Updating Your Utility Belt

I just updated my utility belt.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original blog entry at: http://www.codinghorror.com/blog/2013/10/updating-your-utility-belt.html

Fool around enough in the woods and you’ll eventually break or tear a nail, in those instances the nail file is indispensable. The one included in Leatherman tools (I use a Leatherman Style CS which benefits from a built in clip and bottle opener) has always been great in that there is actual grit in the file so it isn’t just for show and can keep your nails nice and smooth.

The file isn’t necessarily a nail file, it is handy for throwing a quick edge on a saw or knife blade or filing something fit that’s just a little too big.

You’re tempting me with that flashlight, as mine is currently only capable of about 500lm. It still seems to be good enough for me though, plus it’s titanium (Jetbeam TC-R1) which feels really good.

Also, the battery is an 18650, which means it’s 18mm in diameter and 65mm long. You’re missing the 6 in the number.

My favorite part of this post is the blurred out keys in the second photo. Highly respect the diligence.

Just the other day I fired up my battery powered barbecue rotisserie for the first time in ages and it didn’t work due to corroded battery terminals. Two seconds with a nail file and it was fixed :slight_smile:

Can anyone mansplain this to me?

You’re using it wrong:


The file is useful as previous commenters have pointed out, but you have to watch out – I had a Leatherman Squirt a few years back, and the rough edge of the file was enough to scratch up anything else I put in the same pocket if I carried it every day.

One other concern – the Leatherman Style looks awesome, but is the blade short enough for air travel? I recently picked up a Victornox Manager (http://www.amazon.com/Victorinox-Swiss-Manager-Pocket-Knife/dp/B000FNFXK4) to replace my Leatherman (and the collapsible pen I’d been keeping in my wallet!) specifically because the blade meets EU airline regs, which allow folding blades under 6cm x 1cm. Do you know if the Leatherman is the same way?

Well, apparently one of the things that you can use the nail file for is fixing your shotgun in a pinch…


Keys? Blech.

Number pad door lock. Keyless ignition in the car. Never having to to free-up a hand to dig in my pockets: Priceless.

Bright flashlights may be macho, and they have their uses, but for getting around in the dark it’s best to use the dimmest one that gets the job done, and preferably monochrome. Otherwise your rods don’t adjust to the dark, and you can’t see a thing outside of the narrow shaft of light. Or if you insist on being macho, use the bright flashlight and wear an eye patch.

“I’ve never filed my nails once in my entire life! Can anyone mansplain this to me?”

As other people have said, it’s useful for more than nails.

Plus, ever get a little tear in a fingernail at the tip? Annoying as HELL, and a file’s the best tool for that job.

(Also, contra Mr. Crandall, I have an electronic front door lock - but they still have a key for backup.

And you do NOT want to get locked out of your house because you didn’t notice the low-battery warning or something.)

Not as common as the CS, but the Style PS is about to lighten my current carry – mostly because it’s easy to unclip but keeps the pliers and scissors that I find are the most-used tools for me on a Squirt PS4.

It’s also possible to use small (4mm) screwdriver bits with it, wedging them into the carabiner section: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yDsYphq5klg [not my video]

“Now, I want you to go in that bag and find my leatherman.”

“Which one is it?”

What’s with the “Bad Mofo” sticker? Pulp Fiction?

Nice idea to ditch the USB over the phone, but it means always carying a USB cable, and my phone wont boot a computer…

Well, apparently one of the things that you can use the nail file for is fixing your shotgun in a pinch…


Quite like the “bad mother…” on the blades.

Oh dear. Your blurring out your keys is a bit of security theater, I’m afraid.

By the looks of your keys, you’re using the same-old, same-old pin and tumbler locks that have long since been compromised. It isn’t like the tech is new; it is over 150 years old. An attacker can either bump or pick your locks and they’re in a matter of seconds.

In any case, just like in computer security, an attacker will take the easiest route: instead of painstakingly recreating your keys, she will use a “Skeleton Brick” to open a back window or a coat-hanger to open the garage door.

The picture doesn’t do the Style justice in terms of size, it’s roughly a quarter of the size of my Ford keyfob. So dinky!

I’ve never thought about having a torch on my keys but now seriously considering one if that’s anywhere near as small as the Style. Any idea where I can purchase the ITP 96 lumen in good old England? I’ve only been able to find an 80 lumen on amazon uk.