Blades and Knives

10 Best Multi-Tools for Everyday Carry

10 best multi-tools

Having a good multi-tool is an incredibly useful addition to your everyday carry (EDC) collection. Multi-tools come in a ton of different sizes and configurations that can suit a number of different applications.

Whether you need a set of pliers, a knife or a screwdriver, a multi-tool can save the day in a large number of circumstances.

Here are the 10 best multi-tools that you should take a look at if you want to take your EDC to the next level.

1. Leatherman Wave

First and foremost on this list is probably the most popular multi-tool on the market, the Leatherman Wave.

The Wave is a staple and for good reason; it offers a lot of functionality and has a great design.

At 8.5 oz and four-inches long, it offers a fair bit of heft, but if you can pack it, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better option.

The Wave features several tools that are accessible with the tool closed, including a great knife blade. All of the tools lock and the pliers are a great size for most tasks.

If you like the Wave but want something a little more premium, take a look at the Leatherman Charge options.

These are versions offering upgraded blade steel, titanium or aluminum handles, wire crimpers built into the plier’s head and a seat-belt cutting hook.


  • MSRP: $99.95
  • Length: 4in Closed
  • Weight: 8.5 oz
  • Tools: Pliers, Wire Cutters, Scissors, Plain Blade (2.9”), Serrated Blade, Wood Saw, File, Metal Saw, Slotted Screwdriver, Eyeglass Screwdriver (Reversible Slotted/Phillips), Leatherman Bit Acceptor (Slotted/Phillips Included), Can/Bottle Opener, Ruler, Lanyard Ring. 
  • Locking Mechanism: Liner Locks and Back Locks
  • Pros/Cons: One-Handed Access to Most-Used Tools, Small Scissors
  • Purposes: General EDC
Leatherman Wave Multi-tools
Source: Leatherman

2. SOG PowerAccess

The SOG PowerAccess offers a unique compound-leverage system, using gears to increase the amount of power put out by the pliers.

This gives it the best set of pliers out of any tool on this list because with minimal effort, you get maximum effect.

It also incorporates both a plain and serrated blade, multiple screwdrivers and a bit driver on the tip of the tool when closed.

All of the tools lock for safe and secure use, and it is a relatively compact size for easy transportation.

Additionally, SOG offers several iterations of the PowerAccess, so you are sure to find a version that works well for you.

The SOG PowerAccess also comes with a pre-installed pocket clip for convenient carry.


  • MSRP: $65.95
  • Length: 4.1in Closed
  • Weight: 5.9 oz
  • Tools: Pliers, Wire Cutters, Plain Blade (2.4”), Serrated Blade, Wood Saw, File, Can Opener, Bottle Opener, Phillips Screwdriver, Slotted Driver Tips on Can and Bottle Opener (Two Sizes), Awl, Ruler, Hex Bit Driver, Jewelry Driver.
  • Locking Mechanism: Back Locks
  • Pros/Cons: Compound Leverage Gears, Pocket Clip, Uncomfortable Handle to Grip
  • Purposes: Hard-Use EDC
SOG PowerAccess Multi-Tool
Source: SOG

3. Gerber Center-Drive

The Gerber Center-Drive offers one of the best screwdrivers of all the multi-tools on the market.

It has a long shank that allows it to get into small crevices that many of the other tools cannot.

You can also bend the shank to an angle to provide more torque. Additionally, the tool has a great main knife blade, spring-loaded pliers, pry bar and a nail remover.

This would make a great tool for construction workers and contractors. At 4.7-inches closed and 9.5 oz, this wouldn’t be great in the pocket, but is perfectly carriable in a belt pouch or bag.


  • MSRP: $104
  • Length: 4.7in Closed
  • Weight: 9.5 oz
  • Tools: Pliers, Wire Cutters, Plain Blade (3.25”), Serrated Blade, File, Long Bit Driver (Flippable Phillips/Slotted, Pry Bar, Nail Puller, Bottle Opener, Awl, Lanyard Hole.
  • Locking Mechanism: Liner Locks, Back Locks
  • Pros/Cons: Long Screwdriver Shank, Spring-Loaded Pliers, Heavy
  • Purposes: Construction
Gerber Center-Drive Multi-Tool
Source: Gerber

4. Victorinox SwissTool X

The Victorinox SwissTool X departs from their traditional line of Swiss Army Knives by offering a tool with a large set of pliers.

