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Old July 21, 2012, 08:44 PM   #1
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NON LETHAL weapons

I'm particularly interested in any LE guys input on this one, since y'all have probably this day in age utilized some non-lethal tools.

My wife and i live in an OK neighborhood. It's not bad, but some petty crime happens here and there (USUALLY it's a car break in), and she's rather petite.

She wants to go jogging while I'm either at work or out of town, but wants something light she can carry to defend herself if some schlep wants to start trouble.

We've discussed various methods, and what happens in our neighborhood wouldn't warrant shooting, nor does she like the idea of running with the added weight of a pistol. Even a small one. I also like the idea of getting her a method of incapacitation that she is 100% likely to use if some jerk-off wants to start something, rather than an end-all lethal option that she might hesitate using, or be very realistically presented with a situation where it is an inappropriate response (no. I do NOT believe in the "bluff/intimidation factor" of a gun).

So the options we've looked at are tasers (which mostly fail the bulk test) and pepper spray.

i guess I have 2 questions
1. Is there a small keychain sized taser that will work and is easy to use and aim?

2. What kind of spray works best? I've been sprayed with military grade mace and I'D say it works. Which brand is the best? Foam/gel or regular spray?
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Old July 21, 2012, 09:12 PM   #2
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I just trained on a new non-lethal. It was the pepper ball gun, wicked little thing and you don't have to get close to use it. We used the full size paintball type gun, but the do make a flash launcher. The balls are filled with powdered PAVA, a capsaicin and are much harder than paint balls. They come in regular and 10X. Also they have stinger rounds which would not do you any good. Use the 10x Mean sob that!! And you don't even have to hit them, just bust that ball real close.

Last edited by garryc; July 21, 2012 at 09:20 PM.
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Old July 21, 2012, 09:33 PM   #3
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No offince but how does that help he wanted something small and light.
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Old July 21, 2012, 09:39 PM   #4
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It's small and light About like a typical flashlight.

As far as pepper spray, FOX all the way, and none of that dye crap either, You'll know who you hit by the mucus running out of him. 5.3 Million SHU, I've learned to trust it.

I let my wife spray me with some junk she bought at some store. It was mildly irritating but not near incapacitating. Saber I think.

Last edited by garryc; July 21, 2012 at 09:46 PM.
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Old July 21, 2012, 09:55 PM   #5
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Get a treadmill. If she wants so bad to get out Id still recommend a S&W 642 or similar and make sure she is always with a couple friends.
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Old July 22, 2012, 03:41 AM   #6
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If both of you are worried enough to think about her having protection while jogging, I think she would be better served with a firearm, even a small one like a P-32.

If she has to go the non-lethal route, I would recommend the pepper sprays that come in the form of a pair of 1 lb hand weights. She can use the spray to slow 'em down and bash their skulls in with the weights immediately following. I'm not joking.
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Old July 22, 2012, 04:13 AM   #7
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Look at the First Defence (Defence Technology) MK-6 .7% OC spray. Very small and light and is in a streamer configuration (rather than OC fogger). That minimises "secondary" exposure. You must factor in the very real possibility of traditional OC fogger effecting the user as much as the intended target.

I got hit in the eyes during my LE training with the MK-4 .7% OC (same content) and I was (reasonably) incapacitated. I then spent an hour in the shower crying

There are plenty of you tube videos on this stuff I think.
You gonna pull those pistols or whistle dixie?
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Old July 22, 2012, 07:31 AM   #8
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I've had level 1 exposures to Saber, First Defense and Fox. Fox wins hands down.
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Old July 22, 2012, 08:50 AM   #9
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Your petitie wife attempting to deploy pepper spray in a typical "mugging" scenario is asking to fail.

We can debate scenarios all day long, but when the "bad guy jumps out from behind a bush" at a woman jogger, he's not there for her money. He's there for rape/kidnapping/murder. He's going to be quick and brutal and there will be no opportunity for her to deploy her pepper spray before she's dragged back into the bushes or a waiting vehicle, or rendered unconscious. Even if she manages to get a spray off in extremely close quarters while fighting for her life, it's unlikely it'll be an incapacitating face-shot no matter how powerful the spray is... and she's likely to only get one shot.

