EDC Options: Leatherman Skeletool CX
If you read our recent post Why a Man Should Carry a Pocket Knife, then you understand the importance of having a cutting tool on you at all times. The question is what knife does the job at a good price? Many of you emailed us for recommendations, voicing another concern: you stated that you work in an office environment where a full on knife when flashed would raise eyebrows. Rest assured, we have the knife for you.
The Leatherman Skeletool CX has been around for years, and for good reasons. It's an affordable, multi function tool with a built in blade that is quite capable. It's available through the Leatherman website, but can usually be found on Amazon much cheaper. There are plenty of reviews and YouTube videos on it, so we are not going to break any ground with our review. But still, we want to chime in with our opinion on why this might be the multi tool and knife combo for your needs.
Folded, The Leatherman Skeletool CX is quite small and easily fits in your pockets. It does come with a belt clip, but we prefer to clip it to the inside of our pockets for a concealed carry which still gives us quick deployment ability. A sheath is available but we don't use it because well, it reminds us too much of a fanny pack and that kills our style points.
There is a less tactical option available, the Skeletool, that does not feature the carbon inserts. The weight savings with the carbon fiber is minuscule, so unless you are a ultimate light weight hiker, the regular version might be the one for you when a low key appearance is the number one priority. It's also available in several color options to match your gear or help look less conspicuous. We prefer the carbon version because it's just so darn cool looking.
The Skeletool CX is fairly lightweight given the amount of tools you get in its small package. That is because Leatherman pared the tool down to the most important functions required day to day - hence the name "Skeletool". All said the little guy weighs in at a meager 5 ounces. Closed it measures 4 inches, but hidden inside is a 2.6 inch blade that is heat treated for hardness. It does come with a blade lock for safety, so no worries about it closing back on your hand.
Probably the second most useful function, and the reason most of us carry a multi tool, is the pliers. The ones on the Skeletool CX function as regular pliers, needle nose pliers, wire cutters, AND hard wire cutters. So there are four functions right there. Integrated into the handle is a bit carrier, so you always have a screwdriver with you. The tool comes with two bits, both Phillips and flat head in two sizes each. The Skeletool CX is compatible with the Leatherman Bit Kit, sold separately, if you feel you need additional driving bits. Of course the must have function on just about every man oriented item today is a bottle opener, and the Skeletool fulfills that need with a unique carabiner clip that is useful as a way to attach it to your bug out bag or belt, and crack open a cold one.
Here is a breakdown of the features:
Overall, the Skeletool CX is a very capable and durable pocket tool with probably the most usable blade in any multi tool available. It's almost like having a dedicated folder with you. We have been using it for a few years now and have no complaints, other than on occasion the handle mounted bit will fall out. We have not lost it yet though. It's not our number one knife to carry, as we prefer an actual knife in most situations, but it is our back up and first choice when hiking. We keep our collection of knives small and purposeful so that we actually use them, and the Skeletool CX is a proud member of the family.
In an office environment the Skeletool CX might work well for computer guys who need the wire cutters and screwdrivers. Actually, a lot of trades could benefit by it as a back up blade. We first started carrying it as college students who wanted to be prepared. It served double duty on weekends while outdoors. We liked having the extra functions of the Skeletool CX available to us. The pliers helped cut some para cord on a few occasions. We even managed to get out some splinters with the pliers. On longer length hikes or in more demanding environments we would have a survival style knife with longer length blade with us attached to our pack. The Skeletool is nice to have at our side for lighter duty. Its a great option for day hikes or minimalist carry.
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