The SwissTool X keeps the same great knife blade, scissors and many of the other tools found on their knives so you know you are getting a tool of exceptional Swiss quality.

All of the tools lock by individual back locks, a detail not found on any other tool on this list.

The steel Victorinox uses is a little softer than other choices, so you may have to sharpen the blade more, but this makes it more rust-resistant than other choices.

At 4.5-inches long and 10.2 oz, this is another heavyweight multi-tool, but it provides you with a lot of utility for that weight.

Whether this tool is for you or not, it offers the highest craftsmanship of all the options on this list.


  • MSRP: $135
  • Length: 4.5in Closed
  • Weight: 10.2 oz
  • Tools: Pliers, Wire Cutters, Plain Blade (2.9”), Scissors, File, Metal Saw, Wood Saw, Phillips Driver, Bottle Opener, Wire Stripper, Can Opener, Slotted Driver Tips on Can and Bottle Opener (Two Sizes), Small Slotted Driver, Awl, Ruler, Pry Bar, Chisel, Wire Bender, Wire Scraper, Lanyard Hole. 
  • Locking Mechanism: Back Locks
  • Pros/Cons: High Craftsmanship, Softer Steel
  • Purposes: General EDC
Victorinox SwissTool X Multi-Tool
Source: Victorinox

5. Leatherman MUT

The Leatherman MUT is one of the best multi-tools for firearms owners.

With its bronze carbon scraper and pin punch, you can easily disassemble, clean and maintain your firearms, all with one convenient tool.

The MUT also packs some of the most-used tools found on other multi-tools, like a knife blade, pliers with wire cutters and screwdriver.

At five-inches long and 11.2 oz, it is not the lightest, but it would be great to throw in a backpack or range bag.

Additionally, Real Avid makes several multi-tools geared specifically for firearm maintenance if you are looking for something more firearm-specific. 


  • MSRP: $159.95
  • Length: 5in Closed
  • Weight: 11.2 oz
  • Tools: Pliers, Wire Cutters, Wire Crimper, Combo-Edge Blade (3”), Wood Saw, Strap Cutting Hook, Bit Driver with Phillips/Slotted Flippable Bit, Bit Storage in Handle, Hammer, Carbon Scraper, Pin Punch, Carabiner. 
  • Locking Mechanism: Liner Locks
  • Pros/Cons: Durable, Very Specific Purpose
  • Purposes: Firearm Maintenance
Leatherman MUT Multi-Tool
Source: Leatherman

6. Gerber Dime

This next option is small and light enough for anyone to carry. The Gerber Dime, at just 2.75-inches long and 2.2 oz, offers a lot of utility in a very convenient package.

With spring-loaded pliers, a knife blade and a screwdriver, the Dime can tackle most day-to-day tasks.

However, though the compact size of the Dime makes it easy to carry, it also limits its ability on harder-use tasks.

Additionally, none of the tools lock, so be sure to only use it for reasonable applications.

If you like this form factor but would prefer a different design, Leatherman offers the Squirt PS4 model you may want to take a look at.

It comes in at about twice the price, but is a step up in quality.


  • MSRP: $23
  • Length: 2.75in Closed
  • Weight: 2.2 oz
  • Tools: Spring-Loaded Pliers, Wire Cutters, Plain Blade (1.5”), File, Slotted Driver, Scissors, Tweezers, Package Opener, Small Slotted Driver, Bottle Opener, Lanyard Ring.
  • Locking Mechanism: No Locking Tools
  • Pros/Cons: Compact, Light Use Only
  • Purposes: General Light-Use EDC
Gerber Dime Multi-Tool
Source: Gerber

7. Victorinox Swiss Champ

If you want a multi-tool but don’t need the beefy pliers, take a look at the Victorinox Swiss Champ.

We all know about Swiss Army Knives, and the Swiss Champ offers a ton of tools in an incredibly compact package.

Additionally, it offers that high-quality Swiss craftsmanship the company is known for.

The Swiss Champ offers two nice knife blades, great scissors as well as a plethora of other tools for any task imaginable.

Further, the company offers tons of other models in various configurations depending on your preferences.

I also like the Cadet and Climber models for a more compact carry.

