SOG Knives, Baton Q1 and Q2, by Pat Cascio

Multi-tools are some of the handiest types of tools to have on hand at all times. Today, we’re checking out two very unique designs by SOG Knives.

The Swiss Army Knife

No doubt, when it comes to multi-tools, it seems like everyone points to the Swiss Army Knife. There are actually two companies that produce these knives, well those officially licensed to do so, that is. And, while they are a good idea and a good design, I’ve yet to have a genuine Swiss Army Knife or one of the poorly made clones that didn’t break on me when put to real-life use. In my opinion, they are made for very light repairs. Use them for anything more than that and they break. Plus, for the life of me, I don’t understand why the Swiss Army Knives comes with a very dull blade. What’s so hard about putting a working edge on a knife so it will readily cut?

Some Traditional Multi-Tools

Many people look at some of the many more traditional multi-tools that are on the market today. There are some outstanding models out there. I’ve been carrying my favorite from Leatherman for years now. Sadly, it is a long-discontinued model called the Blast. However, they have many models from which to choose. Plus, SOG Knives produces many outstanding traditional multi-tools that are equally up to my high standards, as far as multi-tools go. So, there’s something for everyone when it comes to the more traditional versions of multi-tools.

Less Traditional Multi-Tools From SOG– Baton Q1 and Baton Q2

Today, we’re taking a look at several less traditional multi-tools from SOG. There is a series of them, but we’re only checking out the Baton Q1 and the Baton Q2, which are anything but traditional in nature. As a matter of fact the Baton Q1 and Baton Q2 are covert or camo tools, designed to appear to be something else. I like that.

To be sure, the Q1 and Q2 are both made in China. However, as I’ve mentioned many times, you get as good of a product as you want from this country, and the SOG products are not made in slave labor prisons.

The Baton Q1

Up first is the Baton Q1, which appears to be a well-made pen or marker at first glance. Riding in a pocket, it can sure pass for such. However, there are several secret tools that you can really appreciate. The Q1 is made out of anodized aluminum and weighs a mere 2.4 oz, so you don’t hardly know you are carrying it in a shirt or pants pocket. It has a pocket clip on it, like so many pens have. And, the thing actually has a pressurize pen that works. Nice! There is also a bottle opener and flat head screw driver in the top of the pen, and it opens easily. Lastly, if you pull up on the top of the “pen” and fold it over, it reveals a very well made spring-loaded scissor that is super sharp. The scissors are made from 5CR15MOD stainless steel.

The Baton Q2

The Q2 appears very similar to the Q1 when it is in a pocket; however, it has several totally different multi-tools on-board. There is no pen. Instead, where a pen would be, there is a 75-lumen LED flashlight that is turned-on by rotating the bezel. There is also a pocket clip for ease of carry. In the upper portion of the Q2 is a 2.5-inch, single sided knife blade that is super-sharp. To open the knife, you press on a release button and fold the top of the “pen” over and you can hold the top of the “pen” to the side of the bottom portion, and you basically have a “fixed” blade knife. There is also a bottle opener and flat head screw driver in the top of the Q2.

Seen Many Other Pens That Were Junk

I’ve seen many, and I mean many other pens that had concealed knife blades in them. However, they were all junk. The blades weren’t sharp and couldn’t be used under stress, and the entire “pen” would break in short order.

Q2 is a High Quality, Well-Made Multi-Tool

Nothing could be further from the truth with the Q2. It is a high quality, extremely well-made multi-tool that will stand up to the harshest use.


Of course, in their performance evaluation, one use comes to mind with the Q1 and Q2, and that is opening mail and packages. Both work great. The flat head screw driver will take care of a lot of jobs that it was designed for, holding up to a lot of torque. I didn’t try to break the screw driver, because anything can be broken under the right circumstances. I didn’t have any bottles around that needed opening, but the bottle opener will take care of those jobs.

My wife liked the Q1 better than the Q2, because it had quality-made scissors that actually work as well, if not better than full-sized scissors. She’s an elementary grade teacher and is always using scissors for something. Plus, she liked the pen. It wrote smoothly. I preferred the Q2 because of the knife blade. Being a guy, we appreciate knives, even small ones. I can easily envision using the knife blade for self-defense work as well. Taking out a eye or cutting through tendons or arteries will end an attack in very short order.

The 75-lumen LED light on the Q2 is brighter than you think it is. That’s a good thing. The one bad thing is, you have to twist the head of the light to turn it on/off. I’m surprised SOG didn’t install a simple on/off switch of some type. Other than that, I have zero complaints about either multi-tool.

