View Full Version : best non firearms defense

February 10, 2009, 07:24 PM
im thinking mostly in college, where our security guards with mighty maglights are the only thing weve got. No guns allowed. Theyll even terminate enrollment of off duty police who chose to carry. Wondering, what do i have left for weapons? fist? pen?

February 10, 2009, 07:25 PM

Huey Long
February 10, 2009, 07:44 PM

If concealability is an issue, I'd get the biggest knife you can conceal.

If concealability is not an issue, I'd go with the machete. Worldwide, the machete is at least as popular a weapon as the firearm. I don't know much about non-firearm weapons, but I'm guessing that that many machete owners can't be wrong.

Since you intend to use it as a weapon, if you decide to go with a machete, get one with a clip point so that you can thrust with it as well as hack.

February 10, 2009, 07:51 PM
A good mindset.

Followed by a knife and some sort of 'slower downer' :D Mace comes to mind. A machette seems great for a primal offense, but if someone is jumping me last thing I want to be doing is hacking away and possibly hitting myself.

Look up coldsteel special projects. They have a lot of various weapons for decent price.

February 10, 2009, 07:58 PM
I use a rusty tire iron. I would take that over a knife in any fight, although I didn't carry it around with me, just kept it in my truck. As far as concealed defensive measures go, I use a knife, but there are a wide variety of options, such as pepper spray, tasers, and others. I wonder if experts would recommend any of the alternatives to knives and firearms, and why. I would be interested in this, because you can't always have a firearm.

Brian Pfleuger
February 10, 2009, 08:00 PM
Tazer/Stun Gun of some sort.

February 10, 2009, 08:23 PM
Speaking from someone who is in college and cant cc like he should, I carry a Blackhawk pocket folder under 3 inches (legal to cc in VA), as well as my Blackhawk Gladius mounted to my bag... Since I go to school in Norfolk, it seems only right to carry Blackhawk gear :p Support your local businesses... who make their stuff everywhere else......
Mace is a no-go in the super windy Tidewater area.
Tazers and stun guns I believe are also banned.

February 10, 2009, 09:49 PM
Bowie knife, TASER, baseball bat, pepper spray, brick, large nasty dog, friend with a gun, all of the above.

Seriously, NOTHING equals a gun. Lobby the school officials until they see the light of reality.

February 10, 2009, 09:56 PM
they wont even authorize pepper spray for school security. school rulebook doesnt prohibit pepper spray though, so i carry a kimber guardian angel around. it bans knives, but culinary arts students carrya set of like 20. Bad guys tote guns...oh well 1.5 more years there

February 10, 2009, 10:06 PM
Lol i can't remember what they're called, some police have them. There was a previous thread about concealing them. I've thought about getting one for on campus, they are a Telescoping stick with a heavy (small) ball on them (not a morning star lol) Use that to molly-wop the bad guys!!!!

February 10, 2009, 10:10 PM
how fast you can you run with your head down?

February 10, 2009, 10:13 PM
It's called an ASP!

The first one, not the 2nd one.

Well maybe the 2nd one, might be risky if you have a pet hamster that you frequently touch.

February 10, 2009, 10:14 PM

February 11, 2009, 02:07 AM
Mace/OC spray, knife, or an asp (depending on what's allowed). Make sure you get some combative training on whatever you use.

February 11, 2009, 03:38 AM
But I just had a funny thought of seeing Jesus being attacked by a bad guy and pulling out the old can of Hair spray and a bic lighter and torching him to death across the campus as he screams......:D
hehehehe Sorry I couldn't resist....

February 11, 2009, 08:57 AM
But I just had a funny thought of seeing Jesus being attacked by a bad guy

Yea, but Jesus would just pull a miracle out of his pocket and whap it on the BG. HEY! That's it! Carry Jesus in your pocket. Better than carrying a cop.

February 11, 2009, 09:27 AM
While I was living in an apartment complex that didn't allow guns, my main home security was a nice aluminum baseball bat, a machete, and various other small sharp things throughout the apartment..........and (no I'm not kidding) a crossbow with a red-dot sight. My apartment was situated in a position where even if I missed and the bolt went through a wall, there were no other apartments close enough to be in danger.

