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Defense Spray- Basic Questions

2794 Views 21 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  KC135
I'm considering purchasing defense spray from Fox Labs for my wife and I. I know nothing about these products including how to correctly / incorrectly carry or use them. Fox Lab products are offered in several canister sizes and sprays, ( stream, mist, foam) along with cop top units (?) or spring loaded flip top.

Those of you who have been trained in the use of defense sprays, would you provided some insight on the proper and most effective use or any do's or don'ts. Basic question that come to mind are: what if there is a light breeze blowing towards you - who will get more of the spray the bg or you? I've heard these sprays should not be used indoors especially hospitals because the spray could be sucked into the ventilation unit and be distributed through out the office / building. How much spray is normally used? Is the 2oz a one spot canister?

I have no idea on what to tell my wife regarding how to properly carry or use the spray except point and spray. Any comment, suggestions or recommendation would be appricated.
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1) Foam is better than mist spray- far less likely to come back on you.

2) Very limited range, literally almost knife-fighting distance. (10 yds is generally considered the "max".)

3) Be ready to escalate your force application, not everyone will be incapacitated/dissuaded by OC/CS.

4) Use it as long as you can, but you should be breaking contact (RUNNING!), or drawing something more decisive, if the agressor does anything other than turn and run from you.

5) OC/CS is not a "threat", don't warn, etc.. Have it in hand, verbally challenge (have a phrase in mind, "Backoff, man...", whatever, don't warn that you have spray, unless you are immediately prepared to escalate). Use as needed. Some instructors will tell you to challenge, and I understand the reasons for that. To me that is a situational assessment, and in general, negates the effectiveness of the spray by reducing the surprise.
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Each delivery method has it's own advantages and disadvantages. To say one is better than the other is uninformed.

The circumstance will have a good deal to do with the effectiveness of the product. Example, if person is wearing wraparound glasses popular today, foam may not be effective, while gas or droplet stream may be.

Foam is much easier to clean up, but can also be thrown back at you. As noted , any spray can get into the HVAC system.

Basic classes are taught in many areas, suggest you find one.

Fox IMO is the best, and I carry 4oz stream Fox. Was an OC instructor for some years..but do to my age dropped certification.

Oh...aiming point should be high chest with stream or droplet stream.

PS..effect will not be immediate, effect on EDPs, drugies, drunks, is marginal or doubtful..effectiveness in general will run about 75 to 80 percent.

Spray and move quickly away, off line of you opponents movement if possible. You do not want to be where he/she last saw you!!!!
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KC - a 4oz like yours - any info on total duration of spray??

Sounds like a lot but not sure how quick the stuff gets ejected.
P95Carry said:
KC - a 4oz like yours - any info on total duration of spray??

Sounds like a lot but not sure how quick the stuff gets ejected.
If you mean duration of product constant spraying, no idea. If you mean duration of effect, it depends on product. Fox with high SHU value will persist.

I tested some very old stuff, guess about 12 to 15 years. Did take a taste, and did check to see that it sprayed well. No problems. That is not to say I would carry any that old.
KC135 said:
Each delivery method has it's own advantages and disadvantages.

Spray and move quickly away, off line of you opponents movement if possible. You do not want to be where he/she last saw you!!!!
State correctional facility yard, EMS "public event stand-bys", and living in KS/OK has left me with a few prejudices! :biggrin: Its very irritating to me (despite a diet rich in habaneros, jalapenos, rojas, etc..), and rather than chance getting it on me, with the spray, I'd go to blunt-force. But you are right, be sure to weigh the pros and cons of each, foam has just been more situationally suited to me. And definitely bug out/away ASAP!

As far as duration, I've "treated" a bouncer who had a can of OC dumped down the front of his pants by a genteel young lady, reluctant to leave a club. :chairshot He was somewhat incapacitated about 3 hours later. He could certainly move, but was rather distracted. :eek:
OC Spray

I don't carry often but keep handy a OC spray from Guard Aklaska , a 9 0z. size with a thumb removable safety key. This spray has one of the highest percentages of OC, 20% compared to the smaller 'purse or pocket sized' cans and even more potent than most all LEO carries. This one is supposed to deter even grizzlies ! It has an ingredient which opens skin pores and removes protective mucous from the eyes and nose to really 'sink in ' ! Here is a clip from the manufacturers descrip. :
In any aerosol product, there are three components; The active ingredient, the carrier or base, and the propellant. In pepper spray the active ingredient is capsaicin, not oleoresin capsicum(OC). The total capsaicin in a pepper spray can be thought of in the same manner as the octane rating in gasoline. It is in reality the qualitative strength rating of pepper spray. In the past, Schoville Heat Units (SHU's) was a rating used as a marketing ploy to sell pepper sprays. SHU's are determined by a taste test and are not recognized by the E.P.A. or any laboratory in the industry because of their obvious inaccuracy.
A pepper spray that reads 10%, 15% or 20% tells the consumer that, by volume, the formula contains that respective percent of OC. The percent of OC does not tell the consumer the qualitative strength of the active ingredient -- capsaicin. The A.O.A.C. method for testing oleoresin capsicum is the only method recognized worldwide. The three capsinoids that make up the percent of total capsaicin are the following: Capsaicin(%C); Dihydro-capsaicin(%DHC); and Nordihydrocapsaicin(%NDC).

