random, regurgitated as I think of it comments:

    I like, carry, and use a SAK more often. Even when carrying a basic EDC folder or fixed blade, I see no reason NOT to carry at least a basic two layer SAK. For collecting purposes, I very much enjoy the SAK's more.

    I always have a Leatherman, usually a Sidekick or Wingman somewhere.. one in the house, keep one in the Jeep... I've got real pliers in the garage if I need them too. I don't always have screwdrivers everywhere.

    I don't like whittling or carving toggles, pegs, or whatcha-whosits with my LM. It bites into my hand and it hurts. Maybe I'm a wimp. I don't think so, but I shouldn't (and don't) put up with that if I don't have to.

    Any LM tool worth it's salt is weighing half a pound. None of my SAK's do. So that's a consideration.

    So, to answer .. or at least comment on the question of "Do I need a <blank> if I already have a <other blank>?"

    Maybe, maybe not. That's up to each of us to look at our uses and needs and decide if one tool or the other fulfills it. As has been said recently, you need one of everything so that you know what you need two of.
     
  34. Bdug

    Bdug Scout

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    Yeah you are probably right!
     
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  35. PiterM

    PiterM Scout

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    Got both but if I’d be forced to choose just one... Leatherman Super Tool 300 is hard to beat! And it’s also easy to mod if you need a specific tool onboard, like scissors in my case:

    [​IMG]
     
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  36. leghog

    leghog Guide

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    I discovered I rarely used a leather but often used a SAK. Haven't carried a Leatherman since. That was about 15 years ago in Iraq.
     
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  37. colrbh

    colrbh Scout

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    Let the weird looks start..I've never owned a SAK. Went from a us demo knife to a rem r4 scout knife. Always carry a leatherman on the belt.To many yrs in e.m.s...old habit lol..
     
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  38. oathkeeper762

    oathkeeper762 Bushbum & PT Wanderer Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    I love them both. I Have many variations of each, and carry one or both daily depending on my schedule. I refuse to choose, it would be like trying to choose between you’re two oldest and best friends. Great products, very useful, don’t leave home without one or the other, or some days both!
     
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  39. Foilist

    Foilist Guide

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    I converted from SAK to Leatherman about 20 years ago. I tried and liked a number of LM models (old style Wave was my favorite) before switching to the Victorinox Spirit. I like how all of the tools open without unfolding the pliers, and I like the variety in the tool array. I almost always carry it paired with a good folder or small fixed blade.


    There is still a place for SAKs, though. My work edc (at a school) is often a Mini Champ, and I have a couple of others stashed in kits or drawers.
     
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  40. Foulwind

    Foulwind Guide

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    I choose the SAK in the poll above, but have and carry both while at work, a Huntsman and Leatherman Wave. My SAK gets 100% use unless I happen to need pliers. My Leatherman has all the things my Huntsman has, scissors, saw blade, knife, and a few thing the SAK doesn't like file, Philips bit, pliers. My SAK just seems easier to grab being in pocket. I like the scissors on my SAK WAY more than the then scissors on the wave! Maybe having the wave on left hip helps balance out the weight of the mini-mag and LiL Larry LED flood light on the right hip (Belt carry)
    I started carrying wave after I found myself in need of a tool to remove an 1/8" air fitting and having to walk back to FAB, Gown up, walk to the chase where my tools were grab the tool needed and head back out! Wave would have removed the air fitting.
     
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  41. Robert Highhawk

    Robert Highhawk Scout

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    I keep a Leatherman in my bass boat
     
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  42. SpookyPistolero

    SpookyPistolero Slow learner Lifetime Supporter Bushclass I

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    Woods = SAK
    City = LM

    The SAK carries very poorly in a pants pocket (I carry in a pouch in the woods). The LM had a pocket clip and more city-oriented tools. I've only very rarely wanted a pair of pliers or a screwdriver in the woods.

    That said the new folder LMs may change my mind.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  43. Rich_S

    Rich_S Tracker

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    I have several SAKs and an old school Leatherman Core. The Leatherman is way more capable, but too heavy to carry around. So the SAK stays in my pocket and the Leatherman in the glovebox of my car.
     
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  44. squishware

    squishware Troubleshooter Supporter

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    Lost my old style Charge Tti on the beach. I replaced it with the new Charge Tti Plus. The replaceable cutting jaws are 7 million times better than the old style.
    [​IMG]
     
  45. Ptpalpha

    Ptpalpha Bushmaster

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    I voted Leatherman, mainly because of the Charge that @squishware posted above. If I can only have one multi tool that'd be my choice without a second thought.
    That being said, at the moment I own zero Saks and only one Leatherman, the Raptor which I just bought off the blanket and am still getting used to. It'll likely ride in my EDC pack as a "just in case" item (along with the CAT tourniquet).
    I always carry a knife, whether fixed or folder, and since I work with hand tools every day I have the high quality, task-specific tools always at the ready.
    Same goes at home and in the bush. No offense to either camp, but for me both are compromises to carrying the right tool for the job. That includes my new Raptor too, but it's just so cool I can't help but love it.
    So I'll still end up buying the Charge Plus tti, but it'll likely ride in the truck and the ruck as a just in case item.
     
