Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Swingline SmartTouch™ Stapler - Review

Let me go over some information and disclosures first.

I recently volunteered to become a product reviewer for I do not receive payment for these reviews but I am allowed to keep the product.

For this first review, I received a Swingline SmartTouch Stapler and a box of Swingline S.F.4 Premium Staples from's vast range of office supplies.

Stapler and staples enjoying the December Florida sunshine.

My first thought when I pulled this stapler from the box was that it's broken. I mean, look at it, there shouldn't be that much space between the top handle and the staple chamber. But it's not broken, it's just designed very differently from your everyday desktop stapler and this is what makes it unique.  But before I go on with how it is unique lets talk about some basics.

I tried for about 2 minutes to open this stapler, to put staples in, in the fashion that I am used to...lift the top and stick in the staples. I guess reading the back of the box (can you say "duh"?), where it says "QuickLoad™ feature for easy front loading" might have moved things along a little quicker. That button you see on the back releases the filling chamber and you drop in the staples. I did have some problems getting this to release, and to close, but after the initial problems all worked smoothly.

The first, very nice, feature of this stapler is the fact that it takes a full strip of staples, 210 per strip.  No more breaking the strip and ending up with little pieces rattling around in the box.

The next outstanding feature is that although this is a desk stapler it is designed much like the little compact staplers that I have always used.  I like these staplers because they are small and are designed for one handed stapling, they don't require that you put them on the desktop and apply all your weight the get them to work.

Even though this stapler follows the compact design closely, it also sits very stably on the desk and can be used just like any desk stapler.

Lastly, and most importantly, performance.  The package and the product details, state that the stapler has a 25 sheet capacity.  I assumed that it would work well on 25 sheets, but not easily.  I was very pleasantly surprised.  The stapler worked on 25 sheets easily and without effort AND with one hand, so I decided to test it's limits.  I doubled over my 25 sheets and stapled.  Wow - the 25 sheet limit is an underestimate, it handled 46 sheets of paper easily, the only thing that made it not acceptable is that the staples are too short.

This stapler is available in three color combinations.  The black and gray that I received, and combinations of blue or yellow with white. It is also available in the compact style (I have to admit I would purchase the compact over the desktop).

Final conclusion?  If you need a reasonably priced, good performing stapler this is the one to get.  For me, the only drawback of this stapler is the size.

Staples.  Honestly, how do you review staples?  These worked well.

ah hem  - and this review was going so well - the only way to test staples is to compare them to other staples and the only way to do that is to put different staples in the stapler, right?  Well, the stapler now will not work - it is hopelessly jammed and I cannot even open it to get the staples out.  Sorry folks, I now have a stapler shaped paperweight.

The staples that I used are standard staples that I have been using in every other stapler in the house, these particular staples are made by Reliable and are fairly old, but that really should not be an issue.  It seems to be the release on the back of the stapler which is the issue, it just will not release the the piece that holds the staples.  I do not know if this is a design flaw or specific to this stapler, but the stapler simply will not work.

So I have to modify my conclusion.  I might be a little hesitant to buy this stapler, however it does have a one year warranty so I would probably give it another chance, but I would give the filling system a real workout the minute that I received it.


Stephanie said...

Hmm, the idea of a stapler you can easily use both on a desk and in your hand is good, but troubling that it doesn't take standard staples. Thanks for the thorough review! Really helps to make a purchasing decision.

Julie (O-kami) said...

Stephanie - it does take standard staples I think that the failure is in the staple compartment, something in there has jammed it.

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