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Old January 7, 2010, 05:22 PM   #26
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All security have the same objective.

You can look at security in layers. You determine the amount of time of your response ie. Police, security or yourself. Then you have physical barriers do give the response time to arrive or for yourself to evacuate to a safe room or get to your firearm. As I said in another thread the most effective way to reduce crime is CPDED. Lighting cut shrubs down around for a clear view of observation. A light color building is better for detection and a lock on your mail box and mail picked up. A safe room is always nice to have as well. In Rome they used Geese that would act as a alarm. A small dog that barks is great to give you a warming. Counter survaillance should be used to determine if your being targeting and vary your routs so your not so predictable. Again lighting for observation is cheep and bad guys don't like them. In fact studies have found that areas that had high crime activity when the area was lit up the criminals would relocate.
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Old January 9, 2010, 08:00 AM   #27
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My cellar door has a bar across it as well as my cellar windows. They have anchors in the cement with 3/8 bolts so if they need to be removed no problem, the door has 3/8 studs anchored with easily removable nuts. I rely on my dogs and arms in living quarters. Large dogs are one of the best alarm and are great deterrent's.

We just had a case here in N.H. where 4 sicko's hacked a mother to death with a machete and stabbed her, they tried to kill her 10 or 11 years old daughter, but she played dead. They had targeted the house up the road, but they heard a dog barking inside and decided to pick the next house down. That is why I LOVE my 100lb dog with no sense of humor
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Old January 9, 2010, 08:33 AM   #28
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Many have suggested this in countless other threads but carrying when you're home is probably the best thing you could do. I've also installed security cameras that record over my network to an off-site computer. This way there is no way they can retrieve any device that's hidden. (Or make you retrieve it.)
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Old January 9, 2010, 08:56 AM   #29
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Sadly.. If a burgler decides he's going to break into your home... He's going in. The best we can do is put enough obsticals in his path to make it more trouble than it's worth. Most criminals tend to be lazy, and will take the path of least resistance. IMHO Alarms are good, but not a deterent to many Burgler's. They know the response time of police and security, and set that as their search time perameters. Dogs are the best individual deterent in my opinion. Second to that is a neighborhood watch. Nosey neighbors are the best deterent, and the best chance of the perpetrator getting caught.
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Old January 9, 2010, 01:52 PM   #30
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Ever considered the tear gas spray alarm that they advertise in SGN? I have thought about getting one to try. Supposed to fill a room with gas when tripped. They are cheap too.
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Old January 9, 2010, 02:15 PM   #31
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No dogs? Just put all your valuables on the porch...

I feel my dogs are front line ...they will know before you will and will react faster ...can flat out run/catch any human and will have to be dealt with before you can deal with me...plenty of time for me to draw and fire...2 GSD will demand your will I

But since you don't want dogs then good locks ,Video ,alarm and sirens,motion lights and those driveway chimes are cheap and work great...A few Beware of Dog signs wouldn't cost much...
All I want to do is live in peace...for that I'm willing to die

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Old January 29, 2010, 08:22 PM   #32
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I am a firm believer in having deterents that will hopefully keep me from having to confront a bad guy and have to shoot someone.
We have a good home security video system (visable to anyone on our property) and a wondrful doggie that has good ears and loves to let us know
something is loitering around our property.
Today, it seems that the drastic times means drastic measures.
People are going off the deep end when they get fired or get divorced or whatever. And everyone owns a weapon so I read every day that a normal
citizen blows people away or a druggie shoots someone for a $20.00 bag of dope. It is crazy.
I have the means to protect my family and I hope I will never use them.
However, everyone must be ready to do so. It is a reality today.
Just keep up on going to the range a few times a year, know your weapon,
keep them safe from the family members that don't understand (grandkids, etc) and hopefully you will die an old age of natural causes and never have to
use leathal force to stop the ugliness that is coming for sure.
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Old January 29, 2010, 08:36 PM   #33
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I have some very expensive measures to harden my house.

But I also have some easy and cheap measures that, while low tech, do a great job. Rebar lengths into eyebolts across all important doors. Simple cheap $1 alarms on all important doors and windows. Did all of my windows/doors for under $20. Brace important doors with boards braced against an opposite wall/stairwell, etc.
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Old February 2, 2010, 06:14 PM   #34
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Home Security Ideas

