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Old May 9, 2008, 05:20 PM   #1
Dusty Rivers
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Pepper Spray all aspects

Pepper Spray seems like a better option than lethal force for dog encounters and similar events.

What other events would pepper spray be an effective tool?

What is the best source/brand/delivery option to carry for personal defense along with CC option.

My wife doesn't have CCP so would a key chain spray be worthwhile or worthless.

Seems like there would be a market for a pepper spray squirt gun like one of the water variety?

LEOs Is pepper spray effective?
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Old May 9, 2008, 05:29 PM   #2
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Pepper spray is iffy at best on dogs, I've seen some shake it of i a couple of seconds, and then I've seen some plow up a front yard with their nose trying to get the stuff off! The best of any I've ever used is Freeze +P, GREAT STUFF, and it has worked beautifully on all of the turds I've ever sprayed with it. Even killed a rogue racoon with it one time! I keep a couple of cans of it in my car now even though we are issued something different now, the Freeze just works better. The biggest thing with spray is, if you spray someone/ some animal, YOU WILL GET SPRAYED TOO!!! That is inevitable with spray. So as bad as it sounds, whatever you or your wife may want to at least expose yourself to whatever you get... maybe not spray directly, but at least get some in the vicinity so you can see what it's like. I'd also suggest something with OC and CS, if there is some that is civilian legal. (No idea what's out there for civies)
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Old May 9, 2008, 06:07 PM   #3
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Iv'e had alot of trouble with a very aggressive dog that lives next door.Tried the regular pepper spray with little effect. Range was very limited. The best I found was online, and it's a pepper-mace combination made by Mace Security International MSI and is designed for bears and will shoot about 30 feet.I gave the problem dog a blast of it and problem solved. However this is nasty stuff and if you get just a waft, it will burn your skin and cause difficulty breathing.
Do not carry in or leave in your car cause heat can may cause a rupture and then you have a major problem!!
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Old May 9, 2008, 07:24 PM   #4
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Pepper spray...

I wouldn't personally recommend pepper spray.

Not only is there a chance it will be blown back on you by the wind,
but even if it makes it's mark, I think it will merely anger, not stop a criminal.

There are some cool, less than lethal weapons available to the police
like the SAGE weapon. It fires a number of types of rounds, like hard plastic
batons, chemical rounds etc.

However, it is a (very) large weapon that looks like a "street sweeper" shotgun. Your wife is not going to pull it out of her purse and take care of business.

Good tool for the police, though.
Our local police (surprisingly) had the restraint to use it on an
armed man who was acting pretty psychotic and after threatening a public official with a gun, went home and then emerged from his home with a gun.

A hit from the SAGE weapon took all the wind out of him.

That being said, there have been a lot of uses of lethal force compared to that incident. I somehow suspect that this man was given different treatment because he was connected and well heeled.

Lesson learned, don't mess with the police...
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Old May 9, 2008, 07:55 PM   #5
Bill DeShivs
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Pepper spray has it's uses. I use Freeze +P also.
When buying o/c, make sure you get one that is delivered in a liquid stream, not a spray. Sprays will surely get you!
The two times I have had to hold someone at gunpoint, they just ran or drove away-knowing I could not shoot them.
Had I had o/c with me, I could have sprayed face, then crotch.
All I would have had to tell the responding officers would have been, "Look for the screaming, crying guy with no pants on!"
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Old May 9, 2008, 09:12 PM   #6
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I have to disagree with you on your pepper spray response. Although there is a small segment of the population that pepper spray will have little or no effect on, I personally have sprayed in excess of ten people while on the job.

It put every single one down almost instantly.

I also cannot agree enough with shooter_john. If you use it you will get it too. I have never used it without being exposed myself. You know that going in, which is one of the reasons they spray you at the academy. They wan't you to think first and use it appropriately and they wan't you to be able to fight through an exposure if needed.

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Old May 9, 2008, 10:25 PM   #7
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As a Wildlife conservation officer, I carried and used pepper spray on a few people and on a variety of dogs and a few wild animals---in my experience, it WORKS and works well.
In order to carry it , we had to be trained to use it and know its affects so we were sprayed with it---it worked on every one at the training school.
It is said that something like 1% of the population of the USA is immune to its effects but I have not seen or met anyone in that 1% yet.
Although it is possible to get some of the affects on you yourself as the user, for me anyway it was always minor exposure---nothing compared to what the bad guy or offending animal received.
The last time I used it was on some Rottweilers that came after me while serving a warrant---they both got a direct blast and the last I saw of them they were running around blindly and rolling on the ground--they forgot all about me.
Just make sure you keep a fresh can and not something that has been around for 3 years in the trunk of the car.
Buy an extra can and try it out so you can learn the spray pattern and its actual effective distance.

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Old May 9, 2008, 10:29 PM   #8
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Contrary to macho opinion, pepper spray is probably better than a handgun for bears.

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Old May 9, 2008, 11:12 PM   #9
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Anybody used Mace Brand?

