variations factors

The Wenger emblems and tang stamps are the symbols of Switzerland and Brand. It is unavoidable that there are during history production variations on them.  The usual Wenger emblems are high quality inlays. The use of colored aluminum and pad printing or hot stamped emblems are also the symbols of a quality designation.  During history the production changes and we get the evolution of the products. The evolution are both deliberate and because of new products with additional production changes.

There is also in my opinion deliberate production variations and unavoidable changes to the tang stamp to mention one side. In the production we get more and more precise tang stamps. So precise that it is an indication of superior manufacturing. I do believe that there are indications that the design, letter and symbols are deliberate changed at times to protect it further. It can be very small things that you will need a magnifier to see. As I said it is unavoidable to prevent production variations too. There are sometimes clear differences from batch to batch and from year to year that is unavoidable. In my opinion as we get a more and more precise tang stamp we get two indicators that are important. The stamp is at first glance very similar over even a decade? Wouldn’t this be a problem and easier to copy? Second side is thus more precise tang stamp thus more difficult it is to copy. In my opinion the tang stamp is so precise together with a very precise construction of the SAK itself + the emblem. It would be very costly to fake.

If it was made a fake it would be very difficult for them to know the code to all the other factors. This can be small changes on the letters that are production variations and deliberate changes over the years. And! Where the tang stamp is placed on the shank/tang must be taken into consideration. If it is a bit to the left or right, if it is high or low. On the pictures are two Genuine Wenger knives and it is right to say that there is no problem as I see it that any manufacturer in the world would fake such knives. The problem is more that many people do not know the products well so it is easy for many manufacturers to make cheap knives that make an impression of a Swiss Army Knife and that are the problem.

 For me it is more interesting to learn about every detail and to understand some production changes. It is no doubt that there are from time to time deliberate changes done by Wenger to protect their products and quality. This is important because it does show that symbols and the quality of Switzerland must be protected so it shows the difference between high-quality and fakes. Precision and quality goes hand in hand. If you study coins, watches or any products that are quality made in the world you will see that stamps are an indicator of a protected and signed product.  So I have no doubt that emblems and tang stamps are far more important than most would know.

It would be interesting to learn about the laws and regulation done by the Swiss authorities that regulate The Swiss Symbols. This is a factor that may influence sudden changes to the ones used on blades and handle scales on the SAKs.


If you look on knives from the same batch it is interesting to see all the evidence of the same stamp module that cannot be copied. To use a backside stamp is not new in history, that said it gives extra protection. Most importantly it may mark a significant change in the development of the Brand. A running change or a fresh change as well. Some of the Wenger tang stamps are so precise that it would be difficult for the best engravers in the world to be better. It does tell me that the stamp process used by Wenger and modules must be made of a very precise and high quality metal. Let me know if you have information. To be able to get such detailed work is evidence of extreme manufacturing. The Brand is known to be early out with technological production methods. This is a significant milestone with this Brand.  I am sure that it is not a random change done, it is a deliberate change done to improve the product.  In a super modern and high quality production you now have the possibility to use better signatures than others and you can from time to time adjust the placing of the signature. By using a New Brand image or the two stamps on one blade you increase the protection so well that one may rule out any fake possibilities made.


My Philosophy

With Swiss Army Knives you find the regular evolution with the changes done to the functions, introduction of new functions and categories in knives. To know the different knives and products made by a Company and so on. You learn that some categories of knives and product are more expensive to make. Some knives have better quality and got materials in them that are expensive and hard for the production to make. There are products that require steps or hand made parts. Some SAK are made in limited numbers and more collectable than others. Some are in series and some are in sets. Some then collect individual categories of SAKs and therefor have to know what tang stamps that are used on them during time periods. One must know the changes done in the history and that includes evolution, milestones and products. This text pretty much sums up what is the regular information that collectors have in mind and must know. This I have talked about at different places here and there. There are catalogues and helpful information done by collectors, authors and individuals around the world. Both Swiss factories made strong attempts to help out about questions arriving from around the world as well. There have never been  made any complete catalogue anywhere because it is impossible. It is therefore absolutely impossible that information I am looking for regarding Company secrets and steps done to protect their products will be listed. I do believe there are made the different tang stamps that we know from history and the modules made according. It remains to be seen if there are small changes and traps made within the same type of tang stamps as well. With Wenger I noticed the same stamp used over long periods in time and for sure I know that this is close the address used by them. It is a bit risky anyhow and then it is the precision, the laws and regulations and protection of products. Under a magnifier you can see the impact, distortion and precision of a tang stamp +Unavoidable production variations and module changes. The obvious changes done with different letters, symbols and size are obvious changes in the history in them. I started notice that changes in the blade grind or small changes done on the design suddenly had a small hard to see change in the tang stamp as well. This can be for quality reasons and all the other factors involved.