See Myself Packing Both

I can easily see myself packing both the Q1 & Q2 in a dress shirt pocket or even a casual shirt. No one will give it a second glance, to be sure. And, instead of pulling out a more traditional multi-tool when you need it, you quickly take one of your “pens” out of your shirt pocket, unfold the tool you need for the job at hand, and take care of it.

Can Take Care of a Lot of Small Jobs

I assure you that everyone who sees your Q1 or Q2 will want to check it out for themselves and want one or both of their own. Once again, we are talking high-quality multi-tools. Of course, they can’t handle some of the jobs the more traditional multi-tools can handle; however, they will sure take care of a lot of small jobs, especially when it comes to cutting or tightening loose flat head screws, and this is always an on-going thing with me. Lots of screws work themselves loose on handguns, and it only takes a second to tighten, if you have a flat head screw driver on-hand.

Worth It

Both the SOG Q1 and Q2 come with SOG’s lifetime warranty. The Q1 retails for $54, and the Q2 goes for a bit more at $67. Are they worth it? You betcha they are! They also make great gifts. Be sure to check out the other Baton Q models on the SOG website.


  1. These reminds me of a vacuum cleaner/air purifier (really) that I saw a few years ago. The vacuum could be converted to an air purifier be putting water into the cup that normally collected the dirt, and a couple of other adjustments, and it pulled the air through the water to clean it. It was designed and built like a spacecraft. Everything was stainless steel, the wand was telescoping, and worked super smooth, and everything about it was like something out of Star Trek. It cost something like $1500 or maybe even more. The way it was designed and built, that’s what it should have cost.

    Still, it was just a freakin’ vacuum cleaner and a waste of money.

    $54 for a pen, a pair of scissors, and a screwdriver/bottle opener. $67 for a pen knife, a screwdriver/bottle opener, and a flashlight. Forget it.

  2. I have the Q1 and I love it, however I made the mistake of lightly oiling the scissors and now when I cut with them the scissors will sometimes slide back into the handle while cutting if under pressure (cutting something dense). Whoops. Otherwise, an awesome tool.

  3. Never had good luck with SOG products. Had a folder literally break apart in my hand after 2 days of light use and a machete that would not hold an edge to save its life. Thank you for the thorough review though!

  4. Pat needs to do a little more research on Swiss Army knives. There is technically only one company that makes SAKs – Victorinox. Wenger (the other company) was acquired by Victorinox in 2005 and since 2013 Wenger Swiss Army knives have been integrated in the Victorinox collection as the “Delémont collection”.

    Furthermore, I and a ton of people can attest to the utility and functionality of SAKs. I’ve been using them since the 1980’s and never broken one. And, yes, I have used them in real world scenarios – not just light duty. I’ve worked on all manner of vehicles, furnaces, appliances, bikes, etc. I’ve cut anything imaginable and used the accessory tools for those things a regular knife can’t do. Victorinox is also legendary for their machining tolerances also. I will agree that the blades need sharpened but if you use a knife you should be able to do that and the stainless steel does take more work to sharpen but it won’t rust in the field either.

    Lest some think I just have an exceptional knife, I have over a dozen SAKs and all have been of the same high quality

  5. I know the theory goes that China can and will make products just as good or bad as you are willing to pay for them. But I read today that a Chinese vaccine manufacturer is in trouble for apparently knowingly making and selling defective childrens’ vaccines that are on the market and have already been given to many Chinese children. Not a manufacturing error- they are alleged to have actually falsified numerous records!

    On another note, I own several US made Gerber knives and have only the highest respect for their quality when made in Oregon and their customer service. However, a Chinese made Gerber pocket knife that I purchased a while back was truly a piece of crap. Within a short period of time of light use, the liner lock has worn to the point that the blade will close unexpectedly on my fingers! It now sits in my junk pile as too dangerous to use. I just can’t help thinking some manufacturers in China operate with few if any ethics. I avoid all things Chinese whenever possible as I know they will probably not hold up.

    PS I have a SOG Trident pocket knife also and do not like the excessive side to side play in the blade when open. It feels cheap! As a result, SOG is not high on my list of quality manufacturers. My knife might be a lemon, but I’m not going to spend any more of my money to find out!

  6. I have close to 4 dozen Victorinox and Wenger knives. My wife, who could break a boulder with a rubber mallet, managed to spring the scissors on my favorite EDC Wenger, but after literally decades of experience, unless one is ham-handed or clumsy, breaking a SAK is quite an anomaly.

