Tools that stand the test of time
in 1996 THE leatherman micra WAS brand new and multi-tools were all the rage. Somehow, the clever little gadget, with its spring-loaded scissors and tiny screwdrivers, wound up on the shelf of a local chain store, mismarked to half its asking price. My old man, a sucker for a bargain, bought out the lot of them. I was 12. I’ve admired the hell out of it ever since.
A good tool has a knack for longevity, for being passed along. Sometimes among friends as loans that last lifetimes. Sometimes they’re handed down generations. Inevitably, funny little bonds form, and sometimes perceived value far outstrips a tool’s actual cost. I’d rather lose an expensive socket set than the little Leatherman that’s outlasted 20 years of sock drawers and jeans pockets.
The staff at Motorcyclist have similar attachments, and in assembling them for this photoshoot, a picture of each contributor emerged. The racer. The painter. The mechanical dabbler. Each of us treats them like our machines in miniature. We laud them when they make us look sharp and hold them accountable for our faults. And, just as with motorcycles, the tools may vary but our outsized affection for them remains constant.