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Old February 11, 2005, 12:57 PM   #1
Wynterbourne
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Effectiveness of handheld stun guns

Recently incidents in our neighborhood have caused my wife to develop a moderate, and reasonable, concern for her safety. However, my wife, also known as 'She who despises all firearms in any way, shape, or form' absolutely refuses to learn how to use a firearm. So we're looking into alternative methods.

She's not particularly interested in pepper spray, despite the information I've shown her. However, she is willing to carry a handheld contact stun gun. I've heard stories that the effectiveness of a handheld stungun is 'sub par'.

Are handheld stunners in any way effective?

**Editted for grammer**
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9mm. Because no matter how you try to rationalize it, .45 ACP is still for people trying to compensate for -something-.
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Old February 11, 2005, 02:50 PM   #2
SpectreBlofeld
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Funny you should ask.

Last night, around 11 pm, I used my 100,000 volt stun gun on a friend (with his permission).

He braced himself... set his jaw... clenched his eyes shut... cried out...

and THEN i shocked him.

He opened his eyes and said, 'THAT was it??'

I arched an eyebrow, put the gun to my own arm, and, yeah.

It felt like hitting your funnybone on a sharp corner. Certainly not pleasant, but it wasn't incapacitating.

If you're going to get one, get a POWERFUL one...
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Old February 11, 2005, 03:37 PM   #3
Para Bellum
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How about a taser?

Is there a chance of turning 'She who despises all firearms in any way, shape, or form' absolutely refuses to learn how to use a firearm' into 'she who owns a taser'?

Apparently these tasers are effective. And what 'she who...' might like about them, they don't cause permanent damage. Even not to people with heart-conditions. There's a good video in a thread here:
http://www.thefiringline.com/forums/...d.php?t=158224


A police instructor who is a friend of mine is sceptical though (but he carries a .22 in his off-time )
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Old February 11, 2005, 03:57 PM   #4
Wynterbourne
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I wish. There are items in her background that cause her to hate the 'disconnectiveness' of ranged weaponry. I'm -slowly- working her towards the ability to utilize ranged weaponry of some sort, but it's a slow process.

What makes the Tazer so much better than a handheld stunner?
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"You can say ‘stop’ or ‘alto’ or use any other word you think will work, but I’ve found that a large bore muzzle pointed at someone’s head is pretty much the universal language." - Clint Smith

9mm. Because no matter how you try to rationalize it, .45 ACP is still for people trying to compensate for -something-.
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Old February 11, 2005, 04:40 PM   #5
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Taser / Handheld

...the tazer has permanent contact trough the darts in the skin/clothing and gives a controlled well designed 5-second shock (again and again if you wish). So contact is not lost by pulling away. As far as I know, you won't be able to pull away anywhere after a taser struck.

Check this (german) site or an english equvalent, at the right side of the page you will find (english) videos explaining... http://www.nonletal.de/taser/

does she know that anything under 7yds puts her at extreme risk? I am speaking after 20yrs of hand-to-hand combat and martial arts training...
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Old February 11, 2005, 05:32 PM   #6
seb5
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Actually the civilian version of Taser gives a 30 second jolt, supposedly to let you get away. The down side is that you have to leave your $1000.00 taser there to let the 30 second ride continue.
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Old February 11, 2005, 09:40 PM   #7
m0ntels
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Damn Drunks!

I had a 100,000v stunner I got to use in a potato gun ignition

Well, I was having a BBQ and some of the kids (early 20's like myself) got a bit toasted and found my stun gun loaded up with industrial Energizers...yes there is a difference! At first they just started sticking their fingers in it, then realizing that volts is nothing without real amperage, they proceeded to shock themselves over their entire bodies and actually takes turns passing the thing around. I finally had to take it away from them because I figured it probably wasnt healthy.

I got shocked once by some smartass playing with it, and it kinda feels like a bee sting, but that's about it. At that point I really wondered if they should be considered anything more than an overgrown potato gun lighter. Your attacker would basically have to have a hold of you already to use it, the switch is very small, you need to maintain constant contact for it to really start to hurt, and I think it would **** of an attacker even more than he already is. I know they make ones much bigger, but still, weak choice at best. I'd absolutely go with a knife over a stun gun.

