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Poll

As stated in the title, what do you think is the best of the three finalists in Lynn's $10 MT Challenge?

Victorinox Huntsman
4 (13.3%)
Leatherman PST
9 (30%)
Gerber MP400 Compact Sport
17 (56.7%)

Total Members Voted 30

Voting closed: February 22, 2018, 08:50:48 PM

Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge) 937

Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 7,909 Any tool is better than nothing. Some not by much
Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« on: February 17, 2018, 08:50:48 PM »
This poll is part of a challenge I was given, to find the best tool i could for $10, tax and shipping included.

Here's a link to the main thread of the challenge.
https://forum.multitool.org/index.php/topic,75705.0.html

There are three finalists. Each have their own review threads. Please feel free to read those to see the condition of the tool in question.

Victorinox Huntsman
https://forum.multitool.org/index.php/topic,75927.0.html

Leatherman PST
https://forum.multitool.org/index.php/topic,75950.0.html

Gerber MP400 Compact Sport
https://forum.multitool.org/index.php/topic,75967.0.html

This is also a place where you can give anecdotes, personal experience, grievances, and any comments you like to sway my decision on what the best tool is in the $10 Challenge.

Admin Team Zombie Apprentice Posts: 19,918 mmmmm SAKrelicious
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2018, 09:03:35 PM »
Carried a Spirit for a couple of years and thought nothing would top it. Then the MP400 came into my life. 
Built like a tank, Lovely and compact, super cool one handed flicky action, but best of all as a UK citizen, easily modified to become a bladeless and therefore legal carry.
More comfortable to use than the PST and more versatile than the Huntsman, for these reasons I feel the MP400 should win.

Great threads Lynn  :like:

'Use the force Harry' - Gandalf
Thread Killer 2017 Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 7,250 Born to multitask.
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2018, 09:19:23 PM »
Well, I'll just go into a bit more detail on my choice.


The Huntsman has a saw over the PST and MP400, and a reamer, and I do love those things, and a corkscrew, not something I prioritize.
The PST has a file. No scissors though, and both other contenders have awesome scissors.
The MP400 does not sport any implement the others lack, apart from the Huntsman not having pliers of course.

We are down to three tools, or which two are pliers. Kinda hard to improvise a pair.
I was expecting the Huntsman to be eliminated because of this. It is excellent for what it is, but pliers are just too nice to disregard. Sure, it's more compact, but I am going by functionality.

So for me, it came down to the PST, and the MP400.

PST wins in form, aka when closed. Slim, light, nothing really sticking out. Gets lost in a pocket. Much more easy to carry. And its thinner pliers could potentially solve a problem the MP400 would have a tough time even reaching.

Still, the MP400 was brought into this world much later, and certain aspects of MTs got addressed.
All tools lock. The pliers are one-handed and beefier than the PST. There is a nice pair of Fiskars scissors on it too.
Probably the most important thing is comfort. The PST is legendary, but so are the marks it leaves in your palms when clamping something with force. Not an issue when using anything else, but a big issue when using the pliers.
The MP400 solved this by having the pliers come out the front.

Thanks to the flicky pliers, there is also the least amount of handle splay you could have on a multi-tool. Not that the PST has that much handle splay, compared to other culprits.

It saddens me somewhat, and it also surprises me, but I have to vote for the MP400.
« Last Edit: February 17, 2018, 09:26:30 PM by ReamerPunch »

Zombie Apprentice Posts: 10,549 Man of Multiple MultiTool Manufacturers
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2018, 11:02:06 PM »
I usually judge tools by thinking of using it for work. Locking tools are a must-have for working MTs to me. MP400 wins.

Pontificating particularly pious positions pertaining to polymorphic paraphernalia. G-Man.
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 9,407
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2018, 11:04:58 PM »
how am I the only one who likes the Huntsman over the other options?

Solving problems you didn't know you had in the most obscure way possible

"And now, it's time to hand this over to our tame race axe driver. Some say, he can live in the forest for six months at a time without food, and he knows of a secret tribe of only women where he is their God. All we know is, he's call the Styx!" - TazzieRob
No Life Club Posts: 4,469
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #5 on: February 17, 2018, 11:26:58 PM »
How about both the Huntsman and the PST? That's an EDC under $20 that can accomplish most tasks needed. 
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 7,909 Any tool is better than nothing. Some not by much
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #6 on: February 17, 2018, 11:32:56 PM »
how am I the only one who likes the Huntsman over the other options?

Sell me on it, if you think it's the best. This is your chance. Why do you like it the most?
No Life Club Posts: 3,070 American Clandestine Materials Executive (ACME)
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2018, 03:34:40 AM »
My vote is for the PST.