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  46. Nathan H

    Nathan H Tracker

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    I have both a Leatherman Super Tool 200 I've had it almost a decade and I love it, it's never failed me yet and it still looks fairly new somehow, the leather belt sheath has seen better days though. I place a ranger band around my leatherman, this stretches over the opened handles securing the pliers in the closed position thus giving me a third hand great for tying flies etc I also have about 4 1/2 feet of bank line wrapped around the sheath and secured with another ranger band, my idea being its a bow drill string, spare shoelace etc and the additional ranger band is a back up in case I over stretch one and rip it

    I also own the Victorinox Swiss Army knife Hiker model , perfect for bushcraft having a main blade little blade, saw and awl
    I've owned this one about 5 years as the leatherman was just too heavy on my belt

    I carry one or the other every time I leave the house as I have a front door key attached to them, which one I carry is dictated by what I plan on doing, going to work then its the smaller slimmer profile SAK as its easily concealed in my pocket same if I'm shopping with the wife. If I'm out doors with my family having fun then its the leatherman as the pliers and extra strength and durability is preferred

    IMG_2942.JPG

    IMG_2940.JPG
     
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  47. SonsOfLiberty

    SonsOfLiberty Student of Life Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    I have had a dozen SAKs and a half dozen Leathermans.
    I currently have an ALOX Farmer with a lot of miles on it. I also have a Leatherman Wave with a lot of miles on it.
    I have 4 Leatherman Waves-one in every bag and vehicle I use.
    SAKS are cooler looking, but good luck twisting baling wire or pulling cotter pins or twisting/crushing stuff with your SAK. The pliers on the Wave are 100% worth the small weight penalty. I've battoned 2-inch branches with the knife on my Leatherman.
    I have an ST300-It's too heavy to carry and lives in the Jeep. Wave is where it's at.
     
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  48. grace under fire

    grace under fire never the same day

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    i mechanic. I have carried a leatherman for over 30 years. it is a part of me anymore. Use what you are familiar with, its much safer
     
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  49. JasonJ

    JasonJ Supporter Supporter

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    Nice mod! I just got a Rebar that I plan to add Wingman scissors to in place of the wood saw. I got it specifically for the pliers and the superior wire cutters, as I find myself needing that quite often, and those are the two areas where all of my SAK's fall short.

    I have perhaps 15 SAK's now... a few LM's. Two Micra's, a Wingman, 2 Sidekicks, a Rebar that I've owned for about a week, and I have an original Wave coming today, and a new wave in black oxide coming in a few days. I love them all, and sadly, I can't carry them all all the time, nor can I carry a LM, a SAK, and a nice folder too.. well, I could, but seriously for me, that's ridiculous and impractical.

    If I could only have one, I'd probably want my Rebar and a good folder for basic knifey things. BUT, and this is a big but, I have yet to use and evaluate the Waves. I can already see from my Rebar how desirable the outside opening knife blades are, it gets annoying opening the pliers to get a blade out, for as often as I go after one (hence the dedicated folder, relegating the LM blades as backup).

    Thing is, I just got a used Wenger EvoGrip 18 and am finding it to be an amazingly awesome tool too!

    Sometimes, I hate having too many choices.
     
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  50. Kennebago

    Kennebago Scout

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    I tried for a while but I never warmed up to carrying a fullsize multitool. It was always heavy, and it was never as good of a knife as a dedicated knife (for me).

    I have a Style on my keychain for light pliers and scissors stuff, saves the day when I sneak out to go fishing sometimes, or when I need to grab something fiddly I can't reach with my fingers. It takes up no space and weighs nothing, so I keep it. It isn't a full tool and I don't want it to be.

    I carry a SAK (Pioneer) anytime I have a change pocket, which is most days. This is in addition to a bigger folder and a flashlight. Two-layer Alox SAKs are great (IMO) for slipping into a small pocket you'd otherwise ignore because of how flat they are. Very easy to carry and unobtrusive.

    I use the knife and awl on my SAK far more often than the pliers and scissors on my multitool (yes, and the bottle opener too). The only reason I carry the multitool at all is because it is basically free in terms of size and weight. Measured that way, its incremental utility is actually pretty good, but a full multitool has never been that useful to me.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2019
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