Randy
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Old February 11, 2005, 09:52 PM   #8
baker1425
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Taser Civilian

I've had the nova stun guns issued to me at work. They were mostly ineffective because of the level of electrical input and the distance between the probes. The best use I found for my nova was to keep dogs away, as the sound scared them.

Having been hooked up to the Tasertron (now defunct) and the Taser X 26, and having seen them work on the street, I believe that the taser would be a better idea for her. it shoots the straightened fishhooks as darts (5 yards for some cartridges and 7 for others) to transfer the voltage across a wider area, can be used as a handheld unit (drivestun mode), and leaves you feeling like you've gone three rounds with Tyson. you don't have to leave the stun gun behind, because once you've stunned the assailant, you take it with you for the drive stun.

its not a cure all, but I'd rather be peppered than stunned.

Davidsons has the civilian Taser for sale. Any law enforcement trainer thats certified in the taser can train your wife how to use it.

Don't get me wrong, I would think that a Kahr MK9 with Ranger SXTs would be ideal, but this is a good intermediate step. A lot of agencies that have gone to Tasers do the community demonstrations of the effectiveness, if you check around you can probably get a demo done.

Good luck.
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Old February 12, 2005, 07:40 AM   #9
SpectreBlofeld
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I'd like to say that I've taken a full blast of pepperspray to the face (used to have some adventures back as a teenager) - and it was the most incapacitating pain i've ever experienced. I was absolutely miserable.

After an hour or so, though, it wears off.

If she insists on carrying a nonlethal deterrent, I'd MUCH sooner recommend pepperspray than a stun gun, given my experiences.
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Old February 12, 2005, 01:36 PM   #10
esldude
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Security guard I know was trained in using pepper spray and also found it miserable. They were required to experience it by the instructor. However, it seems the chemical in it causes more misery to lighter skinned people for some reason. Darker skinned people are less effected. And of course black people are least effected. As it was described to me there is quite a difference in how debilatating it is when used on caucasian versus african people. All this apparently was known by the instructor.

Any instructors or others experienced in pepper spray able to confirm or refute this?
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Old February 12, 2005, 02:00 PM   #11
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red is positive, black is negative.
They should have done what the nice officer ask them to do.

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Old February 12, 2005, 04:01 PM   #12
baker1425
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pepper

I became a OC instructor in 1997 (Freeze/Aerko), went to Defense Technologies in 1998, Freeze Aerko in 1999, and Ed Nowicki's OCAT Instructor Trainer Program in 2001.

In my experience, that is a myth about the lighter skinned folks getting hit harder by pepper. I've trained approximately 500 folks in use of OC and OC/CS products. The whole experience of pepper is largely dependent upon the perspective of the person being sprayed. If they think it is effective, it is. If they think that they can fight through it, they will.

The product really doesn't matter, as long as it is designed for law enforcement use. The technology to make pepper spray can be in a garage and a lot of it is slick marketing. Percentages of OC, SHU (Scoville Heat Units), the Carrier, spray patterns, flammability, and others are all things to consider.

The most effective spray I've used is FoxLabs 5.3 Million. It has a coarse stream and good distance. Second is Aerko Products freeze +P. Third is the Defense Technology MK3.

The key to making your wife comfortable with the pepper route is to buy two cans, tack up a paper plate on the side of the house and make her spray and move. If she gets a little OC on her, make sure that she soap and waters it and does NOT put cream, lotion, burn ointment, etc. on it. OC is a good intermediate weapon, but can't stand alone in place of a good mindset and effective tactics.

I carry a 1/2 oz key ring Freeze+P. It is a good intermediate between hands and the pistol.