My favorite small hand-to-hand instrument I have is basically a small wooden club about 3/4 of a foot long and about the diameter of a real thick rolling pin. In fact it kind of looks like a short one-handled rolling pin. Makes sense, I think I "borrowed" it from my high school H&H class, though I think it was actually an old meat tenderizer or something. Hey I never said I was a saint.;)

On a more serious note, the best thing I'd suggest would be to take either some boxing or Krav Maga classes. If something happens that requires some violent action to keep you safe, you shouldn't have to be reaching for a weapon and wasting time. If you happen to also have a weapon on you, your chances can only improve. No reason to leave yourself helpless just because you can't have a firearm.

February 11, 2009, 11:07 AM
While I was living in an apartment complex that didn't allow guns,
Well you will be happy to hear that in Virginia (where I notice you're from), a part of a renters agreement that bans you from allowing a firearm in said housing is legally void. IE even if you sign that paper and still carry a gun anyway, they cant arrest you and they cant evict you.
ยง 55-248.9. Prohibited provisions in rental agreements.
Check A.6 http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp504.exe?000+cod+55-248.9
Gota love VA... :p

February 11, 2009, 03:24 PM
Yeah I know, those little details that you learn later instead of sooner.:) That was actually several years ago and it was only after I moved away from that apartment that I was smart enough to look those kinds of things up. Still, it was always kind of fun looking over and seeing a crossbow leaned up against the wall :D

February 11, 2009, 03:52 PM
I know you said knifes aren't allowed but since it's your butt on the line here's one that's supposed to work...they even say it's great for security guards... :)


This little toy injects a basketball sized ball of CO2 into the BG at 800psi, instantly freezing internal organs and ending the fight with one quick stab...or so the ad says. Great for knife fights with Grizzly bears... :D


The Great Mahoo
February 11, 2009, 04:12 PM
I'd suggest an expanding ASP batton. They are quite handy. Not sure on how local laws and regulations of the schools might apply to them, since they are pretty much only intended to be used as a weapon.

Atleast with a knife you can claim utility value for the reason you have one.

February 11, 2009, 04:23 PM
how viable is a pen as a stabbing weapon?

February 11, 2009, 11:39 PM
If I were the mugger, and you stabbed me with your favorite Gel Bic, I'd just be more ******... You'd have to get it in my neck (Which is a slim chance, if you can clearly see my neck, then your life probably isn't in danger.) I'd go with something more like one of these.....http://www.selfdefenseproducts.com/images/blade/hidden/210502-BK.jpg

February 12, 2009, 12:07 AM
Again, the legality of carrying something like that, concealed or otherwise comes into questions.
In Virginia, its a no go...

February 12, 2009, 10:40 AM
Pen knife not legal in California either.

On further thought, I'm not sure a pen is legal in Cali. My Mont Blanc has the little white star on the end and I think that makes it a Ninja weapon under Cali law.

February 12, 2009, 07:15 PM
How 'bout a slingshot? Not much good up close and reloading is slow, but I I'm pretty sure one 0 buckshot to the chest or face, while not lethal, would give a BG a few seconds to reconsider his actions.

Couple years ago I bought a Saunders Folding Falcon. Never really used it 'til recently and discovered that the tiny handle dug into my palm and hurt like hell. I designed and made an ABS plastic replacement handle and tried it today. Very comfy and I could consistently hit a yellow-jacket trap hanging in a tree, 60 feet away.