You would be served better by having her learn Krav Maga or some other fighting art. Also, you should both go for a run together a few times, exploring different routes and talking about possible ambush points. Discuss safe locations at different points along her routes and ways to improve situational awareness.

Does she listen to music when she runs? If so, make her stop... nothing is more debilitating to situtational awareness than removing the ability to hear your surroundings.

Don't let her run in the dark.
Don't let her run through any wooded or "off street" area... stick to the roads and sidewalks that have houses on them.
Ensure she has several different running routes and not to do the exact same path every day.

And finally, she should carry a firearm. Assuming you've done all of the above, she should be able to find trouble before it finds her and escape. But should the scene turn bad and she's realized she's about to be confronted with no way out, a little Baretta Tomcat or Taurus Model25 may turn the tide.

Does she usually CCW? Maybe that's the first step?

Last edited by SamNavy; July 22, 2012 at 08:56 AM.
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Old July 23, 2012, 01:30 AM   #10
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Full-time LEO of 23 years service here. I feel I should throw in this quick caveat: Pepper spray, regardless of strength or the reputation of it's manufacturer, can [and will] fail miserably. I've seen it happen firsthand. For that matter, same goes for pretty much any other weapon you care to name, non-lethal or otherwise. In other words, it might have an effect on an attacker, or it might not. There are no guarantees. That said, take a look at Cold Steel and their Inferno brand pepper foam spray. Check 'em out at
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Old July 23, 2012, 06:42 AM   #11
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Using the limitations she has imposed, Fox 5.3 OC. That's what I've provided to my wife. OC isn't 100% effective but it's perhaps the best option for those who chose to be unarmed and have limited defensive tactics skills.
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Old July 23, 2012, 01:29 PM   #12
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Agree with last post. Fox 5.3
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Old July 23, 2012, 02:52 PM   #13
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I second self defense training, A good, small fixed blade knife and how to use it. In a fantasy self defense scenario everything works. If she gets jumped it will be fast and brutal.
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Old July 23, 2012, 06:40 PM   #14
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There are obvious benefits to activities such as running and cycling (increasing 'wind', overall speed, maybe quickness/hand-foot-eye and agility depending), but these benefit you, in an accumulating fashion (as muscle 'capacity' increases over time), and, emphatically, NOT (in a survival sense) when you are actually doing the activity, except to the extent that your heart rate is raised enough to increase your reaction speed as compared to being in a sedentary state.

By the nature of the activities, cycling or running present many opportunities for predatory behavior. Your focus during the activity will be on things not necessarily ideal for maintaining SA (going faster, going further, pushing lung capacity, enjoying the scenery/runner's high), and those things are big enough to make you lose the zero-sum-gain contest for your mind's finite attention in the 'overall game' of staying alive.

The fundamental vulnerability is that you 'cover ground' at a rate that continually presents ambush opportunities, and at a rate that compromises your ability to 'take in' the landscape, the flora, and the 'fauna'. It would be one thing if our footspeed or the momentum we carry on the run were an actual evolutionary advantage. It is not, and getting 'brained' is a serious 'game over' possibility. Against women, the predator's preference may be to grab or physically control (so have an item that can 'loose' another's grip, as part of a contact-distance escape strategy)

(Of course, developing ways to maintain mental sharpness while doing these activities, paradoxically, will increase your overall ability to maintain awareness, in the future, even if 'otherwise occupied', and whether in an active or resting state.)

So, all very good suggestions, but I think some of Sam's suggestions (post #9) are on-point regarding:

(1) have a commitment to predetermined and varying routes,
(2) be more than merely acquainted with the ground to be covered (have maps or make them, and obviously a walk-through),
(3) no headphones,
(4) prefer high-visibility routes (generally), know the locations, the effects of the time of day, exceptional events/conditions out of the norm, and
(5) having others you trust aware of your activity and of your routes.