I
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Old February 12, 2005, 05:54 PM   #13
Psalm 144:1
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Regarding stun guns:

In my opinion,the primary value of a handheld stunner is as a psychological deterrent. The scary crackling and nasty-looking arcs of current ARE intimidating, especially if the object of the affection has never before been shocked, and has heard all sorts of horror stories about the effectiveness of stun guns. All of which means that the things are useless, since all of us who are dedicated to CCW realize that relying on the "intimidation factor" of any weapon is foolish unto the extreme. Sure,sometimes people get lucky. And anyone with any sense backs away from a determined looking person with a ready weapon. But violent assault is most often an irrational act,perpetrated by individuals whose motives are alien and abhorrent to our own. If an attacker suddenly develops a case of common sense, consider it a bonus. Besides,I once owned one,carried it in my back pocket, and sat on it by accident and zapped myself right on the tuckus. Got right back up in a hurry,too! Unpleasant sensation, butt hardly debilitating.
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Old February 12, 2005, 06:31 PM   #14
esldude
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Baker1425,

Thanks for the straight info from someone in the know.
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Old March 15, 2005, 05:57 PM   #15
Harry Bonar
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re-stun gun:

Dear Shooter
Yes, and it hurt like ^%^$^%^% and simply made me VERY mad VERY quick!
Harry B.
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Old March 15, 2005, 06:46 PM   #16
captainsdad2
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Have to get too close for stun gun

Stun guns are hand held which means you have to be close enough to touch the BG (and he is close enough to touch you). Not a good thing!!! Tasers are somewhat better, but if the BG is wearing heavy clothing the darts may not make contact with skin meaning it has no effect. Not a good thing!!! OC is better yet as long as you spray the BG directly in the face and then run as fast as you can. OC is a good step between using your hands and using a firearm. If possible, running as fast as you can is the best defense.
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Old March 15, 2005, 06:49 PM   #17
tokarevman
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By no means a popular compersion methed, but on an underground skatbording video i have MTV's Johny Knoxville has some Knoxville LEO use some no leathels on him. The stun gun did nothing realy, the taser all be it put him down but he was cracking up and complaing about how much it hurt in between the zaps the LEO's were giving him and eventialy grew tierd of it and riped the barbs out with no hesetation. But the pepper spray put him down and he satyed down, and the bigest thing is when people are sprayed it cuts there vison down. Johny said the spray was the worst by far. lol maby you should get her to watch that video to change her mind.
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Old March 15, 2005, 10:39 PM   #18
N.M. Edmands
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I experienced a stun gun hit during a training excersise.
Decided then and there that if anyone I knew gave one of these to a loved one for protection,I would slap the crap out of them.
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Old March 16, 2005, 03:04 AM   #19
djw6611
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Forget the stun gun, they are useless. I have one and its more of a joke than anything else, and mind you this is a $60 100,000 volt stun gun. My friends always grab it when they are over my house and zap each other. I guarrantte if someone attacked me with a stun gun I could knock it away from them in a matter of seconds. I would sit all day long and get stunned with a stun gun before I take another shot of pepper spray to the face.

Ever worn wool socks on a carpet and touched a door knob? Thats about what a stun gun feels like.

EXCEPT the x26 tazer, but the drawback with that is YOU ONLY HAVE ONE SHOT, if you miss the target your kinda screwed. Its an excellent police tool but not the best for civilian self defense.

Get her some FOX LABS pepper spray, not a keychain unit, but the full 2oz unit. The keychain units are too small, have too little spray, too little distance, theyre a bad idea.

DEFINITLY get 2 pepper spray units, one to keep and one to practice with. And BE SURE TO REPLACE THE CANISTER AFTER 2 YEARS from the date of purchase.
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Old March 16, 2005, 06:36 AM   #20
tyme
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Tasers-
They're allegedly fairly effective (the claims are what, 90 or 95%?)... if both barbs hits. If it's not effective, you have no recourse. There are no effective failure drills.

Reloading simply takes too long, and as previously stated you only get one shot between reloads. If the very first shot doesn't work, you're in trouble. By the time you reload, an attacker can close the distance or get out of range.

Electricity running across someone's torso is not completely safe no matter what Taser, Inc. claims. It is less-lethal (very-probably-not lethal) rather than non-lethal.

The cartridges are expen$ive. How does anyone expect to practice with a taser?

