First time I heard about Ganzo multi tools was couple of years ago, I did my research, and was tempted to get myself G201-B(black) but its price was just not attractive enough.
So, time went by, I was still looking at those Ganzo, but couldn't justify spending around 20$ on it when Leatherman Wingman was available for 25-30$ shipped, even though people were saying that Ganzo's are very good for the money.
Gearbest(direct, non-affiliate link to tool in question) had Ganzo G201-H on sale for 14.99$(or so) and at that price it was OK to get, so I bought two, just to make sure Im not sorry that I didnt buy more :D!
First impression was very good, the tool came without original box, insterted into good looking hard sheath with bit driver kit included, very well lubed in what appears to be mineral oil both on tool and on bit kit.
Bit on the heavy side with tool being 271gr and sheath 48.5gr and bit kit 73gr, together they are about 392gr give or take, which is alot.
Inside tools looked slightly "toyish" and thin, serrated knife, for example.
But enough about looks. I carried this tool for around a week to see how it performs in every day carry situations.
Performance of its serrated blade - its crap if you want to cut ropes with it, its really that bad.
This version of Ganzo comes without locking tools or blades, but since my Wingman has also non locking tools(aside from outside accessible knife and scissors that is) I thought that it wont be a problem, plus, all the tools on Ganzo are outside accessible, which seemed great to have!
However, I was disappointed how hard it is to deploy any of its tools yet so easy to have them snapping/closing back in and the fact that they are outisde accessible means that there is nothing between my fingers and tools when they close so risk of injury is pretty high with this one.
Non locking tools on my Wingman are not as easy to fold back in by accident and are accessible only when you open the tool, so basically you get some sort of basic protection when screw driver, for example, decides to fold down and its being stopped by the handles of multi tool and my fingers dont get hurt that easy.
The main tool, of course are pliers and they appear to be strong at first and the handle design makes them much more hand-friendly when applying lots of force, something that Wingman/Sidekick/Rev dont so you cant cut anything thick without gloves, however with Ganzo you can, but I do reccommend to use gloves anyway to prevent minor injury.
Another good point is that pliers are spring loaded, which means that they will stay open all the time, this might not suit everyones needs, but I like this feature in my multi tools.
I tried to cut 4mm thick nail and it worked, I had to press with both of my hands, then open the jaws, check that the nail wasnt in half yet and did another attempt, right at the same place, just finishing the cut and it did, the nail snapped in half. Given that hard wire cutters are dull and not sharp like the ones on more serious pliers, it wasnt surprising that the cutting was done with two attempts.
Nail appears pretty rusty at its head, but its only external, doesnt affect its durability during cutting test, top was if I recall correctly 3mm, bottom 4mm:
After cutting the big nail in half the handles gave in and I tried to unscrew handle screws at the plier heads and screw them back in to let the tool readjust the handles back into their previous, wider position. None of my Leathermans suffered such damage to their handles after cutting thick material.
Left the ones in use, right the ones in storage:
However, while trying to do so I managed to strip heads on one side of the handles so handles were readjusted only partly. Perhaps screwdrivers didnt fit perfectly? I expected handles to bend back after I loosened them and they did after single attempt to cut something hard, thus making readjustment after hard use pointless.
Plier tips are rather wide, so no small, precision works with these. Also, pliers dont come with stranded wire cutters so you wont be able to cut stranded wire efficiently, I tried and it only locked the pliers. Also, after cutting that 4mm nail and trying to cut stranded wire they developed some noticeable movement to the left and right. My Wingman came with already noticeable movent to the sides, but nothing to complain about, so this is to be expected from Ganzo when forcing it to do more than what it is intended to. However, during I believe that Ganzo will develope more wear and tear on pliers than Wingman.
Included sheath, which looks good and quality, is under-engineered and if you carry it on your belt or anywhere else attached by its belt loop, you will lose it, because its thin and seams that hold it to sheath are very thin.
I almost lost mine when walking with it on the belt outdoors on the pear, came to the shore and checked my tool to see that the sheath barely holds onto the belt and the loop is about to tear off!
Solution? Thicker belt loop and durable threads.
Another thing regarding sheath is that its internal pocket, where the bits are stored, is separated from multi tool with thin layer of fabric that gets torn down each time you put the tool back into the sheath, it wears out pretty quickly.
The good part, however, is that Ganzo comes with awl and Ive used to to make a hole in drywall when doing little repairing of ceiling, even despite its inability to safely lock into working position, with steady hands and wise head it was easy job to do :D.
Saw, which other people have complained about due to its oddly-round shaped tip, was also pretty usable on drywall.
Took its philips bit head and used with my cordless drill to attach the plasterboard to the ceiling, it took some beating and its still usable, so its not total crap.
Sheepfoot main blade cuts well, came reasonably sharp and did fine with rope, unlike its serrated counterpart.
Can opener is so-so, just like on Wingman, its there just to have it in case, not nearly as good as those on Victorinox which are really good!
Used scissors out of curiosity to cut regular office paper and they seemed to work well for their size.
There is use for this multi tool, however, its not going to give Wingman or Sidekick or perhaps even Rev run for its money, because its not as well built, not as user friendly and despite the number of bit drivers included, its still pretty limited to what it can do due to lack of thought put into designing this Ganzo tool.
For the money, would I recommed it? Yes, its good for 14.99 or even less(I got refund 1$ per each tool because they came without original box) and you dont have to worry of losing it somewhere or breaking it beyond repair, but dont expect it to perform as good as Leathermans do, I did and I quickly found out that it doesnt.
Is it good gift? Certainly not, especially if you're thinking about gifting to craftsman or someone who knows ones way around tools and DIY stuff.
It certainly is a good loaner or tool to beat up not to worry about it being messed up beyond repair, but nothing more.
I hope this review was useful to some you, thanks for reading :)!