Mr. Primitive :)

February 12, 2009, 07:56 PM
when I was a freshman in the community college near here, a guy came into the library and said I was using "his" computer, when I wouldn't move he pulled out an old compass (the kind used in mechanical drawing) and stabbed me in the shoulder with the needle part. It went clean to the bone and just stuck there. From the look on his face I think he was as shocked:eek: as I was at the way it just kinda stuck there.:confused: I recovered from my shock before he did from his, and I proceeded to use my fists to locate his nose around on the other side of his face.:mad: When the campus cops ~goons~ pulled me off of him the compass was still stuck in my shoulder and I had forgotten all about it.:D

Take some basic hand-to-hand training for close up work. For the most part, inside 10 to 15ft most BG's with a knife can cut you before you clear leather on a CCG any way, let alone if you are fumbling for some other "inconspicuous" weapon-but-not-a-weapon.
Best thing to do is plan. Be observant, play out scenarios in your head in each of the environments you find yourself in on a daily basis. Stay alert and have a plan. Ultimately and unfortunately you have to make a choice many of us make on a daily basis where CC is involved.
Which do you value more...your safety or their rules. There are consequences for braking the rules (or laws), and if you are going to break any rule (or law) first and always....plan on getting caught. Examine the consequences and decide if it is in your best interest to do so.
Sorry for waxing a little philosophical on ya there...

February 12, 2009, 07:58 PM
when I wouldn't move he pulled out an old compass (the kind used in mechanical drawing)

When draftsmen attack! :eek:

March 2, 2009, 05:14 PM
In situations where I can't even carry my Kershaw folder like going to a Red Sox game where they frisk you before you go in, I just keep cash in my front right pocket and an old wallet in my left with old credit card offer cards and nothing else in it. I'd have no problem handing it to someone that pulled a knife on me after the game walking the streets (it happend to my friend).

March 2, 2009, 10:08 PM


March 3, 2009, 04:11 PM

Some brains have more stopping power than others.

call me Mr. 25 Auto :)

March 3, 2009, 04:55 PM
Can't go wrong with big a$$ Maglite either... I bet I could put quite a number on an attacker with a 3 cell and it would be an absolute mess with a 6 cell:eek:

March 3, 2009, 07:46 PM

March 3, 2009, 10:08 PM
I know how you feel, I go to a no carry school but thankfully at least we have an armed police force. As far as your personal protection goes you should consider a knife or mace. I prefer mace simply because you can keep distance, its non-lethal and allows you to stop more than one person at a time without getting too close. I have been in multiple attacker situations before and distance is everything when you need to get away.

Another option is to take some martial arts/self defense classes. If you achieve a high level of skill your odds of survival go way up if you are unarmed and attacked. Although truthfully if you opponent has a gun that's not going to help much either.

If you are able to live off campus where your rights are not infringed upon I would do so. Dorms are notorious for their ridiculous rules so if you can live off campus and have a firearm in your home I would go that route so at least you are protected there.

March 3, 2009, 10:11 PM

March 6, 2009, 01:42 PM
You should carry a rabid wolverine in your book sack. :eek:
Honestly, you should petition the school and in the mean time use your head about where you are going. A good 3" knife would not hurt to carry either.

March 6, 2009, 04:15 PM
Holy crap! Guys, I'm all for self defense but the OP said he was refering primarily to a college campus. Some of the suggestions; baseball bat, machette, tire iron...come again???

School campuses are often very against weapons of any type. I think it would be unusual to find a school that would allow knives, OC spray, ASP's, etc., much less a machette.

And in some states (like the oddball one I live in), carrying a concealed knife is a felony. Carrying a concealed handgun is only a misdemeanor. :D

If I went to a college where I felt the need to arm myself with a machette while sitting in class I think I'd try to find a new college. Some of these responses I'm hoping are strictly jokes. For a serious answer to the OP, if the school allows OC spray I'd recommend that over a knife, ASP, or anything else besides a gun (I can't immagine any school that allows tasers, or that would be my choice above OC).

I've used all of these (minus the gun/ knife) on people in real life (non training): Winchester baton, ASP, OC, taser. Taser is the most effective, followed by OC (I'm on my 6 or 7th can:D). But really, as a student I think discretion would be the better part of valor. Best defense? Common sense and some good running shoes. :D

March 6, 2009, 04:26 PM
My wallet has sentimental value, a gift from my dad. No way in hell a bad guy will get it. My school has no armed people on campus (besides bad guys.) They are so bad, they wont even allow off duty police to carry, even though theres a federal law protecting the police the school will still terminate enrollment. Theres been 2 (maybe 3 by now) rapes reported already, youd expect them to want police. Funny thing is, culinary arts students have a bag full of knives and are required to but a leatherman would get me booted. The school doesn't have a pepper spray policy, and campus security seems okay letting girls carry it. Ill carry my OC and call it good.

