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Comparison Review: Leatherman MUT vs Multitasker Series 3

Discussion in 'Gear Reviews' started by chaosmagnet, Apr 28, 2017.

  1. chaosmagnet
    • GITD Manix 2XL Owner
    • In Omnia Paratus

    chaosmagnet Loaded Pockets

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    First, a note about me. I am a part-time firearms instructor and competitive shooter. I've never been in law enforcement or the military. While my evaluation of these AR-15 focused multitools is based on a lot of experience with the AR-15 platform I've never been in any kind of gunfight, and I hope I never will be.

    Also, a note about multitools and my relationship with them. I have a lot of multitools, including about 20 various Leatherman products. You could legitimately call me a Leatherman fanboy. Some of these multis are safe queens, others have seen heavy use, and a few have been badly abused. Don't come back to me and say that I concealed my biases from you.

    Finally, a note about the tools tested here. I bought a Leatherman MUT new in 2012, and it arrived with some QC problems: the plastic piece the punch rests on was broken, and the bit-holder was WAY WAY too tight -- it was replaced promptly under warranty with Black Oxide version (an upgrade I was glad to have). The replacement unit has been my constant range companion since and has seen heavy use in that environment. I don't carry it except on the range. The Multitasker Series 3 has been discontinued; I found mine new on a popular online auction site. I evaluated the MUT based on five years of use and the Multitasker on about five days in my home office, so please keep that in mind.

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    Multitasker claims that the tool is CNC machined and hand-built and I absolutely believe it. Fit, finish and precision are top-notch throughout other than what may be a design flaw in the pliers pivot.

    Where Leatherman really shines (other than the pliers, and I warned you I was a fanboy) is in packaging. The whole tool is sleeker and much easier to hold in your hand, open or closed. The Multitasker uses space less efficiently, resulting in a tool that's much chunkier.

    The steel of the Multitasker is seductive, and I would love to believe that its pliers are better because of the steel and the precision with which it was machined, but they're compromised by the pivot during my home-office desk-top fiddle-testing. If I learn different on the range or the workbench I'll be quite pleased.

    I'm not selling the Multitasker, but it's too chunky to go on my belt, and too clumsy to deploy the bolt override tool to use under time pressure. I'll put it in my range bag and see how it works for me. If the good people at Multitasker are reading this, I hope they're working on a Multitasker Series 4.

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    alessandro.salvi likes this.
  2. chaosmagnet
    • GITD Manix 2XL Owner
    • In Omnia Paratus

    chaosmagnet Loaded Pockets

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    Today I found out that the Multitasker 3X has been released. It doesn't look very different -- "improved" pliers and frame and PVD coating for the blade are claimed but if the pics are to be believed these are small changes.
     
  3. Macbrun

    Macbrun Loaded Pockets

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    Great review and I think it's dead-on. As mentioned in another thread, I own a MUT and my son has the Multitasker. If my life depended on one or the other - I'd go with the Multitasker simply due to it's sheer quality and ability to be used as a blunt instrument. For that reason that's the one myself son prefers as well. For my needs at the range though I'm happy with the MUT.
     
    chaosmagnet likes this.
  4. tryharder

    tryharder Empty Pockets

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    Awesome review! I own the Multitasker Series 3 and I love the heft and build quality of it. I haven't had a chance to try out the Leatherman MUT, but I'm sure I will have to pick one up soon to add to the collection.
     
    chaosmagnet likes this.
  5. M24shooter

    M24shooter Loaded Pockets

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    Necropost, but great review Chaosmagnet. I've owned both the MT3 (not the X) and the MUT. Honestly, the MUT was ok but I'd take an MT3 or even a Surge over the MUT. The MUT has had some durability issues. The first one I had cracked at the joint under what I would consider not heavy use. Sent it back, got a new one. That was about 6 years ago. The replacement has been fine, but after I got a MT I really quit using the MUT almost entirely. For a purpose built MT that is intended for use on an AR platform, the MT is just about impossible to beat. The MUT hammer surface is about the only thing that an MT doesn't have, and I used the side of the MT for that on several occasions. The bolt hook on the MUT was handy at times, but again the MT is able to do that without any problem.
    In terms of manufacturing and build quality there is just no comparison. MT beats the snot out of the MUT. I keep an MT with AR gear and I have a couple of Tubes/Twists thrown in too. About a month ago I finally just gave my MUT to a friend that likes the MUT so he would have a spare. If I want a multitool that I can use with a bolt gun, an AR, or pretty much any other firearm and that will also serve as a general purpose tool, I'll take the Surge and just have a Twist/Tube on hand for the punches and stuff like that along with some bits/sockets and adapters. But I'm really not taking the MUT as a primary ever.
     
    chaosmagnet likes this.