Multitool.org Forum
 
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length
+-

Hello Lurker! Remove this ad and much more by logging in.


Help selecting Multitool 1051

New User Posts: 4
Help selecting Multitool
« on: November 06, 2020, 05:44:27 PM »
I found this forum searching multitools on the web and it is awesome to the point of being overwhelming.  I want to buy my son a multitool for Christmas and the more I research, the confuseder I get.  I am looking at full-size Leatherman tools, but still like the Gerber Center Drive.

He is a Motor T in the Marines and whatever he gets will be used hard.  I want a tool that isn't likely to break when he needs it in the field.  I would prefer the knife to be accessible without opening. (I like the Gerber because of the accessible pliers, knife and screwdriver, but am concerned about overall quality and longevity compared to Leatherman).

I have <sort of> narrowed it down to the Wave, Charge, Surge, or Center Drive.  I dropped the Supertool because it has a reputation for rattle and loosening, and the others look like you can tighten or loosen the hinges.   I like the black oxide finish, but I'm concerned it will quickly wear off.

I would appreciate input.  Thanks for  your help
No Life Club Posts: 2,407
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #1 on: November 06, 2020, 06:27:35 PM »
I found this forum searching multitools on the web and it is awesome to the point of being overwhelming.  I want to buy my son a multitool for Christmas and the more I research, the confuseder I get.  I am looking at full-size Leatherman tools, but still like the Gerber Center Drive.

He is a Motor T in the Marines and whatever he gets will be used hard.  I want a tool that isn't likely to break when he needs it in the field.  I would prefer the knife to be accessible without opening. (I like the Gerber because of the accessible pliers, knife and screwdriver, but am concerned about overall quality and longevity compared to Leatherman).

I have <sort of> narrowed it down to the Wave, Charge, Surge, or Center Drive.  I dropped the Supertool because it has a reputation for rattle and loosening, and the others look like you can tighten or loosen the hinges.   I like the black oxide finish, but I'm concerned it will quickly wear off.

I would appreciate input.  Thanks for  your help

In that case I would recommend the Gerber.  If you are looking at hard use full size multiools that are currently being manufactured... Have outside opening blades and tools.... and are concerned about quality and longevity....  Gerber it is.
The black oxide is fairly durable.

I have broken a Supertool with use (and my bias is that they're more breakable these days, compared to their older counterparts)
I use the Wave for light repairs, and have a Gerber MP600 in my bag... For when failure is not an option.

Victorinox is another great choice...  Heavy duty and available in black oxide.
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 8,826
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2020, 06:27:58 PM »
The  Black Oxide finish is excellent, and I'm not the only one here who thinks it improves with age. A beat-up well used BO Wave is a thing of beauty and has lots of unique character (even if I do grumble about uneven grinds).  :tu:

Welcome to MTo by the way.  :cheers:

New User Posts: 4
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2020, 08:48:53 PM »
Thank you for the help!
And thanks for the welcome to the forum - I think I'll stay awhile & learn something!
Global Moderator Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 23,610
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2020, 12:45:20 AM »
Welcome and Thank your son for his service.   

I am not familiar with the Gerber Center Drive as I dont have one.  I have the others and I'd choose the Surge.  Black will look great over time.  Its pretty durable for the most part.  I think the Surge offers a few more on board tools that could be a benefit.  Add the bit kit and he's got quite a few more options. 

Good luck with your choice. 

Esse Quam Videri
No Life Club Posts: 2,080
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2020, 06:11:53 PM »
Welcome and Thank your son for his service.   

I am not familiar with the Gerber Center Drive as I dont have one.  I have the others and I'd choose the Surge.  Black will look great over time.  Its pretty durable for the most part.  I think the Surge offers a few more on board tools that could be a benefit.  Add the bit kit and he's got quite a few more options. 

Good luck with your choice.
  :iagree: (clue's in the name I guess  :facepalm: )

The Surge is a mighty hefty piece of kit. I have an OG one and it's been going strong since about 2011/12  :tu:

I only have one Gerber (MP600: Pro Scout) It's ok but not as solid as my Surge (I can't comment on other Gerbers)

I have a SwissTool and the quality is amazing, really!! It's at least as well built as my Surge (if not better) but no OHO and, for me, that's a deal breaker with this size of tool and the proposed use  :dunno:
I can open my Surge blades with gloved hands and no looking (which is a major plus for field based work  :tu: )

You might consider the LM OHT   https://www.leatherman.com/oht-49.html 

I have one but find the blades too short (vs other similar LMs) However, the spring-loaded pliers are VERY useful 

Best of luck and may your God watch over your son  :salute:
« Last Edit: November 07, 2020, 06:19:48 PM by SurgeUk »

They don't like it up 'em!
No Life Club Posts: 1,219
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2020, 06:37:52 PM »
If he plans to belt carry and the extra weight is not an issue the surge is a good option.
Also if he will find himself needing a file or saw regularly They are replaceable on the surge which is also handy if you need to use them to destruction to get the job done.


