I've recently been looking at various tactical pens for my own use and carry, as well as for a future DVD. (And training videos at the Survive and Defend member site.) While I'd never call one of these my “tactical pen” to law enforcement or TSA officers, I do believe these tools have a place in a person's gear both for survival purposes and to defend oneself with. Like many items, you hope you never have to use them for that purpose, but you will be glad you have one if needed. As a bonus, you can always write with them.
Here is a review of one of Uzi's well built pens.
Tactical Pen Review
The UZI TACPEN6-BK Defender with Glass Breaker and Cuff Key is one of several tactical pens made by Uzi. It is a well built and sturdy tool that has a place in many emergency or survival kits, as well as a carry item that provides a variety of uses, including writing.
The pros of this pen by far outweigh the cons. First of all, the pen is well built and sturdy. The aircraft aluminum it is made from provides strength without added weight. The clip on the side is also sturdy, allowing you to clip this pen for carry or storage.
There are two features with this pen that are not needed very often, but if you did find yourself needing them, this pen would increase in value ten-fold. These two items are found on the end-cap. The first is the Carbide-Tip Glassbreaker. If you need to break a window, this is a pen to have. Remember, it is best to strike the window near the corner, rather than the middle if you are breaking one. If you have gloves, I also recommend wearing them when you strike the glass for safety. The second extra feature, that you don't find on most tactical pens, is the built in cuff key. (Do any other pens include a cuff key?) You unscrew the end-cap with the glassbreaker to access the cuff key. How often will you need this? I guess that depends. I've always had a handcuff key available, if not on my person, at least at my house, since high school, and I like having another one available with this pen. For those working in law enforcement and security, having an extra key could come in handy. The pen writes well, and takes Fischer Space Pen refills. This refill will be preferred by some due to the versatility the refill provides for writing.
I wouldn't call the size of the pen a pro or a con. It is what it is. Most of the tactical pens on the market, if not all, are larger than your standard Pilot or Bic pens. So they do feel different when writing with them. These pens don't fit that well in some shirt pockets either. But again, this is true with many, if not all, tactical type pens. Additionally, if one wants to defend him or herself with this pen, it is not the best for using the ice-pick grip with thumb over the cap as I and many others teach to do. The pen end, and the glassbreaker end, are both too sharp to have your thumb covering when striking something hard. I don't put this as a con because many tactical pens fall into this category. Others that have DNA catchers are the same. You just have to use a different grip if you have to defend yourself with them. And you definitely could defend yourself with this pen.
Here is the only real con I have with this pen. To retract the ink tip you have to unscrew the barrel and just a little more and the pen comes apart to refill. To be fair, I unscrewed the barrel so the ink was inside and wouldn't contact my shirt if I put it in my pocket, and then pulled on it and such and it was still sturdy. However, with it unscrewed to retract the ink tip I wouldn't want to have to deploy it in a defensive situation. I just don't like that with a couple more twists the pen would be apart. This is a minor detail depending on how you will carry the pen. If you are clipping this to the visor of your vehicle, having the pen tip out doesn't matter. So again, this is a minor con, and the pros definitely outweigh it.
The Uzi Tacpen6-BK is a solid, well made, pen with carbide-tip glass breaking end and a cuff key. It can also be used in defensive situations. If you ever need any of these, you'll be glad you have this pen handy. Recommended as an addition to your self-defense/survival gear.
The Uzi direct link is above, and you can also see these pens at amazon: