Help with a multi-tool for gift


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Quoheleth
July 23, 2008, 03:19 PM
Hi, all. I usually hang out over in the firearms forums, so this is my first time into this part of THR.

Quick question. I want to give a multi-tool as a gift for a friend in the AC business. He did a quick-fix for me last night and wouldn't accept cash (but he did drink my Budweiser!). He liked my Gerber 400-series tool, so I thought something like that might make a nice "thank you."

My local Academy has three choices in my price-range: the Gerber 400-series, the Gerber Suspension and the Leatherman Kick - about $30. (http://www.academy.com/index.php?page=content&target=products/outdoors/hunting/cutlery/multitool). I would love to be able to afford the Wave or the Swiss Tool, but those are not possible right now.

For any of you who have experience with any of these three? He carries a kit bag with him most of the time that has a plethora of tools. This would be a little extra he could have with him at all times - like when he's at the top of a ladder and his kit is on the floor - not to replace the bigger stuff but make a handy addition.

Thanks for the advice,
Q

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Browning
July 23, 2008, 03:34 PM
Out of those two I'd probably choose the Gerber.

I have one of the Leatherman multi-tools and whenever I go to use the pliers the sharp edges of the two thin strips of metal on the Leatherman that make up the body of the tool are extremely uncomfortable when you're exerting any kind of pressure.

They're made well and they won't break, but you're pretty much forced to use a glove to protect your hands.

The Gerber multi-tools on the other hand are just as well made and the body of the multi-tool that comes into contact with the palm of your hand is a flat piece of metal, so they're just as comfortable as using a regular pair of pliers and there's no discomfort when using then even if you're squeezing them for all your worth.

Since I use the pliers 9 times out of 10 when I reach for the thing that's a pretty desirable feature.

Quoheleth
July 23, 2008, 03:41 PM
Out of those two I'd probably choose the Gerber

Which one - the 400-series or the Suspension?

The Suspension comes with an additional set of screwdriver tips that can be utilized, but if the adapter gets lost, that "bonus feature" is pointless.

Q

Irwin
July 23, 2008, 04:52 PM
(but he did drink my Budweiser!)First of all thank him even more and go buy some real beer :D Also id opt for the leatherman kick never had any problems with sore hands from using the pliers, its definetly robust and a good deal for the price (considering i payed $80 for mine at a local shop) But once you give it to him tell him to buy a cheap nylon sheath as the leather one is crudly made and the button seems to get stuck, not exactly easy to get out and back quickly. Failing that the Gerbers not a bad choice either. Irwin

Cougfan2
July 23, 2008, 05:00 PM
I have a Kershaw multi tool. I like it because the pliers can also operate a vise grips. Not sure Kershaw makes them anymore, but you can probably pick one up on e-bay.

Browning
July 23, 2008, 05:24 PM
Which one - the 400-series or the Suspension?

The Suspension comes with an additional set of screwdriver tips that can be utilized, but if the adapter gets lost, that "bonus feature" is pointless.

Q

Other than the screwdriver tips they're essentially the same feature wise and the Suspension is actually $1 less.

GERBER SUSPENSION MULTI-PLIERS

$28.99
Spring loaded Pliers
Tools Lock for Safety
Needlenose pliers, wire cutter, fine edge knife, serrated edge knife, saw, scissors, crosspoint screwdriver, small and medium flatblade screwdrivers, can opener, bottle opener and lanyard hole.
Ballistic nylon Sheath

Maybe he'll be able to keep track of them. If it's not attached I usually end losing at least one of the additional gizmo's within the year if I use it very often unless I'm real anal about keeping everything in it's proper place.

You're saving a buck and getting some screwdriver tips, so you might as well get it.

HoosierQ
July 23, 2008, 06:06 PM
I have both and the newer Leathermans have more rounded edges. My Gerber is a real "palm pincher"...I mean raise a blood blister here...if, for example you slip off of something with the pliers or cut through some stiff wire. When the wire goes "clip", about 3 times out of 10, I go :what: ouch!!

