COMPARISON TABLE OF THE BEST TACTICAL PEN OPTIONS
The table below compares 10 of the best tactical pen options available. To see any of the pens below on Amazon.com, simply click on the pen’s image to take you to that pen’s product page.
What is the best tactical pen?When you want to be able to protect yourself, you unfortunately cannot always carry a gun or self-defence knife with you. For that reason a lot of folks like to have other self-defence weapons that they carry with them all the time, but that is also not a burden to carry with them. Once such option is a tactical pen. Tactical pens are small, light and you can carry it with you wherever you go. As most people would not even notice if it was a tactical pen vs a regular pen, you won’t get those awkward stares like you might sometimes get when you open carry a gun.
Quick Tips For Choosing The Best Tactical Pen
Before we get into what the best tactical pen is, we first need to understand what one should look for when choosing the best tactical pen for your needs.
Materials – As a tactical pen is designed to be used in a combat/self-defence situation, it needs to be made out of sturdy materials that can handle high impacts. The best tactical pen options are usually made from a metal, such as aircraft grade Aluminum or very hard polymers.
Grip – Much like a knife, you will be handling the tactical pen in your hand as a stabbing device in a combat situation. For that reason it needs to have a good grip that will not slip in your hand when being handled.
Pen – It might be a self-defence weapon, but it will be serving you as a writing utensil on a daily basis. We recommend getting a pen that has refillable ink cartridges.
Extra features – To be even more “tacticool”, some of the best tactical pen options have some nifty extra features. Such features include hidden handcuff keys, a fire-starter, glass breaker or even a DNA catching scoop!
6 Top Tactical Pens
Below we look at 6 of the best tactical pen options available. We consider construction quality, usability and the overall look and feel of pens.
Smith and Wesson SWPEN3S Tactical Pen with Stylus Tip
The first pen on our list of the best tactical pen options comes from Smith & Wesson. It measures in with a length of 5.7 inches, weighs approximately 1.4 ounces, and is made from T6061 Aircraft Aluminum. It uses Schmidt P900M Parker style black ball point pen refill.
If you are someone who is a bit tech-savvy, this pen might appeal to you as it has a tip that can also be used as a stylus on touch screen devices. A rubber O-ring helps keep the cap in place when you use it as a stylus, which is great as we hate it when things wobble around loosely! It is probably a bit of a thick point for a stylus, so do not expect too much from it. The cap itself is a bit thin…not the sturdiest around, and in a confusing emergency situation where you will have to defend yourself you never know which end you might have to use!
The pen looks really nice with it silver finish and will fit in any situation, from using it at home or at the office. Besides the thin cap, the construction quality of the pen is overall pretty good and should not let you down. There is a clip on the pen so you attach it to your pocket, however we think such a clip could affect your grip if you had to hold the pen in a self-defensive manner. If the cap is attached to the back of the pen, that won’t be too much of a problem…but you won’t necessarily have time to take the cap off the pen and put it on the back in an emergency situation.
Schrade SCPENBK Tactical Pen
This pen from Schrade measures in at 5.7 inches, weighs approximately 1.6 ounces and is made from CNC machined 6061 aircraft Aluminum. It uses Hauser Parker ball point pen cartridges.
There are not a lot of super fancy features to this pen, and that is because this pen is designed to be a “hide in plain sight” type of self-defence weapon. It looks like an ordinary pen, but is a bit heavier than a normal pen and the Aluminum construction makes it hard enough to use as a weapon in striking an attacker.
We like that the pen is ready for use as a weapon immediately. I.e. you do not have to unscrew a cap first or anything. The cap of the pen is flat at the back to provide your thumb with enough surface support so that you can exert more force when stabbing with the pen at your attacker. The fact that the striking end of the pen is a solid point (rather than the writing tip of the pen) makes the pen a lot more sturdy when striking at something
When you want to write with the pen you simply unscrew the cap to reveal the pen point. The Hauser Parker ball point pen will provide quality writing performance in most environments.
Similar to the Smith & Wesson, this tactical pen has a pocket clip. We would generally prefer a pen without a pocket clip to ensure the clip does not gouge into our hands when used in a combat/self-defence situation. While the pen does not have the extra features that some of the other pens have, it is definitely one of the best tactical pen options available.
Columbia River Knife and Tool TPENWK Williams Tactical Pen
The best tactical pen has to be discreet and not look like a dangerous weapon. Similar to the Schrader pen, the pen from Columbia River Knife and Tool is a “hide in plain sight” self-defence weapon, which should not raise too much suspicion from others. The pen measures in at 6 inches in length, weighs approximately 1.2 ounces and is made from 6061 aircraft Aluminum with a hard coat color anodizing.
It boasts a non-reflective tactical finish…but really that is more a marketing ploy than something that will necessarily be important for everyday carry to the average user. It looks really good though with its futuristic tapered styling and smooth lines. We like that it provides decent grip with the grooves in the body of the pen and the flat top at the back of the cap for your thumb.
This pen also has a sharp point at the back of the pen that will be the main weapon of attack that you will use in a self-defence situation. This allows you to be able to use the pen immediately as weapon and not have to unscrew the cap first. Every second can count when you are in a life and death situation!
If you want a nice looking slim pen that is not as heavy as some of the other pens, then this pen from CRKT might be the best tactical pen for your needs.
Gerber 31-001880 Impromptu Tactical Pen
Gerber is well known as a knife maker, but they make one of the best tactical pen options available! This pen is one of the shorter pens on our list of the best tactical pen options measuring a length of 5 inches and weighing approximately 1.02 ounces (although we believe it is actually more like 2+ ounces). Different to the other pens on our list, it is not made from Aluminum but rather made from Steel (which would explain why it has a bit heftier feel than the other pens). This pen uses “Rite in the Rain” ink cartridge, which is designed to allow you to write in any weather conditions…or even upside down!