Victorinox knives are some of the first multi-tools and pocket knives people carried, and for great reason, they just work.


  • MSRP: $87.99
  • Length: 3.6in Closed
  • Weight: 6.5 oz
  • Tools: Large Plain Blade (2.5”), Small Blade, Corkscrew, Eyeglass Screwdriver, Awl, Can Opener, Bottle Opener, Slotted Driver Tips on Can and Bottle Opener (Two Sizes), Wire Stripper, Scissors, Pliers, Wire Cutter, Wire Crimper, Fish Scaler, Hook Disgorger, Ruler (cm/in), Woo Saw, Nail File, Nail Cleaner, Metal Saw, Metal File, Magnifying Glass, Phillips Screwdriver, Slotted Driver, Chisel, Multipurpose Hook, Toothpick, Tweezers, Ballpoint Pen, Pin, Key Ring.
  • Locking Mechanism: Slipjoint, Does Not Lock
  • Pros/Cons: Compact, Tons of Tools, Tools Don’t Lock
  • Purposes: Outdoors, Camping, General EDC
Victorinox Swiss Champ
Source: Victorinox

8. Gerber Multi-Plier 600

Next on the list is the Gerber Multi-Plier 600. With its Wharncliffe blade, strong pliers and multiple flat-head drivers, the Multi-Plier 600 is ready for business.

The pliers feature replaceable tungsten wire cutters that are stronger than steel. All of the tools lock for safe and secure use, and the Wharncliffe-style blade offers a lot of utility.

At 4.9-inches closed and nine ounces, this is no featherweight, but it would work great in a backpack or belt pouch.

Though the plier’s heads are plenty durable for hard use, the blunt ends do not offer much in the way of detail work like with some of the other options on this list. 


  • MSRP: $85
  • Length: 4.9in Closed
  • Weight: 9 oz
  • Tools: Pliers, Wire Cutters, Plain Wharncliffe Blade (2.36”), Serrated Blade, File, Can Opener, Bottle Opener, Wire Crimper,  Phillips Driver, Small, Medium and Large Slotted Drivers, Ruler, Lanyard Ring.
  • Locking Mechanism: Back Locks
  • Pros/Cons: Tungsten Wire Cutters, Small Knife Blade
  • Purposes: Hard-Use EDC
Gerber Multi-Plier 600 Multi-Tool
Source: Gerber

9. Leatherman OHT

The Leatherman OHT is one of the more unique multi-tools with its one-handed, fast-deploying pliers. This is the perfect tool for you if you use the pliers more than any other tool.

It also offers a cleaning rod/brush adapter for firearms maintenance so it would be a good choice for gun owners.

Unfortunately, due to design constraints, the OHT has a small toolset that is compromised in size due to the way the pliers deploy.

Gerber also offers the Diesel model that has a similar design, but in my opinion, the Leatherman was executed better.


  • MSRP: $89.95
  • Length: 4.5in Closed
  • Weight: 9.9 oz
  • Tools: Spring-Loaded Pliers, Wire Cutters, Plain Blade (2.37”), Serrated Blade, Wood Saw, Strap Cutter, Cleaning Rod/Brush Adapter for Firearms, Can Opener, Bottle Opener, Oxygen Tank Wrench, Phillips Driver, Small, Medium and Large Slotted Drivers.
  • Locking Mechanism: Liner Locks
  • Pros/Cons: Quick Access to Pliers, Compromised Size on Other Tools
  • Purposes: Firearms Maintenance, General EDC
Leatherman OHT Multi-Tool
Source: Leatherman

10. Leatherman FREE P4

This is a relatively new offering from Leatherman. The FREE P4 (or P2 if you prefer something a little smaller) provides many of the features of the Wave in a magnetized, easy-open package.

Many of the most-used tools are still accessible on with the tool closed and the FREE add in a pry bar and larger scissors, which are incredibly useful.

All of the tools on the Leatherman FREE lock, and it offers a main blade with a good shape and size.

This is a great general-purpose multi-tool that is great for all-around use. 