March 6, 2009, 09:29 PM
Can you carry a taser on campus?

March 6, 2009, 10:29 PM
no. no batons/bats/clubs either.

March 6, 2009, 10:42 PM
Hmmm...I think cc on campus should be a no-brainer. More education is obviously needed in the general student population.

March 7, 2009, 02:51 AM
Most of the time, common sense prevails if there is a justified use of force for self-defense. Common sense should also be used when examining force options.

Here in Kalifornia, ironically, carrying batons, sticks, martial arts weapons, disguised knives, brass knuckles, etc, is a FELONY, whereas carrying a concealed handgun is usually treated as a MISDEMEANOR (it's a "wobbler" that can be charged as a felony, depending on circumstances).

So, you might as well carry a gun rather than that street gang crap if you're headed into harm's way...just don't get caught.

That's bad advice, though. The smart thing is to obey the law, because even if you end up defending yourself legitimately, you're on a slippery slope legally if you end up using a weapon that's not legal for you to own and/or carry.

I think for most people, the odds of getting into a legitimate self-defense situation are far outweighed by the chance of getting into trouble for possessing an illegal weapon.

Remember that a felony conviction will probably bar you from eventually being able to CCW legally (and, indeed, gun ownership).

Legal options include stun guns and pepper spray (if allowed in your jurisdiction): Hey, better than nothing, maybe. A small folding knife with a very sharp serrated edge (don't use it for anything else) would probably be an option.

Something small and hard you can hold in your hand (no, not THAT...). I mean, a kubotan or something. An umbrella, carried if it's raining, in the car or locker if it's not, would not be questioned. A cane, well, that's a stretch unless you're disabled somehow.

Remember, context is important. A baseball bat or golf club might be perfectly legal to own, but carried in an alley at 3am, be considered a felony offense.

Martial arts training is a great confidence builder, that, along with situational awareness, should get the average person through nearly all scenarios (along with a good pair of running shoes).

Certainly, improvised weapons are potentially useful. If you have some stick fighting, well, anything can be a stick (pool cue, bottle, rolled up magazine, uh, stick...).

grey sky
March 7, 2009, 06:54 AM
Canes. Is it illegal to carry a cane anywhere? All wood stout heavy, depending on type. I have some realy nice ones that are not out of place on my evening constituional :)
A fellow in my neighborhood caries a bat while walking his dog. Looks out of place to me.

March 7, 2009, 07:26 AM
Judo chop.

Seriously, carry a legal size knife or if the size restriction is too much get a Swiss Army knife multi-tool which comes with a nice size blade. If pepper spay is legal, by all means.

You can also live off campus and keep your gun(s) home and get a CC permit if available in your state. I believe you can CC on public land/property outside the university property (thinking the university is inside a city/town).

March 7, 2009, 10:26 AM
Good old fashioned H2H. Take some classes, watch a bunch of bruce lee movies, or just hang out with some rough and rowdy folks and you'll learn all sorts of stuff really quick.

March 7, 2009, 10:40 AM
Gun Free Zones = Liberal created Predator Playgrounds. Increasing crime is a consistent "unintended consequence" of the liberal so called solution to violence.

March 8, 2009, 08:25 AM

March 8, 2009, 12:40 PM
Go biker style... I had a large bronze snap, my keys, a full set of roller chain repair links... (2 masterlinks, 2 inner and one outer link making a 4 or so inch string) and a 6 inch cresent wrench... would result in much "BFT" to a noggin!

