What is one thing that has seen wars, opened gazillions of canned beans, corned beef, soup, bottled colas, and beer, and is now sitting prettily at the New York Museum of Art? Your guess is as good as mine. It’s the ever faithful Swiss Army knife.
The Soldier’s Valet
Forty-four years after the last armed conflict on Swiss territory, Karl Elsener designed the first prototype of the Swiss Army knife. This creative burst of genius was triggered by his indignation that the Swiss Army was issuing German-made pocket knives to their soldiers.
His first design had a cutting blade, can opener, a punch, and a screwdriver – the perfect mechanism for soldiers who had no time for an extra baggage. Five years later, he added a spring mechanism that secured two additional cutters on both sides of the handle. What made him add a corkscrew is something worth pondering – but it was heaven sent.
The soldiers could do a lot of things with one small device – uncork a bottle of wine, whittle wood, mince onions, fix a loose screw, and clean their fingernails.
This invention soon invaded the US Army. Finding it hard to say Offiziersmesser the GI Joes called it the Swiss Army knife, and the name stuck. Today 116 years later, Elsener’s invention is as multi-tasking as ever with added features such as the miniature scissors and the hair tweezers. The soldier’s valet indeed marched with the times.
Is that a Swiss Army Knife?
Elsener sold his invention under the Victorinox label. Victorinox was coined from the combination of Victoria and inox, in honor of his mother Victoria and the stainless steel or inox he used for his knives.
The famous utility knife invaded the golfing greens and is now on cyber mode with the latest Cybertool 34. Golfers have a use for the one handed divot repair tool, one handed removable ball marker, and groove cleaner. Computer technicians have uses for the 34 features of the Cybertool. It includes a bit wrench and a set of precision instruments for computers.
There’s the Victorinox Swiss Memory USBs that boasts of a 256 and 512 MB memory sticks. These are compatible with Windows 98SE/ME/2000/MAC OS X, OS 8.6 and higher. These can be used also on a Linux 2.4 and higher.
The Swiss Army knife with USBs includes different features like the LED light, scissors, blade, and retractable ballpoint pen.
Not to be outdone, Wenger, another manufacturer, has come up with beautiful Swiss Army knife money clips. What do you know? This knife that comes with a limited lifetime warranty has bells and whistles, making it easy to locate from a sea of generic army knives.
Great Gift Items
No one can resist a Swiss Army knife. It’s like a tool shed or office to go. With its varied features and premium artisanship, who will say no? If you are thinking of functional, then get these while these are on sale. For a personal touch to the gift, have a special note inscribed. Just in time for the holidays, right?