Planet Sea Fishing say the pocket-sized Leatherman Juice XE6 multitool is versatile, durable, stylish and more.
A friend of mine once assured me that you could fix anything short of a hole in the sky with just a Leatherman and a roll of gaffer tape… and he wasn’t far wrong. For anglers, a well armed, high quality multitool is a godsend, and they don’t come more reputable than a Leatherman. There are numerous Leatherman multitool products ranging from full-blown professional tools, right down to equally precision miniature key ring versions. The subject of this review, the Leatherman Juice XE6, is from the pocket range of tools.
Now there are multitoys and there are multitools, and there is a world of difference between the two. On the one hand there are the nameless pieces of junk often offered free or for pennies as a fuel points bonus, and then there is the top end quality of brands like Gerber and Leatherman. The cheap and cheerful tend to be barely functional and about as robust as a dissolving coffee cup, while on the other hand a lifetime of reliability is only part of what the proven brands provide.
I have carried a fishing multitool for years and would be frankly naked without one. With no less than 18 tools the Juice XE6 has endless angling uses. The integral pliers, wire cutters, knife, scissors, and screwdrivers have seen constant use since the tool came into my possession back in the summer, and I am discovering new applications all the time. The fixed lanyard ring, for example, doubles as a handy knot tightener – simply place the hook in the ring and pull knots tight.
In my experience some integral scissors display noticeable slackness and ‘play’ between the blades, which effectively renders them useless for snipping monofilament and braid lines. Those on the XE6 are tightly bladed, clinically sharp and effortlessly slice through even thick braid, with no laborious need to ‘chew’ through the task.
The awl is useful for removing small springs and circlips from the insides of reels, while also serving as a great implement for removing dried in mackerel gunk from fingers at the end of a day’s fishing!
I am forever bending and clipping pieces of wires for all sorts of things including forming various rig components. The hard wire cutters located in the junction of the pliers’ jaws easily bite through up to 1.6mm stainless Tig wire and similarly thick hooks. The regular wire cutters are excellent for cutting heavy commercial mono like the 250lb I use for big fish boat rigs.
The only criticism I have is that the blades/tools do not lock in position when opened. Locking is standard on the larger Leatherman models, and my concern is that a slip could cause one or other of the blades to unintentionally close on the user’s hand. Take the wickedly sharp serrated knife blade… the consequences of a closing accident do not bear thinking about. In experienced hands however, there is unlikely to be an issue, and the product does come with a ‘pinch’ warning.
- Regular pliers
- Needle-nose pliers
- Scissors Knife
- Serrated knife
- Wire cutters
- Hard-wire cutters
- Extra small screwdriver
- Small screwdriver
- Medium/large Screwdriver
- Phillips screwdriver
- Diamond-coated file
- Wood/metal file
- Bottle opener
- Can opener
- Stainless steel with hard-anodized aluminum handle scales
- Stainless steel body
- Fixed lanyard ring
- Leather case (sold separately)
- 25-year warranty
- 3.25in / 8.25cm (when closed)
- 6.7oz / 190g
- RRP around £85
- Best price found at publication £69.95
- Outlet: www.leathermans.co.uk http://www.leathermans.co.uk/Leatherman-XE6.html
The compact Leatherman XE6 is beautifully engineered and removes the needs to pack a pile of different tools. Highly functional rather than gimmicky, stylish, durable and versatile are among a host of adjectives that apply to the XE6. My XE6 is the ‘thunder’ purple colour – which I love – but it’s also available in other calmer colours. It comes with the Leatherman 25 year warranty, and a leather belt pouch accessory is available for around £6 from the link above.