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AR Multi Tool Buyers Guide

By Gabby

Gerber multi tool for military and eFect for use with AR15Back when I worked behind the counter at the gun range, we used to roll our eyes at folks who would come out of their lane and ask to borrow an AR front sight adjustment tool. Maybe that was mean, but those of us who worked there, knew that of all the tools we would lend to shooters, the AR sight tool would have been the first thing to walk. Also, I believe that most AR owners consider a sight tool standard equipment when they take their gun to the range.

Disregarding my obvious issue of schadenfreude, I want to arm my range bag with a great multi tool that will keep me self reliant at the range. The truth about multi tools, is that they are rarely everything you need them to be. If you have one that is a scissor, then you'll be stick needing a plier. If yours has an Allen wrench, it'll be metric when you need imperial. So rather than spend a ton of cash on one "all-in-one" device, I went looking for an inexpensive AR focused multi tool.

HK tactical multi tool by BenchmadeGerber has two tools that serve this purpose well. Their MP600ST seems like a solid tool for anyone facing deployment, but seemed like over-kill for my needs. Gerber's older model, the eFect, would have probably been the perfect tool for me, if it were not for the $111, price tag. To be fair, Gerber's knives and tools are known for their exceptional quality, so I image one gets what they pay for, but I was not looking to spend this much.

Also known for exception quality is Benchmade. But what I was made aware of during my research, is that they manufacture and private label many items, for other brand names. One of these brands is HK. The "tactical" multi tool they offer, is packed with gun related tools that would come in handy at the range (or in the squad car, I imagine). AR tools and a shotgun choke key might make me everyone's favorite gun girl, and you never know when a handcuff key may come in handy. The red rubber on the outside of the HK tool seems like it would be a bonus when in use, and easy to find in the bottom of a dark range bag, but I can't speak to how "tactical" this feature will be.

leatherman pocket tool the rail for ARThough I may be the least patient person I know, I ended up pre ordering Leatherman's new pocketool called "Rail". These were debuted at SHOTShow 2013 and are expected to begin shipping this month. They retail for $45 and for that price one could also thrown in, the Rail's two sisters, "Cam" for bow hunters and "Pump" for shotgunners.

When my multi tool arrives I plan to review. Meanwhile, here is a break down of the four products between which, I chose.

Gerber Military Multi Tool

  • Stainless Steel Construction with Black Oxide Finish

  • Needlenose Pliers with Crimper Jaws

  • One Hand Opening

  • M4/M16 Front Sight Post Adjustment Tool

  • Carbon Scraper

  • Serrated / Fine Edge Knife

  • Carbide Wire Cutters

  • Long Reach Philips Screwdriver

  • Lanyard Ring

  • Can Opener / Bottle Opener

  • Gerber eFect
  • Interchangeable Tool Component: OTIS Nylon end brush

  • Patented Saf-T-Lock

  • Flat Driver Scraper

  • Interchangeable Tool Component: OTIS Curved Pick

  • PunchScraper

  • HK Tactical Multi Tool
  • Needle nose pliers

  • knife blade

  • strap cutter

  • four tooth front sight adjustment for AR-15 / M-16

  • shotgun choke key

  • cuff key and double lock tool

  • file with scraping end

  • saw blade

  • Carry pouch and 9 piece bit set included

  • Leatherman RAIL
  • Front Sight Adjustment Tool

  • 3/8 inch Tactical Rail Wrench

  • Bit Driver

  • #2 Phillips - 1/4 inch Screwdriver

  • 7/16 inch Allen Wrench - Torx #15

  • 1/8 inch Tool Punch

  • Oxygen Bottle Wrench

  • Carabiner

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