An additional tactical feature that this pen has is the glass-breaker made from tempered steel. It sits right next to the writing point of the pen, so should provide for a sturdy stabbing point if you had to use the pen in that fashion. The protruding glass-breaker point will hamper the pen’s ability to hide in plain sight though, so keep that in mind when passing through security checks. Overall the glass-breaker point is placed in such a way that it won’t interfere with writing. The pen is a click pen rather than a screw pen, so it makes the pen a lot more user-friendly for folks who have to write a lot with it throughout the day (having to unscrew the cap each time can be cumbersome and the cap tends to get lost after a while)
With a lot of grooves in the body the pen, there should be plenty of grip to be able to hold onto this pen when you need to! We are not so sure about the black finish though, it might look a bit shabby after some scratches from daily wear and tear. While a tactical pen is a self-defence weapon, we still would like the best tactical pen to look good throughout its lifetime.
Under Control Tactical Pen
If you are looking for the Swiss Army Knife of tactical pens, then this pen from Under Control Tactical is probably the best tactical pen for you! This thing has A LOT of features! It includes a DNA catcher, glass breaker and a LED flashlight! It measures in at 6.5 inches in length, weighs approximately 1.6 ounces and is constructed from Aluminum.
This pen does not have a sharp point for stabbing your attacked like other pens on our list have, but rather you attack them using the crowned end of the pen that is also the DNA catcher. It is intended that this way you also get your attacker’s DNA for later identification. They also put the LED flashlight on this end. The flashlight is not super bright, so do not expect a light that can temporarily blind your attacker like a proper tactical flashlight might. The opposite end of the pen is the writing side of the pen.
The pen uses standard refills, so you should be able to buy refills at most stores that sell writing utensils.
User comments for this tactical pen is generally positive with users commenting that they are happy with the build quality of the pen and that it generally does a decent job at writing.
UZI UZI-TACPEN6-GM Aircraft Aluminum Defender Tactical Pen
This UZI pen does not have as many features as the pen from Under Control Tactical, but it does have glass breaker and built-in handcuff key. The pen measures in with a length of 6 inches, weighs approximately 1.6 ounces and is made from Aluminum. Th pen is compatible with standard and Fischer Space Pen refills. The pen is a twist pen, rather than a click pen.
The pen has a lot of textured surface for grip, but it might be too textured! The rough surface might damage your pocket or whatever you keep the pen in.
The stabbing point is also the writing/pen point, which means the pen point will likely be damaged if you were to use it in a combat scenario. Some users also noted that the glass breaker tip can be a bit wobbly if the handcuff key is not properly screwed in, and that the glass breaker tip tends to get lost if it comes undone. The secret handcuff key should be compatible with most professional handcuffs.
There are mixed comments from users on this pen. Quite few users complained that the pen is actually quite bulky and that the build quality is not quite what one would look for in one of the best tactical pen options. It is a bit cheaper than the Schrade and S&W options…but not much. We would probably rather opt for one of them.
So which tactical pen d we think is the best tactical pen?
There are not a whole lot between the best tactical pen options. They are all made from Aluminum and provide similar capabilities as a weapon. So which pen do we think is the best tactical pen? Let us recap.
The Smith & Wesson tactical pen looks good and has the added feature of being a stylus for your touch pad devices, which the other pens do not offer. It provides decent grip, however to use it as a weapon you would first need to unscrew the cap before using it, which could cost you valuable time!
The Schrade tactical pen is a straight forward tactical pen with no fancy features. It is a hide in plain sight weapon. The pen has a somewhat blunt stabbing point, but this is likely to cause maximum pain and damage to an attacker while also being very sturdy. The flat back of the cap provides a surface for your thumb so you can produce maximum force.
The CRKT tactical knife looks really good with its tapered lines, while the grooves in the body should provide for good grip. Similar to the Schrade, the back of the pen is the stabbing point. However the CRKT pen has a much sharper point.
The Gerber pen is a hefty pen made from Steel rather than Aluminum. Being a click pen, it makes it very user-friendly for people who need to use their pen a lot for writing throughout the day. It has a glass-breaker tip that protrudes out and sits next to the writing point. The glass-breaker point probably limits the pen’s hide in plain sight ability though, so be careful when going through any form of security check with it.
The Under Control Tactical pen has a lot of features…perhaps more than a tactical should really have. The DNA catcher also doubles as the stabbing point of the pen, which is not going to be as sharp as any of the other tactical pens, but should still inflict pain and damage to an attacker….just perhaps not as much as you would like.
The UZI tactical pen has some nice features, like a glass breaker and handcuff key. However the writing point is also the stabbing point, which might affect the sturdiness of the pen if used as a weapon. The quality of the pen is perhaps not quite as good as some of the other tactical pen options. The rough texture of the pen is also likely to irritate you and damage your pocket.
Which pen would we choose?
There definitely are some great tactical pens out there, but if we have to choose a tactical pen today to carry everyday as a self-defence weapon and as a writing utensil we would choose the CRKT pen as the best tactical pen. It looks really good, provides good grip and the sharp point will be a very effective weapon in a self-defence scenario. It is the most expensive pen on our list of the best tactical pen options, however it is only marginally more expensive than the other pens.
What Do You Think – What Is The Best Tactical Pen?
What do you think of the tactical pens that we discussed above? Do you think there are tactical pens that are better and deserve to be called the best tactical pen? We would love to hear your thoughts on the subject of what the best tactical pen is, so please share your thoughts in the comments section below.