During history there are books, catalogues and archive information released by both Companies. A complete inventory list with additional information does not exist. If there is any information it is limited. We collectors have had to dig out information by surrounding us in many knives and to use the internet smoking hot.  As said both Companies have been very helpful and skillfully finding information to enthusiasts. The best is to do it yourselves finding information by cross checking every little detail and compare. I am confident there are things and secrets within the emblem and tang stamps that are beyond the normal information.


I believe Wenger used a set of individual tang stamps in history. I would believe there are made many examples of one particular stamp that would be obvious. It would believe there are very tiny differences between them because of how they are made. Then you have individual pressure, placing and production variations that happen. If a stamp is from a metal module with impact or pressure then metals may get individual micro changes. To be sure that a different module has been used you have to check different knives. All this is not sufficient evidence. I had to be sure it was a new module made and that a new design change had hard to see changes. Step by step you can see in the Wenger history that on a regular basis the modules are changed and on a general basis never re-appear. It gives an indication to build on. Even if a stamp gets worn there are similarities that one recognizes. It seems that design changes may include a new module used. I am still not satisfied. I need evidence and from all the years of research I knew that both factories have a constant quality development and production changes.

 Both factories must be as modern possible to be able to keep up and to be able to be in competition.  The Swiss Army Knives represents symbols of Switzerland and everything Swiss get copied.  To protect against fake products the quality must be shown and the correct maker known. It is important that the protection of a product need markings that identifies and protects at the same time. I would believe the same individual stamp used in the production is made in a set of numbers with only micro differences between them. This set of stamps is probably highly protected. It seems to be that the modules are limited by a number of years not only because they get worn. It is also because of quality and protection!  In some knives it seems there are out of time stamps and small differences that I cannot explain. Very interesting!

A SAK is a blueprint of the time itself and they are made in time windows this included every part, springs, functions, scales, liners, rivets and on and on. This mean that if a knife from every batch is saved then you have a protected blueprint.

31.07.2021 Solo

New condition. This Solo is from 1986 and up to maybe early 90s. There are factors on this that to me is in the 1980s.

I got the opportunity getting another old cross red alox Solo. Tang stamp factors can be very helpful to date a 93mm Pioneer Range Victorinox. The little difference with the large V and the small v can be very useful. Many times there are only small differences on these knives making it difficult to be very accurate on your date. The Solo Alox is a beautiful knife with a robust construction and blade.

It is so in the world that there are still users which prefer only have a pocket knife with one blade on it and no other functions for EDC. The Solo or 0.80 00.20 is one of these knives people like to have. They are lightweight, solid, easy to clean and slim. One of the other reasons I get these is to see the surface of the blade, spring and construction. In other words I am looking for production variations. If you are into the Pioneer Range then I am very sure you know what I mean. The Pioneer Range got some of the most durable constructions of all.

Beautiful Victorinox Solo slip-joint pocket knife!It would be impossible for me to be sure about what production changes Victorinox did with these SAKs over the years. What is for sure is looking on the knives and see the obvious evolution changes and the surface of the blades and functions. Using a magnifier then you can see it better. There are also the more rounded functions and the construction with sharper edges on the back of them. If you read some about the history with SAKs then you discover the fact Victorinox used Drop Forged Stainless steel rather late in their history too. I cannot give any 100% information on this but only give some impulses. What is for sure is the fact this is interesting in deed. I have also noticed how some of the knife blades in history are more straight compared to the blades used in the 93mm models with many other functions. Not always that is. Then you have the old cross, anodizing and color too.

23.10.2021 small v

 I found another 93mm Solo Alox Pioneer Range in red. I usually always buy these when I see them. This one got the small v in victorinox which is before the one above. It is a beautiful blade with in super construction. The spring is polished and got that supernatural Victorinox functionality. The 93mm category is superb! I have seen several times the box for this used on both the small v and big V stamped knives. I would believe this one is 1980-1985 made.

28.10.2021 Wet Sand

Today I would like to show you my beautiful 58mm alox classic with the Wet Sand color. On the picture you can see the stamp on the main blade and the Victorinox engraving on the alox scale. On Alox SAKs you will find an engraving field. This can be placed on different areas on the scale depending on categories and dates. On limited models you may find year or other information marked there. On some Alox knives in history you will find no engraving field on them. Even the small 58mm knives by Victorinox got a stamp on the blade for identification. The wet sand is a cool thing and depending on the light you will have variations in the impression of the color.

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03.01 | 15:26

The 120mm continued after the New Ranger. They had Patent and not pat pend. I say pat pend first then patent next. But! Wenger did many variations! :)

03.01 | 15:08

The old Ranger 120mm is from 1991, on my 1993 it is pat pend I have seen it on 1991 too and Swissbuck as well! Wenger can be a minefield because of variations

03.01 | 15:04

It is a superb question. Wenger used different stamps, some because of european laws. Usually the quality and steel is the same. Which is first? Not sure.

03.01 | 14:48

Hi! Sorry for late answer. I have seen many variations with Wenger, please send pic to

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