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Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast. 21329

Zombie Apprentice Posts: 19,262 Armed with camera and not afraid to use it.
Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« on: June 04, 2009, 05:12:38 AM »
In this review, I am going to compare and contrast 3 Leatherman multi-tools. Each share very strong family traits to the other.  I am talking about the Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.

One of the major defining characteristics of this family is the use of Zytel in the handles. Now Zytel is a DuPont trademark for what we would normally call Nylon. Nylon is a strong impact/abrasion resistant plastic. Leatherman has decided to use this substance to line the tool to make a sort of comfort grip. I personally feel they failed at this. The inner edge is rather sharp. The outer edge is rounded. I am uncertain why they didn’t round the sharp inner edge. I find it equally painful and annoying to have a sharp metal edge, or a sharp nylon edge.  With that said, Leatherman did attempt to make the grip more ergonomic by incorporating 3 small finger indents in the nylon.  Now here is the interesting point. Leatherman did round the edges on the finger indents, but left a rather sharp crease dead center of these nylon finger indents, negating any comfort. Basically, this family exhibits the same issues that far older multi tools suffered from, and that is sharp edges digging into the fingers. Nylon is very durable stuff…so it would probably take ages for it to wear round and become comfortable. Maybe I am harping on this a little much, but I would expect this issue to have been cleared up in this day and age. You might find it more comfortable, all things being personal preference.

Now for a size comparison.


All Leatherman tools from left to right: Pulse, Kick, Fuse, Blast, Wave, Surge, Core, Skeletool. That is a two dollar Canadian coin for size comparison.



From left to right: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast. Note the nylon grey inserts that define this series.



From left to right: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast. The pliers are all the same from model to model. Likewise, each tool features the same ruler marks on the handles.



From left to right: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.

The tool set does vary from model to model. The Kick has 12 tools, The Fuse has 13 tools, and the Blast has a grand total of 16 tools.

The Kick:

Being the smallest and lightest of the family, it also has the least tools by one from the next model up. The one thing that you may find striking is the locking mechanism. There really isn’t any to speak of…well at least that is functional. The kick has the old flat plate mechanism. Although the tools do snap open, they are easily closed. Since there is no lock, you have to watch your fingers.

One handle contains:
-Bottle/Can opener, and standard Leatherman Phillips screwdriver.

The other handle contains:
-clip point knife, large and small flat head screwdriver, and a lanyard ring.

Of interest, one of the rivets has a screw mount to affix what I suppose is an optional metal clip. It is also the lightest at 147 g.

The Fuse:

Being the middle of the litter, it has a few more features that the Kick doesn’t have. At least, this tool has an effective locking mechanism. I view this as a must in a modern multi-tool, and considering that these tools came out in 2004, I wonder why Leatherman didn’t incorporate a locking mechanism in the lower end Kick. The only new addition to the tool set is a very useful pair of scissors
So with the Fuse, you gain a locking mechanism, a pair of scissors, and you lose the capability of adding a metal clip to secure the unit in a pocket.  
The fuse is also slightly heavier at 170g, and is also a little wider to accommodate the scissors.

The Blast:

This is the top end of the family. To show its higher status, there are now 16 tools. On top of what the fuse has to offer, you gain a wood metal file in one handle, and a metal saw plus a small bit driver in the other handle.  The Blast weights a hefty 196 g, and is thicker then the fuse.


From left to right: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast. Illustrating the difference in thickness and details of the locking mechanism employed.

Similarities in the family:

-   Use of Nylon in the handles
-   Basic tool set is the same with increased additions in each successive model.
-   Each model features the same ruler markings on the handles, same placement of model name.

Differences in the family:

-   Leatherman Kick has the capability to attach a metal clip to the tool.
-   Leatherman Fuse and Blast feature an effective locking mechanism.
-   Leatherman Fuse offers scissors over the Kick.
-   Leatherman Blast offers a file, saw, and a small bit set over the Fuse.
-   Each model up gains in weight and thickness.
-   The kick offers a smaller length blade. The Fuse and Blast carry the longer blade.

