Best Tactical Pen Ultimate Guide

What is the best tactical pen?

Well to answer this question I have created a guide for you that displays all the information of the top tactical pens. This guide should help you to make the best choice for your needs, budget and features. This is a one of a kind guide that is not available anywhere else on the internet.

The analysis of the tactical pens  in the interactive chart below that follows will help you decide what the best tactical pen is best for you.

We all have our personal preferences on what style of tactical pens we want, but in an extreme situations you want the absolute best tactical pen possible, and so we’re here to help.

Ultimate Tactical pen comparison guide and key

Tactical PenPen MaterialWeight (ounces)PriceRatingLength (inches)
Gerber 31-001880 Impromptu Tactical Pen

Rugged, machined steel body with Cerakote™1.02$$4.65.6
Schrade SCPENBK Tactical Pen

CNC 6061 Aircraft grade Amluminum
Smith & Wesson Military and Police Tactical Pen

T-6061 Aircraft grade Aluminum1.6$4.26.1
Columbia River Knife and Tool Tao Pen

Precision machined 6061 Aluminum1.7$$4.35.75
Mil-Tac TDP-1

Aircraft Grade Aluminum1.2$$N/A 5.25
Colt Tactical Self Defense Defender Pen

Aircraft-grade aluminum1.7$4.26.5
Smith and Wesson SWPENMP2BK M and P 2nd Generation

T6061 Aircraft Aluminum1.4$4.75.7
Columbia River Knife and Tool Tactical Pen

Precision machined aluminum1.2$$4.86
Smith and Wesson SWPEN3BK Tactical Pen with Stylus Tip

T6061 Aircraft Aluminum1.4$4.45.5
UZI Tactical Pen 1

Aircraft Aluminium1.6$46.25
Columbia River Knife and Tool Tactical Pen - Titanium

Schrade Tactical Fountain Pen

6061 aluminum1.4$4.45.9
UZI Tacpen 6 

Finished aluminum body1.8$4.26
Surefire IV Tactical Pen

Aerospace Aluminum body1.7$$4.85.8
Tom Anderson TA-TP2BK Tactical Pen

Cnc Aluminum Construction1.6$4.55.25

Included in the matrix are 6 columns:

  • Pen brand and name/model – (click to view more details or to purchase)
  • Overall Length – full length of pen with cap on
  • Weight – pen weight in ounces
  • Pen Material – the metal used in the pen
  • Price – These are approximate prices on  These change frequently based on availability, special promotions, and more.  But generally speaking: $ = under $25, $$ = $25 to $100, $$$ = $100+
  • Rating – The average user rating on This can be very helpful in deciding if people are satisfied with their purchase.

*Click on any of the columns to sort the data to help make your decision easier

What is a tactical pen?

If you find yourself in an unexpected position what would you want at your side? Of course, a handy dandy tactical pen. A tactical pen is essentially a hidden self-defense tool. What better way to hide a defense weapon other than in plain sight. These pens are designed to act as Kubotan. A Kubotan is a close-quarter self-defense tool. One end is often blunt to be used to strike or put pressure on pressure points for pain compliance, come-alongs, etc. The other end is usually more pointed for even greater pain compliance, thrusting or glass shattering. You can take a tactical pen in most places where pens are allowed. A tactical pen gives you the advantage in situations where regular self-defense weapons such as tactical tomahawk,pepper spray, guns and tactical knives are not allowed. Since these pens are also essential writing tools most of them come with ink cartridges that are waterproof, temperature proof and can be used to write upside down and of course if you ever need to write something in space you have the fisher space ink. To everyone tactical pens are stylish writing instruments that are designed with most of the fine qualities found in a nice pen, but to you they’re more than that.



What is the difference between a tactical pen and a normal pen?

When compared to a normal pen, a tactical pen is more ruggedized and has many other uses in survival situations. Most tactical pens allow you to break glass. Some tactical pens include features such as a handcuff key and a dna catcher. They are designed to deal a lethal force on pressure points or joints. While on the other hand if you do this with a normal pen, the tip of the pen could break off, potentially causing you to injure your own hand and so rendering the pen ineffective as a weapon.

Features to consider when buying a tactical pen

1. Discreetness – You should consider if your tactical pen looks like something that your co-workers would question negatively like “Why does your pen look like a weapon?” You don’t want anyone to feel uneasy around you and look at you like you are a menace. A good tactical pen is discreet yet at the same time an effective self-defense tool.

2. Grip- When you are going to use your pen, you want to have a good grip because your hands could be sweaty, wet or dirty and no matter what you need to be able to depend on your pen. Look for good quality knurling on your tactical pen.

3. Individual features-Some pens come with a glass breaker or a handcuff key or a dna catching tip. If you work in law enforcement then it would be desirable to have a handcuff key or a dna catching tip. It depends on what extra features you want your tactical pen to include.

