Multitool in a carabiner

I really like the look of the Guppie multitool, which turns a carabiner into a multidriver, adjustable wrench and utility knife (there's even a pocket-clip that doubles as a money-clip if you want to carry it in a front pocket). Hell, it's even got a flashlight! And a bottle opener! I haven't tried it (I've been scared off of carrying anything with a blade by the fear that it could be used as a pretence for some Orwellian shakedown if I'm stopped by the cops here in London), but I want it.

Columbia River Knife and Tool 9070 Guppie Black and Grey Multitool (via Core 77)


  1. I’m sorry to hear that you don’t carry a pocket knife for fear of the police. That’s no way to live! Things must be getting pretty bad in London. Here in the USA, it’s necessary to carry a pocket knife to open any packaged food product, much less your mail.

  2. I own this. It’s awkward. Over minimal use, the pieces begin to not fit together so snuggly. The driver bits become loose and the shape feels just uncomfortable enough to make you worry about the blade injuring you while open. The blade on mine does not lock, and as such is very dangerous.

    When used, I would constantly worry about losing pieces or forgetting to mate everything back together. Too many individual pieces that can get lost.

    I guess if you’re in an emergency situation, it’s better than sticks and stones, but certainly less useful and less safe than many other multi tools.

  3. I have one, but I can’t say I use it much. It’s conceptually nifty, but very heavy (I don’t know why they didn’t cast the bulk of it in aluminum instead of steel). The hex bit driver is a good idea, but the little plastic bit carrier (which also houses the white LED light) is easy to lose. And as is typical of most multi-tools, the quality of the knife is poor (cheap low-carbon stainless). I agree that being able to carry a small knife is near-essential, but I much prefer my Mcusta to any multitool I’ve ever seen.

  4. I have a Skeletool. I think its a pretty good setup.

    It’s a little too heavy to carry around every day but clips to the belt easily, so its a constant companiion while camping or working on other projects around the house.

    It keeps 2 double ended bits safely stowed when carried and the rest are in a tool box for when I need them. I am not an expert on steel, but the blade has kept a very sharp edge

    I can’t imagine the wrench on this thing is much use for anything tighter than an erector set.

    get the leatherman and then do your best not to lose it. They are expensive.

  5. I think we’re hitting the point of diminishing returns by bending a multi-tool into the shape of a carabiner. Multi-function devices aren’t diminished by their inability to do more than one of their functions at a time, unless (as in the case of a carabiner) the job that the tool does (attaching this thing to that thing) is one you need done continuously.

    That said, carabiners are wonderful technologies. Amazing how all it takes is four cents’ worth of machined aluminum, and I’m mentally transported back to my residential Midwestern college in the mid-90s, five hundred miles from the nearest climbable rock, where they were used to secure Nalgene bottles to backpacks.

  6. As a lighting professional, i like the wrench part of it. except I’m not sure if there’s a good place to tie string to it (you only drop a wrench 100+ ft once to learn that lesson)

    And honestly, very little needs tighter than finger tight plus half turn more.

  7. I carry one in my bag, and that tiny Philips head-let has saved me three or four times. (saved me from having to walk somewhere to get a real screwdriver, but still…) for a serious fixing, I’d go to my toolbox, but this has come in handy.

  8. carrying a knife is an essential part of being human. evolution denied us sharp claws, jagged teeth, or diamond tipped beaks. however, we did get opposable thumbs and a brain capable of designing tools. if i am ever in a situation where i need a knife (to cut a seatbelt, rope, peel fruit, or slice cheese) and i have to resort to using my teeth to gnaw, then i have greatly dishonored my ancestors.

  9. Oh joy. Sure, it’s not weight bearing but seriously, I would never trust something that looked like that even if they claimed it was, I have nightmares about my wire gate ‘biners every once in a while. But the opportunity just be able to put that on the rack is pretty damn nice, there have been a couple of occasions when this would have been very useful to me.

  10. “(I’ve been scared off of carrying anything with a blade by the fear that it could be used as a pretence for some Orwellian shakedown if I’m stopped by the cops here in London), but I want it.”

    Hmmm. Seems like they’ve won the battle on that front. Are you allowed to carry other pointy things in London?

    Do they still have a Bill of Rights there?

    I wish the US was better, but I’m not so sure. Can’t carry knives in London, permitted to carry a Glock 9 in Yellowstone…

    I grew up in a redneck western US town. All men worthy of that name carried pocketknives, and I do the same. I carry a smallish swiss army knife (none of those men would’ve carried such a thing, but education has changed me)which serves pretty well, and opens wine.



