Milwaukee’s FastBack utility knife has been quite popular, and it’s easy to see why – it is a very effective, well-designed, and compact enough for pocket-carry. But it’s not perfect, most notably in how it doesn’t have on-board blade storage. The good news is that the FastBack 2 does.
The FastBack 2 is a slight redesign that includes on-board replacement blade storage for those who want it. I handled a prototype FastBack 2 in June of last year, and found that the knife was only slightly thicker than the original FastBack.
Official press materials confirm that the FastBack 2, or II, expands upon Milwaukee’s utility knife segment, and is not a replacement. In other words, if you don’t care for on-board blade storage, the original FastBack is slightly thinner. If you want the option for on-board blade storage, go for the II.
As with the FastBack, the FastBack 2 also features an integrated cutting hook, wire stripper, and wire form belt clip. Blade deployment is also as quick and easy with a press of the button and flick of the wrist.
Blade storage is accomplished via a flip-out magnetic dock that can hold one spare blade at a time. This helps keep the knife profile as slim as possible.
The FastBack 2 is available now for about $15, and the FastBack has dropped in price to $10. Both are available at Home Depot with free shipping ($45+ orders), or with free in-store pickup.
This post was first published as a sneak preview on June 18th, 2012, and republished on May 13, 2013 with new information.