At Apex Magnets, we’re always curious to see how companies are using magnets to improve the functionality of their products. We recently learned of Leatherman©’s newest multitool line-- the Leatherman© Free Collection, which is breaking the mold of traditional multitools. Gearheads, outdoorsmen, and handymen alike are getting especially excited over the Free P2 and P4’s versatility, packaging, and ease of use.

Our favorite part of the multitools? The innovative use of magnets.

Why the Leatherman© Free P2 and P4 Use Magnets

Before we dive into the “how” behind the Free P2 and P4’s magnets, we first need to understand the “why.”  Leatherman©’s decision to include magnets in the newest design came as a solution to an age-old multitool problem: it’s difficult to engineer a pliers-based multitool to be used with only one hand. There are two reasons behind this. First, once the tool is opened as a pair of pliers, there needs to be something that keeps the handles held together. The other obstacle multitools face is that while there are a variety of tools tucked into the handles, it’s difficult to get them out quickly when they’re needed.

How the Leatherman©  Free P2 and P4 Use Magnets

Leatherman© used a plastic-coated neodymium magnet on the end of each handle, which holds the tool closed. These magnets also keep the tools within the handles secure on the outside as opposed to the previous model, which held the tools inside. With this design, the tension is low enough that a simple roll over the base of the tool you intend to use is enough to open it. The neodymium magnets Leatherman© chose are strong enough to keep the tool closed but aren’t too strong that they interfere with technology, as we’ve learned can happen with stronger neodymium magnets. “We have six of the best multitools we’ve ever created coming out this year in 2019, all based on this new technology, this new magnetic architecture, that we’re really excited about,” says Jeremy from Leatherman© during an interview with BladeHQ at the NSSF SHOT Show.

Using Magnets to Improve Consumer Goods

Magnets have been making objects easier for use not only for the general public for also for those who may have disabilities or struggle with dexterity -- have you read our piece on magnets in adaptive clothing? To stay up-to-date on how companies like Leatherman© are incorporating “magnetic architecture” into their product designs, check out our magnets in the news blog or subscribe to our monthly newsletter. You’ll also get access to exclusive deals and sales!