  11. I have one of these, and I disagree strongly with Redshirt77’s weight complaint. Compared to a pocket knife it’s hefty, but compared to a multitool with similar functionality it’s pretty light. I keep it on me at work rather than lugging around my Gerber tool and bit/adapter set. I’m a graduate student in physics, so I do a fair amount of assembly and fabrication, and it sees as much use as any of my pocket tools. That said, for me at least, the biner sees the least use of any feature save the flashlight, and I’ve often wished for a file.

    If weight’s really an issue, my favorite keychain sized tools are my tiny little doug ritter flashlight ( – found it at EMS), and my vintage stamped sears craftsman keychain screwdriver (I inherited mine, so I don’t know if they’re still made; there’s a pic here:

    I also keep a Leatherman Squirt E4 on my keyring for electronics projects.

  12. I usually keep a Leatherman rip-off and a cheap double-blade pocketknife (one straight, one serrated) either on my person or nearby. The pocketknife is definitely the most useful of the two. I also keep a multi-tool in my glove box, but I use it so infrequently that I often forget it’s in there.

    Regular old pocketknives are all you need. Mine is made by Schrade. X-Timer, SCHDBL. I think I got it on sale for about $15 somewhere, and if I didn’t think it was a good knife, I wouldn’t be here admitting to buying it.

  13. This may be awfully American of me, but I am empathetically horrified by your fear to carry a knife in London.

  14. I have the Guppie in black and have endorsed it to friends. Frankly, it’s the first multi-tool I’ve actually WANTED to carry in years, since I gave up on my functional but annoyingly non-ergonomic Leatherman in college. My blade is stiff and strong, and overall the device has held up well. I would anticipate SOME loosening in the bit holder attachment: it’s a necessary evil in the design that I would have liked to have seen alleviated by using a mag plate since there’s already a good magnetized surface at play holding the bit holder to the main tool. But it hasn’t been a problem. I replaced two of the drivers with allen key tips for my bike. Also, my Guppie had a wonky flashlight switch so I contacted the manufacturer who promptly sent me a replacement same day. I was pleased with their customer service approach towards my satisfaction. Overall, a fine tool i use regularly.

    My review here:

  15. Liberty were kind enough to answer my question on this very matter on The Guardian website:

    Cory, if that blade is less than 3″, the thing is legal. But FWIW, I wouldn’t carry it either, because I don’t trust the police not to play silly buggers regardless of that. Perhaps I’m doing them a disservice, but still.

    I’m going to start carrying a normal-looking penknife, though. Nobody in anything approaching their right mind would imagine my threatening someone with that, surely.

    (BTW, for those not living in the UK, this idiocy with knives predates the current anti-terrorist idiocy by quite a few years.)

  16. That was weird. Looks like less-thans aren’t properly escaped by BB! My second paragraph should read:

    Cory, if that blade is less than three inches, the thing is legal. But FWIW, I wouldn’t carry it either, because I don’t trust the police not to play silly buggers regardless of that. Perhaps I’m doing them a disservice, but still.

    1. The less than sign invokes html. You can code it, but previewing it will negate that unless you go back to submit, and sometimes it just doesn’t work.

  17. This has been out for a while, and having tried it, I still prefer the Gerber Crucial (just for me – I can see how someone else might like the Guppy better) What might be of more interest from Colombia River is the Modular Multi tool platform they call Flux.

    Here’s one called the Go-Nerd which has a USB drive and a bitdriver. There is also the Go-Work and the Go-Play. I like the idea, we’ll have to see how it plays out.

  18. Also, I think there was something like this here once as well, but I found a fascinating and massive thread on BladeForums about what people actually end up carrying in their pockets. (these folks tend to be more knife-centric than some, no big surprise – and it’s fascinating)

  19. I’m pretty sure that thing would be legal in the UK. Any non-locking blade under 3″ is legal to carry in public no matter what. If it’s over 3″, you just have to be able to give a good reason for why you’re carrying it.

    I regularly carry a Leatherman micra multitool (it’s attached to my house keys). The only time I had any trouble because of it was when I had to go to the US Embassy to renew my passport (dual citizen), and they made me leave it at the gate- though they looked after it.

