Protip: Don’t Buy Stun Guns

Non-TASER stun guns like this one are essentially worthless for self-defense. They do make really handy “spark plugs” for igniting the fuel of a potato gun, but that’s about it. Oh, they also look really, really scary.
They can only be used at up-close-and-personal distances, can be easily wrested away from the holder, and don’t penetrate clothing very well.
They do not incapacitate an attacker. Instead, they feel like someone is pinching you quite hard in that area. That’s it.
How might I know this? Well, a friend of mine has such a stun gun that he uses for, not surprisingly, igniting his potato gun. At a small party this evening, some of the more intoxicated individuals decided it would be fun to shock each other. They also insisted that I, as a former military guy, should try it out as well as I’d “be able to handle it”. I originally declined, but eventually succumbed to peer pressure (mostly because I knew I could write this post afterward) and agreed. (Note to self: perhaps I should avoid situations that, if they made the newspaper, would have the phrase “alcohol was a factor”, even if I’ve only had two beers over a few hours.)
Even while being shocked, I was able to move in such a way that broke contact with the stun gun. There were no lasting effects — as soon as the contact was broken, the pain stopped. If I were an actual attacker, I would be able to continue my attack without any issues.
Actual TASERs are quite effective, even against determined attackers, though you only get one shot before needing to reload.
Jacketed hollowpoints tend to send get the “leave me alone” message across loud and clear, and most magazines come with a suitable amount of ammo in case you miss.
In short: if you’re going to buy some product for self-defense, make sure it’ll work. Basic stun guns don’t do that. They look scary as all hell, but they’re woefully ineffective.

2 thoughts on “Protip: Don’t Buy Stun Guns”

  1. If by “succumbed to peer pressure” you mean “was forcibly subdued by three or four large men,” then yes, that’s a great account. I was a few feet away and had a rather entertaining vantage point. Spot on analysis, though. After being involuntarily shocked myself, I was a lot more enraged than hurt. It faded in a minute, and at the height of pain, it was no more uncomfortable than being poked with a dull stick.

  2. Heh i remember this event quite well. I too decided to try out the stun-gun on myself. Apart from the slight pain and marks on my stomach it did nothing more than irritate me. It is a much better ignition source than self-defense weapon.

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