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I’ve seen a lot of comments about the Utili-Key from Swiss-Tech; imagine my surprise, when I went searching through Toolmonger archives for our post on it, to discover that we haven’t written one. So if you’re one of the readers who has suggested the Utili-Key, bear with me — for anyone who hasn’t seen this tool, you might want to take a closer look.

Opinions differ on whether a multi-tool or just-a-knife is better, but Toolmongers all agree that the tool you have with you is better than the tool in the shop at home — thus the pocket knife is one of the most popular tools on this site.  And the Utili-Key, a knife that goes on your keyring, will be with you wherever you go.  Honestly, where do you go without your keys?

Some will tell you that the Utili-Key even slips through security at the airport.  Plus, since it’s so small — key-sized even — you can still carry it when you’re wearing your tight-fitting fashion jeans.

Utili-Key comes in three versions with different features, and only two sport bottle openers — be careful which one you get, lest ye be beerless.  Any version will fit a keychain without over-bulking your pockets.

Best of all, the street pricing starts at $7.

Utili-Key [Swiss-Tech]
Street Pricing [Google Products]
Via Amazon [What’s This?] [What's This?]

 

17 Responses to Utili-Key

  1. Putnameco says:

    Great concept. To bad they don’t work for me in practice. I’ve lost two off my key ring. They just don’t close securely enough, to stay attached.

  2. Kyle says:

    Looks like a good way to get in trouble with the TSA at an airport ;)

  3. I had a utili-key on my keychain for a year, and got used maaaybe three or four times. Handy, for sure, but I’ve always got a pocket knife with me, so I only used it for screw driving.

    Then I got a peter atwood titanium gas baby. Some available here: http://knives.cx/store/product_info.php?products_id=1885&osCsid=4962a6f65b3cbc8296d63a212fb0de9c

    The thing is _awesome_. It gets used all the time, and weighs practically nothing. $50 is a lot of money for a flat piece of titanium, but I’ve easily gotten that much use out of it in the 6 months it’s lived with my keys. A nice splurge.

  4. J.R. Bluett says:

    Patrick, it looks cool, but I don’t see a list of features? Bottle opener, and common screwdriver obviously, but what else do you use it for?

  5. dmiff says:

    Used it for a year.
    Bit difficult to cut with.
    But useful overall.

  6. Davo says:

    I have one of these on my keyring, and both times I flew with it, the TSA inspectors failed to notice it…although they did take my little Swiss Army knife that was on the same keyring!

  7. utilibro says:

    This thing is useless and easy to lose

  8. Zathrus says:

    I’ve had one on my keyring for 3 years now, never lost it (and I find the friction lock secure, even 3 years and 2 children-playing-with-keys later). It’s great for opening small packages, vacuum sealed foodstuffs, etc. And the screwdrivers are functional, but a bit difficult to use.

    And while TSA is supposed to look for them (you can find a FBI training manual online showing various “hidden” knives, including their X-ray profiles; it’s in there), I’ve flown internationally without incident. And if they do somehow manage to find it, you’re out all of $7.

    Heck, last time I flew back from London I used it on the plane to open the tiny little bag of pretzels. Neither my coworker nor I could open them by hand. Big hands, small package.

    I now carry a Leatherman Wave most of the time, so I don’t need it much anymore, but it’s still on my keyring because it weighs next to nothing and if I do leave my Wave at home then it’s pretty certain that I’ll still have my keys.

  9. Chris says:

    In about six months of carrying one of these daily, going through airport security on average four or five times a week, a TSA agent has noticed it *once*, when my keychain was the only metal I had on me and thus was sort of obvious in the little bin. Putting your keychain inside your carry-on is pretty much a guarantee that they won’t notice it.

    Of course, you’re not going to seriously hurt anyone with one of these either, so it’s sort of stupid for them to forbid it in the first place.

    cl

  10. Ernie says:

    I’ve had mine for a few years now. The bottle opener is handy to have but you have to be careful with it as you have to expose the blade lever it toward your hand. I really like having the tiny eyeglass screwdriver where I won’t lose it. The knife is sharp and keeps a good edge. I have never come off my keyring accidentally.

  11. Brad says:

    I have one of these.
    It looks like a great tool but it is almost useless. You will hurt yourself trying to use the bottle opener or phillips head;the straight edge will slice you up.

    Save $10 and get a real tool like a Skeletool. :)

  12. Blair says:

    Um…er…….fashion jeans? Am I on the right site?

    Oh well, while I’m here, I might point out that if you have a knife, and/or screwdriver, and the proper motivation, you will not go beerless (don’t ask me how I know that) ;-)

  13. Eli says:

    I’ve had one of these for about four years, it’s never even come close to opening and falling off by itself, and I use it at least once a week, most often for removing the tiny battery door phillips on kid’s toys. I’ve flown nationally and internationally without incident. Although I usually carry a blade as well, and recently started carrying a skeletool (from two screw tips I’ve moved up to 42, I’m sure it’s overkill), I’m sure I won’t ever take it off my keyring. In fact, every time I edit keys, it survives the cull. Although the blade position can be hazardous in use, I’ve never cut myself, and really, you couldn’t put the blade anywhere else. I guess this is a case where your mileage truly may vary.

  14. Stuart says:

    For just a dollar or two more, I’d rather have a mini Swiss Army knife, and for a few times the price the Gerber Shortcut or Leatherman Squirt is a better choice.

    Plus, there’s the problem I have with a “Swiss Tech” product being made in China. Every time I see these at the store I almost give in to the tempation, but then always put the product back on the shelf.

  15. Dan Lyke says:

    Have one, for the $10 I paid for it, it rocks. Toss your keys in your carry-on bag, which I do anyway, TSA doesn’t notice, you have a blade with you when you’re traveling without having to manage a multi-tool or pocket knife in your checked baggage.

    Yeah, the knife isn’t useful for much more than the sorts of things you’d use a key for, cutting tape and such like that, and there have been times when I wished I was carrying more, but it’s smaller than the mini Swiss Army Knife, and I don’t have to think about having it on me. If you’d carry something more heavyweight this isn’t a replacement for that, or a replacement for a pocket knife, this is a backup for when other systems fail.

    And ten bucks for that seems like a score.

  16. Matt says:

    I had one of these on my keychain for years! It came in handy more than once (I bought direct from http://www.Swisstechtools.com .) SwissTech makes some really nice “multi-tools” though this is still my fav! Can’t beat that price…

    Keep up the good work,
    -Matt

  17. [...] about $5. The Utili-Key, 2.75″ long, goes for approximately $7 (TM mentioned this device 7/24/08, 5/1/09, and 8/20/09). The Gerber Artifact, 3.5″ long closed and 4.8″ long opened, is [...]

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