Pepper spray - first hand opinions


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Thernlund
July 24, 2008, 01:59 PM
My lovely step-daughter asked me about pepper spray and if I thought she should have some. She has a pistol I gifted to her for HD, but she's only 19 and can't carry it out. So, of course, I said that in the absence of something else, sure. It's better than harsh language. But a knife and a bit of practice using it would be better.

She asked why. And I say, "Because I've been pepper sprayed and it didn't stop me at all."

Conversation over. She has some pepper spray ready to roll, but now also a gnarly serrated knife tucked into her purse for quick and easy access.

So... thinking about the above, I wonder who here has been pepper sprayed. And did it or would it have stopped you? Comments?

(I wasn't doing anything illegal when I got sprayed, and it wasn't LE that sprayed me.)


-T.

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Kingcreek
July 24, 2008, 02:21 PM
not all OC is created equal.
some brands are very effective almost every time.
some are marginal at thier best.
For the average not-yet-ninja young lady, GOOD OC and a little bit of training in its use is better than a knife and no training. JMHO
I've been sprayed and I've used it on the street. it works

conw
July 24, 2008, 02:22 PM
I sprayed a guy with some "dog" pepper spray that was a few years old and it caused minor discomfort.

I like my LifeAct because it sprays so hard it'd hurt even if it was not at all hot, and it goes great IWB...it's a first line of defense and it makes the BG show his hand if he's physically threatening me.

maconcop
July 24, 2008, 02:33 PM
Kingcreek is right. Not all OC is the same. I am new on the force and haven't had to use my spray, but I have been sprayed with it. And that S**T is evil.:fire::fire:
We are issued Sabre Red spray with 2,000,000 Schoville units. Make sure you pay attention to the type of OC (spray, fog, foam). We carry the spray b/c there is less that gets carried by the wind than the fog to be blown back on you, and it gives a longer range than some foams. But the spray require better aim than the fog and doesn't coat so thickly as the foam. Just weigh your options. Make sure you get a high Schoville unit rating.

NorestRDS
July 24, 2008, 02:41 PM
the spray is only as effective as the person being sprayed is unmotivated. you can fight through anything , most wont , most cant , some will .

you never warn a person , you just spray them . in the eyes , nose and mouth . suprise is 80% of the effectiveness.

if she doesnt know what kind of spray she has (ask her) its more then likely garbage . inform yourself and her about the heat levels and capsaicinoid %'s .

get her a Sabre 3 in 1 key chain . 2 million SHU pepper at .13 caps and mixed with 1% CS gas. stuff is a beast. also you get 25 shots out of the little keychain as opposed to 7-12 like every other brand. even my favorite, fox.

Thernlund
July 24, 2008, 02:52 PM
For years me and a few buddies have been eating wings that range around 3-4 million Schoville. It was harsh at first, but you get to like them after awhile.

We have sauce mix that ranks at 14 mil. Tried that stright up once on the tip of a toothpick. That was fairly rough for 45 minutes afterward.

So I'm not sure 2 mil SHU is going to do much to me. It'll likely make me blink alot, but stop? Doubt it.

If I was on crack? I probably wouldn't notice.


-T.

conw
July 24, 2008, 03:11 PM
Eating vs having it sprayed in your eyes with transfer agents is quite a bit different. Also, SHUs and all that is not a standardized, regulated unit, is it? I know we trust the ratings that Fox and Sabre etc give, but do we trust the rating that a hot sauce company gives us?

Thernlund
July 24, 2008, 03:17 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scoville_scale

Sauce vendors take it pretty seriously. But as you say..

The greatest weakness of the Scoville Organoleptic Test is its imprecision, because it relies on human subjectivity.

And eat some seriously hot wings and try to avoid rubbing your eyes in some fashion. Can't do it. :D


-T.

ZeSpectre
July 24, 2008, 03:20 PM
Pepper sprays.

I've seen a tiny "spritz" completely break up a 5 man brawl and I've seen a can emptied into a psycho's face just piss him off even more.

When they work they are a godsend but you damn well better have a good "plan B".
(which reminds me that I knew a guy with "plan B" engraved in his PR-24 (http://www.dalglobalsecurity.com/PR24.htm)...the shift supervisor was NOT amused).

MattB
July 24, 2008, 03:25 PM
I heard that you can also use hornet spray and that it is pretty nasty stuff. Some old LEO recommended it in places where pepper spray is illegal.

Thernlund
July 24, 2008, 03:27 PM
This stuff might work...

http://www.silverhook.co.uk/catalogue/sgsa1.jpg


-T.

