The 5 Best Multitool – A Must Have for Every Happy Camper
As an outdoor enthusiast, it is imperative to always be ready for anything. But when it comes to your gear, you really can’t bring everything as carrying weight is a huge factor when camping, hiking or hunting. So how do you cover all the bases without your carrying capacity taking a hit? You need a multitool, of course.
Our Top Pick for The Best Multitool
*/ Below, you'll see more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices and read customer's reviews on Amazon.
What is a Multitool?
A multitool is a simple yet versatile outdoor equipment. It combines various functionalities in a single compact device. Simply put, a multitool is basically a portable tool box that you can carry in your pocket.
The basic multitool comes with a knife, pliers, screwdrivers, scissors, bottle openers and many more. For someone who regularly goes on camping trips, a high quality multitool is an indispensable equipment to have.
Types of Multitool
The multitool comes in various models.
The most common one is the Swiss Army Knife, which you most likely have already heard. Chances are you've already owned one as this tool is not just ideal for the outdoors but also for home use. The Swiss Knife’s design incorporates a variety of tools that pivot from within the handle.
Then we have the butterfly style multitool, like The Gerber Suspension Multi-tool (left) here. Also known as the clamshell style, the Cerberuso 14 in 1 Multitool (right) utilizes a foldable design that opens up with a plier being the central tool with various tools tucked and attached to both sides of the handle.
Finally, we have the one-piece tool style which uses cutouts for different tools within a sturdy metal. If you are going to choose the one-piece style multitool then make sure the base metal is sturdy and durable.
How to Choose the Right Multitool
There are several factors you need to consider when getting a multitool of your own. You should consider the practicality, quality, uses, style and budget among other things. The last thing you want is getting a multitool without the particular function that you would be using the most, correct?
What functions do you need the most? It needs to cater to your style and preference as well as your comfort. A multitool should offer those and much more. In order to help you navigate through the hundreds of multitools available in the market, I have created a simple guideline to help you narrow down your options.
1. Size and Shape
If you need to put the multitool in your toolbox when travelling then it has missed its purpose. The purpose of a multitool is convenience. You should be able to keep it on your person at all times. It should either fit your pocket or it should come with a sheath that you can equip at all times during your travel. A multitool should always be within arm’s reach. Pick a multitool that is compact and easy to carry.
Now, comfort is not the only thing you should consider when buying a multitool. You should also gauge its usability. Does it have all the tools you need? Keep in mind that the more functions a multitool offer, the bulkier and heavier it gets. Find the perfect balance between functionality and comfort. List down the essential tools that you will need and start from there.
2. Resistance to Corrosion
As you would most likely be using this outdoors, a multitool must be able to withstand the natural elements and prevent corrosion. A lot of the multitools available in the market today use AISI series 400 stainless steel. However, this does not mean that it is completely rust proof.
There are multitools that utilizes high carbon and iron content but this makes these tools more susceptible to rust. Even more expensive multitools that incorporate titanium nitrate coat, which gives it a golden sheen.
Wait... See how people prevent corrosion!
There is really no definite way to prevent corrosion except for proper maintenance. If you are using your multitool in the ocean, then make sure you wash it after every use with fresh water or spray it with some rust preventers or light oil.
3. Magnet Signature
Most multitools are made up of steel and iron. This can cause the multitool to affect the magnet of a compass. Keep this in mind when using your compass for navigation.
Ask yourself what tools you would most likely need. The standard functions found in a multitool are scissors, screwdrivers, pliers and knives. You can expect these four to always be present. Now, list down other functionalities that you would most likely be using regularly.
For example, if you will need a tool to help in rotating then a multitool with a spring-loaded jaw would do nicely. An adjustable wrench will also do for this job. There are multitools that have can openers as well as bottle openers.
One nice example for the spring-loaded jaw Multitool...
As for the knife, there are different types to choose from: you have the straight blades and serrated blades. Same goes for pliers as there are regular ones and needle nose pliers. Again, arming yourself with information is the best step in choosing the best multitool for you needs.
Modern Technology, New Features
Of course, with the advancements in technology we also get some much-needed boost in our multitool. From the use of new space age material to new functionalities, it is best if you check out what these new generation of multitools can offer.
As always, it is best if you try it out at the store before purchasing. Some key aspects you should check out when trying out the multitool is the safety and ease of use. Does the tools lock into place? Can you quickly pull out specific tools without any trouble? Getting a feel for the tool is one way to ascertain its reliability.
Our Top Pick for 5 Best Multitool
To help you further narrow down your choices I will list down the top 5 best multitool for outdoor use below.
I’ll jot down each entry’s advantages and disadvantages and leave it to you to decide whether it suites all your preferences.
The Gerber Suspension is a compact multitool which fits snuggly right in the pocket. It comes with 12 tools integrated into it consisting of pliers, knives and scissors. This multitool finds a great balance in size and functionality which is always a the main factor with this device.
- The handles fit the palm nicely and delivers a nice grip.
- The lock system allows for better safety and security when using the various tools in its arsenal.
