Juice Series

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Background

In 2001 Leatherman introduced the Juice line of multitools, an entirely new series of multi-purpose pliers based on a medium sized frame. The use of brightly colored aluminum handle scales and smooth rounded contours, all in a package that folds up to about three inches long makes the Juice models appealing to carry, especially in formal situations when a full size regular multitool would not be appropriate.

In addition to the aluminum scales, the modular layered system of construction (similar to how Swiss Army Knives are built) and the use of rivets instead of screws is noteworthy on the Juice line.

There were originally five different Juice models in the Leatherman lineup, but that number has been reduced to four since the KF4 was retired in late 2006. In addition, two special run variations, the SC2 and the Pro, were produced for large retailers. All of the various models start out with a plier layer, which also houses an array of inside-opening screwdrivers. After that, assorted outside-opening blades and functions are stacked on, creating the different variations.

In 2014, Leatherman "refreshed" the Juice line, with new two tone textured scales. The refresh is regarded by many as a step backwards for Leatherman. The changes are as follows:
  • The main blade was shortened, and made into more of a modified sheepsfoot shape.
  • solid colored anodized scales were replaced with a two tone affair. One side is a plain aluminum scale, the other side has a thin textured aluminum secondary scale covering another plain aluminum scale
  • the nail nicks on the inside drivers were moved higher up the drivers, and made to line up with each other.
  • The new plier heads are slightly pointer at the distal end, and less angular than the older ones.

While the reasoning for the blade change has never been officially been confirmed by Leatherman, it was likely due to a proposed change to United States airport regulations. The proposed change would have allowed blades smaller than 2.5" to pass through airport security. The proposed regulation was eventually was rejected, but Leatherman had already implemented the change to the Juice series.

Tools

Click on the model for more details


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C2
S2
KF4
CS4

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XE6
SC2
Pro
Accessories



More Info

  • Aluminum Scales
    • Note that the aluminum scales are for cosmetics only. Stainless steel frame layers underneath provide the real strength.
  • Stainless Steel Frame
    • Triangle shaped cutouts skeletonize these frame members, reducing weight. Reports are that Leatherman engineers went to great lengths to assure that these cutouts did not weaken the handles. Numerous tools were destruct tested in the process of finding the perfect balance between strength and weight. (see photo below right)
  • Handle Mismatch
    • Due to the varied blade selection, the handles on all Juice tools are somewhat mismatched in thickness. This condition is normal, and varies in degree from model to model.
Juice handle thickness Peeled XE6
Handle thickness mismatch on S2
XE6 with scales removed



  • Date Codes
    • Date codes indicating month and year of manufacture are stamped inside the frame members of Juice tools, generally in the channel containing the screwdrivers. (see below)
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  • USA/Tool Markings
    • Early Juice tools had LEATHERMAN and USA cast into both sides of the plier head. After Leatherman lost the infamous Colgan -v- Leatherman lawsuit in California, all models including the Juice tools were cast with LEATHERMAN and TOOL. A transitionary stage occured in between however as there were apparently a large number of the pre-lawsuit pliers already produced. The solution was to remove the forbidden USA markings with a milling cutter. (see photos below)



  • Screwdrivers
    • Driver length on the Juice tools is rather short, and the fact that three flathead screwdrivers are included is sometimes criticized. However, a closer look at the way these tools are constructed reveals the reasons why:
      • The screwdrivers are housed in the same sandwich layer as the plier head. Making the drivers longer would require that the plier jaws be smaller, or the entire tool be made larger. Leatherman was apparently not willing to compromise in either area.
      • As regards the three flatheads, there were apparently no other functions that would fit into the confined space available. (see pictures below)
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  • Cutouts
    • Nail cutouts appear in both scales on the C2, S2, and SC2 models, allowing easier access to the screwdriver blades. Wider models including the KF4, CS4, XE6, and Pro have no such cutouts. Accessing the drivers can be difficult for users with short fingernails.
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  • Rulers
    • Note that an inch and metric ruler appear on the KF4 model, including both the solar yellow and the storm gray variations. These rulers are not on any of the other Juice models.
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  • Naming Code
    • The logic behind the naming of the various Juice tools is reportedly as follows:
      • C2 = Corkscrew, 2 external tools (corkscrew and knife)
      • S2 = Scissors, 2 external tools (scissors, knife)
      • KF4 = serrated Knife and File, 4 external layers (serrated blade, plain blade, saw and file)
      • CS4 = Corkscrew and Scissor, 4 external tools (scissor, corkscrew, knife and saw)

      • SC2 = Scissors, Corkscrew, 2 external tools (should actually be a SC3, as there are three external tools comprised of scissors, corkscrew and knife)

      • XE6 = No tools beginning with an X or E, but does have 6 external tools


  • Features and Colors
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  • Counterfeits
    • Knockoff artists from Asia have gone to great lengths to copy the Juice tools. Pliers, handles, blades, and appearance are all painstakingly duplicated, clearly with an intent to mislead the consumer. Several Juice models (perhaps all of them) have a fake counterpart. Care must be taken not to be fooled when shopping for genuine Leatherman products over the internet.

Counterfeit Juices Counterfeit Juices
Juice XE6 copy
Note that fakes are generally
about 10% larger than genuine tools




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Created by Bob. Last Modification: Monday 18 of April, 2016 19:57:18 CEST by Poncho65.