New VP of Marketing at Leatherman Tool Group, Inc.

We are pleased to announce the appointment of Bobbie Parisi to Vice President of Marketing of Leatherman Tool Group, Inc. as of February 16, 2015. Parisi will be located at our Portland, Oregon manufacturing headquarters and report to our President, Ben Rivera.

Bobbie Parisi

Bobbie Parisi

Parisi has an extensive brand management background in the outdoor industry in the Northwest. Prior to this role, Parisi served in executive level marketing and brand management positions at Yakima Products, KEEN, Dr. Martens, Nike, and Jose Cuervo.

Parisi is an outdoor enthusiast, active in the community, and passionate about getting youth into the outdoors. She is currently serving as a board member on the OIWC (Oregon Industries Women’s Coalition), a non-profit that promotes diversity in the outdoor, bike, and snow industries, and as a Board member for Big Brothers, Big Sisters organization. She also serves on the Portland Athletic & Outdoor Advisory Council.

“At Leatherman, we place top priority on crafting quality products for end-users at our headquarters in Portland, Oregon,” said Leatherman President, Ben Rivera. “Bobbie Parisi will be instrumental in driving the global direction of our brand, product innovation, and communications. I’m very excited to have Bobbie join Leatherman as Vice President of Marketing.”

In this role for Leatherman, Parisi will be responsible for leading the marketing department, as well as global brand strategy, advanced product development, and product management. She will also be managing the LED LENSER brand for the US market.

WELCOME BOBBIE!

U.S. Commerce Secretary Visits Leatherman

On February 17th, we were host to Secretary Pritzker as she held a roundtable business discussion with leaders from around the Portland area.

Leaders from Nike, Columbia Sportswear, Intel, Portland Business Alliance, CH2M Hill, Austin Industries, City of Roses Disposal and Recycling, CMS Consulting, Columbia Green, ESCO, Greater Portland Inc., Greenbrier Companies, King Estate Winery, Pacific Northwest International Trade, Pacific Seafood, Portland Development Commission, Port of Portland, Schnitzer Steel, Simplex Aerospace, SolarWorld Industries America Inc., Vigor Industrial, Mayor Denny Doyle of Beaverton, and Mayor Charlie Hales of Portland were all part of the roundtable discussion.

Secretary Pritzker Speaking With Tim Leatherman

Secretary Pritzker Speaking With Tim Leatherman

Pritzker then wanted to visit with our President, Ben Rivera, and founder Tim Leatherman as she got a guided tour through our factory. They spoke about how Leatherman employs close to 500 Oregonians and exports our products to over 100 countries around the world – all from our one manufacturing facility here in Portland.

Secretary Pritzker Was Very Active During The Tour, Asking Many Questions About Our Processes

Secretary Pritzker Was Very Active During The Tour, Asking Many Questions About Our Processes

“It’s a fabulous company,” Secretary Pritzker said during her media interview later that afternoon. “It sells to a hundred countries around the world. It’s been in business since 1983. They employ 500 good folks – close to 600 now. That’s how we ended up here.”

Secretary Pritzker With A Leatherman Manufacturing Employee During The Factory Tour

Secretary Pritzker With A Leatherman Manufacturing Employee During The Factory Tour

The 2015 SHOT Show Recap

We had so much fun this year at SHOT Show. We launched three innovative new products, along side LED LENSER, who launched amazing new groundbreaking lights and headlamps as well.

Here is a recap of the three new tools we launched this year at SHOT Show:

  1. Tread – The 25 tools you can wear on your wrist. Inspired by a trip to Disneyland, and our President being asked to remove his Skeletool, we wanted to design something that was the ultimate accessory to every day. A few notable facts are that this bracelet comes TSA compliant with 26 wearable tools, an optional watch, and black DLC or stainless steel finish. The bracelet will be sold late spring 2015, and the watch should be here fall 2015.
  2. Rev – The entry level multi-tool. This tool was designed to be the light, easy to use, and low-cost entry-level multi-tool for users. Carrying 12 useful tools this becomes an upgrade from pocket size, but not as heavy or complex as the Wave. This tool makes a great household or light activity tool. Comparable to the Sidekick and Wingman, the Rev removes the scissors and spring-loaded pliers, allowing us to give you a lower cost with same great quality.
  3. Signal – The survivalist multi-tool. This tool comes packed with the must-haves if you ever should come into trouble. A ferro rod to start fire, a whistle for communication and the favorite or useful outdoor tools like pliers, wire cutters, hammer, saw and knife…among others.

