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Where are the compact multitools?

Discussion in 'MultiTools and Other Pocket Tools' started by tbzbbt, Aug 2, 2022.

  1. tbzbbt

    tbzbbt Loaded Pockets

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    I have a Leatherman Juice CX4 and a Skeletool. I love them both, the Juice is ‘cute’ and colourful in design, feature rich and truly compact but with no pocket clip. The Skeletool is Ubercool in modern tech design, and very practical but is more bulky and has no scissors.

    As I have many smaller day sling packs have been searching for the perfect compromise between these two. I am surprised that I have not found the quality tool I am looking for. I have just picked up the Gerber Armbar which on paper is great: with cool compact design and burnt orange scale. However the execution is poor with non-locking bit driver annoys me with weak scissors.

    i cannot seem to find an alternative. The Juice is no longer produced (why oh why?) and the new leatherman knife-style ranges are plain ugly. SOG and Gerber plier-style multitools seem to be lacking in quality. I’m not a fan of Swiss-army knives. Can anyone suggest other possibilities?

    Thanks for any help
    tbzbbt
     
    WillAdams likes this.
  2. epithetless

    epithetless Empty Pockets

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    I hear you! This is a perennial pursuit of mine as well. The closest I've found to a single, compact multitool that has everything I want -- pliers, wire cutters, scissors, bit driver (albeit in this case for Leatherman's proprietary flat bits only ), and pocket clip -- is the newish Leatherman Curl (a slightly slimmed-down Wave)...but it's still a tad too large and heavy for my day-to-day pocket carry.

    On paper, the SOG Powerpint is really the only thing I've found to fill the sweet spot of the Leatherman Juice line while adding a pocket clip. I do have one that I got as an "upgrade" from the Leatherman Squirt I used to carry, and its pliers are actually pretty great. The way it folds is a satisfying bit of engineering, and I appreciate its compactness, pocket clip, and compatibility with standard 1/4" hex bits (even if it has no onboard bit storage of its own). Those are really the only positives, though. Build quality is definitely spotty. The tool and handle alignment are rough, and the spring on my scissors broke almost immediately...cutting through the paper backing of temporary tattoos at a kids' birthday party. I bought a replacement unit, and the machining on that one was noticeably worse -- so quality control isn't awesome.

    One alternative I'm keeping an eye out for is the Roxon M2 "Mini", which doesn't appear to have been released in the US market yet. It seems to adopt the half-pliers/half-scissors design element of the Nextool Mini Flagship Pro, with the addition of a pocket clip. The Nextool Mini Flagship seemed somewhat promising, but I've read enough reviews detailing poor quality control, especially with the scissors, that I've so far decided against picking one up.

    If you end up finding anything that works for you, let us know!
     
    tbzbbt likes this.
  3. dmattaponi

    dmattaponi Loaded Pockets

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    It doesn’t have scissors, but I find the Leatherman Bond with pocket clip to carry very nicely clipped to the pocket. I have the Curlalso, but find it a little less pocketable.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
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  4. aicolainen

    aicolainen Loaded Pockets

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    On paper, I’ve also found the SOG powerpint to be the best option in this weirdly neglected segment of the multi tool market.

    Unfortunately it has been unavailable at my regular tool pushers ever since I’ve been aware of it, which is easily a year ++
    Very strange, but that’s pretty much the state of the world these days.

    The Powerpint seems like a pretty solid piece of engineering, that’s unfortunately a little bit hampered by Chinese production and QC. Hopefully its apparent success will ultimately lead the way to more competition and quality focused options entering this part of the MT market.
     
    tbzbbt likes this.
  5. tbzbbt

    tbzbbt Loaded Pockets

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    The Powerpint is another one that seems to be good on paper, a good size and feature set, but reviews highlight its quality shortcomings. As these tools are tactile and functional, I’d prefer to pay a bit more for quality. I am really surprised Leatherman has nothing similar. I’d bite at a Leatherman between full size and the Style. The Curl seems promising, though I’m not sure it is much smaller in dimensions that my Waves old and new.

    The Gerber Armbar I mentioned is growing on me.The knife is proving to be good; the scissors ok, and the bit driver is usable in a choked-up grip. This is ironic as it main advantage seems to be the on-axis extended reach....where it fails due to the lack of locking.

    I’ll continue to use it as part of a minikit with my EDC 5.11 LV6 shoulder sling, coupled with a Spyderco Pingu knife and a Lumintop Tool 2 flashlight.

    The Skeletool lives nicely in the front of my 5.11 MOAB6. It could carry a Wave in this but I have no pocket clip and refuse to pay extra for one...

    Roxon is a name I have never heard and I will check them out.

    tbzbbt
     
  6. ox71

    ox71 Loaded Pockets

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    What are the complaints against the powerpint/powerlitre?
    Quality control?
    Do these reviewers expect leatherman quality from these compact tools: juice(if you can find one, and if you do expect to pay)
    Micra, squirt, dime etcetera, great quality from some of these but they are still inferior due to size.
    Curl, bond...not compact
    Wingman, sidekick, rev....still not compact.
    Hmmm looks like the SOG is the better choice here.[​IMG][​IMG]
     
  7. epithetless

    epithetless Empty Pockets

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    Well, yeah, the SOG is the better choice in this category...because it's pretty much the only choice in this category. So it beats out all the other nonexistent contenders easily. ;)

    While I'm personally not expecting premium-level quality from my PowerPints, I would appreciate a bit better (and more consistent) fit and finish overall, and for their scissors to function as well as the pliers. I mean, I'm still planning on carrying mine until something better comes along. But I'll keep hoping something better comes along...
     
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  8. SOS24

    SOS24 Loaded Pockets

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    After dealing with a few different attempts where I felt the tool missed the mark or QC issues, I have went a different route. Give me a SAK and pair of mini pliers or Skeletool if I need to add pliers.
     
  9. tbzbbt

    tbzbbt Loaded Pockets

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    I’ve ordered a Powerpint from Amazon where they are on discount. I’ll share my experiences...

    tbzbbt