We live on nine acres in the country, but on a busy blacktop road. Last year we completely redid our 24 year old security system. I helped design the new system, and I am quite pleased with it. Although I am retired and home the majority of the time, my concern was when we are sleeping. We have two large Fort Knox safes for valuables. We have a black lab. We have an alarm buried near the gate that sounds if anyone pulls into the driveway. I do want to add surveillance cameras, but I want wireless ones that are inside the home. The only ones that would meet my needs are extremely expensive, so that part is on hold. We have a lot of inexpensive sodium lights on the house and barn. We have flood lights on motion detectors on each corner of the house. I sleep with a .45 pistol next to me. We have long screws in the plates on all of the door locks, and peepholes on all exterior doors. We have the nine acres fenced with barb wire, and the driveway gate is on an electric opener, and an intercom at the gate. Just a few ideas to consider. If anyone can think of something I missed, I would appreciate their input.
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Old February 3, 2010, 09:41 AM   #35
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I do want to add surveillance cameras, but I want wireless ones that are inside the home.
KSDeputy, . . . a couple of days ago, had reason to get some "stuff" at Radio Shack. While I was there, . . . looked at their security camera / recorder thingys.

They have a DVR and camera setup that can get started for (if I remember correctly) about $75 each. Up to 3 more cameras can be added to the system, . . . whichever camera comes on, . . . it copies to the DVR until the input is gone.

Cameras are motion activated, . . . and can be wired or wireless.

I really think I'll be more inclined to mount cameras "out" from the house, . . . so what they capture shows what the perp does "outside" the house, . . . whether it is vandalism, trespassing, or B&E. I have 10 acres, . . . no fence to speak of, . . . and it is pretty "wide open" so to speak.

Got to get my "devious" tin foil hat on to figure where to put em. That hat helped me light up the front yard and it backlights anyone / anything inside a 160 degree arc. I mounted 2 lights pointing up my flagpole to the flag, . . . using 2 PAR floods. The front yard ain't LaGuardia lit up, . . . but even a black cat is visible out there on the darkest of nights.

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Old February 3, 2010, 09:50 AM   #36
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A few years ago I took a class which was held at one of the class member's homes. We spent about an hour outside the house, looking for problems --and we found tons. A pile of storage boxes high enough to allow a criminal to vault to the porch roof and access the children's bedrooms. A ring of bushes surrounding an electrical box right next to the garage door, a perfect hiding place for BGs. Bushes against windows, high enough to obscure at attempt to get into windows. Large areas outside which could NOT be illuminated with existing lighting. flimsy locks on all doors. Everyone in the class was amazed at the problems, which this guy and his wife had never noticed. We also worked on scenarios for defending the children in case of intruders, lessons to teach the kids, etc. As soon as I got home I did the same inspection of my house, and made a number of changes to better the liklihood that we would survive any home invasion. Look at the outside of your own house -- see any of the same problems?
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Old February 3, 2010, 06:01 PM   #37
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Everyone speaks of a big dog. Don’t belittle the little dogs. A toy poodle is a great alarm system. I know because we had one. She learned when to bark and when all was just a normal going on. Best alarm system we ever had.

So if a big dog is a large problem you might find the short answer to be a small one.
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Old February 3, 2010, 06:47 PM   #38
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The best way to harden your home is with security screen doors that have a deadbolt. These doors open outwards so it will be a tough time kicking it in. In my opinion, they are stronger then the actual housedoor. Before getting a weapon or any kind of security system, get these. The only way anyone is getting into your house is through a window with these doors in place.

Then the next thing to plan on is slowing the advance of intruders once they are in the house. Motion sensors that set of lights and alarms will do the trick. A centralized professional alarm system along with sensors and panic switches in your room and by the entrance doors is the best way. When you go to sleep at night, you set the alarm system. Believe me, when this is set then you feel totally safe. If anyone opens up a door, window or goes through one of the rooms then something is going to trip.

The last step is your bedroom door which you should place a deadbolt. Your bedroom door should be stronger and of heavier gauge then the regular house door. A door knob alarm will do the trick. Most people will try to open the door first before kicking it in thereby setting off the alarm. You should put one of those bars across the door as scene in a previous picture on the thread.

Another thing to consider is motion sensors on all lights by entranceways and on flood lights that cover open fields and driveways. If you are an intruder then suddenly a halogen flood light comes on, then you are probably going to reconsider. The house is no longer an easy target with the lights on.

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Old February 3, 2010, 07:10 PM   #39
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My dad's business partner told me a story one time.

In a 10 mile radius every house had been broken into except his. So naturally they came by to see if he was the one doing the break ins. When they pulled up he was in his front yard and as they were walking to the fence a nice big rot and a bigger german shepherd came running barking their heads off. They told him why they were there and never mind they got their answer of why they hadn't been broken into.
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Old February 3, 2010, 07:20 PM   #40
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I allways thought that connecting motion sensors to a recording of a shotgun being chambered would make for good fun. Set it on a timer from midnight to early AM.

That sound is universaly known and understood as a "danger Will Robinson" moment. Even if you don't know much about guns you'll get the picutre.

