On each side of the metal saw blade is a metal file, one side is coarser than the other. The fine side is smooth enough to be used as a nail-file at a pinch.
The original Victorinox metal saw was manufactured using a special hardening process and an additional hard chromium plating to produce a hardness capable of cutting iron. As with almost all metal files, the cut of Victorinox metal files was created on a file cutting machine with a chisel. Case-hardening steel is used for thinner files. The hardening process used on this steel makes its surface very hard while its core remains soft, thus helping to prevent breakage. As case-hardening steel is not stainless, Victorinox files needed to be hard-chrome plated. This process slightly reduces the sharpness of the teeth.
In 2005 (date needs confirmation) Victorinox introduced a new stainless-steel metal-saw and file. In contrast to case-hardening steel, the teeth of files and saws made from stainless steel are ground on a high-precision machine. Changes to the geometry of the metal file have made it stronger. The performance of the file has also been improved. This new tool can be very aggressive in removing material and should last a very long time if well-maintained.
On 91mm models, you can tell apart the old and newer metal saws easily, by examining the following:
- On the older version, (top of image below) the texturing ends 8mm away from the handle, whereas on the stainless steel version the texturing ends 2mm away.
- On the older version, the two diagonal file cut-grooves start individually, meeting up to create a flattened V-shape (see image below), and continue to create the cross-cut pattern, separating at the tip. The newer file is also cross-cut, but the two diagonal cut-grooves both start from the very beginning, giving the impression of a single-cut file, even though it is double-cut.
- Note: The older version itself had a few evolutionary changes, such as the addition of the nail-cleaner tip (1973) and a change in the cross-cut pattern (1990). In older versions the V-shape' was not present - however the two cross-cut patterns are still very obvious (compared to the stainless steel version)
- Automobile - 91mm, 3-layers
- Automobile Special - 91mm, 3-layers
- Clipper - 91mm, 3-layers
- Trail Guide - 91mm, 3-layers
- Grand Prix - 91mm, 4-layers
- Mountaineer - 91mm, 4-layers
- Handyman 7236maU - 91mm, 5-layers
- Luxury Automobile - 91mm, 5-layers
- Master Craftsman - 91mm, 5-layers
- Modeler - 91mm, 5-layers
- Mountaineer Lite - 91mm, 5-layers
- Outdoorsman-Original - 91mm, 5-layers
- Ranger - 91mm, 5-layers
- Troubleshooter - 91mm, 5-layers
- Champion A - 91mm, 6-layers
- Champion B - 91mm, 6-layers
- Craftsman - 91mm, 6-layers
- Expedition Lite - 91mm, 6-layers
- Handyman - 91mm, 6-layers
- Champion C - 91mm, 7-layers
- Champion Plus - 91mm, 7-layers
- Cybertool 41 / L - 91mm, 7-layers
- SwissChamp - 91mm, 8-layers
- SwissChamp XL - 91mm, 11-layers
- SwissChamp XLT - 91mm, 11-layers
- SwissChamp XAVT - 91mm, 15-layers
- SwissChamp XXLT - 91mm, 15-layers
The file is predominantly a tool for the 91mm family, however it does feature in three retired 84mm models, and five (two retired) 111mm models. Also note that most of the 91mm models in the list above are retired,
Wenger produced metal files for their 85 and 130mm models