All these tools are backed by our 25-year warranty, and will be available starting Spring 2015. More information coming as we get closer to the release dates, stay tuned!

To follow updates our new products and be the first to know when they are available, make sure to sign up for our newsletter. Click here for more details. 

Want more? Check out our Leap children’s multi-tool for your 9-12 year olds. And buy them ready for purchase now, here. Available in green, red and blue.

Questions? Contact us at info@leatherman.com.

The wearable tool, the new Leatherman Tread

[UPDATE] Need more info on specs and links? Our Tread product page is now live, click here. 

This summer, Leatherman Tool Group, Inc. will debut an industry first: a multi-tool that can be worn on the wrist. The Leatherman Tread is crafted of high strength, corrosion resistant 17-4 stainless steel links that include two to three functional tools each, making a total of 25 usable features like box wrenches and screwdrivers available at a moment’s notice.

“The idea originated on a trip to Disneyland with my family,” said President Ben Rivera. “I was stopped at the gate by security for carrying a knife, when what they had actually seen was my Skeletool. I was unwilling to give it up, so they made me take it all the way back to my hotel room. I knew there had to be another way to carry my tools with me that would be accepted by security.” When he returned from his trip, Rivera, who began his tenure at Leatherman Tool Group 24 years ago as an engineer, began by wearing a bike chain bracelet to see how it would feel. As his thoughts took shape, he brought his idea to the engineers at Leatherman who helped fast track his plans.

The Tread bracelet began taking shape. Each complex link was metal injection molded for strength and intensity. The bracelet was crafted to be fully customizable with slotted fasteners, so the user could rearrange links, add new ones, or adjust for wrist size to ¼”. Even the clasp is functional with a bottle opener and #2 square drive. Other link tools include a cutting hook, hex drives, screwdrivers, box wrenches, and a carbide glass breaker.

“I began wearing prototypes myself to test comfort and usability, and to ask for feedback,” said Rivera. “Folks immediately associated the bracelet design with a watch and asked, where’s the watch? We decided to make a timepiece an optional part of the Tread.”

A version of the Tread bracelet that includes a watch will be available in Fall 2015. The Leatherman TreadTM QM1 will feature a unique Leatherman-designed and Swiss-made timepiece with precision quartz movement. A shock resistant sapphire crystal ensures scratch resistance for heavy duty wear, and the curved watch limits reflection and increases outdoor visibility.

Introducing the new Leatherman Signal Survivalist Multi-tool

If you are far away from civilization on an exciting outdoor adventure, or making sure you’re ready when the unexpected happens, the new Signal multi-tool helps the planning become just a little bit easier with vital survival tools like a ferrocerium fire starter and whistle.

“We spoke with a lot of professionally trained survivalists and if you’re lost, or need to stay overnight outdoors, the main things you want with you are fire, the appropriate tools, and a way to communicate without relying on technology,” described Jason Carpenter, Sr. Product Manager. “If it is part of the tool already, you won’t have to think about bringing it. You’ll already be prepared.”

The Signal was designed originally for the adventure enthusiast who participates in activities like hunting, fishing, geocaching, camping and hiking but has morphed into something that can keep you ready and safe in any stressful unexpected situation.

The Signal also comes complete with traditional Leatherman features like pliers, can opener, saw, awl, and removable pocket clip. In addition, it includes popular features like a hammer, replaceable wire cutters, diamond-coated file, and bit driver.

Coming in a black and yellow color scheme, Signal adds a new look and feel to Leatherman’s full-sized multi-tool line. “It was important to communicate that this was the first Leatherman of its kind. The rugged, nature oriented design was a focus during our research,” said Kenny Lohr, Industrial Designer. “Leatherman strives to be authentic, and we weren’t going to let Signal fall short.”

