A Swiss Army knife is a knife that serves multiple functions and incorporates various tools that are compacted inside the handle of the knife. This knife originated in Switzerland. The Swiss Army knife was first named “Offiziermesser” but was later renamed “Swiss Army knife” by soldiers of the United States after World War II, because they had difficulties trying to pronounce the original name.
The Swiss Army knife is usually red but other colors are also available. It usually bears the logo of either Victorinox or Wenger, or the Coat of Arms of Switzerland whenever it is issued for military purposes. They are available in different types containing different combinations of the tools that are popular on a Swiss Army knife. The simplest and cheapest model available is the one that has only the knife blade. The combination of tools to be included on a Swiss Army knife usually includes some of the following:
A small blade alongside the main blade
- Can opener
- Different types of screwdriver
- Nail file
- Hook for carrying parcels or for tightening shoelaces
- Magnifying glass
- Ballpoint pen
- Hex wrench with bits
- Fish scaler
- Key ring
Most recent technological tools that these knives include one or more of the following:
- Laser pointer
- Mp3 player
- Digital clock
- USB flash drives
- Digital altimeter
- LED light
A pioneer in the development of these knives was Karl Elsener, the owner of a surgical company, who wanted to produce Swiss Army knives in Switzerland after he discovered that the knives supplied to the Swiss army were made in Germany. He succeeded and renamed his company after his mother “Victoria” but the name was later changed to Victorinox. Swiss Army knives are manufactured by two companies: Victorinox and Wenger. The name “Swiss Army Knives” is a registered trademark of Wenger and Victorinox who supplies the Swiss Armed Forces with knives. Some noteworthy models are:
- Victorinox Cyber tools – this knife is equipped with tools to be used on a computer or other electronic equipment. They include a 4mm hex screwdriver and case with four double-ended bit which gives a total of eight ends.
- The Victorinox Presentation Master line includes knives that include laser pointer, detachable fingerprint USB drive and Bluetooth. Included in this recently introduced line of knives is a model suited for air travel. It is bladeless with detachable flash drive and it is permitted to be carried on aircrafts so travelers can carry their stored data along on this useful pocket tool.
- The USD 1400 that is manufactured by Wenger incorporates every implement that the company makes. Wenger also produced a knife called t “giant”. It included 87 tools having 141 functions. It is in the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s most multifunctional penknife.
- This little red knife has been, and still is one of the most useful tools ever invented.