Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Tactical Pens

Hi Ferfal, I really appreciate your advice, because it’s so practical.
I travel by air a lot, and I can’t carry a knife if I have no checked
luggage, so I recently bought a Tao Tactical Pen by CRKT. I can take
it with my other pens, in my satchel, through security and onto a
plane. A number of other knifemakers now offer these self-defense pens
- Benchmade, Uzi, S&W, etc.
Twice in my life I have bluffed attackers into leaving me alone, by
threatening them with a “weapon” that I pulled out of my pocket. Now
I’ll have something that will give me a bit more confidence in a
dangerous situation in another city. (In my home city I can carry a
more serious self-defense weapon with me.)
Personally, I think some of the tactical pens available have too sharp
a point, so they look like a weapon and could be confiscated by
airport security.
Your thoughts?

“Weapon” is anything that increases your efficiency for defense or attack. By this definition a gun is a weapon but so is a knife, a baseball bat, a screwdriver or in this case a pen. Of course some weapons are more efficient than others, but sometimes as in the situation you explain we have to cope as best as we can.

I agree with you, some tactical pens may be too tactical for their own good. :-)
There’s several steel non-tactical pens that can be used as stabbing or impact weapons. The classic Cross goes with me on planes often. The brushed steel Parker can be used to do some damage too.
The advantage I see in dedicated tactical pens is that a)they are usually very solid given their intended use b)Many have more or less efficient slip proof designs that allow different grips and more control.
Avoid aggressive looking designs or very obvious narrow tips because there’s a greater chance of them being confiscated at security checkpoints, especially airports.

I think that of the most well known designs, I like S&W pens the best, especially their  M&P gen2.
Smith and Wesson SWPENMP2BK M and P 2nd Generation Tactical Pen, Black

Smith and Wesson  M and P 2nd Generation Tactical Pen, Black
If you use the pen often, it does make sense to me to have a tough pen that can be used for defense as well. It goes along the Modern Survival philosophy of multiple uses per item.

Don’t forget that there are other politically correct defensive tools as well. I’ve boarded planes with a MTE MC-G33 tactical fashlight with a strike bezel that is more than capable of causing deep lacerations as well as being used as impact weapon and stunning attackers with 1000 lumens.



7man said...

A carpenters pencil is thick and strong and will work similar to a kubotan. These are light and may also be a good addition to an EDC kit or a Bug Out Bag.

mushroom said...

Very timely for me. I just ordered a Colt tactical pen with light. I have been getting by for the last few years without any air travel, but I have to fly out for some training next month. I was wondering if the pen would get through security.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately the UK has the "Prevention of Crime Act 1953" - which makes it illegal to carry anything "made, adapted or intended" to cause injury. If you're caught carrying a "tactical folder" or a "tactical pen" by the police you're likely to go to jail. Although we have a concept of using reasonable force in self-defence this "prevention of crime act" has the effect of a "reverse second amendment" - i.e. making it a crime not to be completely disarmed. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prevention_of_Crime_Act_1953 for details.

The police exercise "section 60" stop and searches in areas of high crime: http://www.met.police.uk/stopandsearch/what_is.htm#stopsearch - i.e. if you're in an area dangerous enough to warrant carrying some kind of self defence the likelihood of you being searched increases(!)

This makes life much easier for the police - which seems to be far more important to people here than the ability to realistically defend themselves!

Anonymous said...

In Europe, and I suspect many other places, there is no such thing as a list of items prohibited from hand baggage. EVERYTHING you take on a plane is entirely at the discretion of the screening personnel. The lists and showcases you see at airports are just the things that are guaranteed not to make it through security. I have recently had a roll of electrical tape confiscated. A friend had a pair of latex gloves taken. You are not entitled to take anything on a plane.

Anonymous said...

I was surprised I was able to fly with my Surefire E2D flashlight. It has a scalloped 'strike' bezel. Combine the self-defense aspect of the bezel with the tactical and practical aspect of the light, and I would take it over a tactical pen any day.