Victorinox Swisstool UK Legal - Disable Lock





Introduction: Victorinox Swisstool UK Legal - Disable Lock


Planning a mobile home tour to UK, I learned that in UK you are not legally allowed to carry any folding knife with blades longer than 3 inches (7.62cm) or any fixed blade knifes (except if you have a good, genuine reason - but I do not want to discuss with Police why I have that EDC knife/tool in my pocket). So I had to accept that I can not carry my big Victorinox Workchamp, that I carry every day in my pocket, because its blade is >8cm.

Unfortunately, all folding knifes with locking mechanism are treated as non-folding knifes by UK law and therefore banned, too. That would kick out both my Leatherman Charge and my Victorinox Swisstool. As I do neither want to buy a new, good non-locking multitool, nor carrying a poor-quality non-locking multitool (that I have lots of) nor going with only a simple, small folding Swiss Army knife I thought about how to disable the locking mechanism of my multitools.


There are some Solutions on the web about bending the linerlock of the Leatherman or grinding away the lock of the Swisstool. But as it will be only for vacation, I want to disable the lock only temporarily, so I can undo the whole Thing once back home.

Step 1: Solution

When the lock-button is moved down to release the lock, there is a hole / space going through all the Swisstools handle. I first thought about blocking it by inserting a tiny nail or something similar, but that interferes with the blade and the other Tools. So I bent a simple paper Clip as shown above (of course I did this with the pliers of the tool itself) to enter only 1-2mm into the handle. It is a bit tough to put in place, as you have to move down the lock release button while inserting it. But once it is in place and hammered / pressed a bit together, it stays where it is and can not be removed by hand nor fall of. So without another tool (I think a screwdriver will do it), you could not remove the clamp and enable the lock mechanism. As Long as the clamp is in place, it disables the lock and but does not interfere with the Tools. And, different to the linerlock of the Leatherman, the lock of the Swisstool serves only as lock and does not at the same time prevent the blade (or the other Tools) from unintentionally opening in your pocket (thats what theses "spings" at the other side of the handle are for).

So (I hope that) at least my Swisstool is legal to carry as EDC in UK.

I would, however, prefer to carry the Leatherman Charge, but I have not yet found a way to (temporarily!) disable the liner-lock. Any ideas from your side???

As I just saw that the to washers at the blade are of different outer diameter, perhaps I could Change them and block the liner lock that way. But I would have to take apart the tool for that - something I would better do with proper Tools at home ...



    • Casting Contest

      Casting Contest
    • Woodworking Contest

      Woodworking Contest
    • Make it Move Contest

      Make it Move Contest

    We have a be nice policy.
    Please be positive and constructive.




    Just as a general note, the UK police are almost guaranteed not to take a major issue with the carrying of a technically illegal knife (tool) when they consider the circumstances... They are generally reasonable people, and will respond to politeness and reason.

    For example, if you're in an area known for knife crime, and you're carry a flick-knife in your pocket, it's very likely the police would take it off you.

    If you're driving across the country, and you've got a multitool as part of a toolbox (or even in your glovebox) then it's extremely unlikely that any UK police officer would be unreasonable about it. I've carried a Leatherman round as part of my work-bag for 15 years, and I've got a ~15cm fixed blade in the first aid kit in my car.

    Because they're clearly NOT weapons, they're not carried "inappropriately", and because I can be polite, I have absolutely no worries about the police causing a stink, even if they had any reason to search you (and they have to give you a reason before searching).

    1 reply

    Thanks for your comment - yes, it's almost never only black or white and one gets always along better being polite and reasonable. I have no experience with UK Police and only litte experience with German Police but I think I can fully agree with you. However, on the one Hand, I do not want to risk neither the tool to be taken off nor to be charged with any offence. And on the other hand, I liked the challenge to find a way to modify the tool ;-)

    Blade locks are an essential safety feature, it prevents an unanticipated collapse during use that usually involves severing a finger or two on the hand holding the knife. I won't have any folding knife that does not have a blade lock.

    6 replies

    I absolute agree with you! Thats why I want to modify the multitool only temporarily, so I can undo the lock-block after returning home from UK. Don't know why British government thinks that a blade lock turns my multitool into a deadly weapon ... but there must be a reason why GOD settled the British on an Island ... ;-)

    indeed, and then we went and settled America ;)

    Welcome to stupid UK law... Personally, I carry a knife with a sprung blade, that locks closed, which is legal... Stupid thing is that I have to carry a knife as a first aider for cutting clothes and bandages ect

    And I always thought that German knive laws were restrictive (banning carrying self-locking one-hand-knives and fixed blade knives with blades >12cm).

    Funniely, the Leatherman Charge can bring me into trouble (as it can be opened one-handed and locks the blade) if I can not claim a good reason for carrying it - but the law applies only to knifes and weapons, so it is no offence under German law to carry any gardening tools such as an razor-sharp axe, a 60cm machete or a chain-saw ...

    I hear there is a new law coming for first responders that will address the problem and has just a few simple steps:

    1) You will now be required to carry a bottle of beer.

    2) Before rendering aid, drink contents.

    3) Smash bottle to pieces after emptying.

    4) Obtain sharp bits, cut bandages as needed.

    There, no need to fear knives now. ☺

    :) lol I like that one... Our current solution is to keep the knife's in our locked drug box, and only get them out with radio consent... kind of defetes the point of emergency aid...

    Keep us updated if this is legal in the UK!