When it comes to gadgets, I love them as much as the next guy and all too often they end up being too complicated, too breakable, and ultimately more of a gimmick than anything actually practical. On the other hand there's a relatively new category of tactical gear called a "tactical pen". I hadn't ever heard of this until I got a pitch from former CIA officer and New York Times best-selling author of Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life, Jason Hanson. This guy has now released what might be the ultimate self-defense tool that can be taken anywhere and yet is deceptively effective when used properly.
What Is The Tactical Pen?
Tactical pens, also referred to by some people as a swat pen or defense pen, are actually a whole category of items that have become increasingly popular in recent years as folks are searching for something that can help them feel safer and better defended - but they either can't or don't want to carry a knife or gun with them. From a practical perspective, guns and knives would be prohibited in many places - though tactical pens are generally allowed. For instance, hospitals, courthouses, planes, government buildings, schools, or churches.
That's where The Tactical Pen found on Jason's site comes into play. For $35 or a three-pack with free shipping for $99, you can have a compact and discrete self-defense tool that is also practical since it functions as a regular ballpoint pen too. It is mad from a solid block of metal with an extremely sharp pointed end that you can wield as a self-defense tool as well as a safety device. For instance, if you are trapped in a car or need to escape from a building where the door is blocked for some reason - simply take the Tactical Pen out of your pocket and hit the window with the sharp glass breaker tip and you can escape to safety.
However, despite its tactical use, we found that the pen actually functions well as a writing tool too. This is because it uses a standard, replaceable ink cartridge as you might find in any regular pen. Plus, it looks sharp with enough, "cool factor" that people will wonder what sort of high-end luxury pen you have ... but not in a way that will distract you or draw too much attention.
Self-Defense Pen That Looks Sharp
Some of us live in parts of the country where everyday carry is a standard practice. Others don't and that's where something like this comes into play. Frankly, the reality is the vast majority of us will never need to use a weapon in anger so a lot of attention goes into buying items that look cool that we like to have on us. For instance, I know folks who go to gun shows and are immediately attracted to military-looking rifles thinking that's the best option simply because it looks cool.
When picking a tactical pen like this though, I think it's ultimately just as important to select one that you feel comfortable carrying with you at all times. It needs to be able to write well and not be too heavy.
Otherwise, if you can't use the pen for writing ... what's the point?
A Tactical Pen With Glass Breaker Can Get You Out Of Danger
On the other hand, if all you wanted was a nice pen - there's plenty of beautiful business pens out there that simply look sharp.
With that being said though, it's doubtful that you are going to take your $500 Montblanc pen and use it to break glass, much less try to stab someone in the neck so you can escape. Even if you were forced into a situation like that, it's likely that the pen wouldn't be up to the task at hand. That means at best you now have a very expensive broken pen ... and at worse you've now pissed off your assailant and your chances for escape have just been reduced.
Unlike knives - even pocket knives, utility knives, or multi-tools that you may keep with you - the beauty of having a tactical pen is that it is the perfect self-defense weapon since it is a virtually un-restricted "Everyday Carry" EDC item.
Don't be Distracted - The Best Tactical Pens Keep Things Simple
There are a variety of tactical pens out there that feature a pen tip designed to break glass. Others have turned the simple and elegant EDC tactical pen concept into something along the lines of a Swiss Army Knife or those camping knives we used to see advertised in the back of men's magazines with everything from a bottle opener to a LED flashlight all added to the pen. While those features are cool - at the end of the day, three things need to come together to create the best tactical pen possible:
Features To Look For In The Best Tactical Pens:
- Extremely hard metal body made of aircraft aluminum or similar high-quality solid metal shaft.
- It needs to write smoothly and function as a good pen.
- The pen needs to be designed in a practical way so that it is rugged and functional, ready to be used as a self-defense weapon but doesn't look scary. While there is something to be said for the "cool factor" of some tactical pens that are on the market right now ... but in the situation where a security guard starts asking questions, you want to attract the least attention possible!
A final word about what to look for when shopping for a tactical pen. This is a defense tool, not a toy. While there's absolutely nothing wrong with simply carrying the pen around in your pocket, you'll also want to look for training materials on how to use it properly. After all, no matter how good the pen is made or what pen features it has. If you aren't prepared to use it the right way when the time comes ... well ... what's the point?