The 5 Most Versatile Multi-Tools For Motorcyclists

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Motorcycle Multitool

If you ride a motorcycle, you’re going to want some tools. A mult-itool can add huge versatility to your tool kit, packing many functions and capabilities into a single, handy package. Here are the best multi-tools on the market for motorcyclists.

Photo: Andreas Knudsen

Leatherman New Wave Multitool
Leatherman New Wave Multi-tool

The Everyday: Leatherman New Wave
I’ve carried a Wave in my pocket for three years and it hasn’t let me down yet. Whether I’m using it as a fast-access screwdriver in the garage or slicing swamp grass off of the CV boots on my quad, it works, full stop. Features include a coarse and fine file, and even a saw with both a serrated and plain blade for versatility, just to name a few. Some of my favorite parts are the robust knives, tiny screwdriver (for those of us who wear glasses), and properly the stout pliers. Who should have it? Anyone that wants a durable multi-tool meant to last.

Victorinox SwissTool
Victorinox SwissTool

The Bombproof: Victorinox Swiss Army SwissTool Spirit Plus Ratchet
Victorinox comes highly recommended from a real hunting outfitter. He’s had the same one for 15 years and it’s never let him down. That’s durability. Add a real ratchet option with a variety of allen/hex bits, torx bits and screwdrivers, and you can remove fairings, covers, or even snug up something that wasn’t torqued down correctly in the garage. The price is steep at $129.95, but this is a tidy little package with a lot of options that can be adapted to your own motorcycle. Riders whose bikes have lots of torx or exotic fasteners should look into this option.

Leatherman Crunch
Leatherman Crunch

The Locking Plier: Leatherman Crunch
Locking pliers aren’t always delicate or precise, but if you didn’t pack a tool roll and have to remove bolts or you broke your shift lever, a locking plier can get you out of a bind, or at least give you something to shift gears with to get you home. Yes, this is the second Leatherman on this list, but other brands aren’t available for immediate purchase, and I don’t want to send you guys on a wild goose chase. Dual sport and adventure riders looking for a locking plier that can do a few extra jobs, this one’s for you.


The Box Wrench: CRKT Tool
CRKT has been a playground for knife makers for awhile now. Along with a utility knife, the CRKT tool provides a variety of metric box wrench options for a commuter who likes to pack light, but smart. While you don’t get a plier with this one, you will get real wrenches, along with another set of interchangeable bits to use, or swap out to suit your needs.

SOG Powerlock
SOG Powerlock

The Smooth Operator: SOG Powerlock
By including a user-customizable tool set and compound leverage pliers/wire cutters, SOG has given its flagship multi-tool two strong USPs. The customizable tool set is killer, allowing you to tailor the tool to your specific needs and economically replace tools if they wear or break. The compound leverage gears that power the pliers double the force you put into them. That means you can cut a quarter in two with the force of a firm handshake or latch onto a slippery or stuck bolt with a comfortable grip. RideApart staffer Wes Siler swears by his.

What multi-tool are you using? What do you like most about it?

  • eddi

    I still have my original Leatherman tool. It’s currently in my home kit though. For the bike I carry a Gerber Method. The handles are more comfortable. I would be wary of carrying a multi-tool with a separate set of bits or sockets. Murphy is just the sort to distract you long enough to leave them home. I keep those in the regular tool bag and know they have sunk to the bottom.

    • Jack Meoph

      I have the same thing. Gerber on the bike and an original Leatherman in the house. The one thing about Leatherman is they are serious about lifetime warranty. I sent mine in because the blade had snapped off at the tip, when they sent it back I think the only original part was the frame. They had pretty much replaced every tool. And it only cost me shipping to them. Nice.

  • runnermatt

    I like the Bionic wrench by Loggerhead tools. They also have a tool called ImmiX which combines the bionic wrench with two knives (one serrated, one straight) and a bit driver (10 or 20 bit, same price). They also make a tool that is just a bit driver. Admittedly, the head of the Bionic Wrench looks a little bulky for tight spaces. RideApart should see if the can get one to review for motorcycles applications. They are a small company and maybe they would be willing to work with you to design a tool that is ideal for motorcycle applications. Here is a link to their webpage.

    • Emmet

      I just bought one last night-I liked that it compresses on the fastener flat surfaces in addition to torquing it. I was going to return it because it seems so bulky that it won’t access moderately small spaces. For $20, I’ll hold onto it and see how it fairs working on motorcycles.

  • Jason 1199

    I use a leatherman skeletool cx (Carbon handle). I had a regular leatherman but I’d feel every ounce of it in my kriega backpack riding in a tuck so I picked up the skeletool to shave some weight at the expense of a few tools I shouldn’t need. It’s slim and compact.

  • Greg Martin

    I’ve been carrying the Gerber Multi-Plier 600 for close to two decades now — on my second one, and the improved design is nearly indestructible. My only beef being the lanyard loop on this one doesn’t sit out as nicely as the old version did – but that’s a very minor complaint. The ability to open it one-handed, and have the smooth sides against your hands has always sold me.

    And the lifetime warranty is everything you could want – when I managed to damage the old one, I sent them a letter with a picture, and they sent me a new one — customer service at it’s best.

  • Benji

    You forgot that one of the custom options for the SOG is a 3/8s drive head. In fact the whole tool is full of customization options. I’ve got mine set up with the wire strippers, sissors, line cutter and 3/8s drive. Don’t need a knife blade (I either carry a proper one or am in a place where I cant) and with a 8, 10 and 12mm socket in the sheath with it, I can solve most any road side issue.

  • BillW

    When it comes to dealing with fasteners, the Motion Pro multi-tool is a lot of tool in a very small and light package. So far, I’ve only used mine in the garage, as a test, and it passed with flying colors. Great tool for a dual-sport, where space can be at a premium. No pliers, though, so I’ll pack my Leatherman.

  • Beale

    I never ride anywhere without my Motion Pro multitool in addition to a knife and leatherman.