My trouble is i never show initiative, but that's only because no one has told me to.
Global Moderator Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 23,610
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2020, 08:03:37 PM »
 :iagree:

Esse Quam Videri
Global Moderator He Who Has The Most Nuts, Wins! Posts: 51,166
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2020, 08:09:10 PM »
I would also suggest a Surge.
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 8,826
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2020, 10:12:32 PM »
You know I have a love/hate relationship with the Surge, but one thing I do really like is the blade exchanger and the fact you can swap in a hacksaw blade*, which is immensely useful. Also, like others have stated, it's very glove friendly.  :tu:

*Pic to follow.

Global Moderator Just Bananas Posts: 63,122
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #10 on: November 07, 2020, 10:20:35 PM »
Welcome to  :MTO:  :cheers: SURGE! Seems to be what most are suggesting :tu: I really like it but you can't go wrong with most of the choices you have to pick from in your list :tu:

BO is pretty durable and I have a few that get some very good use :salute: Here is a Supertool 300 that I have used quite a bit and it still looks pretty good ;)

New User Posts: 4
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #11 on: November 08, 2020, 01:06:05 AM »
Thank you, everyone -  What a wonderful group!  I was going crazy with all the different choices.  It looks like the winner is the Surge - Now I can get one ordered in & have time to make him a nice leather sheath for it.




Global Moderator Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 23,610
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #12 on: November 08, 2020, 01:56:55 AM »
Thank you, everyone -  What a wonderful group!  I was going crazy with all the different choices.  It looks like the winner is the Surge - Now I can get one ordered in & have time to make him a nice leather sheath for it.

 :salute:.

Esse Quam Videri
Hero Member Posts: 727
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #13 on: November 08, 2020, 03:22:32 AM »
Most guys carried Leatherman when I was in the Marines. The various types of Charges and Waves were big at the time. The Gerber tools were issued in some units but were considered disposable. I remember seeing  an ammo box full of busted ones at supply. I recommend the Wave +. He will thank you.
Global Moderator He Who Has The Most Nuts, Wins! Posts: 51,166
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #14 on: November 08, 2020, 05:36:55 AM »
Thank you, everyone -  What a wonderful group!  I was going crazy with all the different choices.  It looks like the winner is the Surge - Now I can get one ordered in & have time to make him a nice leather sheath for it.

Good choice !     :tu:


Here's mine


No Life Club Posts: 4,064
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #15 on: November 08, 2020, 09:19:48 AM »
The surge is a fine tool....so is the wave - and as long as your son is not overly ham fisted he won't break either if used to their purpose.

A leather sheath is a fine thing, however for practicality he may prefer Leatherman's Molle sheath.

Now your boy just has to watch out for the one thief in the corps...



https://terminallance.com/2014/09/23/terminal-lance-345-gear-adrift/
« Last Edit: November 08, 2020, 09:30:00 AM by Sea Monster »
OCD Squad Leader Admin Team Zombie Apprentice Posts: 11,801
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #16 on: November 08, 2020, 12:26:54 PM »
I cannot recommend the Center Drive (and Gerbers). The design is flawed as the pry-tool uses the plastic lock as lever. Also, Gerbers QC seems to be even worse than that of LM (my Center Drive lost out against a brass nail and chipped).

Lots of recommendations here for the Surge I see and I agree, it is a beast. Can't really fault that.

Now there are IMHO 2 disadvantages to the Surge.
1) it is huge and soldiers often carry a ton of stuff already.
2) Lots of tiny parts that easily can get lost (bits, bit-extender, t-shank-blades).
If either of those 2 points are a concern I would recommend the Victorinox Spirit (my preferred choice, by far best ergonomics and most tools for it's size/weight) or the Rebar (if US made is preferred, also cheaper, but again a LM, so check if everything is good upon arrival).

If those 2 points are not a deal-breaker, then I suggest the following to get the most out of the Surge:
1) Buy the surge in a store and make sure the outside tools lock properly. If you order online, check the tools upon arrival and don't hesitate to send it back if they don't lock up properly (LM Quality has seriously been lacking in recent years and especially on the Surge, tools that don't properly lock up are fairly common.)
2) Buy the bit-kit and the extender, without it, the Surge is seriously crippled. The Extender allows the use of regular bits, especially useful if LM bits are not available.