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Old May 10, 2008, 02:07 AM   #10
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"Pepper Sprays are designed to provide a short-range defense against attackers"

Pepper Sprays are designed to provide a short-range defense against attackers
I just wonder why I should risk the failure of a pepper spray when I am already being attacked at short-range and carry a handgun. If it's to close, I have to use my hand-to-hand skills anyway because drawing any tool would take to long. If I can draw only one tool in the little time I have left it sure will be my handgun. I don't have to take chances under attack.
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Old May 10, 2008, 02:21 AM   #11
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If you are under attack, and, you respond with a gun, when the attacker has no weapon, or a lesser one, you might have a problem. I figure if you actually have to use your weapon, you are going to jail, and, you'll probably have to move. Pepper Spray gives you a very effective defensive tool, giving you time to assess, and, it's lighter, easier to carry, plus, it's a better choice on animals, at least for me, then a gun.

Guy at the shop said he used the stuff on a knife attacker, and, the guy still had the knife when the cops arrived.

Life is generally much easier when you don't kill people or animals
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Old May 10, 2008, 07:42 AM   #12
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One out of the three people that I have seen sprayed was not affected by it. I was at a nightclub and some bouncers sprayed a guy that was out of control (not inside the club). The spray only enraged him more. I'm sure alcohol and/or drugs had something to do with it.

Point is, it don't always work the way you want it to.
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Old May 10, 2008, 09:32 AM   #13
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I am a big fan of the MSI brand. Although I am not permitted to be armed at work, I do have a small MSI spray for the odd "bad dog" wink wink. The flip top canister is much better and safer than the cheap keychain style sprays and is easier to aim and fire. I used to carry the OC and CN they called "triple action" but now mostly use the 10% OC.

A couple of nurses in the local hospital ER carry the Kimber Lifeact because they are not permitted to carry weapons of any kind and wanted something that did not look like a weapon. In the pocket of scrubs for example it could be another cell phone, Blackberry, etc.

As for immunity, my F.D. covers the local jail, prison, correctional facility, detox, etc. We had a standby for an inmate that was out of control and he got sprayed with Cap Stun OC. I am particularly sensitive and was feeling it in the hallway as were some of the officers and ambulance crew. One old Lieutenant walked into the cell, picked the inmate up by the scruff of his neck and dragged him to the cot. While the inmate was snorting and choking, the LT had no problems. He told us OC or the old CN and CS they used in the old days never bothered him. He said it was not a matter of geting used to it over the years, but that it had never worked on him ever.
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Old May 10, 2008, 11:34 AM   #14
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Every time I've had to spray a dog, it was immediately effective. I've been sprayed enough in training and by catching some spray on calls to feel that it is equally effective against people. Does it answer every need in every circumstance? No, but that doesn't mean that people should put no faith in it.
Information posted is personal opinion and should not be considered information released in an official capacity
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Old May 10, 2008, 05:58 PM   #15
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Kimber Gaurdian

Kimber has a new OC delivery system called Gaurdian. It has two shots each of which has a range of 13 feet. It delivers the OC at 90 mph. This is the civilian version and sells for $40. There is also a LE version that is effective out to 20 feet and delivers the OC at 270 mph. I read today that some LE agencies have tested it with very good results. This would be a good way to take the rage out of a road warrior in situations where a lethal response might be hard to justify. I'm thinking about getting one for the car.
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Old May 10, 2008, 07:58 PM   #16
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I've been hit with some of the overspray from Counter-Assault bear mace, and given a choice, I think i'd rather be shot with a small caliber handgun than go through that again. I never my eyes nose and lungs could hurt so bad.
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Old May 10, 2008, 09:50 PM   #17
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I have seen it fail to work, in a training class. One of the women in the class simply did not respond to the stuff. The instructor sprayed her. She blinked and said, "That's it?"

With her consent, he sprayed her again -- a longer spray from a closer distance. She kind of half-sneezed, half-snorted, and shrugged.

He went and got a fresh can and tried again. She shrugged and they gave up.

About five minutes later, I watched her wander over to the water buckets, splash a single scant handful of water on her face, rub it with a towel, and walk off. No redness, no snot-strings, no watery eyes. Nothing.

Most people respond to it. Some don't. And -- based on that class -- I would say the difference isn't drug/alcohol intoxication, but simply some folks don't respond to it.

Doesn't make it bad stuff. If I weren't severely asthmatic, I would probably carry OC at least some of the time. But I would not bet my life on it.

The inimitable Tamara tells the story of the time she used pepper spray to defend herself at this link. Simply put, the spray did not do the entire job, but it did buy her the time she needed to put another defense in place. I'd say that's a success story, but it does underline the important lesson about OC use: if you carry pepper spray to defend yourself, you should always always always have a back up plan for what you will do if the spray does not work. (Even if the plan is, "Run like a striped-butt ape and scream like a little girl.")

