Hands on review: Gerber MP400 Compact Sport Multi-Plier

Wednesday, March 1, 2023

Gerber MP400 Compact Sport Multi-Plier: Review

When I graduated with a degree many years ago, my parents got me a Gerber multi-plier tool. It was awesome, I used it all over the show. 

It had a seriously sharp knife, a saw, and a pretty handy pair of scissors. It was great for fishing/sorting tackle, opening beers, doing Macgyver stuff.

I once used it to remove a fishhook from a dog's throat which while an interesting moment for me, it was a painful ordeal for the dog.

I used it for about years until some asshole robbed my house and they nicked it and a whole lot of other gear.

At the time, we had a little baby so we spent the insurance on the kid.

No regrets.

review: Gerber MP400 Compact Sport Multi-Plier

Though I wistfully thought about that Gerber knife a lot for several years. So, when I had a lil spare cash, I got myself a replacement Gerber - the Gerber MP400 Compact Sport Multi-Plier in fact.

It was slightly different from the original one I was gifted in that it did not have a saw but the knife and scissors were sharp as I remembered.

gerber compact mp400 review

So how has it faired?

Let's start with the 'flick of the wrist' opening trick this tool is known for. 

My original (which I suspect was an earlier version of the MP600) would open up and the needle slide out with a said flick of the wrist. This version did not, it was a bit stiff and has taken a fair bit of use to 'sort it out' so the flick trick works every time. 

A small application of CRC early on helped too.

This is the only complaint I have about this knife.

It's super handy and I rate it so much, I brought my brother one for Christmas last year.

Why is it handy? All Gerber knife blades are super sharp, surgical sharp. And that sharpness seems to last for a long time. Indeed, I have not sharpened it yet, despite lots of use cutting string, garden plants and whatnot.

I even used it to cut the skin in my hand to get a wood splinter out.

I would however not perform an appendectomy on myself with it...

Last month I made a coat rack out of some nice Rimu wood - my trusty Makita electric drill couldn't get the last screw into the framing for some reason - enter the Gerber to finish the job.

Gerber has some marketing guff which may be of interest to you:

  • Solid stainless steel construction offers durable use over time.
  • Included ballistic nylon sheath keeps the tool ready at a moment's notice.
  • Proudly made in the USA at Gerber's Portland, Oregon factory
  • Fully functional toolbox that fits in the palm of your hand
  • Stainless steel hardware for durability

I'd most certainly agree the Gerber MP400 is durable. If you drop it it will not break and will likely leave a dent in a wooden floor for example. It is heavy and feels properly weighted when in the hand.

You know how a knife feels just right? It's the same for this tool.

The unit boasts these following component parts:
  • needle nose pliers
  • wire cutter, wire crimper
  • serrated knife blade
  • Fiskars scissors
  • cross point screwdriver
  • small, medium and large flat blade screwdrivers
  • can opener
  • bottle opener

You may be wondering what Fiskars Scissors are - Fiskars is a well-known brand of scissors, famous for originally being for cutting material with. And you could sure cut up and Oscar gown with the scissors on the Gerber MP400 - they are so sharp!

A little bit of research tells me, this unit has been Gerber's most popular selling multi-tool for over a decade. I presume that comes down to a good brand name have a quality tool.

I am totally sold on Gerber multi-plier tools - I don't expect I'll be using anything else in the future.

If this tool interests you, check out the options on Amazon:

You might also be interested in my key ring multitool which has a handy box cutter.
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