Joshua has designed and made lots of tools out of Damascus, titanium and high end stainless steels such as S30V. His current choice of material is titanium due to its toughness and it lends itself to being a very light medium. When you browse the JDR site you are awe stuck by so many models and styles. For someone as young in the business as he is, he has quite a lot under his belt already. I will admit, his designs are not as far out there as Peter’s (i.e. wrench models) but Josh likes to focus most of his attention on pry tools and knives and less on something that has a gadget factor.
When I had to go and pick a model I would like to give a try out on, I chose the Baby Pacu 2.5. Besides the discontinued Hammerhead model I feel the Baby Pacu had the most to offer when choosing between size and available features. The Baby Pacu is a medium sized pry tool that features a real simplistic design incorporating a pry end and a bottle opener. The pry end can do most of the dirty work you would normally subject a pry tool to that you would not risk your pocket knife with. You can pry, scrape, wedge and lightly twist with the Baby Pacu and it still comes back for more. I say lightly twist because unlike steel pry tools (S30V) titanium is not very forgiving when it comes to a twisting motion. Josh recommends you don’t use it for this purpose or it will mar or misshape the end of the tool and he will have to fix the damage if you chose to have it repaired.
Ok so it can’t function as a screwdriver, kind of a bummer I know but it can pry with enough oomph to make up for its handicap. The bottle opener on any of the JDR models is simply perfection in steel. The bottle opener is designed somewhat different that current styles on the market, Josh incorporates a small chamfered hole offset from the main bottle opening area. This opening helps aid in gripping the edge of the bottle cap and when you go to pop the top it never slips, never resulting in having to try a second time. To help facilitate in getting a grip when opening a bottle or using the pry end, the tool also sports a nice finger choil in conjunction with the jimping to provide a secure grip. Josh’s bottle opener design is arguably the best design in use today on a pry tool and it’s so effective it darn near bends a bottle cap in half!
Last thing that makes the Baby Pacu a great tool is the weight. In either method of carry; on your key ring or in your pocket the tool rides real easy due to its reduced weight. I really don’t notice I have the tool on me until I need to use it, it’s really nice to not be so conscious of what tool you’re packing that particular day. The tool also features some really sweet jimping on the spine; some tools have small friction jimping or half moon cutouts like on some of the Atwood designs. The really nice jimping in conjunction with the not so buttery smooth edges gives you a real good grip when popping them bottle tops. The edges on JDR tools are not as rounded or smoothed out like on Atwood tools. This may seem like a drawback when it comes to a comfort level, but you actually will praise this rather than curse it. The non buttery smooth edge comes in real handy on the pry end of the tool. You can use the tool as an effective box opener, it splits tape seams with ease and you don’t need to bust out your pocket knife and get it all gummed up with tape residue.
In conclusion the JDR Baby Pacu is a real nice pocket pry tool in a convenient package. Only featuring the basic necessities and no added fluff, the tool is ready to get down and dirty and do the job it was created to do. The Baby Pacu can be had for price which is average for a custom pocket tool considering the time involved and the price of materials. You can check out the Baby Pacu and the rest of Joshua’s designs at jdrknifeandtool.com