Introduction: Pinkie Sized Keychain Knife From a Leatherman Micra
The Leatherman Micra is one of my favorite knives, but I don't really use the scissors. The flip-out multitool action is the signature feature of Leatherman knives; that's what makes them cool, yet I don't need that feature in the Micra. What I really want is a super tiny knife I can keep on my keychain without adding a lot of weight. With a simple modification you get a knife that is half the weight and half the size of the original. All you loose is one tool -- the scissors. I haven't found any knives for sale that are as small, light, and useful as my modified Micra.
Step 1: Locking Pliers to Remove Hinge Pin Screws
A pair of locking pliers can be used to unscrew the four hinge pin screws that hold the knife together. I like to use genuine Vise-Grip locking pliers because they have a very sharp, clean edge. The hinge pin screws have thread-lock in them so they will feel stiff coming out. They actually come out very easily, with little force, but you have to use the pliers the whole way while unscrewing them. You won't be able to loosen them a little and unscrew them the rest of the way with your fingers.
Step 2: Remove Blades and Organize
Remove the blades and set aside the blades that will be reused. Discard the rest.
Step 3: Adjust Tension
The sides of the knife body will require a little gentle compression to adjust tension on the blades. Don't bend the sides in too much. The metal bends more easily than you might think. Squeeze a little, then test the pressure on the blades. Squeeze a bit more if necessary. The pressure is good when you can fit all the blades and they won't fall out even with the hinge pin removed.
Step 4: Arrange and Fit Blades.
You may want to add two washers to the small end of the body as spacers. Use two number 8 plan flat stainless steel washers. Nylon or brass washers would also be fine. The pictures show the blade arrangement on the small and large ends of the body. Locate the long hinge pin and screw. The pin should enter the hinge hole on the same side as the knife blade. The screw should enter the hinge hole on the side with the bottle opener. You will need the locking pliers to screw the pin and screw together. Go slowly. Do not over tighten! Part of the opening tension is set by how tightly the pin is screwed together.
Step 5: Done
It's no bigger than my pinkie and weighs only 25 grams.
Step 6: Save the Scissors?
With a little welding and you can still use the scissors... I swear my first welds looked like perfect welds! But then I got carried away trying to make them a little stronger. I did this for fun just to practice welding something so small. I was going to throw away the scissors. I'm surprised the heat didn't distort the blades. Now the scissors are actually pretty useful.
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