What’s my most-used bit of outdoor kit? That’s easy, it’s a Victorinox Rucksack. It goes everywhere with me at work along with a small shifting spanner, an electrical tester screwdriver and a Petzl e+lite. It’s amazing how many jobs I go to and I can fix it with just the contents of my pocket.
So when the opportunity to test some Victorinox kit came up, I immediately looked for something along the same lines, and the new Forester One Hand was spot-on.
The tools are similar, but there’s lots of differences. The body on the Forester is a blend of different materials, grippy softer rubber at the edges and patched on the faces with a more regular hard plastic making up the faces. Should hit the floor safer and stay in a wet hand better too I hope.
The tools are all genuinely useful ones, only the corkscrew gathers a little dust with me. The saw blade is genius, mine is white with plasterboard dust, and it’s strong too, I regularly saw wood with it, notching floor or skirting boards with it. It’s not there for show, it’s a real blade, its small size means it heats up, so as long as you’re patient you’re fine.
The big locking blade on the Forester is different, it’s a one-handed affair, that big eye lets you open it in your palm with thumb and forefinger. Closing is a careful two-handed operation, the locking mechanism is a sprung leaf which you hold clear to close the blade.
The reamer and screwdrivers all work, fit the screws they’re supposed to and are tough. I’ll say it again, it’s a real tool, not something you get in your Christmas stocking that you keep in a drawer.
The Forester doensn’t have the little tweasers and tooth pick hidden in the handle that I’m used to, but I can live with that if the design has the same longevity as the Rucksack.
As I’ve got some wood burning stoves in for test (more later) this is going out to play as well as to work. I’ll be back.