Why use 75mm SAKs?

Discussion in 'Multi-tools & Multi-purpose Knives' started by Enkrig, Apr 23, 2019.

  1. Enkrig


    Dec 17, 2015
    I'm curious of other people's uses and opinions. If you have or had a 75mm SAK, I would like to know what do you use it for, and like or dislike about it?

    To be clear, I understand the role of smaller 54mm SAKs (e.g., classis, rambler, manager) as keychain multitools and anything larger (84mm and larger) because they have a fullsize main blade. A 75mm SAK, such as an executive, although very interesting (especially because of the famed orange peeler) seems to be inadequate either way I think of it. But I'd like to know what has been other's experience.
  2. paulhilborn

    paulhilborn Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 22, 2006
    My dad was never a knife carrying kinda guy for the most part other than a money clip he carried with our family furniture store logo on it. He handed out hundreds of them over the years. It had a small blade on one side and small file on the other (made by Barlow). That said he was remarkably resourceful. He'd keep that pen very sharp and when I think back I often go to many of Jackknife's stories and how his father and many other men in his life could do so much with a small blade/knife.

    My dad never liked to much of anything in his pocket so he was for the most part a minimalist. My love of knives came from my Grandmother (another story for another day) but back to my dad. He truly could do anything, plumbing, electrical, carpentry and solve any problem that presented itself. My ability to see and solve truly comes from him but it seems that I could never carry a small blade:eek:

    I gifted him a SAK classic with a clover on it for Christmas one year and he carried it for sometime but eventually went back to the money clip.

    So I guess after a fond ramble, I'm trying to say, what he accomplished with that wee pen blade is truly a testament to my dad and what you can do with a very keen but quite small blade:)

    I usually carry a 3 1/2 to 3 5/8 traditional pocket knife and almost everyday a SAK Pioneer in a horizontal belt sheath for my down and dirty cutting tasks as well as for the tool the Pioneer offers. Carrying less or smaller would seem under knifed to me:(
  3. tiguy7

    tiguy7 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 25, 2008
    AD062545-F2E4-4F10-8213-A5098F6740FA.jpeg F71FB392-D852-46D1-9C0B-421A9BA083B6.jpeg I like and use a Money Clip. I replaced the sandpaper file with a cut file. It is very thin and light.
    Piso Mojado and jmh33 like this.
  4. yablanowitz


    Apr 14, 2006
    Frankly, I find the Classic too small to be useful for much of anything. The Executive is about the smallest thing I'll carry because it is about the smallest thing my old size XL hands can manipulate effectively. And the orange peeler rocks.
  5. jackknife


    Oct 2, 2004
    In 1994, my better half came home from work with a little red knife. It was a Chinese clone of a Vic classic that her boss had bought form some ad agency with their corporate logo on it. It was a horrible POS. I went out and bought a real classic and gave to Karen so she could see the real quality difference. She took it to work and showed the boss, who promptly sent all the clone back and ordered real SAK classics.

    For the next few months, I watched Karen abuse and torture the little knife, and it not only held up, but kept on keeping on. It made a believer out of me. I had always respected little pocket knives, having watched my dad get by in life with his little Case peanut. So I put a classic on my keys and for the next 20 some years, used the ever loving dog poo out of the the thing.

    In modern life in America, and most places in the 21st century, you really don't need that much knife. Last summer I started to carry a Victorinox executive. It had been a long time coming, but I LOVE the 74mm SAK. Unlike the 58mm, the 74mm has a blade just enough longer that it can slice a thick sandwich in half, cut a slice of pie, or carve up some nice BBQ ribs. And it has, for a very small amount of size increase, greater tool capacity than my old classic. The SD tip of the orange peeler works well on the sight adjustment screws of most gun sights. The spear shaped end of the nail file works well on very small Phillips screws like in electrical devises. The scissors are handy as heck on many things, and have greater reach than the 58's. With two knife blades it gives the same choice of having different blade edges like on a two blade jackknife or penknife. And the serrated blade on the orange peeler makes short work of zip ties. To put the gravy on the potatoes, the 74mm still fits down in the coin pocket of the jeans leaving room in the main pockets for other needed items.

    I LOVE the 74mm executive! For a retired old machinist now living in Texas and doing a lot of fishing, its a great EDC pocket companion. It's more than big enough to cut what needs to cut, yet small enough to forget about until it's needed. I use the executive to open all kinds of packages, break down the box for the recycle bin, cut rope/twine/string for the garden, deal with loose screws both flat and Phillips, trim beard/mustache hairs, and even trim fingernails with it. The blades are enough to cut plastic sheeting for painting drop cloths, and open bags of mulch.

    Like my old man told me on many occasions; 'It doesn't have to be big, just sharp.'
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2019
  6. Lapedog


    Dec 7, 2016
    If you are an executive or do a job where pocket space is quite limited the slightly smaller size is nice when it may have to share a pocket with phone/wallet or keys.
  7. Enkrig


    Dec 17, 2015
    Thank you all for sharing the nice stories.

