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First impression of SOG-PA and something exactly same price

Offline firemana

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Today I received my package from TaoBao, containing 1 SOG PowerAccess and 1 HX-Outdoors GQ-17A.  Both are obviously made in China (although SOG is an American brand, production is in China. HX-Outdoors is a Chinese brand).   Image attached.

Both are priced at exactly RMB198 (the usual price of a SOG PA on Taobao is about 248 RMB. This store seems to be a tad cheaper)

1st impression:  The SOG PA packaging and goods seems to be genuine. It is the lighter and smaller of the two, wieght at 170 grams. While the HX outdoors GQ-17A is a hefty 278grams. The SOG, being in stonewash finish and made with stamped metal sheet, looks material wise cheaper and less polished than the HX.  HX is claimed to be made by 420 stainless-steel.  Not sure about SOG PA (but sure you guys know)

I am not going to compare the tools. HX has 14 tools and PA claim to have 18 but they seem to have different focus. HX seems to have much larger and more "hardcore" tools, including double toothed saw, scissors, serrated blade, diamond coated file, while PA has smaller blade, awl, eyeglass screw driver, and a smaller but seemingly more aggressive file.

One of the main short coming of PA, in comparison, is the tool locks. all tools on the handle are using spring loaded back lock (shared), and the spring tension of the lock tab is provided by two thin pieces of steel cut-out on the handle frame. In comparison, HX is very similar to Leatherman Wave, where the 4 main blade tools are locked by liner lock, and other tools within the frame are locked by back lock. The back lock of HX is much more solid with a dedicated spring plate to provide tension.  To release the lock, HX requires pressing on the tab, but PA require you to lift the lock tab, which is quite difficult to achieve with 1 hand.

Lastly, the driver bits socket located at the center of PA is quite a disappointment. I do not know if I have received a poorly QAed unit, but the socket holds driver bits very loosely, with a visible 1mm gap. It is so loose that when you apply more torque on the driver, the driver bits will turn inside the socket.

All in all, I would recommend the HX-Outdoors GQ-17A hands down, except for it's forbidding weight (making you totally do not want it for daily carry). I would happily carry the PA for EDC purpose if it were not for the failure of the driver bit socket.

* SOGHX.jpeg (Filesize: 120.39 KB)

za Offline Max Stone

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Re: First impression of SOG-PA and something exactly same price
Reply #1 on: June 19, 2021, 06:57:03 PM
Thanks for the review firemana.  :tu:

You can see from the lack of activity on the SOG forum, that interest has really dropped off for this brand. I don't know if we will ever see the golden years of SOG multitools again.

On the other hand, the Leatherrman-inspired HX-Outdoors looks quite refreshing, even if they have lifted most of the design ID from the market leader.
Screenshot 2021-06-19 185547.jpg
* Screenshot 2021-06-19 185547.jpg (Filesize: 60.89 KB)
Education is a journey that starts when you realize that knowing a little about something opens the door to the universe.

au Offline ReamerPunch

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