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- Price: ~$27
- Weight: 2/5
- Size: 3/5
- Durability: 2/5
- Utility: 2/5
- Overall Rating: 2/5
See our Recommended section for top-rated pocket size multitools
The goal of the Leatherman Freestyle is find the right balance of utility and convenience. It is the size of most pocketknives with the added capability of wirecutters and needlenose pliers. Leatherman claims 5 tools on the Freestyle, but most users would consider this a 3 tool unit. Knife blade with serrated section, wire cutters and needle nose pliers. Leatherman counts two pliers – the ends are ‘needlenose pliers’ and the middle section are ‘regular pliers’. They also count 2 wire cutters – hard-wire cutters and regular wire cutters.
Our Hands-On Review
Leatherman built a reputation for solid engineering and high quality tools but the Freestyle is not their top of the line. 420HC stainless steel in the blade comes with a nice edge and stays sharp with use. The blade is easily opened with one hand, as long as you are right-handed. Left hand users will find the knife case obstructs the thumbhole.
The pliers on the Freestyle are suitable for light-duty work, capable in a pinch for occasional use. As with most pocket multitools, if you are going to be doing serious work then you will want a real set of pliers. The pliers are not spring loaded and the joint can be overly tight which requires two hands to re-open the jaws between each squeeze.
The biggest drawback to the Freestyle is what Leatherman left out – no Phillips or flat head bits. Not even the pseudo screwdriver points found on many multitools. Other drawbacks include reports of the knife blade breaking off and corrosion problems. Look at the blade and you will see Leatherman included another ‘design’ hole behind the large thumbhole. This creates a weakpoint on the blade that serves no purpose other than to look cool. We could feel our Freestyle knife flex during cuts that put torque on the blade. Finally, users in saltwater environments report problems with corrosion and discoloration after minimal use.
- Blade length: 2.6 in
- Closed length: 3.45 in
- Weight: 4.5 oz
- Pocket clip: yes
- One-handed: yes