    I completely agree that small knives, such as my Executive, are very capable multi-tools and the knife blade is ok (much better than a classic or rambler for sure). Still, when cutting food, which is 90% of my use for any knife, I find myself having to plunge the blade deep and having food get into the hinge.

    For background, I do work in an office and that's why I got an Executive (and I was intrigued by the awesome orange peeler which I use daily) even though I felt that the blade in 84mm SAKs was already a bit too small. (For contrast, I find the blade on an Opinel No. 8 (3.25in) too long.) Anyway, I'm just having second thoughts...
  8. Getahl


    Dec 22, 2007
    The Exec is great for when you want Vic scissors and a 2.3 inch blade in one package, and don't want to be bothered with tracking down your Classic and normal pen knife

    It also shines on it's own merits.
    Lapedog and jackknife like this.
  9. James Y

    James Y

    Feb 18, 1999
    I've carried and used the same Executive for 20 years now. I prefer it over the Classic-sized models, which are also good, but not as comfortable for me in use. The Executive also goes perfectly with whatever other SAK or single-bladed one-handed you might choose to carry that day. It's compact, while still being large enough to locate easily when carried loose in a pocket (I don't carry knives on my keyring).

    Lapedog likes this.
  10. gadgetgeek


    May 19, 2007
    If I was in a suit all day, that would be the direction I'd go for EDC. All choices are compromise in some way, and I think for me, a classic is too small, and in some cases even a compact might be too big. I had one, and gifted it to a guy who was about to do a lot of traveling, no idea if he still has it or not, but it seemed the best choice for a traveler.
    mnblade likes this.
  11. Piso Mojado

    Piso Mojado Basic Member Basic Member

    Jan 11, 2006
    Beside the Executive and Money Clip, there is a third 74 mm SAK: the Ambassador.



    Signature II for comparison, a Classic with a retractable pen. The Ambassador has gone in and out of production over the years. Now it's in, and SAKwiki says it got a cross cut file in 2018. Mine is an old one.

    Comparison with the slimmest and trimmest 84 mm SAKs, Cadet and Secretary:



    On my digital kitchen scale, Secretary weighs 21.5 grams, Signature II 22 grams, Ambassador 33.5 grams, Cadet 46.5 grams.

    IMO Victorinox likes the Ambassador as an advertising knife. I'd like to see them do more with it. It's big enough for an Ambassador Lite with two batteries. SAKs with two button batteries are 50% brighter. And it's big enough for a retractable capacitive stylus that would work on modern touch screens.
    mnblade likes this.
  12. Ourorboros


    Jan 23, 2017
    I've always thought of the Victorinox Money Clip as a flattened Ambassador with a clip.
    I like the 74mm Vics because they have more to hold on to than the Classic. Maybe modern life doesn't demand a lot of blade, but it sure is nice to have something to hold on to. It also happens to be about the same size as a peanut. I've never had much comfort in using knives smaller than a peanut, although I have some well made knives in the 2.5" size. To me it's the smallest practically usable knife size.
    Wardo46 likes this.
  13. tiguy7

    tiguy7 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 25, 2008
    50402B99-4D89-4AB3-87F4-040AB5B5AE5C.jpeg E1086E45-F5FC-42D7-A7F8-B0723944197D.jpeg The Executives came with different scales. Left: Alox, Middle: solid Stainless Steel, Right: Stainless Steel Cap
    In the 2nd picture, the left knife has a horn handle; the middle knife (older model) has a solid SS frame, a real file, and a single leaf spring in the scissors; the right knife has a SS cap handle, a long file, and no scissors.
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2019
    mnblade likes this.
  14. Getting older

    Getting older

    Jan 3, 2016
    Today I scored a executive at a goodwill here in florida,first thing I saw when walked in.Been wanting one for awhile,best part less than 5 bucks!Love the bigger size over the classic,I where a2x glove,and achy fingers like the size
    jmh33 likes this.
  15. Enkrig


    Dec 17, 2015
    Nice. Can never say no to a good knife for that price...
    Getting older likes this.
  16. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 20, 2005
    I dislike the Classic totally as a "knife". There is little about it that is better than my Leatherman Ps4 Squirt. I carry an 84mm Small Tinker now. Prior to this, I carried a regular Tinker (91mm) but eventually got a 111mm two layer SAK as my dominant or most used edc knife. The 74mm SAKs are about the same size as a Peanut and many people like peanuts. I have no particular dislike of the 74mm size, just the model I chose to use is slightly larger and still is pretty much un-noticed in my pocket. Would I miss the 74mm series if discontinued? Probably not.
  17. Case C.

    Case C.

    Jun 27, 2017
    I love my Ambassador and probably will end up with a Alox Cigar Cutter 74. Perfect coin pocket knife and not too small like the Classic.
    mnblade likes this.

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