The gerber is well made though and if the thing didn't come together at the hinge quite so closely, the pinch wouldn't happen. For that reason, I proceed cautiously with the Gerber pliers.

Quoheleth
July 23, 2008, 06:43 PM
Other than the screwdriver tips they're essentially the same feature wise and the Suspension is actually $1 less.

Yeah...the difference, tool-wise, is how the pliers is brought into action: the Suspension is a butterfly-style, like the Leatherman, but the 400 series is Gerber's sliding pliers.

That probably boils down to what one prefers as far as which is "better," huh?

Q

TimboKhan
July 23, 2008, 06:49 PM
CRKT is making some interesting tools as of late. I particularly like the new Get-a-way driver. It's not really a multi-tool, but it is something that could inexpensively be included with a multi-tool.

http://www.crkt.com/gawdriver.html

On that same track, he might appreciate the Gerber Artifact:

http://www.knifecenter.com/kc_new/store_detail.html?s=GB01770

Again, it is something that could (very) inexpensively be given along with a regular multitool, and it has the added advantage of being a little pry bar, which I would think an HVAC man might find useful. The knife is simply a easily replacable #11 x-acto blade, so it's not a big burly thing, but it would be good for cutting tape or something. I am suggesting it more for the pry utility, but it also has a bottle opener if he decides to crack open a bottle of good beer, like Coors.:neener:

As far as the tool itself goes, I might suggest a Swiss-Tool. Fellow THR member Dave Markowitz posted a nice review of the Swiss-tool on his blog, found here: http://survivalpreps.blogspot.com/2007/06/victorinox-swisstool-rs-multitool.html I personally don't ahve any experience with one, but I have yet to see anyone that wasn't pleased with the quality of the tool Something to consider, I guess.

Guns and more
July 23, 2008, 08:09 PM
I buy the Gerbers at Wal-mart. I think the last one was $29. Blades sharp, pliers useful (but watch the pinch). Quality is good.
Don't loan them out or you'll be going shopping.

EHCRain10
July 23, 2008, 10:36 PM
might wanta check out the SOG multi-tools as well, not sure if there is anything in your price range but they offer some nice features in the $50 range on the powerlock

Clean97GTI
July 24, 2008, 01:55 AM
I own a Leatherman PST II and have carried it frequently for years. One of the best purchases I ever made although I got mine at a garage sale for considerably less money.

They are $40 from Botach Tactical with sheath.
http://www.botachtactical.com/leatpstii.html

Limeyfellow
July 25, 2008, 02:20 AM
Out of the three I use the Gerber Suspension as my cheaper multitool. Use it to tighten up my telescopes, handy little work around the house, maintaining the garden equipment like the riding mower and plow and putting up fences for growing vegetables and so on. Works really well for what I put it through (though I have a gerber 600 series that I take hiking, camping and shooting). I even used it once in a public restroom where the lock on the door was stuck and couldn't get the strength to open it by hand. Thank god, for that would be rather embarrassing otherwise.

The only problem I had is one of the blade opening tabs broke off. It was covered by the warranty however and happened after a year of constant use.

VegasOPM
July 25, 2008, 02:31 AM
I've been carrying a Leatherman pretty much every day since 1992. I love them. The handiest one they have ever made is the Side Clip- but I think that they discontinued it.

tholiver
July 29, 2008, 02:48 PM
I have an old SOG Paratool, Leatherman Wave and Leatherman XE6.
The Paratool is nice but it has no scissors and some people are put off by the tilt head pliers.
The wave (mine is the old version) is good if you need one handed opening.
Right now i usually carry the XE6 because its small and has all the necessary tools (blade(s) (one plain edge one serrated) /scissors/saw/can-opener/pliers/screwdriver etc etc.
If you need a really beefy multi-tool i hear the Victorinox Swisstool is hard to beat.
Or the slightly lighter Victorinox Spirit.
But then i collect SAK's so i'm inclined to believe people when they praise Victorinox products,lol.
I've seen the Vic Spirits on ebay for around $50 U.S.

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