Best non-gun defense against a gun?

Best non-gun defense against a gun?

This is a discussion on Best non-gun defense against a gun? within the Defensive Knives & Other Weapons forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Hi all, So, my workplace bans firearms, as many do. So for about half my waking hours I find myself without a firearm. My workplace ...

View Poll Results: What would you choose as your first option?

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  • Knife

    9 12.68%
  • Blunt weapon (baton, etc)

    10 14.08%
  • Pepper spray/gel

    15 21.13%
  • Taser

    4 5.63%
  • Fire extinguisher

    2 2.82%
  • Empty hands

    4 5.63%
  • Other

    27 38.03%
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Thread: Best non-gun defense against a gun?

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array maxwell97's Avatar
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    Best non-gun defense against a gun?

    Hi all,

    So, my workplace bans firearms, as many do. So for about half my waking hours I find myself without a firearm. My workplace is not especially violent, but the possibility is of course there, and of course the workspaces are laid out with no thought of security (i.e. escape) whatsoever. I actually would have no moral issue with carrying against policy, but there are certain concerns that make it impractical (believe me, I've tried to figure out a way).

    So, in such a situation, what would you consider to be your best option? Consider any firearms to be off-limits, as well as brass knuckles, switchblades, "sand clubs" (saps) and "slungshots" (weights swung on a cord or chain). It's silly, but that's MN law!

    My personal selection so far has been pepper spray with a six-yard advertised range, and I always have a folding knife, so that's something.


    Edit: thanks to all for great replies. There's a lot of "other," and it sounds like some of those are in favor of escape as a first option. To clarify, I agree wholeheartedly, and think that should probably be the first option even when one has a gun; but let's assume for this discussion that a gunman is between you and any avenue of escape. Unfortunately many workspaces are arranged in such a way to make this a likelihood.
    Last edited by maxwell97; March 14th, 2017 at 09:20 AM.
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    Member Array Pijo73's Avatar
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    Best i would have on a job site is my brain, second would be my bladed tools or a blunt object
    Tasers and pepper spray etc would fall under most companies "no weapons" stance
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    Member Array Goldstar225's Avatar
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    As a cop, I have access to baton, pepper spray and taser on my belt as well as empty hand and I've had occasion to use all of them over the years. There are pros and cons to each. Taser- very effective if you get both darts in but you get one shot at it. Baton - it was eventually effective but takes multiple strikes. OC spray - we use foam which is great in an enclosed environment but doesn't effect respiratory system, eyes only. You do get multiple shots with it and IME it caused resistance to either cease immediately or reduce the ability to resist in about 80% of incidents. Empty hands - never lost fight but in a few cases it was only because brother officers arrive to help out. If they had not shown up I was going to have my butt handed to me.

    On my own time I carry fox 5.3 aerosol in addition to my handgun.

    Let me edit my post since I failed to read the whole title as non-gun defense against a gun. If close to contact distance, aggressive empty hand. Otherwise, feet applied rapidly to gain distance and cover.
    Last edited by Goldstar225; March 13th, 2017 at 10:46 PM. Reason: Didn't read whole question

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    I chose fire extinguisher simply because it is something required in workspaces and must be readily available but with a bit of observation even an office will contain many objects that may be used as improvised weapons.
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    Member Array Renaldow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maxwell97 View Post
    My personal selection so far has been pepper spray with a six-yard advertised range, and I always have a folding knife, so that's something.
    I think you've likely hit upon the best choices already. I would add to that a walk through of your work, looking for environmental items that could be used if it ever came to that. As you put fire extinguisher as a voting option, I'm betting you've already done that though.
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  7. #6
    Distinguished Member Array Dave909's Avatar
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    I'd say a Taser. It can be used from range, it knocks the person down for the count for plenty of seconds and buys you time to GTFO. Going against a gun with anything that can't be ranged is going to get you shot unless you can pull off a Hollywood-type "throw the knife into the forehead" kind of move. Pepper spray can be shaken off and it can also hit people you don't want down, including your own self should the wind misbehave at just the right moment (you might not be inside the actual building at your workplace when something goes down or windows may be open).
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  8. #7
    Distinguished Member Array Dave909's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by msgt/ret View Post
    I chose fire extinguisher simply because it is something required in workspaces and must be readily available but with a bit of observation even an office will contain many objects that may be used as improvised weapons.
    It sure can be a good distraction tool. But I'm also sure you've seen what happens when a bullet hits a fully charged extinguisher. Not a lot of good when you and your co-workers are blinded and confused instead of the BG. And if the extinguisher is out of reach when the gunman is keeping you and the others squarely in their sights? One move backward and goodbye good guy. That's the problem with most workplace "weapons", they either require you to get the jump on the BG, or distract the BG, which you may find very difficult to do in many cases.
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  9. #8
    VIP Member Array maxwell97's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Goldstar225 View Post
    OC spray - we use foam which is great in an enclosed environment but doesn't effect respiratory system, eyes only. You do get multiple shots with it and IME it caused resistance to either cease immediately or reduce the ability to resist in about 80% of incidents...