Seriously though -- I think not having a lot of plants trees close to the house that can be used as cover and ample lighting with some motion sensor lights plus a few of the others listed before is all you can realistically due before you venture into the rediculous.
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Old February 11, 2010, 10:00 PM   #41
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I have a dead bolt on my door, all my windows lock and i have a 120 pound doberman than that is a well trained guard dog/best friend. I live in more of a rural area, so im not dreadfully worried about 2 legged critters but the 4 legged ones have been more trouble recently. There isnt another house for miles nor any children to lock up guns for so i literally have at least 1 gun in every single room in my house, Plus my more expensive pieces in my gun room on display but with loaded magazines nearby. So if they (BGs) want to drive way out into the boonies, bust down my door, windows ect. Get through my vicious/lovely "Daughter", as well as my collection shotguns, rifles and handguns. I dare them to try!!!!
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Old February 11, 2010, 11:59 PM   #42
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Best advice I can give is the motion detector security lights. They work great where I am now. One of mine is a standard porch light, the other 3 are double-floods. Very cheap insurance. My new house is going to get a bunch of them on my next trip. It already has the locks changed and Master security bars where needed. I also have a lot of security equipment laying around collecting dust, like limit switches and alarms. They will be put to use in the new place. The driveway alarm that Dwight mentioned is also a must; I've already looked at those. And, I've been wanting to see a decent security camera/DVR setup that wasn't going to break the bank. I've looked at a few, but I'm definitely going to check out the one he mentioned. (Thanks, Dwight!) Strange, but the place I'm moving to, I doubt most people even lock their doors. What can I say, I'm a kid from Detroit. Nothing's going to change for me, except maybe I can relax a little more.
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Old February 12, 2010, 12:41 AM   #43
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Ok so at Home Depot there are vibration sensitive alarms that stick to the inside of your windows. I think they are like 12 bucks a piece. I put one on every window. I also stuck them on the inside of the exterior doors so if someone was trying to beat it down it would go off. Then from the same company they had door specific alarms that would go off if the door opened. <--- these were like 20 bucks. They all have a simple switch and they work. You will be alerted when you will need your gun. I find this method of alarm system much better than a standard service.

I leave the window ones on and turn the door ones on when im inside.
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Old February 12, 2010, 05:31 AM   #44
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wireless cameras are great,i have them front and back that attach to any tv for broadcast and are hidden inside bird houses on the outside. Smile your being recorded. In this day and age you better have a few options or get caught with your pants down. Ive said this many times befor but if your dealing with gangbangers they come in the size of herds. cameras, alarms good watch dog and a 12 ga shotgun,with pistol stock attached,huge deterrence,along with a .40 s&w glock.
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Old February 28, 2010, 08:31 PM   #45
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"Pistol on my nightstand..."

OK. What happens if you're not in bed when some BG's kick the door? I carry at home or, at least, have one within reach. 2 big dogs, too, that I love and are great security. But they're not for everybody and they are a PITA at times.

Lots of good tips here, but stay armed.

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Old February 28, 2010, 10:23 PM   #46
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When I was talking to some friends about getting an alarm system my best friend of over 20 years said " you probably have a system that when someone breaks in it wakes you up and hands you a gun" I thought that was pretty amusing.

As someone mentioned above if they are determined to get in they will so my advice is to make it as big a pain in the butt as you can to bust in and have a security system to alert you and the police if they do get in. A system that has a setting that arms everything minus the motion sensors for when you are at home is great. If someone gets in chances are they will not risk going through your house once an alarm goes off and I much rather someone break in and be scared off then to have to confront them. Unless you have something that is making them focus attantion on you other then another target all you really need to do is make your place less attractive then everyone else. If there are other houses around you with no dog, alarm, lights etc chances are they will pick an easier target.
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Old February 28, 2010, 10:44 PM   #47
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Here is one that is very effective but a little extreme. If you have wooden fence around your yard, you can take single edged razor blades, line the sharp edge just slightly (so you can't see it easily from the other side) above the top of the fence and staple gun them into place. If anyone tries to leap over that fence they won't be too happy. However, if the neighbor kids climb on it ot you put your hands on it when talking to your neighbor, you'll get cut up really bad. Plus when they rust they add the joy of tetanus.

A dog, even a small one, is more observant and sounds off way sooner than anything from ADT.

A yard sign such as this helps too.
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Old February 28, 2010, 11:40 PM   #48
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Great thread!

There seem to be alot of physical barrier and prevention ideas. I would guess that phycological planning is just as critical. I'm thinking along the lines of 'fire drills' at work or school, where you have a standard action plan
- do you have a safe room with a solid door, weapon, disposable cell phone?
- numbers for who you call first & second, etc.
- ...
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Old March 1, 2010, 01:02 AM   #49
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Take a moment to think about what tells a thug that your house is not going to be easy to get into.

