Leatherman Charge TTI multi-tool review
“The only tool I own that is very close to always with me is my Leatherman Charge.”
Leatherman claims the Charge TTi was born after combining the most requested features and so creating what is considered to be the best Leatherman Multi-tool by many.
|Weight:||8.2 oz/232 g|
|Closed length:||4 in/10 cm|
|Expect to pay:||$170.00|
|Where to buy:||Amazon.com|
The Leatherman Charge TTI offers 19 features with lock-in-place mechanisms that are packed closely using some impressive engineering in one durable multi-tool.
- Needlenose pliers
- Regular pliers
- Hard-wire cutters
- Wire cutter
- Wire stripper
- S30V knife
- 420HC Serrated knife
- Spring action scissor
- Cutting hook
- 190mm/9″ Ruler
- Can opener
- Bottle opener
- Wood/Metal File
- Diamond-coated file
- Large bit driver
- Small bit driver
- Medium screwdriver
Look and feel
Holding the tool in my hand I noted a fair weight which I didn’t expect. The titanium handle did a great job of holding everything together as there was no play on any of the tools including both the blades. The obsessive part of me was also very pleased to find that the tips of the needlenose pliers lined up close to perfect.
When holding the tool in your right hand, the knives can be flicked up into position with a simple thumb movement and releasing the lock to put away the blade was just as effortless.
In the tools closed position you can access the two knives, the saw, and also the file. To access the bit drivers, screwdriver, scissors and can opener the handles need to be swung around to the tools open position.
Why we like it
The knife is made from S30V stainless steel which is a hardened, wear and corrosion resistant stainless steel which is often used in the production of high-quality knives. Locking the knife into place should be followed by cautious use as the knife is a force with a very sharp edge while the beauty of the S30V composition means it will retain its edge much longer than other knives.
S30V steel is considered a premium grade steel and is one of the most prominent reasons for the large price difference between the Charge and Leatherman Wave considering, besides the two tool difference, these two multi-tools are very much the same.
The saw was the feature that impressed me the most. The short 3-1/2″ blade delivered a cutting capability I did not at all expect from a tool its size.
Made from 420HC stainless steel the saw is used with little effort and designed to work with a pulling motion.
I assume the designers opted for the pulling motion instead of a pushing motion as a safety precaution.
A pushing motion can result in your hand ending up over the saw blade if the saw had to bind with the workpiece.
The bit driver
Leatherman offers a range of double-sided bits that can be purchased separately making the bit driver a very versatile feature on its own.
These bits can be easily interchanged by just pulling out the current one and popping in the desired bit while a spring clip holds the bit in place.
The Leatherman Charge comes standard with a Phillips and flat screwdriver bit.
A standard bit kit can also be purchased for $19.00 and contains 21 double-sided bits in two holders that include Hex, Robertson, Pozi, Phillips and Slotted bits.
What we don’t like
Due to the fact that the crimper is located towards the end of the needlenose pliers, it’s hard to apply the pressure required to crimp what needs to be crimped.
The bit driver will also leave you annoyed if the screw you are trying to drive is sunken. Due to the shoulder of the flat bit holder, you will be limited in accessibility. This means that only screws that sit flush with a surface will be able to be driven using the bit driver.
Remember, this is a multi-tool. Designed to help you out in a bind or an easy to reach tool for a quick job. It’s not designed to be your go-to tool for every work.
Who would use the Charge
Anyone who can use a tool would find value in this multi-tool. It’s a great all-rounder and can be used from carpenter to mechanic. Take it out on your next fishing trip or have it close by when you go camping. It makes a great gift for a DIY dad, husband or anyone that loves quality tools.
The leatherman charge is definitely a top contender in the race for the best multi-tool. For it size, it has a great deal to offer. When compared to the big daddy Surge. It weighs 4.3 oz less and is 1/2″ shorter in its closed position while only taking a 2 tool knock. It’s a well-built, durable piece of craftsmanship that is small enough to carry around and bail you out when you are in a jam.
The 25-year warranty is a big plus and in the 9 years, I’ve been using Leatherman tools I have never had a problem when needing to have a tool repaired.
The warranty combined with the usability of this well-balanced tool earns it the Woodwork Junkie top pic for best Leatherman multi-tool.
After its redesign in 2004, the result was a multi-tool that offers all the same features as the Charge with the exception of the crimper and the blade hook for a total of 17 tools.
Instead of the titanium handle, it has the standard stainless steel handle making it only slightly heavier.
Instead of the S30V steel blade, the Wave‘s knife is made from 420HC steel.
The $90.00 price tag on the Leatherman Wave makes it Leatherman’s best-selling multi-tool to date.
Alternatively, the Skeletool.
The Skeletool is one of the smaller, lighter and more stylish of the Leatherman multi-tool series.
While weighing in at only 5 oz this little guy has 7 tools of which the most notable would be the pliers, knife and bit driver.
The little guy has the essentials and can be carried on your belt using the stainless steel belt clip or can easily fit in your pocket.
The Leatherman Skeletool comes in 3 different colors including normal stainless, blue and green and starting price is around $60.00.
Woodworkjunkie.com, DIY like a pro.