4. Pocket clip-When you are in a rough situation, you want your pen to be there, not lost because it fell out of your pocket. This means that you should look for a tactical pen that has a well-built pocket clip to properly secure your pen wherever you will keep it.

Review of the 5 best tactical pens

Honestly, most of the pens included above are very good choices; but there are a few that we just need to point out as our favorites.  Below you will find our top 5 picks for overall best tactical pen along with a more detailed review of each pen.

Gerber Impromptu Tactical Pen
Gerber Impromptu Tactical PenThe gerber Impromptu tactical pen is crafted with a machined stainless steel body ready to take the force of any damage you deal with it.It uses a special patented “rite-in the rain” cartridge that allows users to write in all weather conditions.Unlike most other tactical pens this comes with a clicker instead of a cap which gerber used to make it more user friendly.Additionally the pen has a steel tip that can be used to break glass.The pen is also modestly priced so don’t worry about breaking the bank on this one.You can check out the in depth reivew on this pen on my post.

SureFire IV
Surefire IV Tactical Pen
Surefire was one of the first brands to make a tactical pen.Over the years they have refined their pen and now they have made their version of the best tactical pen.The SureFire Pen IV is a sleek pen and made from high strength precision machined aerospace aluminum.It comes with a high quality schimdt ink cartridge.It is a little bit on the pricey side but it is well worth knowing that you are getting a quality pen from a quality brand.

Schrade SCPENBK Tactical Pen
Schrade Tactical Pen
The Schrade Tactical Pen retails for a more budget friendly price compared to the above pens.This pen excels on the tactical side of things with its blunt point which means it is highly effective in dealing hard blows that will surely ward of an attacker.The ridges on this pen provides a secure grip. It has a cap instead of a clicker which is a little inconvenient but that doesnt take away from its affectiveness as a “tactical” pen.

Smith and Wesson M and P 2nd generation Tactical Pen
Smith and Wesson M and P 2nd Generation Tactical Pen
Smith and Wesson is a renowed gun maker company known for their exceptional guns and they do not fail here with their tactical pens.They have a wide variety of tactical pens but the Smith and Wesson M and P 2nd Generation tactical Pen stands out among them.It is a heavy dity tactical pen that plays the part but does not look the part which in our case is a requirement.It has a very business like feel to it which makes it perfect for the ones who work office desk jobs.The pen also comes with a twist off and on cap.Unlike other tactical pens which come in the classic colours of black and grey this one comes in Brown,Black,Blue and Gray

Columbia River Knife and Tool Tactical Pen
Columbia River Knife and Tool Tactical Pen

This pen is the master in desguising its true identity:A tactical Pen.It looks just like any other pen but it still has the strength and durability you would expect from a tactical pen.It is also very light and elegant with a twist to open and close design.The CRKT logo also adds to the non tactical appearance of the pen because it is not associated with famous gun manafacturer names.It  has a tapered body that greatly improves its grip.

Your Turn

Now that you have seen our options and reviewed our top choices for the best tactical pen on the market, it’s up to you to decide which pen you think will best fit your needs, style and price range.

As you know, new tactical pens are being created all the time by new and old manufacturers.  For that reason, the comparison chart above will be updated when new tactical pens are available in the market. If you feel like we missed a superior tactical pen that needs to be included on the list, let us know in the comments below!


Written by Aaron Floyd


  1. Tabby says

    What do you think about the gerber pen ?I see that pen mentioned all the time and it looks pretty good .do you agree ?

    • Aaron Floyd says

      Thank you for bringing this pen to my attention.I never heard of it before.I will definitely check it out and maybe write an article on it.I would say CRKT Williams’ Tactical Pen is different from this one in that CRKT’s is slimmer and longer.Plus the grip looks to be better on the CRKT Williams pen.

  2. says

    I’ve always loved the heft of the Surefire pens. While I don’t own one myself, a friend has one that he carries on him all the time so I’ve gotten to play with it quite a bit. In addition to its tactical uses, it writes halfway decent too which is rare for a tac-pen.

  3. Nick says

    Thanks for the reviews. Well organized and informative. I currently own the Colt tactical pen (w/ LED, DNA catcher and glass breaker). Personally I think it’s a great pen…I’ve had it for 2 years and use it everyday (thankfully just for writing). I was thinking of buying a new tactical pen and came across the new Schrade tactical pen (SCPEN4); it comes with an emergency whistle, impact point end and ferrocerium rod and striker. Can you give me your professional opinion on it? Thank you.

  4. says

    I want to get my husband a tactical pen for Christmas gift and this would be the first one he had ever had. Which one do you think he would he most excited about? Thanks!

  5. Lukas says

    Wondering about options that include LED. It seems to be a fairly small portion of the tactical pen market, but I’m ideally looking for something durable and smooth writing, with a glass breaker tip and flashlight. Favorites?

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