I find the fit and finish and most especially the ergos of the PST superior to the Gerber. I hate flick open pliers for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is when I had an origional Multiplier (before they called it the 600 series) got cruded up and that the limbs will close all the way allows it to close too far to really get a grip on it. I like classic Leatherman style of folding pliers because I can actually get traction with them, even if I might be thankful for that pair of gloves that I always carry. Gerber, it's a metal block even with the pliers out, and you can't actually make full use of your hand strength when you grab onto something with the pliers. And becuase they swing open all the way, I can get in there and clean a Letherman out when I do start to grime to a halt, which I can't really do as well with the Gerbers. Better quality, better grip, better maintainability. And it is more easily pocketed- slimmer, lighter, and won't poke a hole in my thigh or my pants.

That being said, if I could vote for second place, it would be the Huntsman. You can not go wrong with a Huntsman off the black top, and there is a reason it is and has been for forever one of Victorinox's best selling patterns. The saw is amazing for it's size, the blade is good, the can and bottle openers work, and the scissors are best in class, bar none. Vic got it right and they don't screw with it (hint to LM) and that is why they are a trope codifier, if you will. For a long time, my combo was a PST, a Huntsman and a Mini-mag. And I'd feel far from poorly outfitted if I had to go back to it.


"Even if it is only the handful of people I meet on the street, or in my home, I can still protect them with this one sword" Kenshin Himura

Necessity is the mother of invention. If you're not ready, it's "a mother". If you are, it's "mom".

"I love democracy" Sheev Palpatine, upon his election to Chancellor.
Global Moderator Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 22,786
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2018, 05:56:04 AM »
I lean heavily towards the PST.  I mean its what LM is built on.  While it lacks scissors and saw and both are really the kinds of tools IMO make life a bit easier when needed.  As a city dweller neither are mandatory day to day.  The Huntsman in that case is off my list.  Let me add that a plier based tool is more needed than not for me day to day.   As to the MP400, well to put it simply, I just didn't get along with it.  Stubby implements and as compared to the PST just comes up short.  Bulky with no real added implements for the bulk.  Did I say stubby tools?  I cannot get over that. 

Esse Quam Videri
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 9,407
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2018, 10:39:28 AM »
how am I the only one who likes the Huntsman over the other options?

Sell me on it, if you think it's the best. This is your chance. Why do you like it the most?

Well one huge advantage I saw off the bat is the minimal time investment in regards to restoring it. While it might not have been a huge hassle, I'm personally not overly keen on having to take apart tools to get them in "fighting" shape as a must. Big hands and nerve damage that makes 'em shake tend to make fiddly jobs like that a matter of convenience rather than something that has to be done (unless I want to spend another hour cussing because I can't put back one tiny screw like I did with the Switchplier 2).

The Mp400 and PST have excellent drivers as you've shown, but the Huntsman isn't a slouch by any stretch of the imagination in that department. Where the largest difference is the pliers. The PST is the original and a fabulous design but the chinks in its armour show because of that - it isn't the most comfortable thing in the world to use. That is a huge downfall for what would be my biggest selling point on it. And the lack of a wood saw and scissors make it an incomplete tool in today's world where it can be a great part of a system but merely an ok stand alone if you're not 100% you won't need one of those 2 tools.
The MP400 is the tool I had picked to win this thing at the beginning. Excellent scissors, sturdy drivers, comfortable to use... until I saw that it lacks two occasional but oddly convenient implements to have - metal file and wood saw. You've been quick to hit another odd choice in the serrated blade. I'd say that this is just Lynn being quirky, you can get some minor precision cuts done with the awl if push comes to shove but there isn't one. While it is a tool I'd like to give a go, again it is a very bare bones solution that might need a piggy back from something else.

So the Huntsman is nothing fancy, nothing overly thrilling but it doesn't have to be. In this line up of tool it is that comfort food just like ma used to make. The other two options might sound more exhilarating but you might  also end up being hungry to continue this food analogy. And it does come full circle - if you have to use one of these tools to earn your next meal, the Huntsman tells you right off the bat what you can and can not do. It even packs a toothpick to assure you that you'll get that meal and a hook to carry the leftovers. PST and MP400 are amazing and innovative in their own way, but also deceptive in the ability to overestimate what can be done.

Solving problems you didn't know you had in the most obscure way possible

"And now, it's time to hand this over to our tame race axe driver. Some say, he can live in the forest for six months at a time without food, and he knows of a secret tribe of only women where he is their God. All we know is, he's call the Styx!" - TazzieRob
No Life Club Posts: 3,435
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #10 on: February 18, 2018, 11:43:21 AM »
I always avoid answering questions about what is “best” without adding a lot of context and caveats. There ain't no such thing as an easy answer, to paraphrase the old saying. My first thought here was “Best, but by what criteria?”

