Multi-tool with a built-in tripod

Gerber is one of my favorite multitool companies; I like the fact that they're always experimenting with clever (but rarely gimmicky) ways to extend the functionality of pocket tools. Case in point: this forthcoming "Steady" tool, which incorporates a tripod with a standard camera screw-mount. I really miss carrying multitools wherever I go, but the combination of insane, overreaching anti-knife laws in the UK and frequent, expensive airport checkpoint confiscations (I forget stuff sometimes!) has put my multitool in dry-dock beside my desk. The Steady is due in 2012 -- maybe by then we'll live in a world that acknowledges that banning edges from public places isn't necessary or sufficient for safety.

Gerber Steady


  1. … by then we’ll live in a world that acknowledges that banning edges from public places isn’t necessary or sufficient for safety.

    More like “Remember when we could go outside without being hooded and locked to a coffle chain!”

  2. I agree with you about our knife laws being dumb, but I thought you should be fine with the vast majority of multi-tools so long as the blade is 3 inches or less, shouldn’t you?

    But I’m no lawyer, so if anyone knows any more then that would be useful to know :)

      1. That Bug Out Bar is neat.  Of course, possession of such an item will mark you as a burglar in the eyes of many law enforcers.

  3. I’ve lost count of the number of multitools I’ve had to abandon in airports… Even the ones that did NOT have a blade.

    1. Long ago I found some kind of small, triple-headed wrench, crudely stamped from a single sheet of metal, lying in the street.  Being the kind of pack-rat to collect such quazi-useful junk, I stuck the thing in my backpack and forgot about it.

      A year or two later I’m going through airport security, very careful to leave behind my Swiss army knife and anything else bladed, when I see the airport folks pointing through the scanner at my bag at this cheaply made tool which apparently could not go on the plane.

      Easy come, easy go (and my wife is probably happy that I got rid of at least one piece of junk).  But come on folks, what did they think I could possibly do with such a small, unsharpened object?  Dismantle the airplane?

  4. It would appear that Gerber has managed to combine two of Great Britain’s top hysterical fears(knife crime and any camera that isn’t a CCTV unit busy surveilling) into a single product. 

    If only there were some way for a pocket knife to be on the dole, they’d get some serious free advertising from the Daily Mail…

    1. Perhaps Gerber’s next innovation should be multitools without knives.

      Ideal for taking on the plane like that swiss army knife with USB key without the blades.

    1. You wouldn’t want to necessarily set it on what the tripod is on.  That’s the function of a tabletop tripod, to raise it up from the surface.  If you don’t, depending on what you’re shooting, you’ll get more of the surface than what you’re trying to shoot.  Flash would also be basically useless since it will really brighten up the surface, and blow out the bottom of the image. 
      Also, if you just set the camera on the surface, you only get one ‘type’ of shot.  With this tripod, you can angle the camera any way you want. 

      You could of course but a small tabletop tripod, but in this case, why bother.  I carry a knife when I’m out shooting, so, why carry ANOTHER tool.

    2. More options for angle and positioning.  It appears that the angle of the mounting screw is adjustable.  Also, the legs of the tool can be steadied on some irregular surfaces which would not as readily stabilize a camera.

    3.  Because there’s always a flat surface parallel to the line of sight you want to take a picture at, of course. Lucky you.

      This is perfect for day hikes and camping trips.

    4. >> Why wouldn’t I just set the camera on whatever supports this ‘tripod’?

      i’d want the camera to be a few inches above the surface so that the surface isn’t included in the framing of your picture. with that said, there are better ‘table top’ tripods for this task; there’s even a widget you can use to convert a waterbottle into a camera support. overall, the addition feels “gimmicky” to me

  5. I can’t imagine using that as a tripod…

    On the other discussion, I think banning little blades of any kind (including nail clippers) on airlines is ridiculous.  The only reason the hijackers on 9/11 were able to execute their plan with box cutters was because nobody suspected what their intentions would be.  Before that, I believe most hijacks were not intended to use the plane as a missile.

    In any case, if some jerk tried to take over a plane nowadays with a pocket knife (even a cleaver), people would not let that happen.  They’re well aware of what the consequences could be now.

  6. I have carried a leatherman on my belt around London for ten years without any police hassles…. Even had it examined by a copper once when I forgot it was on my belt as I went into the American Embassy. It’s a very handy tool and i use it almost every day.

  7. If this tool is as small as it appears to be I could really see making it part of my pocket quiver. A little tripod is often just what I need to get a shot. As I rarely travel in planes or go in and out of government buildings the whole blade discussion is fortunately out of my realm of experience. I regularly carry a tiny leatherman as well as a No. 9 Opinel in my pocket in the summer.

  8. My brother was stopped by the TSA at the airport and told to give up the bottle opener on his key chain.  There wasn’t even a blade on it.  It was a bottle opener.  The funny part was that his wallet was attacked to quite a long wallet chain.  My brother, absolutely flabbergasted that his bottle opener was deemed a weapon he had to hand over replied by saying, “really, you think that is a threat, but you’re fine with letting me carry on this [referring to the chain]?” He then proceeded to wildly swing his chain like a medeival morning star.

    I don’t know if you can still do this, but back when they first banned lighters, many of the shops in the terminal sold souvenir lighters.  Once, after the TSA confiscated his lighter, he walked down to one shop, bought such a lighter, walked back to the security officer who had taken his lighter, lit up his new lighter right in his face, and said, “Bang up job you’re doing.”

  9. UK knife laws mean you can only legally carry a knife (unless you have a good reason – like its for your work) if the blade is less than three inches in length and _it does not lock_.  This last point is really important and catches many multi-tools. 

    Personally, I carry a classic Swiss army knife, which is not only useful and cool looking, but complies with the rules.  If you want to legally carry a Leatherman or similar, you might want to grind off the locking tab on the knife blade.

  10. By “lock”, do you mean lock open, so that it can’t close with out moving a lever or some such? That is a safety feature. Too bad they want to disable that :o(

    And the Swiss army knife is a great knife – even the classic one. The make multi-tools now, don’t there. I do have a generic brand multi-tool I keep by the TV to fix little things that tend to crop up in the home, and its knife doesn’t lock.

    @brucksprout:disqus – what is crazy is this: pre-9/11 I was allowed to fly with my 4″ pocket knife – but NOT this cigar punch that LOOKED like a bullet o_0

    And you are totally right why 9/11 worked. In the past hijackings didn’t involve slamming into buildings. If it happened today, no one would just sit there.  The best (maybe only) thing to protect us since 9/11 was locking the cockpit door.

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