View Full Version : Home Defense Set-Up
April 6, 2009, 09:11 PM
I am trying to assemble a home defense plan for myself. I've never really sat down to put a plan 'on paper' so to speak. But recent things have put it closer to the front burner. And not the news, because alarmist media shouldn't be a reason to do anything. It's more that it's been on my doorstep, almost literally; rapid gunshot-like noises in the neighborhood outside last week, and then the police down the street for a bit.
So, to come to the point; I'll try to give as much detail as possible. I'm in an apartment on the second floor. Front door, one way in out, one way out. I'm not worried about the windows, because a.) second floor apartment, and b.) horizontally-opening windows; I don't think anyone could get through them even if they wanted to. Security doors downstairs. It's not a small apartment, but the hallway leading to the bedroom is sort of cramped. More or less a rifle or shotgun is ruled out, even with a pistolgrip, stockless set-up on a shotgun, and can't have a folder/collapsible riflestock in NY. I've got a good selection for pistols; my CS9 jumps up at me, because it's more compact, and since it's my one of my two primary CCW selections, I'm very familiar with it.
One thing I want to figure out is a place to store it I can quickly get to it. No kids, and no one really goes in the bedroom but my fiancee and I. The idea I like best is getting a kydex or nylon holster and mounting it to the wall side of the bed so it would out of sight; have nice wide flat posts that are almost just asking for a holster to be attached, lol. Anyone use a setup like this, and how well does it work for you?
I've also a Scorpion LED flashlight, with the "tactical" push switch on the rear of the light that I used to use for work that is going to find it's way in with the pistol.
Any input is appreciated :)
April 6, 2009, 09:52 PM
First thing I'd recommend is probably also the cheapest... get a fire escape ladder... one of the First Alert ladders in a box things (check Amazon.com). This will serve you well not just for escaping from a BG but also for escaping from a fire.
Second thing -- keep a phone nearby -- regular phone setup as well as a cell phone. For calling for help. For me, this is the wife's job while I grab a gun (or two).
Lastly, there are mounts like you described that you can buy and attach a holster to. Often these are sold as vehicle/furniture mounts. Alternatively, you can get a gunvault quick access safe. Both of these items are sold at www.natchezss.com. I found they had the best price on the gunvault's that I could find (I bought mine from them). Even after practicing with my gunvault, I don't think it's as fast as I would like. With a child in the house, it's still the only thing I could negotiate with the wife. An added layer here may be to CARRY IN A HOLSTER while you are at home -- this is often the best recommendation if you don't have really little kids (I don't care what anyone says, I'm not carrying around a weapon (holstered or not) while I play with my 1 year old -- he's likely to yank it out, even if from a level 3 holster) and don't forget to remove it when you go outside. At night, you could then move it to your fixed gunholder or put it in a safe.
That covers a few ideas for INSIDE the house. Further preventative measures would include mounting floodlights with motion activation sensors outside your home, but that may not be a choice for a renter. My backyard area has these and they light up like daylight if someone approaches. Not too bright to be uncomfortable for someone who is supposed to be there, but bright enough to scare away the cockroaches, if you know what I mean.
April 6, 2009, 11:50 PM
jgoo1, perfect,insightful to the point,love the ladder idea.
April 7, 2009, 12:03 AM
JG you sound like my deceased brother, but that's good he was a Fire Marshal.
April 7, 2009, 02:15 AM
The NRA Basic Personal Protection In The Home Course teaches the basic knowledge, skills, and attitude essential to the safe and efficient use of a handgun for protection of self and family, and to provide information on the law-abiding individual’s right to self-defense. This is an eight-hour course. Students should expect to shoot approximately 100 rounds of ammunition. Students will learn basic defensive shooting skills, strategies for home safety and responding to a violent confrontation, firearms and the law, how to choose a handgun for self-defense, and continued opportunities for skill development. Students will receive the NRA Guide to the Basics of Personal Protection In The Home handbook, NRA Gun Safety Rules brochure, the Winchester/NRA Marksmanship Qualification booklet, course completion certificate, and Lesson Plan (print 10-06).
The NRA Basic Personal Protection In The Home Course participants must be law abiding, adults (at least 21 years old), and experienced shooters (shooters able to show mastery of the basic skills of safe gun handling, shooting a group, zeroing the firearm, and cleaning the firearm) to maximize what can be learned from this course. Proof of shooting experience can be one of the following: NRA Basic Pistol Course Certificate, NRA FIRST Steps Course Certificate, NRA pistol competitive shooting qualification card, military DD 214 with pistol qualification, or passing the Pre-Course Assessment.
