Leatherman Signal Review

Leatherman Signal Multitool

 

Leatherman essentially invented the multi-tool as we know it today and are still the heavyweight in the industry. Established in Orgeon in 1983, they filled a niche that was long ignored, the need to combine multi-tool capability in a compact, easy to carry design, that was tough enough to take the kind of abuse that real work dishes out. Since then, there have been an endless number of  copycats, but due to the undeniable quality of their tools, Leatherman has continued to thrive. Their work as the leader in the industry has culminated in some truly awesome tools and although they may seem expensive, when you consider the quality and longevity, Leatherman multitools remain one of the best values on the market.

leatherman signal

The Signal, by Leatherman is the current Cadillac of their line and a fine addition to any kit. It takes the tried and true concept of the multi-tool, adds some off-the-grid functionality and winds up as a tool that is as at home on your belt for and EDC tool and perfect for hiking, camping, fishing, and anything else you do in the outdoors.

 

The signal combines all the usual elements of a Leatherman tool, including pliers, cutters, knife, saw, hammer, drivers and openers in a patented fold-down assembly. Then, the Signal adds some interesting extras that make it the perfect multitool for off-the-grid situations.

In addition to all the regular tools, drivers, and blades, the Signal incorporates some very useful extra features:

leatherman signal45

Safety Whistle – A signaling whistle for instances where the user may be lost or trying to get someone’s attention. It’s the kind of thing everyone knows should be included in any outdoors safety kit, but carrying around a stand-alone whistle is rarely done. Having it right on the tool means that it is available anytime without thinking.

Ferrocerium Rod – The best fire starter for emergency situations. A modern flint, it is a metallic material that produces very hot sparks and even works when wet. Better than a match, this works in all weather and for long periods of time. The material will likely last the life of the tool when used only for emergencies.

Diamond Coated Sharpener – This pull-out diamond sharpener helps keep edges sharp when away from home or during an emergency situation. In an emergency, one may find themselves using the cutting edges of the tool far more than usual and keeping an edge is essential.

The Signal from Leatherman uses 320HC stainless steel which is an improved high carbon (HC) form of the industry leading 420 stainless often uses for high end tools. In addition, the handles of the Signal have a DLC (diamond like coating) applied for scratch and corrosion resistance. Like all Leatherman tools the Signal comes with an unprecedented 25 year warranty for repair or replace, meaning that this significant investment will be protected for a long time and indeed, the Signal will be the only multi tool that one would ever need purchase.

tool_diagrams_full_size_Signal

  1. Needlenose Pliers
  2. Regular Pliers
  3. 154CM Replaceable Wire Cutters
  4. 154CM Replaceable Hard-wire Cutters
  5. Wire Stripper
  6. 420HC Combo Knife
  7. Saw
  8. Hammer
  9. Awl w/ Thread Loop
  10. Can Opener
  11. Bottle Opener
  12. 1/4” Hex Bit Driver
  13. Bit Driver
  14. 1/4″ Box Wrench
  15. Carabiner
  16. 3/16″ Box Wrench
  17. Safety Whistle
  18. Ferrocerium Rod
  19. Diamond-coated Sharpener

Out of the box, the Signal demonstrates the expected Leatherman quality, feel, and fit and finish. We found that the pliers were a bit stiff during initial use, but were easy enough to loosen by opening and closing for a few minutes. The tool array is typical and definitely adequate although the lack of a scissors was concerning to some.

The built-in belt clip was handy when having the tool out often for use, but the lack of a clip to lock the tool shut leatherman signal3was a bit perplexing. Performance wise, the tool is excellent. The additional features that make this a survival-ready tool where helpful – the ferro rod is super useful (and a bit fun) but as with emergency fire starting, it takes a bit of practice and excellent tinder preparation. The whistle was a bit underwhelming but adequate and the diamond sharpener was effective when used properly.

In short, the Signal is a great new addition to the Leatherman line and for those looking for some extra emergency or camping features, we recommend it highly.

See customer reviews at Amazon here.

Length: 4.5 inch

Weight: 7.5 oz

Handle: 420 stainless

Tools: 19

Steel: 420 stainless 

 

88.75

Value

9/10

    Quality

    9/10

      Utility

      9/10

        Workmanship

        9/10

          Pros

          • Leatherman quality
          • Additional survival tools
          • Belt clip
          • Warranty

          Cons

          • Price
          • No locking clip
          • Whistle too quiet
          Both comments and pings are currently closed.