It’s not often that new trends emerge in the self defense products arena. The mini stun gun craze continues but is rather old hat by now. Today almost all self defense devices are rechargeable, relegating replaceable battery styles to a niche. So what’s really new?
There is quite a bit, actually. A whole new category has sprung out, seemingly out of nowhere and is poised to dominate the industry. It’s the stun gun flashlight which combines both features in one. They are shaped like a tactical flashlight with a smoothly flared head and a very purposeful overall shape. The flashlight is generated by LEDs at the head. And with names like Touchdown, Security Guard and Police Force, they sell partly on their names alone. We count six models in the marketplace at present. Six months ago there was one.
Take for example, let’s examine the SWSG4000R model by Streetwise. Dubbed the Security Guard 4,000,000 Stun Flashlight Rechargeable, the model is the smallest of its type at 6 inches in length. It looks more like the typical mini Mag Lite®. The SWSG4000R isn’t made of metal but it does feature a rubberized shell that gives it a solid feel and secure grip. It’s rechargeable and includes a belt loop holster like all flashlight stun guns. The stun spark goes across the recessed flashlight head via its two electrodes. It’s activated separately from the stun effect.
The Streetwise SWSG6000R is stronger and larger than the SWSG4000R model at a length of 11 inches. The head is longer and shows several metal strips along the side. These are energized when the stun gun is activated so if the attacker attempts to grab it from you, he’s get a shock. This model also has a loud alarm mode making it multi-purpose.
Although Streetwise has introduced more of these type devices than any other maker, Safety Technology, the other dominant maker, has not been standing still. In fact, their large FL-LG stun flashlight has been a mainstay for the last couple years. Feeling the heat perhaps, they recently introduced a newly designed version. While the old one was 200,000 volts, 16.5 inches long and needed replaceable batteries, the new one improves on those specs. This model combines a stun gun function, 150 db alarm with a steady red light, a bright LED flash light, an LED red flash light and a LED red flashing light for signaling. It’s 15.5 inches long and includes a shoulder strap. And, oh yes, it’s rechargeable now.
You might wonder how these devices differ from stun batons which have been around for quite some time. It’s a matter of design. Stun batons typically have an even circumference from end to end and may or may not have a flashlight. The stun flashlight, on the other hand, looks like a flashlight and IS a flashlight. It’s just one that has a stun gun feature built in.
To me, in actual use these flashlight stun guns are confidence inspiring because of the cylindrical shape compared to the omnipresent thin and small rectangular styles. You probe straight ahead with these so it’s more of a “thrust and stun” device. That’s the best and most secure position if you need to use the stun gun with force. Although there are only a handful of these items now, we expect many more in the future.