Family Pros:

-   Easily available anywhere Leatherman tools are sold.
-   One of these models will fit your needs. The kick is light. The Fuse is a good compromise if you absolutely need a locking mechanism along with scissors. The Blast offers the most features.
-   Nice Phillip screw drivers. Leatherman quality on the folding tools.

Family Cons:

-   The kick offers no locking mechanism. This is a step back for a modern tool.
-   Every one of these models have a sharp edge on the nylon that digs into the fingers when using them.
 
« Last Edit: June 04, 2009, 05:45:38 AM by Chako »

A little Leatherman information.

Leatherman series articles
No Life Club Posts: 1,092
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2009, 05:27:33 AM »
While certainly not perfect, I have a certain soft spot for this line up. They are true value tools and hard workers.

My two big complaints:

They ALL need the tapped screw for a pocket clip.

The Fuse should have another tool, preferably a file.



Fan of the Leatherman mini-bit driver and the Vic backspring philips.
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 8,550
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2009, 06:13:51 AM »
There is something appealing about the simple, classic design of this line, my EDC is a fuse. Plus it's lighter than either wave or spirit.


The Fuse should have another tool, preferably a file.


I definately agree. :D Although as it is makes sense for spacing the lineup.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2009, 06:15:34 AM by jzmtl »
Chief of the Absolutely No Life Club! Abandon All Hope Ye Who Enter Here... Posts: 42,959 Why haven't you got a Farmer yet!
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2009, 07:08:36 AM »
Another great review mate :tu:

Now some Swiss stuff if you please :)

Give in, buy several Farmer's!!!!!!
No Life Club Posts: 1,547
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2009, 08:00:13 AM »
Nice comparison review!  :cheers:

I agree 100% about the handles. I find the implementation utterly bizarre. The indents are also lower than the back of some of the implements, so that the tools actually dig into your fingers when you squeeze. IMO, these are actually the least ergonomic handles LM currently offers.

I also don't understand why they don't all have pocket clips.

I was just using my Kick and I had big problems trying to unscrew 2 different slotted screws. Neither of the slotted drivers worked, but they were easily handled by my SAK.

On the other hand, I really like the Kick because I don't mind beating on it and it is really easy to carry. I like the phillips driver a lot too.

In fact, I used the Kick so much that I am really looking forward to getting a Blast next. If I feel as comfortable with the Blast as I do the Kick, it may very well become my EDC!  :tu:



[
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 19,262 Armed with camera and not afraid to use it.
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2009, 12:04:01 PM »
Mike, at the moment, I don't own anything remotely Swiss. Those items are rarer then hens teeth in my neck of the woods. I did order 4 SOGs from the net. I will probably have to do the same with the Swiss stuff once I find a nice Canadian Distributor or dealer. :(


A little Leatherman information.

Leatherman series articles
No Life Club Posts: 3,785 Why is it doing that?
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2009, 12:22:06 PM »
How about Felinevet Tim (aka The CatMan)? :pok: :D
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 19,262 Armed with camera and not afraid to use it.
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2009, 12:36:30 PM »
Thanks. I didn't know about that site. It is now a favorite.

A little Leatherman information.

Leatherman series articles
Chief of the Absolutely No Life Club! Abandon All Hope Ye Who Enter Here... Posts: 42,959 Why haven't you got a Farmer yet!
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #8 on: June 04, 2009, 07:08:23 PM »
Thanks. I didn't know about that site. It is now a favorite.
Yep Tim's you go-to Swiss guy :)

Give in, buy several Farmer's!!!!!!
No Life Club Posts: 1,571
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2009, 08:53:27 PM »
Awesome review and pics, Chako!  I actually wanted to get a Fuse (or Blast) and this review helped me out a lot.

This is called a Swiss Army Knife. Do you know what Switzerland is? Switzerland is a place where they don't like to fight, so they get people to do their fighting for them while they ski and eat chocolate. - Larry David
No Life Club Posts: 1,599
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #10 on: June 04, 2009, 09:03:02 PM »
Catman rocks! Great review i like the side by side comparison.
Mike

I think Alcohol, Tabacco and Firearms should be a convenience store, not a government agency. 

