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Mod: add a cheap pocket clip to an Alox SAK for 5$ (Victorinox Cadet, Pioneer)

pedro · 17 · 19033

Offline pedro

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Hi guys, I’m a long time lurker on this forum, and I’d like to repay all the good information I’ve found here by posting a tutorial on how to add a classy pocket clip to an Alox SAK (Cadet in my case). It took me about 25 minutes with the most basic tools.

It should run you about 5 bucks total and there is no need to remove the scales  :)



What you’ll need:
  • A cheap flashlight to harvest the clip from
    Search eBay, AliExpress, or another Chinese wholesale site for a “3 mode flashlight” and look for this exact model. It should be about two bucks - order one or two and wait a few weeks for it to arrive.
  • 1mm drill bit
  • Button head screws (>1,5mm thick, 2mm long) and a screwdriver. I reused the torx ones which came with the flashlight - filed them down to the appropriate length by hand, using the clip to hold them in place. But I really discourage you from doing it this way because a) the steel is crap, b) the threads are shallow, and c) they don’t go all the way up.
    Alox is a very soft material, and since you’re not tapping the holes, you’ll need screws that will “bite” into the scales and stay put. Take my word for it, it worked for the Cadet, but I messed up my Bantam because of the screws :(
  • Drill-press and a vice, or a cordless drill and some patience (that’s what I used and it worked even better – remember to drill only little by little, check the holes often and adjust the angle).
  • Hammer and a nail, or something else to make pilot holes.
  • Epoxy with metal filler. I used the one which comes in separate tubes, it was about 3 bucks.
    This is the most important component - I’d say what holds the clip in place is probably 30% screws and 70% epoxy, so don’t skip it.
  • Coarse metal sandpaper
  • Q-tips or a toothpick and a paper towel for cleaning up.
Here’s how to do it: (Note: I used the Bantam to take the pictures afterwards, since I had to be quick with the epoxy)
  • Use the hammer and a nail to make the pilot holes. You want to make them exactly here:

    The pilot holes won't be exactly in the middle of the pyramid, just a hair up. It’s because you need the holes to go completely through the scales, and this is the lowest point from the top you can do this on the Cadet. You also need to open the nail file to a ~90° position to drill all the way through
  • Carefully drill the holes. (Notice how they are one row lower on the Bantam, which is bad - follow the guide from above)
  • Clean the metal dust from the knife and wipe it with some alcohol, together with the clip and the screws to get rid of any grease from your hands.
  • Roughen up the underside of the clip and the area on the scales when the two will touch with some sandpaper.
  • Mix a pea-sized blob of the epoxy, scoop it up with the underside of the clip and put it in place. The more epoxy you have under the clip and inside of the holes the better at this point, you’ll clean it up later. Be quick, it’ll harden and be useless in about 3 minutes.
  • Put the screws in and screw them until they’re flush and STOP! Don’t overdo this - if you make just one more extra turn, you’ll rip the threads, and the epoxy alone won’t hold it. Btw. hold the clip in position (with your thumb, etc.) and adjust it regularly during the process.
  • Clean up the remaining epoxy, especially inside of the knife, or the nail file won’t open and close properly.
  • Leave it for a day at room temperature. If the clip is too stiff and you need to bend it a bit (I had to), be really careful and clamp the whole knife over the clip in a vise, etc. Otherwise the clip would work like a lever and you’d tear the screws out.
  • Don’t tamper with the screws anymore.
Voila, an Alox Cadet with a clip that looks like it was made for it. If you drill the holes exactly as pictured, the clip will touch the very end of the flat engraving area, so it won’t even mess up your pants that much. :)
And what about the flashlight? I just threw an old AAA battery in it and left it on a playground behind our block for some random kid to “find” it there :)

Remember, this will void the warranty of course, and you can mess up your scales. But if you go for it then post your mods here!


de Offline Storky

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pt Offline MacGyver

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Hi, welcome to  :MTO:

Very nice post and useful mod, very well laid out and explained. Great work.  :cheers:

