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It was 1975. Oregon native Tim Leatherman and his wife Chau were on a budget journey through Europe and, along the way, encountered a series of situations that necessitated unorthodox uses of the scout knife he carried. While it worked in a pinch for leaky hotel bathroom plumbing and road-side fixes for their Fiat, Leatherman, who earned his mechanical engineering degree from Oregon State University, found himself wishing he simply had a pair of pliers.
Armed with an idea and various sketches from his trip, Leatherman set about designing and marketing what would become his famous plier-based multi-tool. It would take eight more years and a partnership with college friend Steve Berliner, but a combination of innovation and perseverance led to his first order — 500 tools to Cabela’s — and, eventually, and internationally-known enterprise.
Today, Leatherman runs on the same drive and dedication of its founder, making tools for builders, workers, problem-solvers and adventurers. Everything is made under one roof in Portland, Oregon, and tested indoors and out across the great Pacific Northwest. Whether hiking through the Cascades, fishing in one of the many lakes and rivers, working through a handyman job or just that honey-do list, Leatherman’s quality and dynamism ensures the job is done right.