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Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy) 13561

No Life Club Posts: 3,126
Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« on: February 03, 2010, 02:03:44 AM »
Strata



I was in REI recently with a 25% off coupon in my pocket and I was looking for a multi that I didn’t currently own or have owned, and I saw the Strata.  The price was reasonable with the coupons so I decided to buy one.  The following are the features and my thoughts on those features.
The toolset on the Strata is as follows: Spring-loaded pliers with carbide inserts, CE OHO blade, scissors, flat head driver, can opener/bottle opener combo tool, wood saw, small flat head driver/clamshell opener, Phillips driver, and file.

Impressions:

Pliers:  The pliers feel good in the hand and the spring loaded aspect is a nice addition.  When I was working on my car over the weekend it was nice to have pliers that were easy to manipulate when I was in hard to reach places.  The carbide cutters are a little different than past Gerber models (MP600), in that they are anvil instead of bypass cutters.  As Bob mentioned earlier it means they will be less prone to shattering and can cut through more items easier.  I tried them on a coat hanger and they went through like butter, with no signs of chipping or denting.  They look to be user replaceable, just like the older MP600 style cutters.




Knife:  The knife is a basic Gerber offering.  The profile reminds me of the Benchmade Osbourne designed knives, which is neither good nor bad, just an observation.  The knife opens fairly smooth and lockup is tight with no noticeable play in either direction.  The stonewashed finish is a nice touch over the bead blasted finish on the other Gerber offerings.



Flat head driver:  Basic large flat head driver/pry tip which is about the same size of driver on the 111mm Victorinox knives.  Has a fingernail pull on top that could double as a bottle opener in a pinch (but only for smaller bottles).



Can opener/bottle opener:  I can see this as being both good and bad on a tool like this.  I can see the implement bending while opening stubborn cans, and it’s a little unwieldy to open bottles.  I would have preferred Gerber adding a bottle opener to another implement (large flat head driver) and keeping the bottle opener separate.



Scissors:  The scissors on my model are very stiff to use, but cut paper and thick cardstock with ease, but the stiffness is a turn off for me.  They will probably break in over time due to the resistance being run off the back spring.



Wood Saw:  I haven’t actually used the wood saw on the Strata yet but it seems like it would do a good job at cutting down most anything you would use a multi tool to cut.



Small flat head/clamshell opener:  Again we see the clamshell opener on a Gerber tool, only this one is a little different than the one found on the Octane.  This is a push style rather than the Octane’s pull style.  I must say I prefer the Octane’s opener over the Strata’s, but they both get the job done.  The Octane’s opener just seems like it has more uses.



Phillips driver:  Finally Gerber is listening to us and putting proper Phillips drivers on their tools.  This one has good length, and is also quite thick.  I would not hesitate to put some torque on this driver.



File:  The file is a bit of a disappointment in my eyes.  It’s not very long, and I feel it could be coarser, but in a pinch it will do what you need, until you can get to a proper file.  As Bob mentioned in his earlier review the end of the file could be used as a sort of needle file if one was needed.



Sheath:  I really like the sheath that comes with the Strata.  It is made of a padded nylon that really hugs the tool, but also doesn’t make it hard to get the tool out of the sheath.  It can be worn vertical or horizontal, and features a snap closure.





Overall:  Gerber is finally making some strides in a positive “non-Suspension” direction and I must say it has come at the right time.  Sure the Strata has some shortcomings, but no tool is perfect.  Its not the “Wave-killer” as some people let on, but it’s a serviceable tool with a solid set of implements.  If Gerber keeps with this trend I feel they will win back a lot of people who maybe had forgotten about Gerber, and their uninspired designs.

Note:  A Leatherman Charge Ti was used in all pictures for size comparison only.

Zombie Apprentice Posts: 13,375 Sing, Michael, sing. On the route of the 19 Bus!
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2010, 02:17:14 AM »
Excellent review Zack :tu:

It looks half decent, which is a good thing - thanks for sharing.