March 8, 2009, 01:20 PM
I worked security on a large college before and now I work security for an inner city high school. I worked both unarmed. The college I was with the Public Safety division of the SUNY University Police Department. There were between 2 and 12 armed cops and another 70 officers that were unarmed. The best defense you really had was your radio. You could call for back up that would be there within a minute. If you had a serious emergency, armed help would come also. Aside from that, you just used common sense, kept your distance when in a dangerous situation and reported what you saw while waiting for help. Numbers was the best weapon we had. The college was a medical school with a level 1 trauma center hospital. We got in more than a few hairy situations. Everything from 5 related shootings arriving to the ER at once to a psychiatric patient refusing to take his meds and swinging on patients. I don't care how tough or crazy you are though, nobody is taking on me and a dozen guys who do this all the time. If I was really in a bad spot though, let's not kid ourselves, a bic pen will serve as an effective enough stabbing tool. The college and the high school I wear armor every day. Outside of work, the best non firearm weapons I ever had were 2 German Shepherds, Max and Kato. They're in Heaven now but I'd take them over a bat, club or knife any day. A gun will run out of ammo, Max will keep coming at you. Spray Kato with oc spray, see what that does for you. I have a Boxer pup named Punch that has the makings of a good guard dog. I'm surprised no onje else said dog.

James K
March 8, 2009, 01:42 PM
Under the circumstances, a heavy 5-cell flashlight will work as well as a baton or bat; those would be considered weapons, where the flashlight would be a normal thing to carry at night. A plus is that the mere presence of a light may discourage an attack. Also, the light can blind an attacker or light up a scene the BG might not want illuminated. (Use a shock resistant bulb; it is better if you can batter in a skull without putting the light out.)

I have said this before, but someone who really feels the need to carry a gun will carry a gun (if he/she can get one at all) and damn all the laws, rules, and regulations.

But don't overlook perfectly ordinary objects that can be weapons. At times in certain places, I used to carry a rolled up copy of the old large-size Life magazine, a highly dangerous and deadly weapon, and not one likely to be banned on a college campus. A friend who works for the telephone company and has to go into some bad areas carries a 2-foot long piece of 200 pair. What is more natural than a piece of telephone cable carried by a telephone installer? But it is guaranteed to smash a skull or break an arm if used that way.


March 8, 2009, 02:58 PM
I would just carry pepper spray and be done with it if you are on a college campus. Every girl I knew in college carried mace in their purse/book bag/on their keychain and none ever had a problem with the 'authorities'.

March 8, 2009, 03:34 PM
I carry 16oz. can of "Bear Spray" it is about 20X more powerful than "pepper spray" same material just more and stronger.I figure it will take out about 2-3 zombies with maybe non lethal means.

Don P
March 8, 2009, 03:54 PM
Staying at home locked in a closet. No one gets hurt including ones self

March 8, 2009, 06:06 PM
Pepper spray or bear spray. On a college campus especially remember your just trying to get away. I think you would get as expelled by spraying someone, tasering them, and smashing their head on the sidewalk as you would by shooting or stabbing them. Plus bear spray has got something like a 98 or 99 percent complete deterrent rating. I mean, cmon, they use it for bears.

March 8, 2009, 06:47 PM
+1 on the biker style. Carrying a ball peen hammer is legal everywhere and has tremendous stopping power.

I am 42 and have an artificial left hip which qualifies me to carry a nice stout hickory cane without question (evern through airport security). That is my non gun defense.



March 8, 2009, 07:00 PM
I noticed I was not real clear... All the stuff I mentioned were my "key chain" and totaled a good bit over a pound:cool:
It also had a 6 inch 4 strand rawhide lace braided fob for a fine handle!

March 8, 2009, 07:27 PM
Yup, that is quite a keychain, leave a hell of a mark or imprint :D


March 8, 2009, 11:44 PM
leatherman wave? doesn't look very threatening, the two main blades can be opened with one hand (provided you're right handed), and its heavy enough to hit someone with :)

March 9, 2009, 11:06 AM
Outside of work, the best non firearm weapons I ever had were 2 German Shepherds, Max and Kato. They're in Heaven now but I'd take them over a bat, club or knife any day. A gun will run out of ammo, Max will keep coming at you. Spray Kato with oc spray, see what that does for you. I have a Boxer pup named Punch that has the makings of a good guard dog. I'm surprised no onje else said dog.

I agree, dogs are awesome but again, I really doubt there are too many college campuses that allow dogs to be brought to class by the students.

