Leatherman Expanse E33BX knife

GearFlogger reviews the Leatherman Expanse E33BX knife Leatherman has some very creative gnomes working in their forges. We GearFloggers are very fickle about our knives and multitools, yet after more than a year the Leatherman Skeletool CX is still our tool of choice for pretty much any backcountry adventure, up to and including Denali.

Along came a 3.7oz knife. Leatherman's Expanse series of cutlery comes in 33 (2.6in blade) and 55 (3.1in blade) drop point formats, each with either a straight blade or a combo straight and serrated. I always go for the combo because of the rope and cord cutting utility. The 154CM stainless steel blade from Crucible Metals is very balanced: it's tough, holds an edge and resists corrosion. The E33BX handles well too, with a seamless match between the steel and plastic scales.

The tension in the blade is adjustable, and there are two means of opening: a standard thumb stud and Leatherman's interesting Blade Launcher. The launcher is under your index fingertip on the back of the knife, and a small movement of the switch deploys the blade. At first I thought it was completely redundant to the thumb stud, but it's actually a faster and more economical movement that you'll probably end up using exclusively.

The B in the name is for bit driver. The handle is significantly thicker than a blade-only design, but it makes the knife easier to hold and to handle, and it hides the flip-out driver. It comes with a double-ended #1 and #2 Fillips bit, with a 1/4 and 3/16 flat bit tucked into a slot in the handle, and it's quite servicable. There's a carabiner clip that doubles as a bottle opener folded into the handle. You can put it away or use it as the situation demands, it's a nicely flexible option, as is the removable pocket clip. The only nitpick is the liner lock, which is recessed a bit too far although with practice you'll get used to it, and it does make accidently folding the blade during use – an already unlikely event – highly unlikely. All in all, a nicely designed package if you're looking for this exact combination of functionality.

$37.35 at Amazon


Note to readers: As of November 1, 2022, Gearflogger no longer participates in affiliate programs or accepts commissions on links to products. We’ll find some other way to make money. Maybe get a real job. Maybe not.

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