Wielder of the Bow of Banishment. Admin Team Point Of No Return Posts: 31,892 El Presidente del Fan Club Micky D
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2010, 02:23:52 AM »
Nice review and pics Zack.  :tu:  Looks to be a good tool, although the can/bottle opener looks a bit funny to me too. :-\

Try not to be the person who blunders around and causes everyone else to get out the way.  Everyone else thinks you're a utter...
No Life Club Posts: 4,594 no nacimos con miedo...
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2010, 02:33:46 AM »
enjoyed reading it and good pics too :tu: seems like gerber is looking in the right direction with this one :)

A
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 6,352
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2010, 02:47:24 AM »
enjoyed reading it and good pics too :tu: seems like gerber is looking in the right direction with this one :)

+1  Though, for the life of me, I don't understand why Gerber used that multitool/knife knock-off-style combined bottle/can opener.  :think:  They don't work for the knock offs, and I don't really think it'd work for Gerber.  Granted, with that said, the long can opener is not too far of a stretch from the Victorinox saw/bottle opener/can opener/screwdriver found on most of the 108mm line.  *shrugs*  I guess it's just my personal preference.
Admin Team Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 23,213
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2010, 03:50:33 AM »
Good to hear the new wire cutters work as advertised Zack. They looked good, but I was curious how good they were. Any chance we could get you to try a few other types of wire? Small diameter copper for one, and maybe some stranded wire too?

Thanks :salute: 

In order to be certain of having the right tool for every job.........one must first acquire a lot of tools
No Life Club Posts: 3,126
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2010, 03:52:38 AM »
Good to hear the new wire cutters work as advertised Zack. They looked good, but I was curious how good they were. Any chance we could get you to try a few other types of wire? Small diameter copper for one, and maybe some stranded wire too?

Thanks :salute: 

I'll see what I can find around the house.
No Life Club Posts: 2,562
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2010, 03:57:31 AM »
Nice review Zack, thank you :tu: :cheers:
No Life Club Posts: 4,230 I just don't know what went wrong.
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2010, 04:02:04 AM »
Thanks! :D

Got those frog legs.
No Life Club Posts: 1,571
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2010, 04:53:53 AM »
Nice review and pics, Zack!  I'll have to keep an eye out for this in my area.

This is called a Swiss Army Knife. Do you know what Switzerland is? Switzerland is a place where they don't like to fight, so they get people to do their fighting for them while they ski and eat chocolate. - Larry David
Global Moderator Just Bananas Posts: 60,364
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2010, 04:57:17 AM »
Another nice review and great pics Zack :cheers: :D
No Life Club Posts: 2,886
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2010, 06:14:24 AM »
Another good review. I like the look of the Strata. The tools look better than some of the last ones on the Gerber tools. especially the proper phillips driver.

"
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 8,694 The MTO handshake.
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2010, 06:38:27 AM »
Great pics & review Zack  :tu: :tu:.
Carbide cutters do not shatter do they  ::) ::) :D :D


"Downunder Mod (that sounds dirty, doesn't it?)"
Yeh Baby :P >:D >:D
Chief of the Absolutely No Life Club! Abandon All Hope Ye Who Enter Here... Posts: 42,959 Why haven't you got a Farmer yet!
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #13 on: February 03, 2010, 07:22:07 AM »
Great review that mate :tu:

Give in, buy several Farmer's!!!!!!
No Life Club Posts: 3,785 Why is it doing that?
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2010, 10:50:00 PM »
Great review Zack. :tu: BTW that sheath reminds me awfully lot of the XTract one...
No Life Club Posts: 2,332
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #15 on: February 03, 2010, 11:14:02 PM »
Excellent review, Zack! Great pics too! :tu:
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 18,746 Armed with camera and not afraid to use it.
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #16 on: February 04, 2010, 12:36:14 PM »
Another tool that looks good from Gerber.

Excellent review also.

A little Leatherman information.

Leatherman series articles
Hero Member Posts: 760
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #17 on: February 04, 2010, 05:42:31 PM »
Thanks Zack. Based on your review I think I will give the Strata a go.  :tu:

Erick
No Life Club Posts: 3,126
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #18 on: February 05, 2010, 12:03:44 AM »
I don't think you will be disappointed.
No Life Club Posts: 3,126
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #19 on: February 13, 2010, 08:31:32 PM »
Update:  I don't like the sheath as much as I had hoped.  It can only be carried horizontal on the skinniest of belts.  My belt is about 1.5 inches wide and the sheath won't fit. Also, it can be hard to get the tool out because the sheath covers up too much of the tool.
No Life Club Posts: 1,014 "Live long and ..useful."
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #20 on: February 17, 2010, 07:59:24 PM »
Excellent review Zack, this is an interesting tool and a step in the right direction for Gerber.

Thanks for putting in the time involved in the review.

:)
Sr. Member Posts: 357 You only go this way once.
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #21 on: February 23, 2010, 01:37:57 AM »
Wonderful review, and excellent pics.  Thanks very much.  Now I want one. :P
No Life Club Posts: 3,126
Re: Gerber Strata Review (pic heavy)
« Reply #22 on: February 23, 2010, 08:47:27 PM »
Glad you enjoyed it...I enjoyed making it.  Both tools now have a new home at Tsquares house.

 

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