Emergency Kit: Ovo Sport, chocolate, cheese, crispbread and a coin
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 8,826
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #17 on: November 08, 2020, 01:09:41 PM »

 :iagree: 100%

Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 5,518 motionless wheel, nothing is real
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #18 on: November 08, 2020, 01:34:07 PM »
A Spirit XBS would be my pick, but they are so superior that it might be the last MT he will ever need.  :D
No Life Club Posts: 1,026
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #19 on: November 08, 2020, 01:41:18 PM »
Any thoughts about Leatherman OHT??

Sent from my SM-G960F using Tapatalk

Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 8,826
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #20 on: November 08, 2020, 01:42:08 PM »
Here's mine...



... And with the hacksaw blade fitted - which works surprising well.  :tu:




Hero Member Posts: 727
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #21 on: November 08, 2020, 03:11:23 PM »
Any thoughts about Leatherman OHT??

Sent from my SM-G960F using Tapatalk

The OHT is a Large tool. It’s design is excellent if that’s the tool load out that you need and like spring action pliers.
Thread Killer 2019 No Life Club Posts: 4,283
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #22 on: November 08, 2020, 03:22:02 PM »
I'll be the contrarian today.  The Surge is way too heavy and has a bunch of fiddley little pieces that are not permanently attached to it that will get lost, those being your screw driver bits your sawblade and your file.  The Super Tool 300 is a little bit lighter and has permanent tools.  It does not have one hand opening blades but a Marine is going to have his field knife on him for most of his cutting needs anyway and the multitool is secondary.  Another option is the Leatherman MUT which was designed for troops and has implements specifically for weapons maintenance.  The MUT might be your best option.
No Life Club Posts: 4,064
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #23 on: November 08, 2020, 08:14:52 PM »
I'll be the contrarian today.  The Surge is way too heavy and has a bunch of fiddley little pieces that are not permanently attached to it that will get lost, those being your screw driver bits your sawblade and your file.  The Super Tool 300 is a little bit lighter and has permanent tools.  It does not have one hand opening blades but a Marine is going to have his field knife on him for most of his cutting needs anyway and the multitool is secondary.  Another option is the Leatherman MUT which was designed for troops and has implements specifically for weapons maintenance.  The MUT might be your best option.

I didn't want to raise the issue of fiddly bits and the liklihood of collecting grit and grease, cause it looks like he's already made a decision :P

Whilst the MUT *does* have the carbon scraper and pin punch, it fails most of your other criteria - being that it too is annoyingly heavy, it's main feature is a large knife - which could be a boon if he doesn't carry another, or a waste if as you say, he carries a dedicated blade. The pocket clip could be handy, but the handle retention clip system and the driver bit carrying system are both a PITA to actually use.

The MUT looks fantastic on paper, but falls short in practice.

My vote is always for the Wave, it's a best seller for a reason, (Mine predates the updated plier head - perhaps the hardened cutters would turn me off, but I've got scars from the Gerber cutters that shatter when you look at them)

If his lad has big hands, or doesn't mind the weight, the Surge is an excellent choice, and depending on what sort of work he does, the blade exchanger may very well pay dividends in due course.


Edit: Just looked up what a Motor T was - he's a truck driver. Weight is not an issue  :rofl: The truck will mostly likely be fitted with a general servicing kit, so spanners and hammers won't be an issue.

The scissors on the surge are well sized for dealing with pesky MREs  :whistle:
Sr. Member Posts: 335
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #24 on: November 14, 2020, 03:04:53 AM »
I have never owned a Surge or a Centerdrive, but I have messed around with both. 

I prefer the smaller less heavy tools like the wave and charge.  The Center drive is just under 10 ounces!  That might as well be an extra large (heavy duty) like the surge.  I like that the Centerdrive has the outside accessible bit driver, but the OTF design makes the inside tools a pain to use.  If I carried the Centerdrive I would only be using it for the pliers and the bit driver, with the blade as a back up to an EDC knife.  That effectively makes it a 10 ounce plier w/ screw driver.  With the Surge you have a bit driver that is less user friendly, but you get a LOT more tools for about 2 more ounces of weight.   

Do you think your son will use the wood/metal file, the wood saw, or the scissors?  That is the main difference as far as I am concerned.  If those tools would be useful to him then a Wave or Surge is probably the better option.  If you think those are not useful to him AND you think he would use the bit driver all the time...  maybe the Centerdrive would be better.   :think:

good luck with your choice
New User Posts: 4
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #25 on: November 20, 2020, 03:58:12 PM »
It still seems there is no "best" tool, and it is totally based on preference influenced by what tools and system are used most.

So the bottom line for me seems to be:
1.  Quality
2. Weight
3.  Ease of use (outside opening) 
4.  Tool interchangeability

Yes, he will be in a shop or vehicle primarily, so weight isn't too big a deal (plus he is a weightlifter).  He has big hands - I expect those hands to be greasy, cold, or in gloves when he needs the tool.  My expectation is for him to have something that will be available in a "situation" where he has a tool handy, even if it's not the best one.  I don't imagine he would use it to replace standard tools.  In other words, it's a field expedient tool.

