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Swiss army knives need no introduction. They are versatile tools that are an integral part of an Everyday Carry (EDC) toolkit. Today, they are iconic items that enjoy the pride of solely stimulating the multitool industry.
A quality Swiss army knife is not only useful for armed militaries in the Alps but also for normal knife users. As its compact design encompasses several tools useful for daily chores, it saves not only money but also space to store these tools.
These legendary knives are multitool knives that prove to be handy in all situations. There are almost 15 tools that not only aid you in home chores but also in outdoor tasks while camping, trekking, and even in an emergency. Despite having so many tools, these knives are compact and portable enough to be carried into a backpack or a pocket. We had recommended swiss army knives as one of our favorite backpacking knives.
Today, genuine Swiss army knives are made by the Victorinox company that is dedicated to sustaining the standard of fineness introduced initially almost 130 years ago while designing the first Swiss army knife. This post aims to guide you as to how to choose the best Swiss army knife.
2020’s 3 Best Swiss Army Knives Reviewed
Victorinox Swiss Army Classic SD
This classic knife is a small, multi-purpose tool that is light and discreet enough to be carried even in a keychain. It has seven tools, namely, nail file, scissors, 1.25-inch long blade, screwdriver, toothpick in scales, keyring, and tweezers.
These tools are just enough for daily tasks. The knife is sold in different colors as well as handle materials such as silver and alox. The remaining part of the knife is made up of the durable stainless steel wrapped in polished ABS scales. This renders the final strength in the shiny body.
- Seven tools
- Available in different colors and patterns
- Lifetime guarantee
- Too small for some
Victorinox Swiss Army SwissChamp Multi-Tool Knife
This is the flagship product! Designed for both occasional projects and daily tasks, the 3.5-inch SwissChamp is only for a serious user with its 33 tools. The tools include a saw, ruler, pliers, straight edge, magnifying glass, screwdriver, drivers, several blades, file, corkscrew, hook, and hole puncher.
Not many will need these many tools. The overall construction is of sturdy stainless steel. You will enjoy its superior grip as well as performance to the butterfly style knives that fold.
- Slim enough for daily carry
- 33 tools
- Available in different colors and materials
- Lifetime guarantee
Victorinox Swiss Army Signature Lite Pocket Knife
This one is a portable flashlight apart from being a pocket-sized tool! The useful little LED is bright enough for easily looking for the keys in the dark. A retractable pen is also a handy tool. The other tools are sharp blade, scissors, nail file with screwdriver, and key ring.
This 2.25-inch tool is built with stainless steel, rustproof aluminum alloy, and durable and sleek cellidor (handle). You can truly count on this knife for a lifetime.
- Five tools
- Lifetime guarantee
- Very small scissors
Difference Between Standard Pocket Knife And Swiss Army Knife
In terms of size, a standard pocket knife and a Swiss army knife look similar and part of the usual EDC toolkit. However, both are different. A pocket knife is a simple pocket-sized tool. A Swiss army knife has multiple tools. This is perhaps why this knife is so versatile as well as popular.
A genuine Swiss army knife has many integrated tools. They come with a wood saw, metal saw, scissor, plier, LED light, wire scraper, blades, USB stick, nail file, magnifying glass, cuticle pusher, bottle opener, bit driver, keyring, tweezer, chisel, screwdriver, toothpick, and bottle opener.
However, not all genuine Swiss army knives will come with all these tools, the number and type are likely to vary. When it is the matter of multitool knives, nothing seems to beat a Swiss army knife.
While pocket knives with useful built-in tools do exist, they do not come any closer to the number of tools in a Swiss army knife. Further, many pocket knives with useful integrated tools are cheap replicas made in China.
These replicas are usually made up of low-grade build materials due to which they turn out to be unreliable in adverse situations. On the other hand, a genuine Swiss army knife features high-quality, durable build materials.
You can stay in peace that the opener tool will not chip or break while opening a soft drink bottle, the magnifying glass will not break, and that that the LED light will show you the way when most required.
Another distinguishing characteristic of a Swiss army knife is its design as well as quality uniformity. This is something that any two pocket knives from the same brand will not show. On the other hand, take any two genuine Swiss army knives, and they will be identical in terms of design and features.
How to Choose the Best Swiss Army Knife
Victorinox produces different Swiss army knives. Each has its one or more distinct features that set one apart from the other. This is what you should know to keep confusion at bay while selecting a perfect Swiss army knife as per your needs and budget.