The carrier/base is also a significantly important, integrated part of the pepper spray. Historically, distilled water, vegetable oil or mineral oil has been used as a carrier for pepper sprays. It is well known that water is the antidote to capsaicin. Those pepper sprays using distilled water as their carrier are usually priced very low and found to be ineffective. Animals, as like humans, possess oils and fatty tissues on their skin to protect them from burns and damage caused by the suns harmful UV rays. Vegetable and mineral oil do nothing more than add additional protection to the skin and mucous membranes, thus reducing the overall effectiveness or the active ingredient, capsaicin. It is also known that capsaicin can be destroyed by the suns UV rays within a period of 48 hours, leaving nothing more than the carrier, be it vegetable oil or mineral oil, which alone attracts all bear species.

The last component of pepper spray is the propellant. The propellant's sole purpose is to dispense both the active ingredient and the carrier. The propellant should be an environmentally safe ingredient that does not contain flammable or ozone depleting substances.

In our research, we at McNeil River Enterprises, Inc., Manufacturer of Guard Alaska© Personal Protection Systems, have found that capsaicin alone will not deter an aggressive animal attack or human assailant. Guard Alaska products are unique from all other pepper sprays. Instead of the conventional carriers used, our products contain a carrier/base that removes the protective oils from the skin and mucous membranes, and actually opens the pores of the skin, allowing the active ingredient -- capsaicin to penetrate, thus increasing its overall effectiveness. Our carrier has a greater density than that of water, thus allowing it to displace water. This is a desirable trait for use when the animal or human assailant is wet from rain or other causes.
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Kentucky....not to seem confrontational, but I have heard the whole thing before, and while is is nice ad copy, I'll stick with product I know works well.

Your company has been claiming to be the end all in defensive spray for some time, I'll pass.

You carry what you wish.
Interesting info Kentucky - I was unaware of the distinctions.

KC thanks - I was actually thinking not so much of the duration of effect as just how long a 4oz would continue to eject until empty. Thus perhaps - how ''far it would go'' in time terms, if it was needed for more than one burst.
P95, I may be all wet...but for some reason 30 1/2 second bursts seems to stick in my mind. Bursts need to be short, and PRN.
Thx again KC - that sounds ''well useful: :wink:
KC135 said:
Kentucky....not to seem confrontational, but I have heard the whole thing before, and while is is nice ad copy, I'll stick with product I know works well.

Your company has been claiming to be the end all in defensive spray for some time, I'll pass.

You carry what you wish.
No offense taken but if I have a choice of 20% over 10-11%, I'll take the big one !
I have no affiliation with Guard Alaska but do have some first hand experience with it. Myself and a group of friends were at an observation point watching a large Brown female with a cub fishing for salmon in the McNeil River.
One of our guys standing about 100 ft from us was charged (whether it was to be a bluff or a real charge ) by the bear. When it was 30-40 ft away, he let go with his spray and when the bear got within maybe 25 ft, was hit full on with the shotgun pattern of the spray. It stopped almost on a dime, reared up, roared and hi-tailed it down to the water and ran downstream. If it stopped that size animal , I think that's what I would want if I had to use it on a good sized BG !
Thanks for the good responses guys.

I'm getting the imperssion you want to know how long a container will last under use or perhaps more than one use?

To the more than one use, try weighing the container when you buy it. It should say right on it how much it has inside in Fl oz. after it's uses, weigh it again. Keep in mind that some of the weight is propellant.

As for the steady use........

Personally, I'd try the manufacturers website two and test one myself.

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How many cold blooded attackers & different situations do you want one $15.00/$19.00 can of OC Spray to last through?
If you...or a Loved One or Beloved Family Member uses it only one time & it fends off a possible violent attack...treat yourselves to a fresh can.
I know I would go buy a fresh one.
Agreed QK - and thx Mike - of course - weigh it!!

I was in fact more thinking not so much of re-use after one episode - more just how long one 4 oz might last with near continuous use against multiple attackers for instance. Would One OC be enough let's say.
I think so.

The key is to hit them in the forehead, a 2 second burst usually is all that is needed. No sense using any more than that. Spray, take a couple of steps back and leftward.

Leftward..because most people that cant see will strike out with their right hand while stepping to their right while using their left to rub their eyes. Its an automatic response. :eek:

thats a "trade secret"...dont tell anyone I told ya... :wink:

The little Fox Labs keychain units are great.
A decent volume of material but, of course for a much shorter period of time.
The big advantage is that you have a unit right in hand with your keys...walking through maybe a dimly lit parking lot.
I bought a ton of them (25) since I am such a total chump...I give them away to people I like.
I never give them away to people I don't like because...they might squirt me in the face with it. :biggrin:
I use Fox myself. It works great on dogs. Last summer I went through 2 cans in three months.
Best aiming point and hitting point is high chest. Remember, the head moves independent of the body.
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