Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Victorinox Swisstool Review

Key Info
- Outside accessible tools.
- Excellent quality.
- Folding-plier design, like Leatherman.
- Some models (such as the CS Plus) come with a corkscrew and/or wrench kit.
- All fits into one belt case.
- Excellent stainless steel blades (12C27).
- Strong - thick steel and blade is thicker than standard SAK blades - same blade as Alox models.
- All locking blades.

The Victorinox Swisstool is an excellent multitool from the makers of the original Swiss Army Knife. Several models are available, including, some with, and some without additional tools included (like the corkscrew and wrench kit). The Swisstool is also available in other permutations, such as the Swisstool X, which has scissors instead of a serrated blade (it still has a straight-edge blade). (the Swisstool CS Plus also has scissors instead of a serrated blade, but includes a straight blade). Similar to a Leatherman (also reviewed here - Leatherman Charge TTi), the Swisstool has a folding-plier design, and outside accessible tools, making for a sturdy and useful multitool.

About the Swisstool...
Thick stainless steel is used to manufacture the Swisstool, which is very corrosion resistant. The blades are made from 12C27 steel, hold a fine edge, all lock open, and are nice and thick, with the straight blade being the same as the ones found on their "Alox" models - stronger than the normal Swiss Army Knife blades. However, all this steel means that the Swisstool is heavy - comparable in weight to a Leatherman Surge, which I like, as it feels "quality", but some people may find too heavy. The Swisstool includes many tools - more than you typically find on a multitool - and so you've usually got a tool to cover any situation (tools include, though not all models have the same tools, these are for the CS Plus: Pliers, Wrench & 6 Bits - bit Hex 3, bit Hex 4, bit Phillips 0, bit Phillips 3, bit Torx 10, bit Torx 15 - Corkscrew, Screwdriver (2mm) - Screwdriver (3mm), Screwdriver (5mm), Screwdriver (7.5mm), Wire cutters (wire up to hardness 40 HRc), Cap Lifter, Normal Blade, Scissors, Metal File, Metal Saw, Wood Saw, Reamer & Punch, Phillips Screwdriver - Chisel & Scraper - Strong Crate Opener, Wire Bender, Wire Stripper, Wire Scraper, Can Opener, Ruler (230mm, 9"), Electrical Crimper & Lanyard hole). Also, unlike a normal Swiss Army Knife, and more like a Leatherman all the tools lock open, which addresses and prevents one of the annoyances of Swiss Army Knives, where tools, especially the awl, have a tendency to snap shut on you! All of the tools are extremely good quality, and the wrench kit and bits supplied with certain models is equally good - the bits being some of the best I've used! A corkscrew is also available too. The Swisstool also comes with a belt case, which varies in size, depending on whether the model includes extra tools or not. The cases are fairly good, and hold everything in one nice self-contained package. I have also managed to find room for a little sharpening steel in there too! All Swisstools can have the extra tools added at a later date, if they are not included with the model you bought - the corkscrew, for example, will attach to the side of any Swisstool model.

The quality of the Swisstool is outstanding. It is the same quality as their Swiss Army Knives, which is excellent, and, in my opinion, better than Leatherman (I say this, because, to me it feels better finished and more refined - none of the blades wobble at all, all sharp edges are rounded off etc.). The Swisstool is very strongly made, and everything about it oozes quality. It is one of the best quality items I own! 

The Swisstool is an extremely good multitool. I have the CS Plus model and carry it everywhere. There's always a tool on it for whatever you need, and it has the locking blades and extra strength over a standard Swiss Army Knife, which makes it even more useful. Personally, I think it's the best multitool you can get (although Leathermans are also very good), and if you only wanted one multitool, this is the one to go for. 

Several varieties of Swisstool are available on

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