Check out more information the Signal on the Product Page.

A recap on our chat with Ben.

In case you missed it, we recently had a Twitter takeover by our very own President, Ben Rivera. Ben sat on our Twitter account for one hour, from 2-3pm PST, and answered any questions coming his way as they piled in. We gathered some of the more popular questions, and have recapped the event for you here.

Ben’s most popular questions and his responses (summarized):

  1. Why doesn’t Leatherman create more fixed knife products?
    1. There are a lot of people who make knives and are really good at making knives. When we make them, we would like to make sure it’s perfect and unique to the market. I wish we could show you how many different prototypes we’ve made, but unfortunately we can’t.
  2. Why has Leatherman shifted its focus to skateboard and surfboard tools instead of more tools for more diverse groups?
    1. We make a variety of tools for specific groups, skate, surf and snow are just a version of that. We have developed good tools for emergency response, gun use, tradesmen, DIY, etc. We’ll continue to appeal to other markets, but developing tools that are up to our standards, while maintaining our current line, takes time and commitment.
  3. Which element of the multi-tool do you think absolutely every tool should have?
    1. The obvious answer if pliers, otherwise your multi-tool is probably a knife. My favorite feature is surprisingly the knife, in conjunction with other Leatherman popular tools. I love the Skeletool, the design and engineering is forward and modern.
  4. Why don’t you get into wearable tech?
    1. I think wearable tech is a good way for Leatherman to venture out, but we’re not experts at technology right now. What I like about the idea is that it’s relevant to today, and it keeps attention. People don’t need another copy of what’s already being done. We’ll probably focus on what we’re most educated in and continue to create new, modern tools.
  5. Can you make a full set of MUT style wrenches? A full metric or standard set would be perfect. 
    1. Oh, that’s an interesting idea. The next questions I have is who already does this, and how can we do it better so it’s different and helpful. I’ll keep this in mind.
  6. Can you start putting s30v blades on all your tools?
    1. We offer it on the Charge TTi, but it’s expensive. There is a variety of materials people prefer, we try to keep a little bit of it all. Realistically, the only time we could see this happening is if we ever figured out tool customization, but right now that would be too expensive.
  7. Can you create customization for tools, so we can pick the parts we want and create our “perfect tool”?
    1. Yes, but it would take a lot of time, and a lot of resources. It’s something we’ve definitely thought of a lot, but haven’t mastered yet. When we do it, we want to do it right. In manufacturing, logistics, design – there are a lot of ways it could go wrong that would still need to be worked out.
  8. Any plans on a Super Tool (or other tools) with a built in LED Light? 
    1. No plans, but we’ve thought of it. Again, it goes back to time and resources, we’d need to re-work and think this through. There are a lot of questions that would need to be answered to pull this off.
  9. Which tool do you suggest me to get?
    1. Without knowing anything about you, I’d say the Wave. If we got the opportunity to talk more, I’d ask more questions and get the chance to figure out what tool is perfect for you. Do you use a AR-15? Mut. Are you a fisherman? Surge. Do you work as an EMT? Raptor.

Thank you to everyone who participated! We had a great time. Stay tuned for more fun on our social channels. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter.

LED LENSER: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter.
Leatherman Sport: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter. 

Handling Routine Car Maintenance with Everyday Tools

[GUEST BLOG]: Tools and auto repair have been long-time buddies for as long as we can remember. While some are fluent in auto maintenance, others need direction as to what tool works best for each need. Who better to tell you some of the top tools necessary for DIY auto repair and maintenance than The Armored Group, a company that renovates everyday trucks into armored trucks?

Here are some must-haves for your vehicle’s tool kit for any minor repair or maintenance task!