If you need pliers, out goes the Huntsman. If you need one-hand opening pliers, the MP400 is the most practical option. On the other hand, the PST has utterly superior pocketability over the MP400. And I could go on this way for hours. Now, given that my budget is $10, my assumption is this is my only MT. Then the Huntsman is in my opinion the clear winner. Why? Because I need a knife far more often than I need pliers. (See? Context and personal preference and experience rear their heads...) Using a pliers based MT as a knife is IMNSHO an exercise in frustration, and especially if the tang is placed on the handle farthest away from the material to be cut (I.e. the cutting edge is pointing in the directions of the opposing handle, like it is on the PST or MP400, as opposed to the Wave and the Vic Spirit. Basically inward opening vs outward). If those $10 is all you have, the knife becomes the absolute priority, and then the Huntsman has no real competition when it comes to practicality and control over the blade. (Also, it has a small blade, which I use even more.) (And yes, if you can pair the MT with a dedicated knife, this all changes, but I added the caveat on that already.) If I already have a little bit of this and a little bit of that, and wonder about this MT thing, this reasoning changes.

Do note all the built-in assumptions and preferences to this argument, which leads me to the conclusion which was a given before I started writing:

I won't vote in this poll, since this is a question I think should be judged in the context of the competition, not voted over. These are all great, but also very different, tools, so what is “best” is highly context dependent.
« Last Edit: February 18, 2018, 02:16:27 PM by Steinar »
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 7,909 Any tool is better than nothing. Some not by much
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #11 on: February 18, 2018, 04:22:51 PM »
I won't vote in this poll, since this is a question I think should be judged in the context of the competition, not voted over. These are all great, but also very different, tools, so what is “best” is highly context dependent.

Oh, I hope you understand that I'm not letting this poll make MY decision. I just wanted everyone to have a chance to air their views.

This is the first poll I ever made, and strangely, I didn't know that the person who made a poll still had to cast a vote before being able to see results. So I have voted, but I didn't want to. I didn't want my view swaying others. I wanted it the other way around.

And thanks to all who have commented so far. This is some excellent stuff, and please continue. There are some great persuasive positions being put out here. :tu:

No Life Club Posts: 3,435
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #12 on: February 18, 2018, 04:25:44 PM »
I won't vote in this poll, since this is a question I think should be judged in the context of the competition, not voted over. These are all great, but also very different, tools, so what is “best” is highly context dependent.

Oh, I hope you understand that I'm not letting this poll make MY decision. I just wanted everyone to have a chance to air their views.

 :tu:
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 14,596 Firm believer of Sturgeon's Law
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #13 on: February 18, 2018, 04:49:14 PM »
 :multi: am also hesitant to vote because it all depends on context and planned use. :think:

If you want to carry it all day the SAK might win, and if you have a dedicated knife and need pliers the MP400 can be the best for you.
OTOH if you desire slim and easy carry and/or a tool for precise jobs, the PST would be the most optimal tool, but if you plan on applying very high torque on pliers and drivers then a comfortable handle and locking, stubby drivers like the MPs are a must. :ahhh

No real winner alone, they all have a utility factor based on what you have or not on you and pair with the tool.

For me, the obvious pick in my day to day needs is the MP400 (I need pliers quite a bit, locking drivers and tools are a must for me and my uses, I don't use gloves if i can remedy it and I really like OHO tools like pliers and folders) and I really find uses for scissors in my daily tasks so the PST can't win here  :tu:

So this gets my vote based on my preferences

For the average Joe that does his daily life and does not specialise in a type of trade or task, and has other regular tools (pliers in a toolbox, etc.) I believe the Huntsman would be the best tool overall    :salute:
« Last Edit: February 18, 2018, 04:53:57 PM by ThePeacent »

My toys:

MTs: Surge (2x), Skeletool CX, Rebar, Blast, Fuse, Micra, Squirt (3x), Wave, Crunch, Mini, Spirit (2x), Pro Scout, MP700 (2x), Diesel, Powerlock, PowerPlier (2x), PocketPowerPlier, Blacktip , ST6 (2x), 5WR, A100

SAKs: Bantam, Executive, Ambassador, Minichamp, Classic Alox, Champion, Farmer, Explorer, Swisschamp, Golf Tool, Wenger Champ, EVO 52, Pocket Tool Chest
Global Moderator Abandon All Hope Ye Who Enter Here... Posts: 49,259
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #14 on: February 20, 2018, 02:26:45 AM »
PST  gets my vote. I think It will still be going strong many years from now.
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 7,909 Any tool is better than nothing. Some not by much
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #15 on: February 20, 2018, 02:33:58 AM »
PST  gets my vote. I think It will still be going strong many years from now.

