Friday, September 24, 2010

Swiss Army Knives

Have a Need for a special-purpose multi tool? Swiss Army Knives might be the answer!

Swiss Army Knives were invented by Carl Elsener, a surgical equipment company owner, in 1891. Elsener started Victorinox and some years later also acquired Wenger company. Originally intended for officers and soldiers of the Swiss army, genuine Swiss Army pocket knives have become an expression for versatility and portability.

Today, boy scouts and girl scouts all around the world have enjoyed the use of an incredibly versatile multi tool called the classic Swiss Army Knife. The Swiss Army Knife has also been successfully proven on expeditions: in the arctic ice of the North Pole; on the highest peak on earth, Mount Everest; in the tropical rain forests of the Amazon, and elsewhere.

A Swiss Army knife (SAK) is a multifunction hand tool or special-purpose multi tool. It can usually be distinguished by its red casing, printed with a white shield and cross, the emblem of Switzerland. Generally speaking, a Swiss Army knife sports a blade as well as various tools, such as screwdrivers and can openers. Other tools used are tweezers, toothpick, corkscrew, phillips-head screwdriver, nail file and scissors. Other models include a saw, hook, magnifying glass, ballpoint pen, fish scaler which doubles as a 7cm (3 inch) ruler, pliers/wire cutters, key chain and with todays technology even USB flash storage, digital clock, digital altimeter, LED light, laser pointer, and MP3 player! And, some models make the perfect engraved gift.

The standard full-size Swiss Army Knife is approximately 3.5in (9cm) long and .75in (2cm) wide; smaller models like the tinker, pioneer and companion are typically about 2.25in (6cm) long and .5in (1.5cm) wide. Thickness varies depending on the number of tools included. A flat version with somewhat fewer tools (but still retaining a knife) the size and shape of a credit card, known as a SwissCard, can be stored in a typical wallet.

Facts

  • This useful pocket knife was legally registered on June 12, 1897. Over 34,000 of these pocket tools with the distinctive Swiss cross leave the factory in central Switzerland each day.
  • Ninety per cent are for export to over 100 different countries and serve as ambassadors for Switzerland.
  • Founder, Carl Elsener, wanted to create work in sparsely industrialized central Switzerland and counter the emigration spawned by unemployment. To go from hand-crafting to industrial production was at the time adventurous and required enormous determination. Today, this family business in Schwyz provides 950 jobs.
  • After an unparalleled success story around the world, the VICTORINOX "Swiss Army Knife" is even orbiting the earth as part of the standard equipment of the Space Shuttle Crew.
  • Over 34,000 of these pocket tools with the distinctive Swiss cross leave the factory in central Switzerland each day.

Did You Know?

  • The largest Swiss Army Knife model is the "SwissChamp" with 33 features. Over 450 steps are required in its manufacture.
  • Over 34,000 of these pocket tools with the distinctive Swiss cross leave the factory in central Switzerland each day.
  • Today, Carl Elsener III (the grandson of the founder) holds the reins and the small Victorinox cutlery became a large firm.
  • In 1897, Swiss cutlery maker Carl Elsener patented his penknife, later to become known as the Swiss army knife.
  • The New York Museum of Modern Art and the State Museum for Applied Art in Munich have selected it for their collection of excellence in design, and, since Lyndon B. Johnson, US presidents present guests with VICTORINOX pocket knives.
  • Ninety per cent are for export to over 100 different countries and serve as ambassadors for Switzerland.

Time and again, Swiss Army Knives have been a life saver in situations of extreme danger and great need. Get your discount Swiss Army Knife today!




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