The Charge Ti: Leatherman's latest multi-tool
By Jeff Chudwin
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While searching the 2006 SHOT Show in February for new street and deployment gear, I met with the folks from the Leatherman Tool Group. The first pioneer of multi-tools, its products stood the test during my team’s deployment in Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina. We discovered the value of a good multi-tool many times in the storm-crushed streets. The high winds took down electrical lines and trees, forming a low-hanging, face-cutting arch-work over the streets we searched. Powerless electrical lines and broken branches created a snag hazard as we moved underneath, standing in the beds of the 5-ton military trucks. When necessary, we cut the obstacles away with a multi-tool wire cutter or locking blade. Why didn’t we use a big cutter or saw? We had only what we carried, and weight was a huge issue. Most of the tactical and patrol officers I worked with attached multi-tools to their belts and web gear.
For the officer or agent on the street who must carry with them what they need now, a quality multi-tool is a necessity. The ability to attach a lightweight, portable tool kit to one set of handles is a key factor that has driven the multi-tool industry’s expansion of makers and models. What used to involve a simple review of models with a limited choice is now a challenge for the officer looking for a pocket-sized toolbox.
The Charge Ti is one of the newest creations from Leatherman, offering a real upgrade in performance. After a detailed discussion of the Charge Ti with the reps at the SHOT Show, I requested a sample for testing. I found the handle design is very comfortable with rounded edges that don’t pinch your hand. All cutting instruments lock in place. (You should avoid a collapsing knife blade; I have the scar to prove it.)
The quality of the materials and variety of foldouts is truly excellent. One feature really distinguishes the ChargeTi: the foldout, double-ended bit drivers. Leatherman has taken the standard hexagonal screwdriver bit and redesigned it as a flat-formed bit with a double end. Every bit is two sizes and fits a rectangular, slotted locking bit-holder that opens from the handle. Blades include standard slot, Phillips, torx, Robertson and hex. Nine double-ended bits come with the Charge Ti, offering 18 bits in all. The Charge comes with a leather or nylon sheath that will carry the tool in the open or closed position, and features an inside pocket for the extra bits. An officer in the field can loosen or tighten about anything with a slot or a hole, and install, remove or tighten weapons accessories, including sights, scopes, bases, mounts and grips. From tightening a loose carrier key or set of Allen-screw secured handguards on an M-4 to about any other light-duty need, the Charge Ti tool bits get the work done.
The Charge Ti offers the best combination of working tools I’ve used. I carry it with me daily.
The Charge Ti:
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