Tom Krein
July 24, 2008, 03:38 PM
I have seen it used and treated people in the ER after it has been used on them and it was effective.

As has been said all pepper spray is not created equally. I personally like the foam. Yeah, not as much range... but DAMN!:fire:

As an aside, if you ever need to decon after using it or getting hit with it the secret is J&J Baby Shampoo. Use it liberally on skin, eyes, mouth, and nares!

Tom

armoredman
July 24, 2008, 03:44 PM
I have first hand experiance with OC. Sabre Red is seasoning in a can. We went with it because some inmate in Florida got tased after being hosed with oil based OC, like our Bodyguard LE-10. That stuff worked. But, because of that inmate ignition, we had to ditch it to use SR water based stuff. I have watched more than one inmate shake off SR with little effect.
On the other hand, I did see that guy take multiple cans of LE-10, and 4 taser shots before giving up...it's relative.

waterhouse
July 24, 2008, 04:02 PM
I've been sprayed. I rank it with cracking my tailbone as the top two worst physical experiences in my life. It was for training, and I knew it was coming. I was able to fight through it, but I did have to hold my left eye open with my left hand while making baton strikes with my right hand because I couldn't will my eyes open.

One of the things they emphasize in OC training is that spray has a different effect on everyone.

3fgburner
July 24, 2008, 04:20 PM
... SHUs and all that is not a standardized, regulated unit, is it? I know we trust the ratings that Fox and Sabre etc give, but do we trust the rating that a hot sauce company gives us?

Scoville Heat Units are subjective, in the sense that they're based on a group of 5 or more people tasting something. Pure, 100% oleoresin capsicum liquid is around 16 million SHU.

Essentially, the Scoville number is how many time you have to dilute x-measure of whatever hot stuff with water, until it can't be tasted. For instance, jalapenos are usually around 5,000 SHU. That means that if you throw 1 cc of jalapeno flesh in a blender with 5 liters of water, the resulting solution probably won't taste hot to most people.

At 2,000,000 SHU, it would take approximately 2 (metric) tons of water to dilute 1 cc of pepper spray to undetectability.

I've got some red habaneros, that are probably offspring of an affair with a Scotch Bonnet, rather than an actual Savina mutation. I'm guessing that they're probably somewhere between the 300,000 SHU of a normal orange Habanero, and the 500,000 SHU of a Savina. Anyway, they've been breeding true for me for about 5-6 years.

I split, de-seeded, and oven-dried my '06, or maybe '05 crop. Consider chili, on a 10 scale. Let's say that on a 10 scale, canned Hormel chili is a 0 or 1, medium-hot is 5, and 10 is "HOLY ******** MY TONGUE IS BURNED OFF OW OW OW ::CHUG 5 GAL OF BEER::". One of those oven-dried, 2 or 3 year old half peppers will jack a crockpot of chili up from a 5 to somewhere around 7.

rklessdriver
July 24, 2008, 10:20 PM
I have some "first hand" experience.

Back in 1999 I got out of the Marine Corps (the 1st time) and decided to go through Basic Law Enforcement Training for the state of NC.

Part of the course, in order to get your NC Law Enforcement Officer certification was to get sprayed with OC.

I don't rember the brand they used. I know it is the same stuff the Palmico Co Sheriffs Dept. issues their deputies as that is who administered the test.

It was not fun. I did not enjoy it one bit. In fact out of the 20 people in my my class, no one found it even mildly amusing. We had to stand at "Parade Rest" while he let off a burst of OC right across the bridge of your nose. I was the 3rd or 4th person in line, so I had the oportunity to watch 3 or 4 people roll around on the ground and cry like little girls before I got mine. The burning sensation is very intense on the skin and takes set in about 1.5 seconds. I couldn't see (of course he scored a direct hit in both of my eyes) after about 2 seconds. It hurt worse to open my eyes, felt like a fire on my cheeks and eyelids. Breathing through my nose was impossible after about 5-6 seconds. I was able to remain standing althou I was pissed off and cussing like only a Marine can. After about 15-20 seconds of feeling the "effects" the instructors allowed us to wash our face off with a cold water hose. It took about 30 mins before I could see clearly, but my nose was still running bad enough I had to breath through my mouth for the rest of the day. A mild heat wave engulfed my skin for about a couple of days afterwards.

Now... in a life and death situation with all my adrenilin pumping I don't know how much better I would fare. Do what you have to do... like not get sprayed with OC in the first place. I hope I never have to find out.

