Tuesday, April 7, 2015

CRKT Eat'n Tool XL

Following up on Erin's announcement of this year's writing contest, it seemed fitting that I review the prize I know the best.

At first glance, the CRKT Eat'n Tool looks like an April Fool's joke. Thankfully for all of us, it is not a joke but in fact a beautiful reality. The original tool was quite small, bordering on cute, and a bit tough for full-sized hands. The newer XL model is a major upgrade: added length makes for easier use, and the larger frame allows additional and improved tools.

Yes, I said tools, plural. "Spock's Spork" is good for more than just chowing down: the bottle opener and can opener are pretty obvious additions to a tool of this sort. The less likely (and more nifty) tools are a series of hex wrenches and a screwdriver/scraper edge, with a carabiner to carry it all around.

Stainless steel construction and a skeletonized design keeps it under 3 ounces for its 6 inch length. Stainless also means it won't rust, corrode, or oxidize, while being tough enough to keep you eating for years. The natural stainless is very good looking, but if you decide you need something a bit different, it is also available in a tough black finish.

With the exception of the food-related portions, the tools are a bit field-expedient. They'll never replace a proper tool, but when they're the tool you have, they can get you home, or at least out of a bind. The bottle and can opener work very well, however, as does the spork itself.

All told, I give the Eat'n Tool XL the biggest compliment I can as a dirty capitalist: my money. I've got one in the Mad Mike BOB in my truck, and one in my backpacking gear, and will be buying a couple more before camping season starts again. For the money, they simply cannot be beaten.

Of course, free is the best price of all, so submit an article to the writing contest and you may well win one. For that matter, submit a bunch of articles and have more chances to win!

Enter early. Enter often.


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