And if no one near you is teaching that class, see http://materials.nrahq.org/go/product.aspx?productid=ES%2026840 and/or http://www.nrastore.com/nra/Product.aspx?productid=PB+01781 .
April 7, 2009, 07:51 PM
Other components of a defence plan:
Neighbors-are they on board? Will residents of your building call the police? Do you know them? Is there a neighborhood watch?
Locks-deadbolts? If not, why not?
Alarm-if you can't put a full system in, what about the magnet pull sirens you can get at WallyWorld or any hardware store?
There are other considerations, but I digress.
Finally, and most importantly, get out of New York. Go live somewhere where they will let you use your firearms. Just don't come to Florida...we're full.:eek:
April 7, 2009, 09:09 PM
Neighbors-Mostly senior citizens. But given the response time of the police when things go bang in the night, someone's pretty on the spot with 911 usually.
Deadbolt-Yes, on every night
Alarm-Dunno; can look into
Dog- Not allowed by apartment rules
Out of NY-Tell me something I don't know :p Working on it
April 9, 2009, 02:14 AM
Everyone is so concerned with firearms choice.
Possibly because this is a firearms site...
April 9, 2009, 03:44 AM
+1 on the fire-escape ladder. Keeping it handy near the window (or against the side wall of the closet) means you can escape a fire easier OR someone trying to break in the door.
+1 on keeping a cellphone charging in the bedroom at night instead of in the kitchen or living room area.
Alarms: In an apartment you can't usually make a permanent installation. You can, however, use portable units to "cover the bases".
More expensive units can include an optional monitoring service, such as Lasershield (http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?product_id=0290019) does. Or you can purchase door/window alarms that are simple inexpensive "screamers" that attach to windows and doors. These are especially good for folks who like to sleep with windows partially open. First Alert (http://www.tvoverstocks.com/first_alert_alarm_system.html) has them packaged in groups of four for less than $13.99 most places.
Putting these local alarms on windows is best done with a piece of velcro (tape or dots) for the small magnet unit so you can position it to however far open the window should be at night (recommended no more than 14"). If there is a 2nd floor balcony, never presume your window/glass door is still safe from intrusion.
Extras: At a hardware store, buy appropriate sized wood screws at least 3" long and replace the striker plate screws for both the door knob and deadbolt. These longer screws will make it tougher to break the door jamb by kicking it in. Adding a brass or steel reinforcement plate around the lock sets prevents the door from cracking apart at the mounting holes.
Remote lighting: Look at wireless remote lighting switches. Plug at least one lamp into a unit so that you can activate a light in the front rooms from the bedroom. It will help illuminate the front of the apartment and surprise an intruder. It may also give you shadows to see where his is.
You mentioned a downstairs security door. The presumption is that this secures access to the hallways and apartment doors. In truth, it only slows down illegal intruders and they often have little trouble gaining access. Some of those door latches are excessively worn and easy to jimmy. In reality, it only reduces the chances that someone will show up unannounced.
As to your plan(s).... With no kids it's pretty simple.
Defend from the master bedroom.
Width of the hallway is not a factor for a shotgun since you should hold up in the bedroom. You have to decide if there's adequate room and positioning to fire down the hallway from the door without exposing most of your body.
Install a locking door knob on your bedroom door. Even though most interior doors are hollow-core to save money. A stealthy intruder will try to turn the knob first, alerting you to their presence.
If someone enters and your door is closed & locked, your focus is on their only way in. When the door is attacked, they have breached one barrier and will breach the second one. At 10-12 ft, shotgun patterns will still be fairly small (12" or less perhaps) but powerful, even from a 20ga.
Be aware of the layout of your neighbor's apartment if possible. For example, if you share a common wall with your neighbor's bedroom, you want to avoid shooting in that direction if possible. Sheetrock is not much of an deterrent to projectiles.
Depending upon the capacity of your pistol(s) and shotgun(s), I'd want the ability to reload at least once to be "handy" (i.e. nightstand drawer on the side where you'll be positioned).
April 9, 2009, 08:49 AM
BillCA: Remote lighting: Look at wireless remote lighting switches. Plug at least one lamp into a unit so that you can activate a light in the front rooms from the bedroom. It will help illuminate the front of the apartment and surprise an intruder. It may also give you shadows to see where his is.
Yep, this is a great idea. Check out my blog on GT.
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