It's also a different world trying to hit a moving, aggressive person with OC as cleanly as he did us that day. Since that day I have seen quite a few people (public and "guest of the county") sprayed. Some were immeadiatly down, while others still fought hard. I believe the latter is due to the OC not getting in the eyes or nose.
Will

theken206
July 24, 2008, 10:38 PM
"not all OC is created equal.
some brands are very effective almost every time.
some are marginal at thier best."

"the spray is only as effective as the person being sprayed is unmotivated. you can fight through anything , most wont , most cant , some will ."

"you never warn a person , you just spray them . in the eyes , nose and mouth . suprise is 80% of the effectiveness."

some years ago, {well by my standards lol} another young man blasted me out of no where with a facefull of some what i assume was standard cheap pepper spray.

Not the same evil stuff I one filled a kitchen with and ran threw on purpose when I was 6.

For the initial blast it pretty much took alot of the fight right out of me. If he would have pressed the attack I wouldnt doubt he would have kicked my butt.

He expected it to be a fight stopper, I went forward and just got my hands on him as he got trapped between a wall and a door. Wild hockey fight like punches and a broken nose insued.

If it wasnt for the blood and the fact I was still standing it would have been hard to tell who was worse for ware. I was complianing as much as he was and man did my throat burn.

I then procceded to rinse the stuff all over me in the shower and agitate my skin.

Funderb
July 24, 2008, 10:48 PM
I've been sprayed with both, and brake/carb cleaner is worse.

Kingcreek
July 25, 2008, 02:00 PM
a good face hit of quality OC is like bobbing for french fries.
(not original- I stole it from cohiba)
I carry Fox Labs

waterhouse
July 25, 2008, 02:12 PM
a good face hit of quality OC is like bobbing for french fries.

Our instructor said his favorite quote from years of spraying students was "I imagine that's what it's like if the devil pees on your face."

brent376
July 26, 2008, 08:52 PM
If you want a good OC spray I would go with Sabre Red. It has 1.33% Major Capsaicinoids. I like the Law Enforcement models that fire a cone spray. There was an article in the portland paper about how ineffective their current spray First Defense is. The Portland Police said that they wanted to switch to Sabre Red because it was much more effective and faster acting.

What ever brand you buy dont get the little key ring units. You want a minimum of 1.5 ounces of spray.

JShirley
July 27, 2008, 01:48 AM
a knife and a bit of practice using it would be better

I like knives and always carry one unless going through metal detectors.

I believe pepper gas works much better as a defensive tool. I can take a lot of pain, but when I was sprayed, I was extremely frightened I would not be able to breathe. I did my best to move as little as possible for 20 minutes or so.

John

theken206
July 27, 2008, 01:58 AM
"I did my best to move as little as possible for 20 minutes or so."

my walk home REALLY sucked and rinsing the stuff all over me in the shower wasnt very cool either

mokin
July 27, 2008, 02:38 AM
I experienced the "fallout" of some bear spray once while camping. I was downwind when the spray was deployed and I "sensed" it on the sweaty parts of my body before I fully felt it in my eyes or nose. I was probably 10 yards away and it had dispersed a little but was still a fairly distuinguishable cloud when it caught me. I was very "uncomfortable" afterward but it was managable. It reminded me a lot of the CS exercises military. As such, I agree with the folks who say that all sprays are not equal and that suprise is a large factor in the success of the defense. I fully believe that if I was in a position to be sprayed and expected it, I could deal with it. I sometimes carry spray but only as a distraction rather than a solution... and I pay real close attention to the direction the wind is blowing.

AWMP
July 27, 2008, 03:18 AM
Sabre Red, we get sprayed with it (mandatory) to qualify to carry it and then have to fight our way through several "stations", it is never never fun.
Trick to a quicker recovery, whole milk, it works.
Thought about getting the wife Kimbers Lifeact, but still waiting to hear more about it.

coyotehitman
July 27, 2008, 03:58 AM
Fox= hotter than hell
Bodyguard= liquid fire

Pick your poison. I have only had one person out of many, many, people that did not immediately cease their behavior and begin nursing their eyes.

I like the spray/cone pattern, I do not like the foam. If you are considering the foam, take a can of silly string and try to put a well placed shot in the face of someone moving around and wrestling with you.

un_lucky
July 27, 2008, 01:55 PM
I've worked in a prison for about eight years and have used gallons of the stuff. I think any defense spray should be used to make you tactic (run away or kick his but) easier, but if used without a plan these sprays will let you down. ALL OF THEM.

33-805
July 27, 2008, 04:08 PM
I got sprayed in training and it worked for me. You could have pretty much done whatever you wanted to with me for at least a couple minutes. I think people react differently too. Current mental status, drug status, rage etc. may all play a role in this.

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