Mike
No Life Club Posts: 4,594 no nacimos con miedo...
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #11 on: June 04, 2009, 10:12:16 PM »
great comparison :tu:, you only let one thing left.....do a side by side thickness photo with the rest of the leathermans :pok: :)

A
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 19,262 Armed with camera and not afraid to use it.
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #12 on: June 04, 2009, 11:04:26 PM »
Thanks everyone.

Anyhow, as you requested, some thickness shots.


From left to right: Leatherman Pulse, Kick, Fuse, Blast, Wave, Surge, Core, Skeletool.



From left to right: Leatherman Pulse, Kick, Fuse, Blast, Wave, Surge, Core, Skeletool.

A little Leatherman information.

Leatherman series articles
Global Moderator Just Bananas Posts: 61,323
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #13 on: June 04, 2009, 11:17:05 PM »
You are getting good with these reviews man :tu: I love my Blast don't have the other 2 but I may well add them sooner or later :D Love all the pics as well very helpful :cheers:
Keeper Of The PowerCut Admin Team Zombie Apprentice Posts: 16,886 - Allan

AHB dk

*
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #14 on: June 04, 2009, 11:29:23 PM »
Great pictures... :tu:
Now I really can't wait to get my Core.  :D


"Don't mistake lack of talent for genius."
No Life Club Posts: 4,594 no nacimos con miedo...
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #15 on: June 04, 2009, 11:34:15 PM »
Awesome mate :tu: thanks :salute:

A
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 5,364
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #16 on: June 04, 2009, 11:36:08 PM »
what kind of camera did you take those pics with?

Excellent review too! I have a Blast and a Kick (thanks Walmart Clearance thread)..now i just need a Fuse. It is strange how most stores carry a Blast and KIck but no Fuse. Sears has em.

:like:    :MTO:
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 19,262 Armed with camera and not afraid to use it.
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #17 on: June 04, 2009, 11:57:46 PM »
I use a small Canon S5IS with a Canon 420EX flash.

My first photos were taken directly on a carpet that covers my cats waist high tree house in the living room. It offers a nice flat and convenient place to take small object photographs. However, I found the carpet a bit distracting, so I dug up some black velvet cloth. Once draped on the tree house, it makes a nice contrasting background that places emphasis on the tool.  Another benefit, the photos hardly take up any HD space.

As for lighting, it is nothing fancy. I swivel the flash head to bounce off a cream white ceiling as I hold the camera over the tools (I do love the swivel LCD monitor on this camera).

As for the reviews, I am having too much fun making them. There is a lot of room for improvement though. I don't cover everything, as I try to make them short and to the point. I seem to be averaging one a night. They take me anywhere from one to two hours to make. I have been lurking on the main page with the real good reviews for so long, that I feel I should contribute a little to this community once I found out that I could. I still cannot believe that I missed the forum link all this time. Likewise, I just found out that there is a photography section (another of my hobbies). Every time I look, this place just gets better and better.  :tu:

A little Leatherman information.

Leatherman series articles
No Life Club Posts: 1,092 Gone Climbing.
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #18 on: July 28, 2009, 08:15:12 AM »
Man I really needed a review like this a while ago... pity I only found it now. I was oging to buy a Fuse but didn't know anything about it, so I left the deal... :(

Great review though mate!  :cheers:

And I am a big ol' +1 on the they need a file for the Fuse. I think that would make it a perfect tool for me at work. Anyone wanna send me one to see if I can mod  :D :pok:

"I would rather live 40 years of excitement and fun and exhilarating and just WOOOO, full volume, then 80 years of la di di di da... you know... boring. Why not get out there and live it?!"
No Life Club Posts: 4,230 Plants should be smoked, not eaten.
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #19 on: July 28, 2009, 01:59:41 PM »
I've owned a Kick before and the lack of a locking blade didn't bother me. When the tool is closed and the blade is out it isn't gonna close on your hands. It may close a little but never enough to concern me.

