Saturday, December 15, 2012

Multi-tool Nylon for the War Belt

Patriot Performance Materials Nylon Multi-Tool Sheath in 1000D
So I scored these pouches on ebay for $7.75 shipped. I figured, how could I go wrong? In no time the first one was on my desk, ready to get fitted to my ATS War Belt. I busted it open and started testing it out. According to the information on the ebay page this product was made by Patriot Performance Materials in the USA of 1000D nylon, which you can see in the images. I couldn't find a lot of information on the company and their website does some redirecting to a page that appears to sell other companies' products rather than creations of their own. I didn't do a lot of digging but a few forum threads here and there reported that their products were good-to-go - there was simply no reason not to buy.

Two thoughts struck me as I attempted to insert my Leatherman Wave: one; it doesn't fit and two; it's not really Coyote Tan. It looked a little green and that is sort of reflected in the images. However, I was mostly wrong on both accounts as it turns out. The multi-tool fits like a glove for one thing and for another, I kind of like the color. It would seem to me that the perfect color is one that looks green in a green environment and brown in a brown one - and this color appears to do that. The tag does read Coyote and in the images you can see that outside it matches very closely to the Coyote Tan ATS Belt. So only a few minutes after my initial impressions I had switched from thinking it was a little lame, to really an excellent product. It is neatly made, I actually like the color, and it fits the tool as if it were specifically made for a Leatherman Wave. It is VERY low profile on the belt, being barely wider and deeper than the tool itself. I like to carry the tool "point up" if you think of it like a folding knife, and it works well that way. The brilliance of the Wave and other tools from Leatherman like the Charge, is that you can access the blades without opening the tool and 5 or 6 times out of 10 I am taking my Wave out to use the blades. Leatherman sells a MOLLE ready pouch that also accommodates bits and accessories for the Wave, and there are other good companies with similar offerings and probably at roughly the same price or slightly more. My understanding though, is that the Leatherman sheath is made in China and if you're looking for something low profile, you just can't go wrong here.

Or can you? I liked it so well that I wanted another one and Patriot Performance Material seemed to have some interesting color options beyond the standard. Specifically, they had one called "Wheat" which looked a little more Coyote, but lighter. It turns out that is exactly the case, but then the problems started. This time the tool actually doesn't fit and the pouch itself seems a little ... off ... for lack of a better word, when compared to the first unit. Take a look at the pictures and the captions for the specifics. The upside is that I contacted the seller and in order to make things right, he just sent me 4 more units to try out. That is customer service the likes of which just don't come along too often these days. As soon as they get here I will make an update post and throw in some other things I scored. My plan is to use all these extra pouches on some Kydex Knife Sheaths to carry sharpening stones or Ferro/Magnesium Rods which should make for a pretty cool project. Stay tuned.
Multi-Tool Pouch with Leatherman Wave
Left to right. The tool won't insert any further than what you see here. Next you can see that the webbing was stitched at a different height which suggests that there is just some inconsistency going on with this unit. In the third image you can see that because the webbing is stitched higher the pouch can't be cinched down as tightly as the first pouch. The flap can't reach the bottom of the pouch itself.