Even though i personally don't really like clips or similar on my sak's at all, a lot of guys here do so i believe that's very useful info for a lot of guys here.  :salute:
"Another Day...; a whole n'other set of fresh possibilities..." - MacGyver (S1E19 - "Slow Death")


nl Offline Ron Who

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Nice tutorial. I would be one of those that don't like pocket clips on larger knives. Ususally I remove the clip and carry the knife in a belt sheath. For SAKs I don't use clips at all as they're small enough for pocket carry and I'm quite comfortable with that.


nz Offline zoidberg

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Welcome to the boards pedro.   :cheers:   :cheers:


au Offline ReamerPunch

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What a great first post!  :salute:
Welcome to the forum. Great mod, it really looks like the SAK comes with the pocket clip. Very well done.  :hatsoff:


gb Offline shibafu

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Nice job, and good idea for sourcing a cheap clip.


scotland Online Gareth

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Wow, what a great guide and first post. :cheers:  Welcome to the forum Pedro. :hatsoff:
Be excellent to each other and always know where your towel is.


ie Offline Don Pablo

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Welcome!
I'm one of the few who don't really like clips, but this is a great post!  :salute:
Hooked, like everyone else. ;)

All hail the hook!


00 Offline Mechanickal

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Welcome!

My introduction to this place was less of a bang than yours.
Nice job! :tu:


Offline pedro

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Thanks for all the positive replies! :)

Seems that quite a few people like their SAKs clipless (which I think is great, since you don't need to worry about modding :P), but for me a knife with a clip is just so much more "pocketable", for two main reasons:
  • I don't like anything dangling from a knife - be it a lanyard, keychain, or an external clip - purely personal preference
  • The Bantam (my first Alox) comes without the keychain loop by design, and it's so thin and tiny that it kept slipping from my pockets nearly every time I sat down or stood up. I'd be finding it on the floor, under the seat in a car, in a couch (together with the remote control :D), etc. When it fell the last time and nearly missed a drainage hole I thought "that's it, either I'll add a clip or I'll just stop carrying it".
... good idea for sourcing a cheap clip.
I actually went through about three flashlights and two cheap knock-off knives until I stumbled upon this one, and there is probably not a more "SAK compatible" clip out there other than the fold-over one SAKModder and the other guys use on their mods.


us Offline MadPlumbarian

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Interesting,,
JR
"The-Mad-Plumbarian" The Punisher Of Pipes!!! JR
As I sit on my Crapper Throne in the Reading Room and explode on the Commode, thinking, how my flush beat John’s and Jerry’s pair? Jack’s had to run for the Water Closet yet ended up tripping on a Can bowing and hitting his Head on the Porcelain God! 🚽


Offline domo

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gb Offline Drreptar

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Sorry to drag this thread out or retirement-I’ve been thinking about adding a clip to my pioneer for a while- do you need to use any tool to add the threading to the drilled holes, or is the Alox soft enough that the steel screws create their own thread?


ie Offline Don Pablo

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Some people have added stick-on clips, no screws required. :think:
Hooked, like everyone else. ;)

All hail the hook!


wales Online hiraethus

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Sorry to drag this thread out or retirement-I’ve been thinking about adding a clip to my pioneer for a while- do you need to use any tool to add the threading to the drilled holes, or is the Alox soft enough that the steel screws create their own thread?

You could use self-tapping screws, but it's probably better to drill and tap for a machine screw.


scotland Online Gareth

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Sorry to drag this thread out or retirement-I’ve been thinking about adding a clip to my pioneer for a while- do you need to use any tool to add the threading to the drilled holes, or is the Alox soft enough that the steel screws create their own thread?

You could use self-tapping screws, but it's probably better to drill and tap for a machine screw.

Yeah, self tappers are easier (and will easily go into the Alox scales) but drilling and tapping the hole is better.  As Pedro was saying in the OP; if you go with the self-tapping screws then something like and epoxy to support them would be a good idea, but also a very permanent one.  ;)
Be excellent to each other and always know where your towel is.


 

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