Did you ever spray Kato with OC (I hope not)? ;) I'd be suprised if it was not effective. In my experience of spraying both dogs and people with OC, it is far more effective on vicious dogs. Dogs have such a heightened sense of smell I can usually spray it several feet away from the dog itself and they'll stop in their tracks. Humans I basically have to hose down pretty good in the eyes and mouth for it to be effective. And remember folks, OC spray isn't instant. Be prepared for a couple seconds at least of no apparent effect. It's not like the movies where as soon as it hits their eyes they drop and scream (in my experience anyways).

March 9, 2009, 06:17 PM
No, I never sprayed him. Just exagerrating the point that he was fierce. I was attacked by 2 guys while walking him when I was just a boy. The pooch proved his worth. Even when 1 of the assailants hit him with a stick, he kept up the attack (the stick probably only wosened the situation for those 2). As a 15 year old boy, I was enraged myself and bad guys got their lumps that day. Yeah, even major college campuses will seldomly have a K9 unit. I said aside from work though.

March 9, 2009, 06:41 PM
If you're talking something practical, easily concealable that you can carry on you at all times (except airplanes, etc.) a 3" Spyderco Delica with a good dose of training is a great equalizer. Of course you don't take a knife to a gun fight but you might be very surprised at what a sharp (emphasis on sharp) 3" knife can do with respect to damage and stopping power.

March 9, 2009, 08:34 PM
From my experience at the various college/university campuses I have been at where I have seen the policy regarding weapons, usually fixed blade is out the window in a dorm. Campus villages may be different since they have kitchens and you can't exactly cook without a knife. So here is a breakdown of what is available to the average student in a dorm

Pen/Pencil, ruler:
- Impact weapon, only good for inflicting pain for temporary immobilization (I say temporary cause depending on pain threshold YMMV. one second tops). Pressure points such as solar plexus, neck, throat, armpit, various points on the arms, sciatic nerve and groin. If you seriously want to go this route it is doable but have some serious stuff you can do after you hit one of the above points so a martial art would be a must

Text books:
- Only good if you have them in your hand and they can be used as distraction to get away. Science books are more likely to incapacitate than the literature, english, and art books I have had. My pathophysiology would be great at this point, probably weighs around 10-15 pounds... If the books are in the backpack best chance would be ditch the pack and run or throw the pack at the aggressor. If you are physically able the bag may be used as a shield if the aggressor has melee weapon of some sort i.e. the above mentioned ball peen hammer

Folding knife:
- Note: ONLY USE ONE AS A LAST RESORT!!! Most of my examples above use delay tactics to escape from a situation. The pen to a solar plexus followed by a simple Judo type throw or a knee to the face will distract them long enough for you to get away. Otherwise if you plan on carrying a knife, get some basic instruction on how to use the darn thing instead of trying to swing it around. Knives if used correctly can be used against that guy with a baseball bat or tire iron or ball peen hammer and most of the time you will come out on top. (most of the time since not everything is determined by skill in a fight, lots of dumb luck) Remember, the point is to get away unharmed. If you escape, you win.

Broom stick:
- This is a good one. I have a 1.5 ft segment i can carry in my backpack and no one can see it. Granted I don't need one but the only unfair fight is one you lose and I don't plan on losing. Take your broom and if it has a wood handle you can saw a little off the end and it will still be long enough to use as a broom. You can carry the sawed off part through metal detectors if there are any on campus (like the library, my laptop sets that one off everytime :rolleyes:). If you take the broom head off at night the resulting stick gives you a longer reach and with proper training you can take on most aggressors.

These are some examples. Again, the point that I CANNOT STRESS ENOUGH is that you get away unharmed. Get training if you feel the need or have not had any. Most college campuses are safe if you stay inside at night and lock your door while you are in your room.

March 9, 2009, 09:44 PM
Telescoping rods are illegal in some areas but would be a 1st choice. They do make pens that look like fancy metal industrial pens that are actually weighted to deliver a blow, they look good and would never arouse suspicion if you had it in your hand constantly.

Take Krav Maga or other real world self defense and go from there.