- It delivers a good balance between size and practicality.
- The plier utilizes a spring system which makes it easier to use with one hand.
- The use of Velcro on the sheath is a strange choice since this tool is designed to be used for years to come. Simply put, Velcro will experience wear and tear sooner rather than later.
- Some might find the Gerber Suspension Multi-plier a bit bulky and heavy.
- Overall, the Gerber Suspension is a safe choice for those who are still not that familiar with multitools. It comes with all the expected tools and is well-made. The actual size and weight of the Gerber Suspension is a rather divisive factor as some feel it is a bit on the heavy side while others don’t see any issues with it.
One aspect of the Tarvol 14 in 1 Multitool is its price. This is a double-edged blade as sometimes the cheaper a product is the lower its overall quality will be. Fortunately, the Tarvol multitool somewhat counters this by delivering an overall decent quality. While definitely not the toughest tool available, it is a great choice for those who want a reliable tool on hand every once in a while.
- One of the most affordable multitool with a decent quality.
- 14 tools available, which is a pretty good number considering its price tag.
- As expected, it is not as durable as the other multitools in this list. Think of Tarvol 14 in 1 as a great backup choice for when you need one in an emergency.
- This is a good choice for those who are on a budget or looking for a decent emergency replacement or backup for their main multitool. For the price, it is definitely one that tries to deliver the best it can with what it has available.
The Leatherman Wingman Multitool is a compact entry level outdoor equipment that is a good choice for beginners. It features a unique package opener and an externally opening set of tools. In terms of usability, this one might be the easiest to handle in this list.
The pocket clip feature is a nice addition and the tool itself fits nicely in any pocket. It has a small file that gets rid of material way too fast so caution is advisable if you will use it on your nails.
- It comes at a reasonable price tag and is a great choice for both beginners and experienced outdoor enthusiasts.
- The overall construction of the multitool is impressive. You can expect it to have a rather long shelf life.
- It has a hybrid blade that I personally feel is too short to be used properly.
- An affordable multitool that can hang with entries in the higher end category. Leatherman definitely knows how to develop worthwhile tools and the Wingman is no different from their long line of high quality and reliable outdoor products.
The Rose Kuli multitool includes the standard functionalities you would expect with the addition of two not quite common ones: a knife axe and a hammer. The choice in this multitool definitely makes it a good rescue and survival tool as it can pry open and smash glass and wood. It is made of steel and wood and comes with a sheath as well.
- This multitool is a great choice for outdoor use and comes with several functionalities that cover rescue and survival scenarios.
- It comes with a sturdy cloth sheath and the blade cover for the axe helps prevent accidents.
- Attractive aesthetic with its red wood handle.
- As this is made of steel and iron, it is susceptible to corrosion. Proper care and maintenance is vital.
- This is a well put together multitool that is also great to have during emergencies. I recommend you put this in your vehicle. The weight balance is good and the overall construction is solid. The design is also easy on the eyes which should make this a good gift for your fellow campers.
Another impressive multitool that features 14 functionalities, the Cerberuso should be on anyone’s shortlist. It comes with the standard tools such as the pliers, knife, scissors and utilizes high quality stainless steel. Cerberuso 14 in 1 Multitool is lightweight and fits snugly at the palm of your hands which is always a must have feature with these tools. It comes with its own nylon carry on pouch as well as 100% moneyback guarantee.
- A good choice for camping thanks to its heavy-duty construction and helpful functions such as can openers.
- Affordable but still delivers a high-quality performance on par with some of the top multitools in the market.
- Each tool locks in place when opened which should help prevent accidents.
- The low-quality pouch will most likely have wear and tear within a couple of months.
- It is reliable and feels well-made. The Cerberuso 14 in 1 Multitool might deliver what you need but it is not a perfect outdoor tool. It is reliable yes, but has some shortcomings as well. Still, if you are looking for something that is budget friendly yet offers a good selection of tools and a decent quality then you can check out the Cerberuso multitool.
A multitool is definitely an essential item that you should have during your camping, hiking and hunting trips. I have a couple ones myself each with their own specific uses for every scenario. I would definitely recommend the Leatherman Wingman multitool. It features a well-rounded variety of tools, it is well-made, compact and easy to use. I have always been a Leatherman multitool aficionado myself.
Remember that being prepared for any scenario is essential so always pick the best possible one even if you need to shell out a few extra dollars. High quality outdoor equipment and survival tools are a worthwhile investment.
About the Author
Ahoy there! The name’s Kevin Smith, the proprietor of this little travel and outdoors blog. The outdoors has always been a passion of mine since I was a kid as my parents were avid campers themselves. They taught me everything I know when it comes to camping, hiking etc. and I would like to do my part by imparting my know-how to like-minded individuals who enjoy the same hobby as me. I started this website in the hopes of helping other people when it comes to answering questions, giving tips and recommendations focusing on the camping niche. Along with some close friends of mine, we are here to help you make the most out of your outdoor experience. Enjoy your stay and enjoy the wild side!