Many people, including those in the news media, often mistakenly equate tasers and stun devices. While tasers are all stun devices all stun devices are not tasers; the two are nowhere near being equal. Here we will explain the difference between the two so you can decide which one you want for your self-defense and personal safety.
A stun gun is a handheld nonlethal self-defense weapon that is second only to pepper sprays in terms of popularity. An electrical charge that is high voltage and low amperage is conducted through two or more probes on one end of the device. The electrical charge short-circuits the body's muscular system depleting the blood sugars so there is no energy left to do harm.
A stun gun must be applied to an assailant for 3 to 5 seconds in order for the effects to take place. It is on average close to 85% effective. The effects are not long-lasting and wear off after about five or 10 minutes, which is plenty long for a victim to escape and get help. Stun devices range in cost from just below $20 up to just under $50 each.
Tasers on the other hand shoot out two electrified darts up to 15 feet away for civilian models. The darts are connected to wires that are electrified with low-voltage and high amperage which gives it its stunning near 100% takedown rate. It has been rated to be more effective than a 9 mm handgun.
It uses neural muscular incapacitation (NMI) that temporarily overrides the command and control systems of the body to impair muscular control.
They also use a "sophisticated pulse wave that utilizes a high voltage leading edge to penetrate barriers such as clothing around the body followed by a lower voltage stimulation pulse to cause NMI."
Tasers are so effective that they are used by 90% of the 18,000 law enforcement agencies in the United States and in at least 10 foreign countries. Next to pepper sprays, a taser is the primary nonlethal self-defense weapon for any law enforcement officer. How is that for an endorsement?
Tasers for civilians range in price from the low $400's up to as much as $1,000.00.
As you can see, the differences between a stun gun and a taser are enormous in just about every category from price to effectiveness to size. The one you choose may save your life but certainly will be part of your personal safety.
By James Lesney