The multifunction pliers or “multitool” is a central element of the majority of EDC kits. For the one who seeks to equip themselves quickly arises the question of which tool to choose. I won’t do here a detailed review because these are found in abundance on the net. Instead, I propose to examine the contexts of use them in and the reasons which led me to buy mine.
Some pictures, from left to right and top to bottom: Leatherman Wave, Juice S2, PS.
Tip: here’s a really large resource for picking the right multitool for the job.
If I only had to have one multitool, then it would be this one. The Wave is extremely robust and has all the common functions for DIY as well as for life in the wild. It is so effective that in many cases, it is it that I use rather than pick up the toolbox from the cellar. Its wire cutter is able to cut barbed wire and beefy twisted steel; its saw is effective and its scissors also. It has two knife blades, and a file. A real workhorse!
Only downside: the Wave is a little heavy to wear in an EDC bag (it has 241g). This is why I replaced it with the Juice (125g) model for the daily wear in the urban context. But if I had to get away from civilization, I however would take back the Wave immediately.
The Leatherman Juice line of models is a good compromise between “full size” models (heavy) and key-chain models (less capable). I personally opted for the S2 model because I don’t get multitools without a pair of scissors, and also because this model has the best weight/functionality ratio. Its clip does not have the power clamping and wire cutting capability of the Wave, but by and large it is enough for routine use. If that were still on the market, I would even prefer the Knifeless Fuse model (170g) of the same size as the Wave, but much more lightweight and without a knife. Having always a knife with me I, do not indeed see interest in a blade on a multitool.
The PS model is the multitool which I take with me when I know I’m going to areas that don’t allow cutting tools (for instance in some American cities). It was announced to be compliant with the directives of the TSA (US airport security agency). Devoid of knife, it is nevertheless equipped with scissors which allows small cuts. Its pliers, you might expect, won’t do miracles but still useful for minor uses. In short, perfect for a light traveling (44.7 g) and legal tool. For daily wear in more permissive environments I would advise for the Juice or the Wave instead.