  • MSRP: $139.95
  • Length: 4.25in Closed
  • Weight: 8.6 oz
  • Tools: Pliers, Wire Cutters, Plain Blade (2.76”), Serrated Blade, Wood Saw, Scissors, Phillips Driver, File, Pry Bar, Package Opener, Awl, Can Opener, Ruler, Wire Crimper, Small, Medium and Large Slotted Drivers.
  • Locking Mechanism: Back Locks
  • Pros/Cons: Good Blade, Easy Opening, Small File
  • Purposes: General EDC
Leatherman FREE P4 Multi-Tool
Source: Leatherman

Honorable Mention: Benchmade 365 Outlast

This next option is a little different from the rest, but is a great choice for those whose main use in a multi-tool is a knife.

The Benchmade 365 Outlast was designed for EMTs and other rescue workers, but works perfectly well for the average person.

It offers an S30V plain blade, a 3V serrated blade with a pry-bar tip, a seat-belt cutter, glass breaker and an oxygen tank wrench.

This would be a great tool to have on you if you were in, or witnessed, a serious car accident. The blades run on Benchmade’s AXIS Option lock that securely locks the blades in place.

Though it doesn’t have the expansive toolset of the other options, it offers great functionality.


  • MSRP: $325
  • Length: 4.82in Closed
  • Weight: 5.96 oz
  • Tools: Plain Blade (3.6”), Serrated Blade, Pry Bar Tip, Oxygen Tank Wrench, Seat Belt Cutter, Glass Breaker.
  • Locking Mechanism: AXIS Option Lock
  • Pros/Cons: Great Main Blade, Expensive, Few Tools
  • Purposes: Rescue Tool
Benchmade 365 Outlast
Source: Benchmade

Conclusion: Multi-Tools

Whether you’re looking for something small and compact, or a heavy-duty beast, a good multi-tool is very useful to have.

There are a ton of different multi-tools in various configurations, so you are sure to find one that perfectly meets your needs.

Think about what tools you could use most in your day-to-day life and deciding on the best option becomes much easier.

Whatever you choose, if you select something from this list, you’ve got yourself a great tool.

What are your favorite multi-tools? Why? Let us know in the comments section below!

About the Author:

Alex Cole

Alex is a relatively young firearms enthusiast who’s been shooting consistently for around seven years. Though he is fairly new to the industry, he loves consuming all information related to guns and is constantly trying to enhance his knowledge, understanding and use of firearms. Not a day goes by where he doesn’t do something firearms-related.

Alex tries to visit the range at least a couple of times a month to maintain and improve his shooting skills. He also enjoys disassembling and reassembling firearms to see how they work and to keep them properly cleaned and maintained. He installs most of the upgrades to his firearms himself, taking it as a chance to learn.

Additionally, he is very into buying, selling and trading guns to test different firearms and learn more about them. He is not only interested in modern handguns and rifles, he appreciates the classics for both historical value and real-world use.
The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (4)

  1. I have several Waves that are kept in the tacklebag, boat, plane, go-bag, toolbox and the is one of the most useful of the multi-tools and been a saver-if-moments on occasion!
    However, the one I rely on, that is my EDC, and gets the most use is my M.U.T.. I acquired it for use mainly in deployment of explosives and as a firearms toolkit. Both functions that it services very well.
    Good choices all! May have to try a SOG Power Access for the tool kit!
    Great read, very informative!

  2. Be aware that the tool driver on the SOG slips readily if you even slightly ease up on the grip pressure. I have carried many of these over years, found Gerber models to be most functional design overall, Leatherman to be best build quality in everyday use, and SOG is what I carry in the backcountry……it’s weight is worth the extreme toughness. All three companies have customer service that is wonderful. The cellular companies should emulate them!!!!!!!!

  3. Leatherman “Wave”: from the day it “hit the market” (sometime in the mid to late 60’s, if memory serves) I first saw one while working Highway Patrol; used it for hundreds of expeditious reasons thru 30+ year career, and it never failed me! I’ve had two “Waves” in my lifetime (and also one “MUT”): “Leatherman” has ALWAYS been my “go to” (This “Old Timer” still carrying my second “Wave” in my EDC Bag most days on me, or in my pickup… Thank you “Leatherman”!)

  4. Everyone has there favorite but for me the Victorinox Swiss , now the X has been on my side for 25 years. Used everyday for farm work, contractor business, hunting and fishing guide and everything else. It even goes to church. I lost my first one in a commercial swimming pool doing a quote, I bought another one and 3 months later drained the pool and found it. It still looked new after 3 months in green slime water. Sold for life.

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