This is only possible if you have identified your requirements and know the different features or factors to consider for comparing at the time of buying. These factors are as follows:
If you know the purpose of which you will be using a Swiss army knife, it becomes easier than ever to choose a model with the most required tools. Doing so saves you from investing in a model that comes with many unwanted tools.
For those who spend most of their time outdoors, a model with a saw blade and LED light is essential. Nevertheless, if you are a frequent traveler, you also need a pair of scissors for some unavoidable cutting tasks.
Similarly, if you are a keen camper, a knife with a sewing attachment and an LED light is essential. Do not expect this light to be too bright as a normal one, but it is sufficient to act as a backup.
So, it is unwise to shop for any Swiss army knife without knowing what you need it for.
Swiss army knives also differ in terms of sizes. Thus, you will come across a variety of sizes. Choosing the right size is important, as it will directly help the purpose of buying the knife. In other words, it is responsible for ensuring comfort handling.
Most users prefer the size that easily fits into their hands as well as a pocket but is still big enough to accommodate all the necessary tools. If you are an average user, a small size with only some tools is sufficient.
On the other hand, if you are passionate about making your things, a knife with more tools is essential. However, logically, the more tools and features, the thicker and heavier your knife is going to be. A small Swiss army knife comes with more than 15 tools, while a big and a medium one has around 35 to 56 tools. So, you need to decide logically.
A Swiss army knife is a faithful tool of adventurers across the globe. Keeping this in mind, Victorinox provides a stunning collection of these knives, including the limited editions. Even these editions are available small, big, and medium sizes, Swisstools, and handy accessories.
Further, right from curved to contoured handles, vibrant colors, and camouflage designs, there is a genuine Victorinox build for all personalities.
Victorinox Swiss army knives have blades made with stainless steel of high quality. Even the body of the knife is made using a sturdy material. Thus, you are assured of durability as well as reliability.
Surprised? Okay, do not be, as two brands are known to manufacture genuine Swiss army knives. These two are Wenger and Victorinox. You need to know about them so that you do not end up getting any fake or replica model. Unluckily, the market is filled with such items as well. The high profile of Victorinox Swiss army knives has resulted in many fake items by other brands.
As a fact, Victorinox now owns the Wenger brand. It brought Wenger during the mid-2000s. Thus, the only formal abode of genuine Swiss army knives is Victorinox. So, you should not choose any other Swiss army knife.
In case you are buying from a shop, ensure that the seller has a reliable reputation. It is wise to check reviews of these knives so that you can easily find the genuine one.
Much of how to decide the tools are covered in the Purpose section. You only need to keep in mind that you should not choose the tools that your friend has chosen. Similarly, do not blindly buy the knife with maximum tools, thinking that later you may get a chance to use it. Rationally, you should decide the tools that you need as per the requirements, not what others like.
Is it legally allowed to carry a Swiss army knife?
The laws regarding carrying knives usually vary from one state or country to another state or country. Thus, it is wise to check what the regional laws specify. Countless people carry these knives for protection and other uses, especially while camping or trekking.
In the U.S., at least, it is legal to carry it. Other regions such as the U.K. require one to be at least 18 years to buy any kind of knife.
You need to know that regardless of the region, it is illegal to threaten or harm someone using this knife. If you do so, you will end up in the regional court. Children should only be allowed to use it under adult supervision.
Am I allowed to carry a Swiss Army Knife on a flight?
It is legal to have a Swiss army knife due to its usefulness. However, when it comes to carrying it while on a plane, you need to think. This is because flight travelers cannot carry their pocket knives on a plane.
According to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), one can put pocket knives, including the Swiss army knives in their checked bags but cannot carry on board.
Do I have to sharpen a Swiss army knife?
Yes! To re-sharpen, you must have a grinding wheel or a whetstone for sharpening the blade. You should then use the latter at 15 to 20 degrees. It is essential to cool it down using water to keep the risk of extreme temperatures at bay.
How to clean a Swiss army knife?
It is common to notice residue left over the tools in a Swiss army knife. To prevent it, in warm water, just open and close all the tools several times. This will facilitate easy movement of the tools. Once they dry, consider putting an oil drop between the spring and the tool shank. Just keep in mind that Swiss army knives are NOT dishwasher-friendly.
Can a Swiss army knife fall apart?
Yes! With prolonged use, your knife may fall apart. If this happens, small screws and springs keeping it together can go missing. In this case, you can send the knife to the maker or find replacement parts.
A Victorinox Swiss army knife is a valuable investment, as it fulfills many purposes and lasts for years. For the first time, it can be a bit challenging to select the best Swiss army knife. However, if you have your purpose, it becomes easy and quick to choose the knife with the most useful tools.