The classic multitool. (Tim Tomkinson)
Photo: Tim Tomkinson

A multitool invented by Tim Leatherman after wishing he had a pair of pliers while working on a rust-bucket Fiat with a pocket knife during a 1975 European road trip. Dozens of companies rejected Leatherman’s pitch, so he resolved to pursue it himself, producing his first models in 1983. A couple of catalogs agreed to carry them; he sold 30,000 the next year. Leatherman and other brands have since developed tool combinations for every possible type of outdoorsman.

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