Here, we continue our examination of the items on the Ten Essentials list(s). In our last post in this series, we looked at the pocketknife from the Boy Scout list, along with how it fits into the Mountaineers lists. An alternative is the multitool.

We did not find a definition for the compound word “multitool” in standard dictionaries. There is an entry in Wikipedia that defines a “multi-tool” as “any one of a range of portable, versatile hand tools that combines several individual functions in a single unit.” The traditional Swiss Army knife certainly fits this example, but in our experience, the word is generally used to describe an implement such as that developed by Tim Leatherman in 1984, often incorporating needle-nosed pliers. Amidst the countless manufacturers of multitools, another well-known brand is Gerber.

While the FamilyTrivium household doesn’t have as many multitools as pocketknives, we have had a few throughout the years. As with pocketknives, Mr. FamilyTrivium does have a couple of favorites:

  1. The mid-sized Leatherman Sidekick sports a saw blade and a pocket clip
  2. The compact Leatherman Micra has scissors in place of the needle-nosed pliers. He’s had this one since he was a kid.

Please let us know, in the comments, if you have a favorite multitool.


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