Leatherman

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
For other uses, see Leatherman (disambiguation).
Leatherman Tool Group, Inc.
Type Private
Industry Manufacturing
Founded July 1983[1]
Headquarters Portland, Oregon, USA
Key people Timothy S. Leatherman (Chairman of the Board and Co-Founder)
Steve Berliner (Secretary/Treasurer and Co-Founder)
Jake Nichol (CEO)
Benjamin Rivera (President)
Products Multi-tools
Folding knives
Employees 525[1]
Website leatherman.com
Leatherman Pocket Survival Tool
A Leatherman Sidekick tool showing on board tools
A Leatherman Wave with all tools unfolded
Leatherman Super Tool and belt holster
Leatherman Surge
Leatherman Micra, both open and closed

Leatherman is a brand of multitools and knives made by Leatherman Tool Group of Portland, Oregon, US. The company was founded in July 1983 by Timothy S. Leatherman and Steve Berliner in order to market his idea of a capable, easily portable hand tool with multiple functions. That same year Leatherman sold the first multitool, which was called the PST (Pocket Survival Tool).

Company history[edit]

Timothy S. Leatherman, a 1970 mechanical engineering graduate of Oregon State University, and his business partner, Steve Berliner, formed Leatherman Tool Group in 1983.

Leatherman was inspired to design a "Boy Scout knife with pliers" while he and his wife traveled Europe and the Middle East in 1975, often attempting to use a simple pocketknife to repair their repeatedly malfunctioning car and leaky hotel plumbing.[2][3] He spent several years perfecting the "Mr. Crunch" prototype and received his first U.S. patent (4,238,862) in 1980.[4] After additional refinement, Leatherman’s first product was introduced in 1983 as the Pocket Survival Tool (PST) and initially sold through Early Winters and Cabela’s mail-order catalogs.[3]

Leatherman sold nearly 30,000 tools in 1984, fueling additional product development and both rapid company growth as well as manufacturing capacity.[5] Today, Leatherman’s only manufacturing facility is located in Portland, Oregon where they assemble 17,000 tools per week.

Almost ten percent of the manufacturing facility area is concerned with the repairing and rebuilding of any tool that needs it, either domestically, or sent from distributors from around the world. Their system is to replace and return any tool sent in with an equivalent item, reducing the time the owner is without the tool, unless they request the same physical tool due to sentimental reasons.

In 2007 the company opened its first retail store, located at its manufacturing facility, that has since relocated to a retail store at the Cascade Station shopping center near the facility in Northeast Portland.[3] The same year, Tim Leatherman was inducted into the Blade magazine Cutlery Hall of Fame in recognition of his design impact on the cutlery history.[6]

Folding knives were introduced into the Leatherman product line in 2005. In 2011 the Leatherman Tool Group acquired German light manufacturer, LED Lenser. The brand and companies are run separately, under the Leatherman Tool Group, Inc. umbrella. The company also manufactures a line of multi-tools designed specifically for military and law enforcement personnel, as well as accessories for carrying and expanding the function of its tools. As of February 2011, Leatherman produced 50 products sold in 82 countries, with U.S. market share estimated at 55 percent.[1]

Leatherman has a sponsorship deal with Major League Soccer team Portland Timbers. They are the shirt sponsor for the team's mascot, "Timber Joey".

Products[edit]

Leatherman’s primary products are multi-tools and knives. Most Leatherman multi-tools are built around a pair of pliers, with up to 21 additional tools stored in the handles, including knives (straight and serrated blades), screwdrivers (flat, Phillips), saws, wire cutters and strippers, electrical crimper, bottle opener and can opener. Most models have a built-in safety mechanism that locks the active tool in the open position when fully unfolded. Models range in weight from the 12.5 ounce (335 g) Surge to 0.81 ounce (23 g) Style.

Leatherman currently produces folding knives under the Crater name. Models range from two tools (knife blade and carabiner/bottle opener) to four (blade, carabiner/bottle opener, flat and Phillips screwdrivers).

Name Type Debut Retired
PST Full-sized 1983 2004
PST II Full-sized 1996 2004
Wave - Original Full-sized 1998 2004
New Wave Full-sized 2004
Sideclip Full-sized 1998 2004
Crunch Heavy-Duty 1999
Flair Full-sized 1999 2004
Pulse Full-sized 2000 2004
Blast Full-sized 2004 2012
Original Surge Heavy-Duty 2005 2013
Core Full-sized 2005 2009
Kick Full-sized 2004 2012
Fuse Full-sized 2004 2012
Charge Ti Full-sized 2004 2008
Charge XTi Full-sized 2004 2008
Charge AL Full-sized 2007
Charge ALX Full-sized 2007
Charge TTi Full-sized 2007
Super Tool Heavy-Duty 1994 2001
Super Tool 200 Heavy-Duty 2001 2005
Super Tool 300 Heavy-Duty 2009
ST3 EOD Full-sized 2010
Skeletool Full-sized 2007
Skeletool CX Full-sized 2007
Wingman Full-sized 2011
Sidekick Full-sized 2011
MUT Military Duty 2010
MUT EOD Military Duty 2010
Mini Tool Pocket 1986 2004
Freestyle Pocket 2009
Freestyle CX Pocket 2009 2012
Juice KF4 Pocket 2001 2005
Juice C2 Pocket 2001
Juice S2 Pocket 2001
Juice Cs4 Pocket 2001
Juice Xe6 Pocket 2001
Juice Pro Pocket 2002 2003
Juice SC2 Pocket 2003 2005
Micra Keychain 1996
Squirt P4 Keychain 2002 2010
Squirt S4 Keychain 2002 2010
Squirt E4 Keychain 2003 2010
Squirt ES4 Keychain 2010
Squirt PS4 Keychain 2010
Style Keychain 2010
Style CS Keychain 2010
Style PS Keychain 2012
Rebar Full-sized 2012
OHT Military Duty 2012
Raptor EMS Duty 2013
Surge Heavy-Duty 2013

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Leatherman Media". Leatherman Tool Group. Retrieved 2015-05-05. 
  2. ^ Monroe, Bill. The Oregonian, December 10, 1981.
  3. ^ a b c "Making History". Leatherman Tool Group. Retrieved 2011-02-08. 
  4. ^ US patent 4238862, Timothy S. Leatherman, "Pocket multiple tool", issued 1980-12-16 
  5. ^ Brock, Kathy. Once again, Leatherman Tool outgrows plant. Portland Business Journal, September 27, 1996.
  6. ^ "Hall of Fame." Blade Magazine. July 31, 2007.

External links[edit]