Wednesday, November 18, 2015

The Realist: "Mini-Review - Ozark Trail 12-in-1 Multitool"

Another guest post from The Realist:


Walmart recently put out their stocking-stuffer sporting goods products for the Christmas shopping season. Prominently displayed was an inexpensive ($3.87) multitool. Thinking back to the horrible multitool in the Atlas Industries Be Ready Bag I had reviewed a couple months ago (http://practicaleschatology.blogspot.com/2015/09/the-realist-atlas-industries-be-ready.html), I decided to purchase this multitool for review.

The Ozark Trail 12-in-1 multitool comes with a storage/carry pouch fitted for the multitool. The individual tools are: 1) needle nose pliers, 2) regular pliers, 3) wire cutter, 4) straight edge knife, 5) serrated knife (misidentified as a saw on the packaging), 6) bottle opener, 7) can opener, 8) awl, 9) file, 10) medium straight screwdriver, 11) small straight screwdriver, and 12) Phillips screw driver. The two types of pliers and wire cutter are part of the same jaw assembly. The bottle opener and can opener are separate structures on the same blade.

None of the blades/tools lock open. This is probably not a problem for the knife blades. However, this could be a serious problem with screwdrivers. In the past, I've had non-locking multitool screwdrivers try to fold closed on me when using them, resulting in pinched fingers and a string of profanity.

The edged tools are disappointing. The straight edge blade has a tolerable edge - it could use some touching up. The serrated edge blade is just dull. The awl is dull and has a too-blunt point.

The medium straight screwdriver is serviceable. The small straight screwdriver blade is too thick for most small screws. It could be touched up with a file to become a serviceable tool.

The file is double sided, with one side being acceptable, and the other side being pretty dull because the grooves are not cut deep enough.

The storage/carry pouch was actually a pleasant surprise - much higher quality that I've seen accompanying low-end multitools in the past. If you are needing an inexpensive replacement pouch for a multitool you already have, it might be worth buying this multi-tool just to get the pouch.

As a less than four dollar multitool, it's not bad. I was encouraged to see that the fish-scaler blade has disappeared from the low-end-made-in-China-sold-during-Christmas multitools.

The Ozark Trail multitool is an affordable replacement for the horrible multitool supplied with the Be Ready Bag. This multitool is also a good inexpensive stocking stuffer, or a good starter multitool if you are building up emergency kits for unprepared friends or family members.

Afterward

If you are wondering what multi-tool I have in the get-home bag in my vehicle, it is currently a Leatherman Sidekick. I also have a Leatherman Supertool 300 in the glovebox of my vehicle, and a Leatherman Micra in the vehicle's first aid kit.

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