- By John Fenna
- 0 Comments
- Last updated: 15/11/2016
The latest creation from the makers of the original plier-based multi-tool – Leatherman – is the super lightweight Freestyle model. Engineered to the high standard you expect from Leatherman, the minimalist Freestyle actually comes in two versions; the standard Freestyle which has Zytel inserts in the handle while the Freestyle CX has a DLC coating and carbon fibre insert. Both models are otherwise identical, featuring the essential components of a true multi-tool; needle-nose pliers, regular pliers, wire cutters and hardwire cutters, as well as a semi-serrated knife blade of 420HC stainless steel that is single-hand opening and closing with a very effective liner lock.
The handles of the Freestyle are very comfortable in use, both when closed in using the knife blade and when open in using the plier head, despite the fact they are both drilled to reduce weight and have a pocket clip feature (not normally something I like).The semi-serrated blade comes razor sharp, holds a good edge and is straight forward (if time consuming) to re-sharpen once blunted, while the pliers and wire cutters are all you would expect, and can snip through fencing wire with ease. The handle design avoids the possibility of pinching flesh as you squeeze the grips.Looking very slick and modernistic, yet totally practical in use, this new multi-tool is lightweight at around 4.5oz, but punches above its weight to give great performance during a host of tasks.
The standard Freestyle costs around £49.95, while the Freestyle CX costs about £79.95. Both come with a 25 year warranty and a full user’s guide.I have been using the standard Freestyle for various tasks, ranging from field cooking (food preparation with the blade), bending alloy tent pegs into pot hooks and pan supports with the pliers and using the wire cutters to “trim” fencing wire into pot handles etc., plus canoe maintenance as well as other more mundane tasks. The Freestyle performed well in all these roles and still looks pristine!
For more information call the UK distributer, Whitby & Co. on 01539 721032 or visit their website at www.whitbyandco.co.uk