I’m not hugely into modifying my Leatherman tools, beyond refurbishing and restoring old beaten up tools that I pick up on the cheap. During the last week however, I seem to have been quite busy producing no less than three custom tools…
The first mod I did last week was a customisation of the humble Leatherman Kick, to add scissors for a friend. The Kick is one of very few current full-sized multitools which remain legal to carry without a “good” reason in the UK, as the blade is under 3″ in length and doesn’t lock. It is sadly somewhat limited in terms of on-board tools though, despite there being plenty of handle space to add tools.
I added the scissors from an old, unsalvageable Leatherman Pulse and was very pleased with the results. I swapped a couple of the other tools around to make their placement a little more accessible and sensible, and the end product was a highly practical, and legal EDC multitool.
Next, I continued a struggle I’ve been having for years with an old Leatherman Charge XTi that I acquired from somewhere, sometime. The pliers on the Charge were ruined, the blades were in poor repair, and a previous owner had managed to badly damage the 5-point security torx fittings, presumably whilst trying to repair it himself. To compound the issue of taking the thing apart, the thread lock last used on the tool had a breaking strain higher than that of the tools I was using to undo the fixings – two of them snapping under the pressure I applied. In the end, knowing that I had some replacement fittings, I decided to drill the old ones out and stop the buggering about 🙂
Having finally disassembled the tool, I rebuilt it using parts from an old Leatherman Wave, Kick and Fuse to closely reflect the tool selection of the Charge Ti / TTi. I replaced the serrated blade with cutting hook, and fitted a new S30V clip point blade and held the whole thing together with the easier to manage 6-point security torx screws in black.
The end result is probably closest to the Charge TTi in it’s component choices, however lacking the cap-crimpers in the pliers. I’m very pleased with it and its close to my ideal tool, (it looks good with the black fixings too).
Finally, I decided to fit the bit driver left over from the Charge XTi mod described above to another Leatherman Kick in place of the two flat-head screwdrivers it is fitted with as standard. I’m on the lookout for some scissors to add to this one, as together with the bit driver, this modded Kick could be a very capable EDC tool.
It’s fair to say that this has rekindled my interest in modifying Leatherman tools, and I’ve some ideas forming for the next ones already…….