  1. Illuminate the Dark - No matter if it’s dark or light outside, you will definitely need a flashlight. Take these small rechargeable light options for example. These small handheld lights pack a punch with adjustable light modes, so you can see all the nooks and crannies of your engine or vehicle’s interior! All of the above options come with a five-year warranty!
  2. Pliers Hold ’Em - Pliers are a great tool for various maintenance tasks. Use the clamping version, such as Leatherman’s Crunch, to hold down a part end, while you use a wrench to loosen a bolt or other fastener. Needle-nosed pliers, on the other hand, have tapered, slender tips that are good for getting into those tight spaces.
  3. Precisely Tight Spots - Certain types of wrenches serve different purposes in car maintenance. Traditionally, wrenches for vehicle maintenance come in both US customary units and metric sizes to accommodate the different fits for nuts and bolts throughout your vehicle. If you don’t want a deluxe size set, try the pocket-sized, such as the Piranha 2!
  4. Choose Flat or Phillips - Screwdrivers are great for tightening or loosening clamps, as well as taking care of any screws that hold protective pieces to the main part you are seeking to reach. Opt for the bit kit accessory pack to attach to your Leatherman.

Granted there are many more tools that were used to create your vehicle, but for simple vehicle maintenance, having a flashlight, set of pliers, set of wrenches and sockets as well as the two types of screwdrivers will get the minor jobs taken care of. Need more ideas on how to use tools for everyday maintenance? Contact your local tool specialist today!

The Armored Group LLC takes ordinary trucks and converts them into extraordinary science marvels with their bullet-resistant plating and glass. Our vehicles have been used in military, tactical and even money-transporting businesses for over 25 years, and we will continue to do so to protect every passenger, every time. Fill out our contact form to get more information about our updated inventory today!

26 Things you probably didn’t know about Leatherman (but might have).

  1. Tim Leatherman graduated from Oregon State University. 
  2. Steve (co-founder) told Tim the company should be called Leatherman because he knew Tim would make sure every tool was high-quality if it had his name on it.
  3. The popular Wave multi-tool, was introduced in 1998, it’s over 10 years old!
  4. Tim and Steve first tried to sell their patent to someone, they wanted a quick sell, no one thought it would sell so they refused to buy it.
  5. The popular outdoor store, Cabela’s, was the first to purchase tools from Leatherman.
  6. It took Tim 8 years from starting a prototype, to his first sale.
  7. The factory, located in Portland, Oregon, has gone through 3 rebuilds adding on each time. It’s currently 90,000 square feet.
  8. Each Leatherman goes through 150 different steps.
  9. Our scrap steel is sent to a local company who melts it to recycle it.
  10. Our steel coils, which feed into our presses, weigh 800-3000 lbs.
  11. All our steel comes from Eastern United States.
  12. Our Plasma laser cutter can cut 300 knife blades an hour.
  13. Every Leatherman is hand checked by a Quality department member before sent to packaging.
  14. Tim originally wanted to add scissors to the PST, but the manufacturing equipment he was using couldn’t produce high enough quality scissors for him. He left them out of the original tool, but reworked the design and introduced them with the PSTII a few years later.
  15. We’ve sold 70+ million tools worldwide.
  16. Our assembly lines build between 12,000 and 13,000 tools daily.
  17. We can add engraving to each tool, online at Leatherman.com.
  18. We sell to 120+ countries worldwide.
  19. 1 in 5 Australians own a Leatherman, one of our most popular countries.
  20. Our warranty team fixes about 200 tools daily, and that’s just North America tools.
  21. Micra is our longest running tool, launched in 1996, still in circulation today.
  22. The Raptor can be taken apart into two pieces to be cleaned, but the rest of the tool isn’t designed to be taken apart.
  23. We produce over a million tools each year.
  24. Our biggest press can apply 300 tons of pressure, it’s mainly used to make our handles for our tools.
  25. We have one retail store, 2 miles from our factory in Portland, Oregon. The rest are sold by our loyal resellers.
  26. Tim’s first designs of the tool, were made of cardboard.

Tim meets with fans in China

Although we’re proud of our American roots, you can find Leatherman users all over the world. Tim Leatherman often makes appearances and attends events globally, sharing his story and business ideas. Here, he’s seen visiting with some Leatherman enthusiasts in China at a event promoting health, outdoor, and technology savvy brands and products. He spoke to the group about Leatherman and LED LENSER, signed tools and shared stories with fans.