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  • The Swiss Army knife

  • is one of the world's best-known tools,

  • and 10 million of them are manufactured every year.

  • But how does one factory produce 45,000 each day,

  • and in such a precise manner?

  • The Swiss Army knife has been around for nearly 130 years.

  • It was first delivered to the Swiss Army by Karl Elsner in 1891.

  • The knives are now produced by Victorinox,

  • Europe's largest knife manufacturer.

  • The main factory in Ibach, Switzerland,

  • produces a variety of knives

  • designed to offer versatility and compactness.

  • Here, it takes around five minutes

  • to produce a pocket knife, depending on the model.

  • There are 400 different models.

  • 2,400 metric tons of steel

  • are imported to the factory each year.

  • From these rolls, knife blades

  • are stamped to 2 millimeters thick.

  • This requires 50 metric tons of pressure.

  • Each roll can make 16,000 blades.

  • Various tools require various alloys for hardness.

  • The basis of the knife is 85% iron,

  • along with 13% chromium and a small trace of other metals.

  • Narrator: Blades are made from hard steel,

  • whereas screwdrivers are formed from softer steel.

  • The blades are rounded off using

  • triangular-shaped plastic wheels and water.

  • The knife blades are then extracted via a magnet

  • and grinded down again to achieve an exact width.

  • Each blade must measure 2-millimeter thickness.

  • They are imprinted with a company stamp,

  • then placed in an oven at 1,050 degrees Celsius.

  • The blades are then sharpened

  • and checked again for thickness.

  • The signature red outer casing

  • is formed via injection molding.

  • Other tools for the knives are produced on nearby machines

  • via a process of milling and grinding.

  • A small metal cross emblem,

  • the Victorinox Cross & Shield,

  • is inspected via a microscope

  • to ensure standard thickness.

  • This was added the first time in 1909

  • and later to all Victorinox knives since 2006.

  • The classic officer's knife

  • is assembled by machine at the factory.

  • Other editions are assembled by hand.

  • Each component part of the knife is checked

  • and polished by hand before it can go on sale.

  • The knives are exported from the Ibach factory

  • to over 120 countries.

  • And, of course, the pocketknife

  • designs have changed over the years.

  • Victorinox keeps adding new features,

  • such as USB storage and laser pointers.

The Swiss Army knife

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How Swiss Army Knives Are Made | The Making Of

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    day posted on 2020/05/13
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