And actually it may be a plus for people who are unlucky enough to live in places where their gov't doesn't trust them with locking knives.

http://ducksrandomthoughts.blogspot.com - or follow me on Twitter- @ducksthoughts

It's hard to say nipple without smirking.
Keeper Of The PowerCut Admin Team Zombie Apprentice Posts: 16,886 - Allan

AHB dk

*
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #20 on: July 28, 2009, 07:05:39 PM »
I've owned a Kick before and the lack of a locking blade didn't bother me. When the tool is closed and the blade is out it isn't gonna close on your hands. It may close a little but never enough to concern me.

And actually it may be a plus for people who are unlucky enough to live in places where their gov't doesn't trust them with locking knives.
+1  :tu:
As said befor, I haven't experienced a job, The Kick couldn't handle... :)


"Don't mistake lack of talent for genius."
Global Tuffy Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 28,078 Just Awesome! And a Slayer of Polar Bear!
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #21 on: July 28, 2009, 07:18:38 PM »
Man I really needed a review like this a while ago... pity I only found it now. I was oging to buy a Fuse but didn't know anything about it, so I left the deal... :(

Great review though mate!  :cheers:

And I am a big ol' +1 on the they need a file for the Fuse. I think that would make it a perfect tool for me at work. Anyone wanna send me one to see if I can mod  :D :pok:

The knifeless version has a file (but obviously no knife)

I'm back!!
No Life Club Posts: 1,092 Gone Climbing.
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #22 on: July 29, 2009, 04:23:57 AM »
Man I really needed a review like this a while ago... pity I only found it now. I was oging to buy a Fuse but didn't know anything about it, so I left the deal... :(

Great review though mate!  :cheers:

And I am a big ol' +1 on the they need a file for the Fuse. I think that would make it a perfect tool for me at work. Anyone wanna send me one to see if I can mod  :D :pok:

The knifeless version has a file (but obviously no knife)

Looking for both, since I can fortunately carry the knife

"I would rather live 40 years of excitement and fun and exhilarating and just WOOOO, full volume, then 80 years of la di di di da... you know... boring. Why not get out there and live it?!"
No Life Club Posts: 2,278 Ruler of the E01 society!
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #23 on: July 29, 2009, 08:44:36 AM »
Ben, you have a PST don't you. How does it compare to the Kick? Is the Kick any better?

Gabba gabba hey!
Global Tuffy Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 28,078 Just Awesome! And a Slayer of Polar Bear!
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #24 on: July 29, 2009, 02:42:49 PM »
Ben, you have a PST don't you. How does it compare to the Kick? Is the Kick any better?

I do, but I don't have a Kick to compare it to.  Sorry.

I'm back!!
No Life Club Posts: 2,278 Ruler of the E01 society!
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #25 on: July 29, 2009, 09:05:25 PM »
My mistake, is it a Fuse then?

Gabba gabba hey!
Chief of the Absolutely No Life Club! Abandon All Hope Ye Who Enter Here... Posts: 42,959 Why haven't you got a Farmer yet!
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #26 on: July 29, 2009, 09:44:59 PM »
My mistake, is it a Fuse then?
Yep he's got a knifeless one :)

coz he's a big jessie :D

Give in, buy several Farmer's!!!!!!
No Life Club Posts: 2,278 Ruler of the E01 society!
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #27 on: July 29, 2009, 09:49:29 PM »
My mistake, is it a Fuse then?
Yep he's got a knifeless one :)

coz he's a big jessie :D

 :spamkiller:   ;)

Gabba gabba hey!
Chief of the Absolutely No Life Club! Abandon All Hope Ye Who Enter Here... Posts: 42,959 Why haven't you got a Farmer yet!
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #28 on: July 29, 2009, 09:51:32 PM »
 :D :D

Give in, buy several Farmer's!!!!!!
Global Tuffy Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 28,078 Just Awesome! And a Slayer of Polar Bear!
Re: Leatherman Kick, Fuse, and Blast.
« Reply #29 on: July 29, 2009, 11:59:23 PM »
My mistake, is it a Fuse then?
Yep he's got a knifeless one :)

coz he's a big jessie :D

You know why I have one.  :twak: :D

I'm back!!

 

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