Review Ruike LD41B

Discussion in 'Knife Reviews & Testing' started by Trollbane, Nov 15, 2019.

  1. Trollbane

    Trollbane

    741
    Feb 3, 2004
    - heavyweight contender, part 2

    Must-haves


    Certain small functions have almost become synonymous with this kind of knives. That includes cap lifters, corkscrews, and tweezers. Perhaps also can openers since they were one of the original features for this category of knives. However, it is not often they are needed these days so Ruike didn't include one on this knife. But why they choose to include a corkscrew instead is somewhat of a mystery to me. Instead, I would have preferred some other tool, why not a really small screwdriver for glasses and the like. The corkscrew works I might add but you have to be a bit careful when using it. It's short and therefore doesn't get a very firm grip on corks.

    There is not much to say about the cap lifter. It works as it should. The tweezers, on the other hand, are worth mentioning. They are actually much better than their Victorinox counterparts. They are a fair bit larger and beefier and therefore much easier both to hold and gripping things with. It is also a function that is surprisingly often used by me. Splinters and grit in small wounds are no fun when outdoors.



    Additional tools

    In addition to what has been mentioned above the LD41 also has some more uncommon features. One is the foldable lanyard hole/key holder that perhaps can be included as a tool but foremost I have the glass breaker in mind. It is, of course, a good idea to include such a tool as a logical complement to the seat belt cutter. I did test the function out of curiosity. I can tell you that the tungsten reinforced tip works. No old car windows laying around so I attacked some ordinary glass instead.

    Then, as a cyclist, I have to say that it was appreciated but unexpected to find a spoke wrench on a multitool. It too works the way it is supposed to. Perhaps it is a bit awkward to use it on such a big knife. But it certainly works as an emergency tool to hunt down a spoke that decided to embark on own adventures to get home from that MTB-ride.



    Handle

    Like all of Ruikes multi-function knives, the LD41 is built on a frame in stainless 420-steel. It is by the way weight relieved. On the outside, you find scales of black G10. The construction is screwed together if someone feels like taking the sides off. The surface gives plenty of traction and the corners have been chamfered. Despite that, I used a bit of sandpaper on the corners to make them even softer.

    [​IMG]
    The bulky handle fills the hand well and is relatively comfortable given the shape


    For being a knife of this type the LD41 has relatively good ergonomics. As mentioned the sides give traction without being too harsh and the width of the handle gives plenty of support for the hand. The tools themselves ride low enough in the handle to not cause any major hot spots. But sure, there are some edges and corners where they extend and especially where they meet your little finger. Some things must be sacrificed in order to fit everything.


    To Carry


    Since the knife comes equipped with a clip and no belt pouch it is obviously meant to be carried in a pocket. That works pretty well given the format. Much of that can be attributed to a good clip with proper tension that allows for deep carry. That paired with the weight of the tool makes it stay put. A rather important trait. You don't want to lose your knife.

    [​IMG]
    The "deep carry"-clip is not proprietary and can be found on other knives

    [​IMG]
    The LD41 is as can be seen wider than both a large Victorinox model like the
    111 mm Rucksack and the original Leatherman Super Tool

    But I wrote "pretty well", you can't ignore the volume and above all the weight. I have no other pocket knife that comes equipped with a clip and weighs in at over 230 grams! If you add a thickness of over two centimeters without the clip and you get a knife I rather put in my bag as a matter of fact. In a pair of jeans, it's uncomfortable and in thinner cargo-shorts, it moves too much.

    For me personally, this is a little more than my pockets or rather my taste can handle. It actually makes a Buck 110 feel light!


    To Conclude


    The multi-function knife market is a veritable hornet's nest and it's not easy to establish a new brand. The competition may not be the broadest in terms of the number of brands but the one that exists is fierce.** First and foremost you have Victorinox with their wide and hyper established line of knives. Although not first in the world they have become synonymous with the phenomenon. As an example, here in Sweden we simply refer to this type of knives as "Swiss-Knives" for short. "SAK" or Swiss Army Knife is an established term. But also manufacturers like Böker exists and with 150 years of experience of making slip joints, they recently continued their legacy of making these types of knives that goes back all the way to their "Camp Knife" with their line of Tech Tools.

    So the question is how does Ruike stand in this context and what do you get if you choose an LD41B?

    [​IMG]
    A partner on all adventures, at least the ones that don't demand light packing that is

    First and foremost, you get a large and well-built knife that, with its sturdy construction instills confidence. The finish is good but not really on par with say a Victorinox. That can be noted in details like that the pliers could have been more rigid and that the lock bar on the knife blade wasn't correctly tuned. Nothing that affects the function though.

    You can tell by the weight that it is a sturdy construction. The first impression is that this is a heavy piece. But there is a natural explanation, there is plenty of steel hiding inside. Whether it is regarded as confidence-building or a disadvantage is probably highly dependent on personal taste.

    For this reason, this is not a knife I choose for longer walks or hikes. Instead, it has established itself as a faithful companion in my bag. Because both the features and execution are highly appreciated. I also see it as an excellent complement when traveling by car, boat or canoe for instance. So basically all outdoor life and EDC where weight is not so much in focus.

    The toolset is predominantly well chosen. The alternative to incorporate a saw instead of pliers is always an option but that can be found on the "big brother" if you need that feature. Personally, I wouldn't mind a really small screwdriver for glasses and such since they are present in my everyday life.

    Another detail I might have changed is the shape of the secondary blade. Instead of a belt cutter, I would have chosen a standard pen-blade. Belt cutters are (hopefully) not seeing very much or any use and are not as flexible in use as a non-serrated knife blade. For me, they have their place in rescue-tools like the model LD43. In that tool, the belt cutter is by the way much larger and therefore probably much more effective in its intended use.

    [​IMG]
    A competent toolbox for, well, the pocket

    The main competition can found in some of the bigger knives from Victorinox but they can't really match LD41B in size and tool-combination. Although they generally weigh less, those that correspond to the number of functions do not have one-hand opening and a locking blade and vice versa. This is where this knife really shines. The knife blade is very good in this implementation. There is simply no blade in Victorinox lineup that matches it.

    Then this knife adds a few more modern details like G10 scales, screwed construction and a pocket clip. The latter is something that the Swiss are notorious opponents of, at least so far. These details can, on the other hand, be found on Bökers Tech Tool City 5 as well. It also features almost exactly the same set of tools as the LD41B and they share the same blade steel. But that model has no one-hand opening and no locking knife blade. The blade is also significantly smaller.

    So overall, the LD41 is a knife that I can recommend for anyone looking for a multi-function knife of the more sturdy variety with a focus on the knife blade and where the pliers are secondary. Thus far I haven't come across a better knife blade on this type of knife.


    Specification:
    • Overall Length: 199 mm
    • Folded Length: 114 mm
    • Weight: 235 g (weighed by me)
    • Blade Lenght: 85 mm
    • Blade thickness: 3 mm
    • Blade Steel: Sandvik 14C28N
    • Handle: G10 on a steel frame (420)
    • Lock: Linerlock for the main blade, slip joint for the rest of the tools
    • Number of functions: 22

    Produced by Ruike, made in China

    / J

    * Which by the way my old Leatherman Super Tool was either. I ruined the pliers that way.
    ** There are quite a few more brands on the multi-tool market where you find everything from brands like Leatherman, Gerber, SOG to Ganzo and other Chinese brands.
     

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