A tactical pen is more than a simple writing implement. In the right hands, a tactical pen can be used as a self-defense weapon and an emergency survival tool. (h/t to PreppersWill.com)
Take note that in some states, there are limitations on Everyday Carry (EDC) kit tools. You may need to improvise if you need access to a self-defense weapon, so choosing your tactical pen can affect your chances of survival when SHTF.
More than just a writing tool
Several years ago, some knife manufacturing companies realized that consumers need concealable tools that can also be used for self-defense. This is how the tactical pen market developed, and now these companies are offering this discreet tool to preppers.
A tactical pen is a writing instrument that you can use as a normal pen, with one or more special features.
The tactical aspect of this kind of pen comes from its construction:
- An all-metal body that is designed for striking an opponent.
- A flat end where you can place your thumb to prevent it from slipping in your hand.
- A pointed end so it can be used to break glass during an emergency.
- It must be long enough, with both ends extending at least half an inch past the edge of your closed hand.
Tactical pen categories
Before you buy a tactical pen, familiarize yourself with these three main categories so you can decide on a tool that suits your prepping needs.
Concealed use tactical pens
Concealed use tactical pens can be used at the office because they don’t look very tactical. They’re inconspicuous and suitable for EDC kits. While concealed use pens aren’t actually designed as tactical pens, they share similar features with one.
On-the-go use tactical pens
On-the-go use tactical pens tend to stand out because they’re designed for preppers. Most pens in this category are available in flat black or dark gray. An all-metal body is mandatory for these pens and they are heavier than concealed use varieties.
A field use tactical pen has grooves machined into the barrel or body to give you a good grip. These pens will have either one or two pointed ends that are specifically used for striking or partial penetration.
Some on-the-go pens have a cover to conceal the pen point. Others may have a pull or screw-type caps mechanism to reveal the pen point. These points can be used for striking.
On-the-go tactical pens tend to be longer compared to normal pens and they may stick out of your pocket. These pens are sturdy since they’re made from hard metals, and you can use them in the field without any problems.
Multi-use tactical pens
A multi-use tactical pen has additional features besides the two main ones: writing and fighting.
Depending on the brand, some multi-use tactical pens incorporate survival features such as:
- A DNA collection tip
- Fire-starting material (e.g., matches)
- Handcuff keys
- An LED light
- A small blade/knife
When buying a tactical pen, consider the features of pens from the three main categories above and avoid a pen that:
- Has an industrial look with striking details.
- Has extremely pointed ends that make it look like a weapon.
- Is flashy or very tactical-looking.
- Is too heavy for your EDC kit.
Tactical pen brands to consider
If you’re not sure what kind of tactical pen to get, here are some brands to consider.
- Gerber Impromptu Tactical Pen – This pen has a rugged, machined steel body and a stainless steel pocket clip. This pen has a glass-breaker, but it’s more expensive compared to the other tactical pens.
- Modkin Tactical Pen Survival Kit – This multi-use tool is a four-in-one high-quality aluminum alloy tactical pen that comes with a bottle opener, a flat head screwdriver, an LED flashlight, and a tungsten steel tip glass breaker. The pen has a hidden switch that turns on the LED flashlight which has a 12-lumen intensity that can last for about 10 hours. The pen can also be used in case of an emergency if you need to break glass or windows. The grip part of the pen has a diamond-thread design so you don’t drop the pen when you’re fighting off attackers. This pen is suitable for preppers who often go on outdoor trips. (Related: Here’s why you should carry a tactical flashlight, and tips on how to use it.)
- Uzi Tactical Pen Self-defense Tool (Uzi TP1-01) – You can keep this durable pen in your car since it also comes with a glass breaker. The Uzi TP1-01 is often used by First Responders, Marines, military pilots, Navy SEALs, and SWAT because it can withstand the elements. Made from aircraft grade aluminum, this pen has a diamond thread grip. It’s also discreet enough to be carried in your briefcase or pocket. The sleek-looking Uzi TP1-01 is an ergonomically designed and light-weight pen.
Keep these tips in mind when choosing a tactical pen for your EDC kit so you’re always ready when disaster strikes.