Gerber Diesel Multi-Plier ReviewJune 18, 2015
- Adjustable, single hand operation
- Good size to weight ratio
- Assortment of on-board Tools
- Tool pictures on handles
- Pliers are not spring loaded
- Some on-board tools are hard to access
- Tip of pliers sticks out of body
The Gerber Diesel is a familiar design from the company that pioneered one hand operating pliers on multitools. There’s nothing risky or innovative about the Diesel—and that’s what you need when you’re working with a tool that was designed to be put to task whenever and wherever. Having experienced the operation of the pliers on both the stainless and black oxide versions of the Diesel, I would recommend the stainless.
CONSTRUCTION & MATERIALS
The name says it all for the Diesel—as this Gerber multi-plier is built for abuse and is up to task for the most stubborn of jobs.
The sliding lock mechanism on the Diesel works like a dream, which is a nice change from previous tools utilizing the same technology. I’m not a big fan of its plastic/nylon pieces, but they haven’t failed me yet.
Bead-blasting is an added layer of protection against corrosion and the Diesel has been blasted to the extreme. The only drawback is that it wears over time, so folks looking for a tool that stays pretty, might want to look the other way (or suck it up).
The Diesel is generally self-sufficient and doesn’t require a lot of attention to stay in good working order. I recommend lubricating the slides for the pliers after significant use, as they can slow down due to grit and lint.
In terms of function, the Diesel meets and beats all standards in terms of durability. In terms of form, the tool shows signs of wear after a few days of pocket travel.
Pliers are rarely an issue with Gerber tools, but the wire cutters on the Diesel are a bit soft. For the price you’re paying, I recommend Gerber look into making them replaceable.
The on-board tools chosen to fill in the Diesel’s frame are familiar and functional. The saw performed like a champ and shows no sign of slowing. For the most part, the knife did too but it did start to dull towards the end of testing, especially the tip, which is really aggressive based on its Wharncliffe shape (one of my favorite blade shapes, by the way).
DESIGN / EASE OF USE
The pliers on the Diesel slide down the rails with ease and stay in place. A major improvement to this would be getting the arms to be spring loaded. It is annoying to open the pliers to access the inner tools, and some of the other tools are hard to get out without opening the tool next to them or on the edge of the frame.
The Gerber Diesel features scissors, a saw, a half-serrated blade, and two types of files. All of these performed exceptionally well, but the knife did begin to dull towards the end of testing. This is due to the shape of the knife more than the steel used. The Wharncliffe style of blade is a little less utilitarian than a drop-point blade but it’s just as effective when put to task.
With similar one-handed multitools on the market being in the same price range, but featuring spring loaded pliers and tools that can be accessed without deploying said pliers, the Gerber Diesel seems a little aggressive in terms of price. The construction and features warrant fair pricing, but I wouldn’t pay more than $60.
One-hand opening Needle-Nose Pliers
One-hand opening Standard Pliers
One-hand opening Wire Cutters
2.25” Cross Cut Saw Blade
2.5” Wharncliffe Partially Serrated Blade
Small Flathead Screwdriver
Medium Flathead Screwdriver
Large Flathead Screwdriver
Medium Phillips Head Screw Driver
Single Cut File
Double Cut File