    On my own time I carry fox 5.3 aerosol in addition to my handgun.

    Let me edit my post since I failed to read the whole title as non-gun defense against a gun. If close to contact distance, aggressive empty hand. Otherwise, feet applied rapidly to gain distance and cover.
    Agree on the feet! I consider those to be my first line of defense, probably before my brain.

    I want to focus on active resistance, though, as my workplace (like many, I suspect) has many areas where there would be no fast avenue of retreat, and some means of attack might be necessary, even if only to disrupt the bad guy for a few seconds. Regarding OC, my thought is that a hit to his face might suffice, as I've read that it usually has a substantial effect on vision that happens very quickly, and would hopefully make it impossible for him to shoot with any accuracy while I skedaddled. Or, if absolutely necessary, closed to contact distance.

    Given your experience with OC, would you say that idea has merit, or is it better to simply rush forward and go hands-on? Assuming that one had some knowledge of disarming techniques, which I personally would need to study more.
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    VIP Member Array Kennydale's Avatar
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    Large Very Aggressive DOG.!!!
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    Member Array Bolt_308's Avatar
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    You state that you have no moral issue with carrying against policy, and you always carry a pocket knife. In my opinion, if you can carry a pocket knife, you can carry a LCP sized pistol, or if not then an even smaller .32 or even derringer. Any of those options would be far better than the above list. As long as it is just against policy and not against the law, no job is worth your life. . .
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  12. #11
    VIP Member Array maxwell97's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bolt_308 View Post
    You state that you have no moral issue with carrying against policy, and you always carry a pocket knife. In my opinion, if you can carry a pocket knife, you can carry a LCP sized pistol, or if not then an even smaller .32 or even derringer. Any of those options would be far better than the above list. As long as it is just against policy and not against the law, no job is worth your life. . .
    I agree in principle. The problem is that my work frequently requires entry into restricted areas where I absolutely cannot carry a gun, knife, pepper spray, wallet, wedding ring or anything else. I would have to figure out a secure way to store a handgun, in the workplace, that would not be detected. So far I haven't been able to.
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  13. #12
    VIP Member Array maxwell97's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by msgt/ret View Post
    I chose fire extinguisher simply because it is something required in workspaces and must be readily available but with a bit of observation even an office will contain many objects that may be used as improvised weapons.
    Yup, I've gotten to fire fire extinguishers plenty of times (training only, fortunately), and have been impressed with the resulting cloud, and that's outdoors. I figure blasting a BG with one would screw up his plans for a bit.
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    Distinguished Member Array Dave909's Avatar
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    But again you're relying on being exactly where you need to be, when you need to be there. That's a heck of a chance to take against someone with a gun. Can you Tom Brady yourself to that extinguisher without the BG seeing you? If he sees you, can you duck the shot? (hope there are some sturdy desks, especially if they are equipped with a rifle). If I'm holding a gun on a bunch of you, and one of you moves too quickly/strangely or you try to bolt, your body is hitting the ground before your prayers hit the cloud. I know, I'm giving a whole lot of maybe unlikely scenarios. But the truth of the matter is that few places, even these days, train for active shooter scenarios. And your typical offices are not at all suitably set up for defensive positions.

    There are elevators to wait on, open cubicles, general crap blocking paths, etc. Unless you're dealing with a lone gunman and you happen to make it down the fire exit stairs while he's still holding a gun on the others, you've got problems.

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    Make do weapons that are just in or around the office - pencils, pens, hat racks, table legs, walking cans? develop a limp. Use doorways to your advantage think fatal funnel and make it work in your favor.
    This is awful to say but is one mind set of a survivor and a hard core instructor at troysgate, he says everyone he meets he goes over in his mind how he would kill them , what is available weapon wise. now he isnt nuts its just his way of staying aware and on top of his game, he is one of the nicest folks there is to train, work with or just hang out with but you would want him in your corner if something went south.
    He teaches active shooter classes and leo survival training.
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