Impressions

Weighing an impressive 34 ounces, it is noticeably heavier than ordinary geriatric canes and most so-called combat canes on the market, but not so heavy that it is burdensome to carry.

A few practice strikes on a heavy bag quickly confirmed that the TDI Cane hits hard and transfers energy into its target exceptionally well without reverberation or kickback. Although it might be argued that it is somewhat heavy for people with very limited physical strength, remember that wielding a cane—any cane—may be just as inappropriate for folks with those limitations. If you are strong enough to swing a cane as a weapon, you’d want to be swinging this one.

The girth of the shaft and strategically placed knurling ensure a secure grip and make controlling the cane very easy. In my preferred ready position, the knurling provides a positive index for both hands without being too abrasive.

The crook of the TDI Cane also reflects careful thought, offering a curve that is generous enough for large hands and hooking tactics without being excessive. Its angled tip helps snag “hookable” body parts and provides an edge that focuses impact and pressure extremely well without turning the cane into a war hammer.

Torture Test

I supported the cane’s ends on pieces of wood and stood on the middle of the shaft with 200 pounds of body weight. It didn’t budge. I also put it through its paces with repeated full-power strikes on a padded target with no signs of bending or wear.

The best definition of a defensive cane is one that offers all the attributes of a purpose-designed weapon without actually looking like one. The TDI/KA-BAR Cane hits that mark extremely well. MSRP is $100. For more visit Tactical Defense Institute at tdiohio.com or KA-BAR at kabar.com.

Zap Attack

Despite its many advantages as a personal-defense tool, the cane also has one inherent shortcoming: If you actually need to use it to achieve mobility, you may not have the strength and balance to wield it as a weapon. That presumes, of course, that we’re talking about a conventional cane applied as an impact weapon. What if instead the cane had additional defensive functions—like maybe a one million-volt stun gun—built into it? Then you’d have a very unique self-defense weapon known as the Zap Walking Cane.

Designed specifically to meet the needs of those with limited physical capabilities, the Zap Cane is at first glance a rather ordinary-looking T-handled walking stick. Closer inspection reveals that the front of the handle includes a built-in flashlight powered by multiple LEDs. Activated by a switch just below the handle, the light illuminates several feet in front of the user, ensuring that he or she can safely negotiate the terrain. Flipping that same switch in the opposite direction activates a small LED below the handle, as well as a powerful stun gun engineered into the lower end of the cane. Like smaller hand-held stun guns, it is designed to deliver a debilitating high-voltage electric current to an attacker to either discourage him or disable him completely.

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