Leatherman vs Gerber Mutli-Tools [Which is Truly The Best?]

This article will give you comprehensive and comparative details between the two best multi-makers, Leatherman and Gerber. We will include feature specifications and determine which is better than the other.

Manufacturers come in a wide variety in the multi-tool field, but two stand out above the rest: Gerber gear and Leatherman gear.

Leatherman pioneered the modern multi-tool and has created exceedingly high-quality tools ever since. On the other hand, Gerber is a multibillion-dollar knife, tool, and equipment company equally well-known as Leatherman.

Let’s jump in and look at the Leatherman vs Gerber controversy and see who we believe makes the better multi-tool.

The Battle of the Flagships: Leatherman Wave Plus vs. Gerber MP600

When comparing two tool manufacturers, the best place to start is with their flagship products.  For Leatherman, it’s the Wave+, while for Gerber, it’s the MP600. There are many other models like the Gerber suspension, Gerber Dime, Leatherman Mut, and Leatherman Wingman – but for the sake of simplicity, we’re keeping it down to these two.

Both are full-sized machines with several features. Let’s review Leatherman first.

Leatherman Wave Plus

Leatherman Wave Plus gif

When comparing Leatherman vs Gerber, the Wave+ is a new version of Leatherman’s wildly successful Wave multi-tool. It comes with 18 different tools in a 4-inch butterfly open packaging.

These include all the conventional tools you’d expect from a flagship, such as a knife, saw, file, scissors, and a few Leatherman-exclusive inventions. The scissors are unique to the Leatherman Wave+, so if scissors are important to you, this Leatherman tool should be your go-to.

On the Wave+, there are two separate bit drivers: a small screwdriver to be used with glasses or electronics and a a medium screwdriver . Leatherman included unique replaceable hard and a standard wire cutter in the Wave+.

Leatherman also put a lot of effort into the Wave+’s general design. Every provided tool locks out for stability, and all four primary tools are open outdoors.

The pliers are among the best we’ve seen on any multi-tool, and the materials are of the highest quality. One of our favorite multi-tools is the Wave+. It’s sturdy, small, and well-made (stainless steel), and it performs everything a multi-tool should.

Gerber MP600

Gerber MP600 multi-tool plier

Without a doubt, the MP600 is one of the most extensively used multi-tools globally. The Gerber multitool is mainly owing to its status as the US military’s standard-issue multi-tool


It’s a large, heavy-duty tool Gerber built to withstand the harshest of situations. For the MP600, Gerber went with a completely different design than Leatherman did for the Wave+.


The pliers on the MP600 have a sliding-out, one-handed opening feature. The additional tools are only accessible after the pliers you’ve deployed and opened the handles. 


If you went through the tools that came with the package, that would take some time. Gerber presently provides more than 20 distinct MP600 models, each specialized for a specific type of work.


Standard versions come with non-removable tools, needlenose pliers (on Amazon), bluntnose pliers, straight blade or serrated blades, a knife blade, etc. Gerber even offers versions created exclusively for demolition engineers.


We believe Gerber made some significant concessions to make the MP600 a tool that anybody could use. Gerber designed these tools themselves appealingly. 


A detachable bit driver is also not included in any of the versions. For that, you’ll need to purchase aftermarket accessories. Don’t get us wrong: the MP600 is a well-made multi-tool with many positive features.

Gerber vs Leatherman Winner is...

leatherman wave with all tools out

In this case, we’ll have to opt for the Leatherman Wave+. The MP600 is a capable instrument, but the Wave+ has a more refined appearance. The Wave+’s detachable wire cutters outperformed the MP600’s conventional and removable carbide cutters, making it a more useful tool.

We’ve discussed the several difficulties with brittleness and durability that we’ve observed with Gerber wire cutters in prior evaluations.

In addition, although the one-handed open pliers are convenient, users commonly utilize knives and saw blades outside access. The MP600’s black oxide coating was also a problem.

There have been several instances of it beginning to rub and chip off after only a few weeks of use. The MP600 is often less expensive than the Wave+, but we feel the price difference is justified. In almost every way, the Wave+ is superior.

FAQs Gerber vs Leatherman

Now, we’ll just outline a few short questions that are often asked.

Do Leatherman and Gerber Multi-tools have Replaceable tools?

Yes, Leatherman and Gerber multitools have replaceable tools. These tools are usually either sold separately as replacement parts or come with a Leatherman or Gerber multitool kit. You can buy replacement parts on their website or on Amazon most of the time.

Are Leatherman and Gerber TSA-approved?

Leatherman and Gerber tools are allowed on flights. However, they must be checked with baggage and not taken on board.

Are Leatherman and Gerber Warranty-backed?

Yes, Leatherman and Gerber multi-tools are usually backed by a warranty. Each company offers a variety of warranty options depending on the specific product. Leatherman and Gerber generally have a 25-year warranty.

Which is Best for Self-defense?

Neither Leatherman nor Gerber multi-tools are designed for self-defense. They are generally too small and not designed for combat situations. If you are looking for a tool for self-defense, you should consider other types of knives or self-defense tools. 

However, if you’re in a pinch, the Wave+ is slightly better.

Last Words

Both Gerber and Leatherman are great multi-tool companies with high-quality equipment. Either a Gerber or a Leatherman would do for everyday use.

If you’re seeking the most extraordinary multi-tool money you can buy, we recommend going with Leatherman. Leatherman pioneered the multi-tool, while Gerber created excellent tools. It’s what they specialize in, and they excel at it.

They’ve spent the last 30 years inventing and reimagining what a multi-tool is and can be. Do they make errors? Yes, everyone does it. However, Leatherman makes all the tools we regard as the best in their respective categories.

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1 thought on “Leatherman vs Gerber Mutli-Tools [Which is Truly The Best?]”

  1. I have both Gerber and Leatherman.
    They are earlier models of around twenty years ago, they still both function for the reasons I purchased them, but yes I think even now the leatherman is the better of the two.
    I also have a Gerber fixed blade knife which is beautiful to use and apart from others is a favourite among them.
    As brands go, they compare equally as well.
    Thank you


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