  20. A few years back I worked briefly as a maintenance man. I carried a Leatherman Wave with me everywhere I went. It was never an adequate tool for any job. It’s decent (but heavy) for backpacking. My conclusion is that multi-tools are not good for even vaguely serious work.

    My brother-in-law, on the other hand, carries a Skeletool, and swears by it. He is a network admin for a small company, and it sounds like the Skeletool is pretty handy for people who find themselves doing impromptu hardware work.

    I carry a CRKT M16 w/ a straight blade. I like the one-handed open and the locking mechanism, and I like the idea that I can lock the blade open (although I’ve never done it). I think the straight blade is easier to sharpen than a serrated blade. My complaints:
    -Seems not to hold an edge very long
    -The clip that keeps it from falling out of my pocket also scratches wood seats
    -It’s really much larger than I need it to be

  21. You guys haven’t actually READ the UK legal code, have you? You just asked somebody else?

    The internet is not an excuse to not do primary research.

    Cory, I suggest you not use this group for your legal defence if you get arrested for carrying a knife.

    Okay, for starters: THE GUPPIE OPENS WITH ONE HAND.

    What, you say? They didn’t say anything about that in the Guardian? Well, no, they didn’t, but the Restriction of Offensive Weapons Act 1959 bans the following:

    “any knife which has a blade which opens automatically by hand pressure applied to a button, spring or other device in or attached to the handle”

    That’s ANY knife. Nothing about blade length. And here’s what CRKT says about the Guppie:

    “The high-carbon stainless steel blade with a Razor-Sharp edge can be opened and closed with one hand using the blade slot.”

    Who here thinks that a “blade slot” might count as a “device”? Or count as one *to a cop who is busting Cory’s chops for some reason anyway*?

    Okay, so then there’s THIS little gem, which bans the following:

    “a disguised knife, that is any knife which has a concealed blade or concealed sharp point and is designed to appear to be an everyday object of a kind commonly carried on the person or in a handbag, briefcase, or other hand luggage (such as a comb, brush, writing instrument, cigarette lighter, key, lipstick or telephone).”

    It looks like a carabiner. That could easily be considered to be against the law.

    Lastly, but not leastly: You may not appreciate just how much latitude cops have in the UK to make on-the-spot decisions. They can take your camera and detain you because they feel like it. If a cop doesn’t like your reason for something, they can arrest you. You might get out later, but hey, YOU GOT ARRESTED.

    1. The blade slot is a device on the BLADE, not attached to the HANDLE- hence the name. The purpose of that law is to ban switchblades, which incidentally are illegal to transport across state lines in the US and illegal to carry in 29 states.
      A standard Swiss Army knife can be opened with one hand using a slot on the blade, as can pretty much any other folding knife I have used.

      Also, by no stretch of the imagination can that knife be considered to be “disguised”, any more than a Leatherman multitool (very common and entirely legal in the UK) is “disguised” because it looks like a pair of pliers. The blade isn’t “concealed” any more than the blade of any other folding knife.

      Oh, and do you actually live in the UK? We’re not the total police state that a lot of posters on BB seem to think we are…

      1. Most Leatherman multi-tools are not legal to carry in the UK according to case law. This is because the blade locks, you can confirm this by looking at the Guardian article linked further up in the comments.

        I only found this out when an off duty policeman I know looked at my Leatherman Wave and warned me, I then contacted a lawyer who confirmed it.

      2. I’m pretty familiar with the UK. Among other things I’m a uk shotgun and firearms certificate holder (which requires an incredible amount of knowledge of the weapons laws in the UK) and while I’m hardly an expert in this specific area, I have more than a passing familiarity with some aspects of UK Criminal justice, having lectured/coached/educated parts of the UK police and other uk agencies.

        I know uk cops personally; I consider some friends, even.

        What are your credentials?

        I think there are lots of stupid US laws too. Duh!

  22. Have one of these, not a big fan. Using it to drive screws is awkward, and the extra part with the driver bits is a pain to carry. I have scotch tape on the spiral thingie for the wrench because it tends to work itself open and then jam.
    And although you can technically open it one-handed, you do so by jamming the tip of your thumb into a sharp-edged slot in the blade, so I just grumble and open it with two hands. (Used to have one with a little disk you pushed against to open it, but I ditched that in an airport trash can after realizing I’d accidentally brought it through security and freaking out about what would happen if I were caught with it.)

  23. I have one of the smaller version, I took the knife off so I could use it as a money clip and not be harassed byt the TSA. Haven’t had any luck re-attaching the knife though…

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