Saturday, May 14, 2011

Leatherman Skeletool CX Review

I've used and abused this particular piece of gear for about 8 months now rotating between bag or body EDC, losing it completely, or just leaving it on a shelf or in my truck (Where it is currently). So far my main complaint is that it is quite heavy, a lighter version would be nice (Titanium anyone?) but as I have already bent the pliers (Wood screws don't cut easily...). Leatherman does currently offer a good warranty where they will fix it and switch the blade to a straight edge (or fine edge, whatever way you want to see it) blade with only shipping (tracked and insured) to them as the cost to you, the rest they take care of which is nice. 
My absolute favorite part about this tool is the carbon fiber scale,
I love carbon fiber, it's freaking awesome as a material with many uses in almost any field imaginable. Medical fields use it for it's strength and light weight in prosthetics, people working in construction use it instead of rebar for concrete (less concrete needed to insulate the rebar from oxidation and thus, less weight). Anyways, back to the knife.
The tools on this particular model come in on the lighter side of the spectrum with a bottle opener, pliers, knife, and 2 double sided screwdriver bits (one on the end, one stored in the handle).
 These tools however, encompass a wide range of uses and I have seriously taken out a sunroof with just this one tool (the 10mm bolts were loose but still... impressive. and yes I do like parenthesis, why do you ask?).
Here you can see how the screwdriver bits are stored, quite handy and the phillips head bits are great sizes for almost any screw, one fits very tightly while one is quite loose fitting, it works very nicely.
 You may also notice the carabiner/bottle opener with the sprung gate at the end of the handle, I have clipped this onto quite a few things and believe me when I say it will weigh down a keychain.
You can see here how the pliers don't exactly close all the way, they require a little bit of force to completely close since I bent them, oh well, live and learn.
As you can see here the tool is 4 inches when closed, also while researching this knife online I found out that the handles are DLC (Diamond-Like Coating) Coated Stainless Steel handles.
The blade length is 2.6 inches giving a total length of 6.6 inches. The knife steel used in the blade is 154CM which is not bad, 154CM is an American designed steel containing 1.05% Carbon, 14.0% Chromium, .50% Manganese, 4.0% Molybdenum, and .30% Silicon. This leaves slightly over 80% for the steel, for my super-secret test method (throwing it around like a monkey flinging poo) it help up pretty well.
 It's got a few nicks and scratches from my torture methods but it has held up very well as a good sharpening would bring it right back.
With the pliers open the tool sits right at 6 inches and fits my ginourmous monkey paws quite nicely. I can use this thing daily and not even think about it which is nice, it doesn't hurt to use the pliers on anything more than a piece of paper like some multitools (my old Gerber comes to mind) and is quite forgiving under torture.
This thing weighs in at a solid 5oz and while not a heavyweight like it's fat sisters, is no skinny model. Leatherman does call this one of their "lighter" knives but is is not exactly pocket size, while it does fit into a pocket and can be unnoticed, I am 5'9" and ~150lbs, so I'm small. This thing sticks out of jean pockets on me which I don't like.

 Overall I would say this knife is a good quality piece and while expensive (usually around $80-100) it is worth it if you use it daily ($100 over 25 years if I do the math right turns out to be quite cheap!). As an on-body EDC knife I would recommend it, not so much as a bag EDC knife. Since I am going for NAVY EOD I have got to mention Leatherman's new MUT EOD multitool. If your in the explosives field (The regular MUT if your a shooter) take a look at this knife.

If you are interested in buying this knife I found it somewhere around here for $70.66 plus shipping and handling.


  1. Great review... I'm looking into Skele in CX...

  2. Takes one to know one.

  3. Great Thourough review of the Leatherman Skeletool Multitool. Its such a strange looking tool yet appealing at the same time!

  4. What I really like about your reviews are how thorough the photos are! Thanks again, I rely on your advice and have never been let down!

  5. I can't wait for my birthday to get one of these - I've been following your reviews for a while, waiting for just the thing and I think I found it!