GearTools & Tech

The Best Multi-Tools of 2017

Sidekicks for any scenario

The Leatherman Skeletool RX uses dramatically serrated blade for cutting through even the toughest materials. (Photo: Inga Hendrickson)
The Leatherman Skeletool RX uses dramatically serrated blade for cutting through even the toughest materials.

Sidekicks for any scenario. 

Gerber Center-Drive
Gerber Center-Drive (Photo: Courtesy Gerber)

Gerber Center-Drive ($119)

The four-inch screwdriver provides tons of torque on stubborn screws and can easily squeeze into tight nooks. At 9.5 ounces and nearly five inches long when closed, the Center-Drive isn’t suited for long expeditions, but after we used it to change out a busted headlight on a decades-old Camry, it earned a permanent spot in our glove box.

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MSR Stake Hammer
MSR Stake Hammer (Photo: Courtesy MSR)

MSR Stake Hammer ($30)

Yes, you can use a rock to pound tent stakes into the ground. But this 11-ounce stainless-steel hammer weighs less than some smartphones and is more precise than the caveman approach. Once your shelter is secure, switch to the bottle opener beneath the head. The inch-long steel claw makes easy work of breaking camp.

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SOG Baton Q3
SOG Baton Q3 (Photo: Courtesy SOG)

SOG Baton Q3 ($94)

When closed, the Baton Q3 looks like an oversize pen. Open it up and it turns into an insanely capable adventure companion, with 13 tools and a long handle for maximizing power while wrenching away on a mountain bike or cracking open a can of beans. The thin profile lets it slip easily into the crannies of any daypack. 

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Leatherman Skeletool RX
Leatherman Skeletool RX (Photo: Courtesy Leatherman)

Leatherman Skeletool RX ($80) 

The Skeletool’s deeply serrated blade is the sharpest and most robust here: it’s ideal for cutting through beefy climbing rope and small branches. With a glass-shattering carbide bit combined with eternally useful tools like pliers and wire cutters, the five-ounce RX hits the sweet spot—hardy for emergencies, yet light enough for backcountry missions.

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CRKT Snailor
CRKT Snailor (Photo: Courtesy CRKT)

CRKT Snailor ($15)

Sometimes a beer pry is all you need. With its ridged back and sturdy 2.8-inch stainless-steel body, the Snailor feels nice in your hand, while the carabiner holder blends smoothly into the shell. We don’t usually go for cute multitools, but the happy snail won us over, thanks in part to its rugged brushed-metal looks and streamlined design.

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Victorinox Swisstool BS
Victorinox Swisstool BS (Photo: Courtesy Victorinox)

Victorinox Swisstool BS ($200)

If the Snailor is for minimalists, the ten-ounce Swisstool BS is made for those apt to pack the kitchen sink. It has 29 tools—more than any other gizmo we looked at—­including a wood saw to chew through kindling, a can opener for campsite eats, and a corkscrew attachment for backcountry date nights, all made from corrosion-resistant black steel. 

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From 2017 Summer Buyer's Guide
Filed To: ToolsMulti-ToolsSummer Buyer's Guide
Lead Photo: Inga Hendrickson
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