Review: Leatherman Style CS Multitool

By Scott Richmond

Some anglers love their gadgets. I'm not one of them. I'm especially not fond of "system" products that claim to do several things in one handy package. I'd rather have three tools that do three jobs well, than have one tool that did three jobs half well.

However . . . there is an exception. For years I carried a Swiss Army knife whether I was fishing or not. For fishing I also carried a big Leatherman multitool on my belt. Then I migrated to a Leatherman Juice S2 for both fishing and civilian uses, and later the smaller and lighter Leatherman Squirt PS4.

My current don't-leave-home-without-it tool is the Leatherman Style CS. This is such a nifty device that I own three of them: one for fishing, one for non-fishing, and one as a backup for when I can't find one or both of the other two (which is about half the time.)

What's On It

The Style CS has six tools:

  1. Scissors
  2. Fine scewdriver
  3. File (on the screwdriver)
  4. Knife blade
  5. Tweezers
  6. Bottle opener

How many of those can you use when you're fishing? All of them! The CS is small, which increases mobility but means fewer tools. I keep a large Leatherman in my fish bag for when I need a bigger knife, pliers, etc.

Weight is 1.4 ounces. There's a clip so you can hook it to a belt loop or other handy spot. The Style CS is in Leatherman's "Keychain" group of tools, which gives some idea of its weight and size.

Leatherman tools are stainless steel. However, some years ago I carried a Leatherman in a sheath when I was saltwater fishing; it rusted out in short order. As my father--an aeronautical engineer--once told me, "Son, in the airplane business we call it 'corrosion resistant steel' because we know that nothing is truly stainless." It's always a good idea to rinse your gear after saltwater use, no matter what the maker says.

Bottom Line

Wonderful device with many uses and easy to carry anywhere.

For fishing use, the CS would be slightly more useful if the file (on the screwdriver blade) could be used for sharpening hooks; alas, it is more suitable for fingernails. So your hooks might remain dull, but least your nails will look good.

Scott Richmond is Westfly's creator and Executive Director. He is the author of eight books on Oregon fly fishing, including Fishing Oregon's Deschutes River (second edition).