Doesn't hurt to have some reasonable measure of insurance, however. I'm +1 on any combination of the following:

(1) small, light easily deployed (wrist band or clip and/or lanyard) knife
(2) P32/NAA .22 maggie (clip-friendly)
(3) OC (clip-friendly)
(4) small high-lumen flashlight (even during the day)
(5) noisemaking device
(6) cell-phone
(7) shaded lenses (dark enough to obscure where your eye-balls are pointing, to avoid 'telegraphing' your movement)
(8) one key, house/car (connect it to one of the items above)

Now the list looks like you need a fanny pack or backpack (chestpack, or pack with H2o bladder not a bad idea). You need to decide what's best and most effective for you. Obviously, the legs do need to be generally unencumbered and the items may be best riding high on the hips, or in an aforementioned pack. I'd probably go with 3 things, plus the shades/goggles and a key, unless I had a pack of some sort.

When we run or cycle, we're focusing on legs, and on being light, and, thus, on wearing less, all emphasizing 'performance' .... Might be time to do some self-eval. if you just have to wear the tiny running bikini.

The hands .... make sure you can fill 'em when you need to. A martial system would be good to complement, as well as drills that increase overall foot-dexterity and the ability to stay on one's feet when 'impacted'.

Be safe.
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Old July 24, 2012, 07:21 AM   #15
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Anyone try the Ruger OC spray? Seems like it incorporates all the "bells & whistles" in one package.
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Old July 24, 2012, 11:05 PM   #16
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If you have reason to use force your dounuts to dollars going to use leathal force. pepper spray, stun guns and the like just make them mad. You could use a tazer or a baton but both require training and can be considered lethal force in the hands of a citizen. There are no half steps when it come to this stuff.
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Old July 25, 2012, 05:54 AM   #17
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You should google "Cold Steel's Inferno." It a pepper spray, more like foam, they have videos of them testing it on people. Looked horribly painful. Id post a link but I haven't figured that out yet.
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Old July 25, 2012, 07:03 AM   #18
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wasp spray?
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Old July 25, 2012, 10:01 AM   #19
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Old July 26, 2012, 07:47 PM   #20
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Thanks y'all!
Nanuk: I like the idea of a knife, as in it's quite versatile. She does too, and carries one in her purse regularly... now along side some spray. As for self defense we've done grab drills and knife techniques for a while now. Excellent idea though, thanks!

Ended up getting a small Fox spray. Nice, compact, light, she can run with it in her hand. I'm HALF tempted to be a guineapig and let her give me a few fam-fire blasts to see how it works... will have a gallon of milk standing by.
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Old July 27, 2012, 10:42 AM   #21
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Make sure you check those sprays. I found that after a couple of years, Fox OC loses the propellant pressure. Press the button and it just dribbles on your hand.

Change them out earlier than that.
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Old July 29, 2012, 08:51 PM   #22
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I have never depended on any of those sprays. I have been sprayed by a couple of them and all it did was make the tears and the snot run and **** me off.
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Old July 29, 2012, 09:41 PM   #23
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I carry a legal knife on me all the time

Without proper knife training in Fillipino Martial Arts, plus the length (3"), I feel it's fairly useless. It's way useful to open packages or pry out stuff that didn't extract or cut some string...

Boston's gun bible or some shotgun for SD book I read says that a person trained with knife will generally always win (i.e. get first strike) in a 10' or less confrontation vs anyone with a concealed firearm.

I don't believe Fillipino martial arts covers shorter knives, I think it's long knife.

Even then a shotgun, even a concealable .38, can be 1 shot 1 kill. A knife can be messy and long. It'll leave a nice trail of blood and the assailant may have to go to the hospital...

IMHO what I'm getting at a knife is better than nothing. Second what others are saying...get some martial arts in there. Where I get confused if Krav Maga is only pistol/knife defense, or if any knife offense is taught. Fillipino is offense with knife...
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Old July 29, 2012, 10:51 PM   #24
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I keep a c2 taser, oc spray and a knife in my EDC
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Old July 29, 2012, 10:59 PM   #25
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There are many small sun gun. They vary from looking like a cell phone to a small flashlight.
Unlike larger versions they require to come into contact with your assailant.

You do need a certain amount of training to use a stun gun. Just like any other weapon, they are more likely to be successful if you know what you're doing.

Just as Glen said about checking pepper spray pressure, you need to make sure your stun gun is keeping a charge.

Another thing you should look into is finding a running companion for your wife.
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