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A good multitool is an essential addition to your Bug Out Bag or Every Day Carry. When we talk about multitools, usually it refers to the big, solid multitools like the classic Victorinox Swisstool or the more “modern” Leatherman Skeletool.

A few years ago, we saw the appearance of the one-piece multitool. A small tool made out of a single piece of metal, with several different functions. It can be small enough to fit in your keychain, making sure you always have it with you. One of the first ever one-piece multitools is the Atwood Prybaby. I actually have one of these babies, and it sits in my work bag.

These Prybabies are not cheap though. Since they are made in small batches, they cost around $45-50 and are usually sold out as soon as new ones are available.

Small enough to fit on a keychain, the Atwood Prybaby is made out of a good metal like CPM S30V or CPM 154. Aside from being a miniature prybar, it also has a nail/staple puller, a bottle cap lifter and a screwdriver tip.

It took a few years, but the big guys took notice of this trend for single piece multitools. Gerber started with the Gerber Artifact Pocket Keychain Tool, which was an Atwood-like tool with the addition of a retractable #11 hobby blade at one end. The chief selling point of the Artifact? Its $10 price point.

Gerber Shard

Now Gerber is introducing a new pocket keychain tool, the Gerber Shard with these functions :

* Lanyard hole
* Pry Bar
* Small Driver
* Wire Stripper
* Medium Driver
* Bottle Opener
* Cross Driver

The Shard is a true single piece pocket keychain tool, omitting the retractable blade of the Artifact. Usage-wise, it’s very close to the Prybaby. The Shard is shaped better ergonomically, so it should be easier to open those bottle caps using the bottle opener.

Atwood Prybaby versus Gerber Shard – photo by Loaded Pockets from EDC Forums.

Being a mass-market product, the Shard doesn’t have the quality (in terms of finish and material) of Atwood’s products. That’s to be expected, but of course with the price they are charging (just $5), this actually should sell pretty well. The Shard makes a great gift, and probably will be a hit next holiday season.

Gerber Shard versus Gerber Artifact – photo by Loaded Pockets from EDC Forums.

Compared to its big brother the Artifact, the Shard is also a friendlier for “every day people”. Without a blade, it might even be possible to bring it onboard aircraft. But in case it gets confiscated by the TSA, hey, it only cost you five bucks.

  1. […] A non-threatening alternative is a keychain tool. A popular keychain tool is the Atwood Prybaby. Hand-crafted and super-strong, the Prybaby is expensive ($50 and up). A more affordable, commercial version of the one-piece tool is the Gerber Shard. View the comparison between the Atwood Prybaby and Gerber Shard. […]