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Old May 10, 2008, 10:40 PM   #18
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Pepper spray them so they stand still. Then you shoot them.
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Old May 11, 2008, 01:03 AM   #19
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I've wondered about that same stuff Socrates. My logic is the gel would last longer and be harder to get off.
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Old May 11, 2008, 02:20 AM   #20
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All the times I've used it on suspects (over 10 years now) I have NEVER had it work by itself. I have always used it to distract the suspect and then go to a different technique (ie. baton or takedown etc). The bad guys (girls to) only start whining and crying after they are in cuffs. They tried issuing us pepper foam for a short time and the suspects started scraping it off their faces and throwing it back . Anytime you use it you will get contaminated also. As far as animals go the dogs I've used it on just snorted and kept coming. One did stop and licked it off (i guess it tasted good ). I would more recommend a civilian taser for self defense. If nothing else pepper spray can be used to spray the attacker therefore buying time to run away.

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Old May 11, 2008, 03:42 AM   #21
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Anything rather then having to shoot the puppy. I LOVE animals more then most people.
I'd much rather have him think he was going to get sprayed, and, maybe, then getting some idea of what he was carrying, prior to pulling a gun. I KNOW I got really mad when the guy brought a Walther PPK/S to what I thought was going to be a really fun, 3 on 1 fight in a bathroom...
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Old May 11, 2008, 07:01 AM   #22
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I got some in my eye and it felt like needles jabbing me.

Remember that most perps are out to get something from you. That is, they have a specific goal such as getting your wallet or raping you or whatever. The people the cops end up spraying are usually just being violent a-holes and swinging at anyone. A cop is trying to apprehend someone, whereas you are simply trying to leave.

From what I've seen on youtube, pepper spray is effective at stopping people from setting and achieving discrete goals like firing a weapon or taking a purse or whatever. It's not so effective at preventing people from flailing around and causing havoc to those people and things nearby.

So if you're afraid of being robbed or carjacked, it might be good (provided the perp doesn't have a weapon). If you're afraid of being punched and kicked in an elevator, not so good.
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Old May 11, 2008, 07:24 AM   #23
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I don't consider it an option for my wife. She has allerigies that can practically lock up her lungs on a bad day and I would be afraid that any blowback from pepper spray would incapacitate her worse than her attacker. Also it would not be practical for one of her possible scenarios; someone hiding inside her car in the dark when she gets off work.

She works someplace where it's not an option to carry, so with any kind of spray out, I figure we're down to stun gun or taser. There's also the possibility of an ASP or something else, I guess. I haven't picked up either for her yet because with my current work schedule I usually drop her off and pick her up myself since we start at the same time and I work close by. My work situation will likely change soon, so we need to make a decision on what's best for her to carry.
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Old May 11, 2008, 07:33 AM   #24
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I have used CapStun brand on an arrest scuffle and on dogs, and it was effective. Notably, the bad guy didn't stop and lay down, but it blinded him and interfered with his breathing enough we got control of him. (2 on 1 in our favor and he was winning - ah, youth). I have also been issued Punch-II and have personally purchased Guardian brand, all of which are quality products. Somewhere on the net I found a comparison of all the sprays and was surprised to see they really aren't all created equal. Do your research and buy quality. Incidentally, if you're going to leave spray in a car, I have found only one unit specially formulated not to burst - an auto unit made by Guardian.

The great advantage of pepper spray is that it's cheap and doesn't cause any damage. This means someone like your wife or girlfriend is much more likely not to hesitate, and will use it before it's too late. All tough-guy talk aside, most people have a tough time shooting a person and WILL hesitate, often because a lot of assault scenarios are not real clear cut until you're rolling around on the ground or have a knife pressed against your belly. A brandished gun is not necessarily going to stop things, either. The spray is intimidating to a lot of bad guys, can be used before things rise to the level of a justified shooting, and if they get it away from you and use it against you, it won't kill you like your gun or knife.

Incidentally, that Kimber Guardian gel-thing doesn't look good to me. The police unit has sights and is designed to deploy up to 21 feet (hopefully with other officers covering.) The civilian unit has no sights and takes away one of the pepper spray's advantages, a continuous stream or spray so you can hit your target. Check out the demo video on Kimber's website: their own demonstrator almost misses the head target with his first shot.
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Old May 11, 2008, 11:13 AM   #25
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The adwantage: Use without re-thinking

OC, Tasers and Guarian Angles have one big advantage: You don't have to think twice. If you misjudged the situation, you apologize, give the - good - buy money or buy him a drink and that can be it. Try that with a handgun .

So, I sometimes carry OC (with my 9x19mm) eg when running in the woods. If a dog comes to close, I don't need to think to long, if it's to close, I spray it. No blast, no casing lying somewhere, no dead dog, no mad owner.
And if the dog tries to kill me, I can still shoot it.

Same applies to unclear situations. If I feel that pulling the gun might be to much and I could regret it - I can use OC as a first defense. Switching to the gun wouldn't take long. However, I don't advocate using OC in a clear lethal threat situation. If the leathal threat is clear, the answer is clear: The fastest and most reliable way awailiable to stop the threat, and in my case that mostly is a 9x19mm Glock or a .223 rifle.

Have a nice weekend,
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