Civilian tasers have 15' wires (not that 21' wires in LE versions are much better). If an attacker is much closer than 15', you have no hope of getting the taser out in time. The attacker has another option: if he sees that you have a taser, he can probably move out of range before you can use it. At that point, he can do whatever he wants. He can find some sort of shield and approach you again, or he can throw a knife at you, or he can take out a gun and shoot you.

If you taser someone as they're running away and they fall, that may break the wires, yank them out of the taser, or pull the probes out of the goblin's skin. At that point, you have to reload, close the distance somewhat to ensure a hit, and try again. No thanks.

They use batteries. Batteries die.

They use electronics. Electronics die.

Aim is in a way more critical than with a handgun because both barbs have to hit, and the separation (of the X26c - civilian x26) is 8 degrees (according to the website). At 15', that's 2.1' of separation (2.0927... and that's linear distance, NOT arc length). I don't know if the dispersion is horizontal or diagonal or vertical, but I'm not impressed. The area you can aim for and still hit with both probes is rather limited. It's important to realize that the full-body incapacitation illustration so prominently displayed on Taser's website does not take into account the difficulty of hitting a target with both probes, which at 8° of separation and at 10-15 feet is not trivial, and probably not much easier than a headshot with a decent handgun.
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Old March 16, 2005, 01:34 PM   #21
perception
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Keep working on your wife Wynterbourne. I met a girl about 4 years ago who also had personal reasons to intensly dislike firearms, but I always carry so she has had to get used to at least seeing them, although she generally cringed. The other day though, she came up to me and told me that she wanted to go shoot sometime. It about knocked me off my feet. I think that there is hope for everyone, it just takes some time.
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Old March 17, 2005, 06:31 PM   #22
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Here is my experience with stun guns, back in the late 80's stun guns were the hot item in law enforcement, everybody was getting them. The interesting thing about stun guns is that you never know how an individual will react to them, some guys it puts down, right now, incredible, others will just stand there and laugh at you, all they get is a tickle, the vast majority of the people will feel it pretty good, that's when their mental attitude takes over, it might make them mad and really start fighting, or it might make them want to stop fighting, so the results were less than stellar. We guessed at the time that body chemistry has something to do with how a particular person reacts, but keep in mind that if someone is really hopped up on something it often fails to work very well, they can fight through it.

The fad that was going on lasted 2 or 3 years then died out, stun guns weren't dependable so the officers quit carrying them. Now they are back in fashion, to the best of my knowledge the technology has not changed at all. So the effectiveness of the stun gun is quite mixed, better than nothing, pepper spray is often more dependable than a stun gun, just keep in mind some people can fight even after they have been hit by pepper spray! Neither one can guarantee your wife's safety.
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Old March 18, 2005, 09:05 AM   #23
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I used to make my self real not popular at the hand held stun gun tables at the gun shows. Zapped myself with everything from the 50,000 volt tinglers to the 250,000 volt models. The powerful ones are a bit painful and leave snake-eyes on your skin. I would hold the thing against my forearm while holding a ball point pen between thumb and forefinger. Vibration took place but, I wouldn't drop the pen.
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Old March 18, 2005, 02:33 PM   #24
perception
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In y electronics and electricity class, we did a lot of work with electricity, and one of the things we measured was that different people have much different internal resistances. The same voltage will lay someone out, while their partner could take it and barely even notice. I guess it goes the same as anything else, some people go down with one shot, and in a recent CCW class, the teacher told of a guy that took over 100 rounds and was still coming. I dont know how valid that story is, but it illustrates the point.
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Old March 22, 2005, 08:07 PM   #25
Kruniac
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Tasers arent effective because they "OH DEAR GOD I CANT MOVE", they are effective because "OH DEAR GOD I GOT ELECTROCUTED AND I HEAR A ZAP AND AHHH".

Psych tactics are wonderful, neh? Anyway, for those that dont want to risk someone not caring about getting tasered, stick to mace.

Mace them while they are standing. Mace them while they are falling. Mace them once more while they are laying. Leave and call the police.
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