This question has generated a lot of good feedback and I'm thankful for that.  Tools were mentioned that I have never heard of.  A lot of abbreviations and acronyms I have had to look up.  Some mentioned would definitely be the last multitool because of the price point. I can understand now why many here carry multiple different tools brands and styles.

The great thing is that I can ask him for feedback and if he says something could be better I can always get him something different for his birthday!

Thanks, all and have a happy Thanksgiving!
Global Moderator Absolute Zombie Club Posts: 23,610
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #26 on: November 20, 2020, 04:29:12 PM »
Ask MTO which MT/multitool is best, get as many answers.  We can be a bit overwhelming with our recommendations  ;)

You've outlined
1. Quality.  Leatherman has a 25 year warranty.  Many in the US have enjoyed a wonderful warranty experience ( me included ).  Outside the US some have had issues.  Its a study tool and one I've enjoyed for years now.  Used to its capacity it'll be a tool that serves him well.  Pushed to its limits like some have and it has survived ( ask me how I know ).  Pushed beyond limits, its a crap shoot.  I always look at it like this, if my tool needs to be pushed to its outer limits to get the job done then so be it and I'll deal with the consequences.  Great thing is we have a member who sells replacement parts and they are pretty easy to replace. 

2. Weight.  Its 12.5 oz.  Add sheath and their bit kit/bit extender and a few saw blades and you'll creep up in weight.  Weight is so highly subjective and personal.  For many the tool is just fine to carry on a belt with accessories mentioned ( me ).  Some find the tool best in a pack.  Some see it as a good vehicle tool.  I use a tool belt at work so carrying another 14 or 15 oz is not a big deal.  What I find important is how good the belt carrying the weight is.     

3. Ease of use (outside opening).  The Surge has 4 tools that are OHO/one hand opening.  Main plain blade.  Scissors.  BE/blade exchanger which holds a diamond file combo regular file or saw ( both included ), as well as T shank jig saw blades.  To many this is a key feature in its utility.  Then there is a serrated blade.   

4. Tool interchangeability.  As mentioned above the BE/blade exchanger is a wonderful feature.  You are limited to the length of the blades that will fit when the tool is closed but I have used longer T shank blades when I wont be closing the tool.  The fact that I can use a variety of different blades for different materials is for me a fabulous feature.  Yes you have to carry the blades but 4 jig saw blades do not add a tremendous amount of weight. 

There is also a bit holder within the tool.  It takes LM/Leatherman flat bits.  They are proprietary BUT you can buy the bit extend they offer or make one.  The bit extender hold standard 1/4 inch bits.  This IMO/in my opinion extends the tools capability even further.  You can buy the flat bit kit which has double ended bits so in total you have 40 different type bits. 

If you want to reach beyond that, I've modified a ratchet tool for the bit holder that I used for sockets.  No you are not gonna get the torque but it did help turn longer screws faster. 

I am primarily a Leatherman user.  I do use Victorinox Multitools but ( this is in no way a knock on them ) I find the versatility of my Charge/Wave/Surge better for what I need a multitool for. 

Regardless of what you decide I do hope we have been helpful to you. 

Esse Quam Videri
Newbie Posts: 33
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #27 on: November 20, 2020, 07:38:50 PM »
Black oxide multitools are super cool!
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 12,523
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #28 on: November 20, 2020, 08:34:41 PM »
I would also recommend a Leatherman Surge in this case :salute:

However, don't take our word for it...

What about a nice trip to a local shop and have a look at the Leatherman Surge and Leatherman Wave yourself?

Btw, the Leatherman flat bits do work and hold-up very good for me.


... anyhow, I often carry a Swisstool Spirit  :D
      *...runs away quickly

Formerly known as MTMatt
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 7,430
Re: Help selecting Multitool
« Reply #29 on: November 20, 2020, 08:55:28 PM »
Surge (BO) or OHT.

2) Buy the bit-kit and the extender, without it, the Surge is seriously crippled.
I think that's quite an exaggeration. There's plenty it can do without it.


 

Donations

Operational Funds

Help us keep the Unworkable working!
Donate with PayPal!
February Goal: $300.00
Due Date: Feb 28
Total Receipts: $172.48
PayPal Fees: $10.10
Net Balance: $162.38
Below Goal: $137.62
Site Currency: USD
54% 
February Donations

Community Links


Powered by EzPortal
SMF 2.0.17 | SMF © 2020, Simple Machines
Page created in 0.051 seconds with 33 queries.
© 2018 Defender Web & Tool