Assuming occasional oiling, I think it will outlive me.  :tu:
Global Moderator Point Of No Return Posts: 36,553
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #16 on: February 20, 2018, 02:38:57 AM »
The mini tank for me. Scissors, pliers, phillips, flat: check. Ask again tomorrow and I could well pick another, for today it's Gerber.
No Life Club Posts: 3,057 Lifelike and remarkably self similar
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #17 on: February 20, 2018, 02:49:50 AM »
The mini tank for me. Scissors, pliers, phillips, flat: check. Ask again tomorrow and I could well pick another, for today it's Gerber.

+1 :tu:

"Drink your big black cow
And get out of here." -  Steely Dan
Thread Killer 2019 No Life Club Posts: 3,984
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #18 on: February 20, 2018, 03:17:28 AM »
I think the MP-400 is the winner. I know that Gerber's tool set is exceptionally well built and usable, from almost 30 years of using my old school Mr. Pinchy, but Mr. Pinchy doesn't have scissors which I want in my EDC and the MP-400 does.
No Life Club Posts: 3,307 One Day Closer To Death
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #19 on: February 20, 2018, 04:31:05 AM »
Mp-400, had one years ago and gave it away to my dad, been wanting one ever since but never find any as cheap as you can.

BB :B:
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 10,549 Man of Multiple MultiTool Manufacturers
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #20 on: February 20, 2018, 05:18:23 AM »
I think the MP-400 is the winner. I know that Gerber's tool set is exceptionally well built and usable, from almost 30 years of using my old school Mr. Pinchy, but Mr. Pinchy doesn't have scissors which I want in my EDC and the MP-400 does.
Keep your eye out on ebay. Sometimes you'll see a v.1 pinchy for sale. Full high polish, incredible plier head, and it has scissors (with pivot screw to tighten). :tu:

Pontificating particularly pious positions pertaining to polymorphic paraphernalia. G-Man.
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 14,286
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #21 on: February 20, 2018, 09:07:48 AM »
Even though the MP platform isn't my cup of tea, I think the MP400 is in fact the best value for the money here.

Like mentioned before:
All tools lock,
Good tool density,
One handed pliers,
Pocketable.

Buy now or regret later
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 14,892 Yoo-hoo, big summer blowout!
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #22 on: February 20, 2018, 11:18:21 AM »
If you are only going to have one tool for ever, the huntsman.  :tu:

If you already have a SAK, or you can buy more tools later on, the MP400. :drool:
$10 for that is a cooler deal than $10 for a huntsman, because Victorinox is already super affordable. :salute:
« Last Edit: February 20, 2018, 11:19:37 AM by Pablo O'Brien »

Hooked, like everyone else. ;)

All hail the hook!
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 7,909 Any tool is better than nothing. Some not by much
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #23 on: February 20, 2018, 02:16:50 PM »
If you already have a SAK, or you can buy more tools later on, the MP400. :drool:
$10 for that is a cooler deal than $10 for a huntsman, because Victorinox is already super affordable. :salute:

What I'm about to say is based on only a couple months of observation on ebay, but...

I saw like a jillion four-layer Swiss Army Knives at about the $15-20 price range, with a few of them dropping below $10. I only saw a lot of 2 Gerbers come close to that once. Given that the price new for the Huntsman and MP400 are pretty similar (about $35 each here in the U.S.), what this says to me is that either plier based tools hold their value better, SAKs are consistently undervalued, or there are just a TON more SAKs available on the used market, driving their value down. Probably a combination of the three.

Both the PST and the MP400 were pawn shop finds. Which, by the way, is starting to look like the place to get the absolute best deals on Multitools.
Admin Team Point Of No Return Posts: 32,341
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #24 on: February 20, 2018, 03:53:34 PM »
I voted before reading the other comments and have been pleasantly surprised by the MP400 love being shown.  I've owned all three of these tools for years now and I like them all.  They've all got their strengths in certain areas but if I had to pick just one, from a purely practical point of view, it'd have to be the MP400 as well.

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...
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 7,909 Any tool is better than nothing. Some not by much
Re: Best Finalist? (Lynn's $10 MT Challenge)
« Reply #25 on: February 22, 2018, 10:19:13 PM »
Ok. Voting is now locked.

Thank you all for your votes and replies. I sincerely appreciate the input. I try to use tools in as many ways as I can think of, hoping to hit everybody's wants/needs, but I'm just one person with one point of view. When I get great feedback like this from the folks here, some of the most passionate lovers of MTs in the world, it is greatly appreciated.

So, to all... Thank you.  :hatsoff:

 

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