  7. I like the Swiss Army Knives a lot, my kids and grandkids get them for birthdays or Christmas or other occasions. I also give them those Finnish compass’ and binoculars, 12X25, Bushnell. Leathermans’ go to the mature ones, and my adult friends that don’t already have one. For those on the “A” list, they get all of the above, plus silver or gold. My goal each year is to turn one non-shooter into a shooter, and a small gift to go along with a free day at the range( SAK, leatherman, etc,) is a deal closer. I like to think I’m closing them with the second round they fire. We have a new indoor range here that is first class. They sell gift cards. And all the accouterments one could desire. To get new shooters or old out of practice shooters to the range, think Swiss Army Knife (free gift!). Loosening up on some cash for this is a good thing. Some of them have developed in to really decent preppers. And it is as always, G*ds Grace.

  8. Good article but I disagree on the comments about Swiss Army Knives. Victorinox makes the original but there are many “Swiss Army Style” knives. I used to sell Victorinox Swiss Army Knives – lots of them. They are some of the best made bladed tools on the market and can last a lifetime. They come razor sharp out of the box. In all of the models we sold nationally and overseas we never had a complaint. They only broke when owners tried to pry things with the main cutting blade. Victorinox offers a lifetime warranty and will repair or renew the knife for a very low cost mainly to cover postage. I prefer carrying one of these over a multi tool or any other platform that offers extra tools. To be clear I have theee knives on my get home bag – a SAK, a leatherman and an ESEE blade. For EDC I’ll always choose a Victorinox. I prefer the Soldier or Craftsman.

  9. Gerber……..I am in love with Gerber over Leatherman (let the flame wars begin!)
    I have three Gerbers:
    -A multitool, first or second generation, with hex head screws to adjust the tension to the slide mechanism, blunt head pliers, black.
    -A multitool, second or third generation, rivets on the slide mechanism, no lock on the tools, needle nose pliers, stainless steel.
    -A Gator Serrator knife, First Production Run, textured grips.

    Why do I like Gerber? When I procured these EDC beauties (several decades ago), it was either Gerber or Leatherman. And I didn’t like the sharp gripping edges of the Leatherman handles, with the tools on the outside. I preferred the smooth rounded edges of the Gerber handles, with the tools on the inside.

    I have used and abused my SS Gerber, and broken a couple of the tools. Gerber would send me replacements immediately, no questions asked. But that’s been a couple of decades ago (I learned how to use my tools properly), I don’t know what their policy and customer service is like now.
    If I would need anything replaced now, it would be the nylon sheath. It’s starting to wear through at the bottom, and the tip of the needle nose pliers is starting to poke through.

  10. Well! One thing I like about Swiss Army Knives is that since all of the ones I have are red ( I know they make other colors). They are easy to find in the woods or grass when you drop them. I can’t begin to tell you how many knives I have lost this way. I also really like that stainless steel from which they are made. I know many users prefer a different steel, but over time, Swiss army knives tend to hold up well.

  11. Thanks much Pat, but too many reviews of low end Chinese products. I know, I know, one can get whatever quality one desires from China. Sorry but my perception of Chinese products will probably always be that they are “made in China”. I’ve been around long enough to know that boat loads of junk arrive on our shores every day, and Wal-Mart remains in business to peddle this junk to the American consumer. I do not use the word “junk” lightly, Americans are addicted to this cheaply made stuff and therefore the market does indeed exist, but much of the stuff is indeed “junk”.
    Many of us are and will always be consumers of quality products, as we feel spending our money on poorly made products is wasteful. We are willing to pay for quality and are not strictly “price” shoppers. I appreciate your reviews, but please consider that many of us out here wish to buy stuff to last a lifetime, and we are damn tired of “made in China”. By the way, many consider China to be a “not so friendly” force determined to undermine the USA. Some even consider China to be actively engaging in cyber-warfare and other assorted activities with the goal of eventually overcoming the USA. Is this a regime we want to support with our dollars? Maybe not!

  12. I’ve carried a Swiss for the last 33 years. I use it multiple times every day. Sure, it isn’t made to skin big game and it isn’t the best camp knife. But for a working man, once I got used to having it on me, I’d be trotting to my toolbox more times than I’d like to.

  13. Well, it’s pretty clear from the comments that I’m not alone in my trust of Victorinox. For CuzMike, take a look at the Vic Hunter. It has a nice gutting blade that has opened up several whitetails for me and a locking main blade also. I don’t need anything else and if I want a fixed blade I have my Swedish Moras. Buy quality made from the US or Europe and forget most of the other junk.

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