  • Well lit at night with or without motion sensor lights.
  • Neat, low trimmed shrubs near the house that don't block visibility to or from the street.
  • Broad expanse of open space between the street & house. No hiding areas or view blocking.
  • Housepaint that is a light color to contrast anyone in dark clothing.
  • Illuminated walkways and driveways (even if it's just the solar lights).
  • Wide angle large diameter peepholes on doors, front, rear and to the garage.
  • Beware of Dog signs on fences and gates.
  • Lock gates to the back yard.
  • Use a wireless intercom to a remote front (or rear) gate.
  • Pea gravel walkways on the side of the house with low thorny shrubs (Pyracantha work nicely).
  • Motion sensors in the back and sides of the house attached to flood lights.
  • Padlock your exterior circuit breaker panels and/or phone boxes. Cover exposed phone wire with conduit or metal coverings screwed into the wall.
  • In suburban/urban areas, use an alarm horn outside for your "panic" button to wake up the neighbors.
If you have a hedge of somekind, keep it trimmed low and trim the bottom of the hedge up from the ground so you can see motion if someone hides behind it.

If deterrence fails, your next layer of security is

Alarms and alert devices
  • Dogs, peacocks, geese all make noise when strangers approach their territory.
  • The driveway alarms Glenn mentioned are photobeam units that can be used elsewhere. Walkways, side yards, across the back yard at angles, inside the garage and/or shop. Select different alarm sounds for each location.
  • If you have basement windows or window wells, the driveway alarms can cover these areas too.
  • CCTV systems are getting cheaper. IR cameras cost more, but don't need light sources. Have lots of acreage? Mount one on a pole with a tv-antenna rotor for 360 coverage. For front door coverage, mount under the porch to cover as much of the porch & front yard as you can to reveal anyone hiding out of sight of a peephole.
  • A monitored central alarm system if you can afford it. If not, simple battery powered alarms on each window and door.
  • In multistory homes, you may not hear the battery alarms in the basement or far reaches of the house. Secure basement doors from inside the house with a bar across the door. Or use another driveway alarm inside the house to alert you.
  • Alarm your garage door and keep it locked. If you have an electric opener insert a bar or pin in the roll-up tracks to prevent the door opening.

Delaying techniques
  • Harden the front door & windows against attack.
  • Doors should use 3-3.5" screws on door jamb hinges & strike plates. Use steel hardware, not brass. For double-doors, use dead-throw bolts that sink at least 3/4" into wood or concrete.
  • Replace door locks & deadbolts with Medico® brand locks (you can't bump-pick them).
  • If your front door has contour panels with thin wood panels, keep the look but prevent break throughs. Lay the door down and trowel concrete in the depressions inside the door. Let dry. Cover with a 1/4" veneer panel and repaint.
  • Apply shatter-resistant film to front windows or install polycarbonate covers inside.
  • Door bars as previously illustrated prevent kicking in the doors. Don't forget the back doors!
  • Sliding glass doors - install security pins in the tracks to prevent lifting them out. Cover the glass with shatter-resistant film.
  • Wood fences can often allow access to a lower rooftop and thus the 2nd floor (or skylight). Drive nails into the top of the fence with 1" sticking up. Cut off at an angle with a grinder.
  • For multistory homes, put a child safety gate at the top of the stairs and close it at night. Force them to delay getting up the stairs.

Inside Tactics
  • Install night lights around the house to minimize dark spots when other lighting is off. Shadows and backlighting will help you locate, ID and aim.
  • If you can, use X-10 modules or remote light controls to allow you an "all lights on" switch to illuminate non-bedroom areas.
  • Have a family plan. Practice it with everyone.
  • Keep a cellphone & charger in the master bedroom in case phone wires are cut.
  • Replace at least master bedroom door with a solid door and reinforce the locks, screws & hardware.
  • Identify the best position(s) in response to each point of entry (alarm).
  • Make a large-loop keyring holding house keys. Attach to it a Cyalume light stick in it's wrapper. If police arrive while suspects may still be inside or downstairs, activate the light and toss it out a window to the police (while advising the dispatcher on the phone).
  • Maintain a bright "tactical" flashlight (Xenon bulbs preferred) to illuminate potential targets and/or blind them with glare.

Got Fence?
A friend in the country has a 240 acre spread. Some of the fenceline is far away and in the dark at night. He's building solar powered battery boxes connected to a photo beam that will guard the fence line. When tripped it will turn on strings of white LED Christmas lights for 10 minutes to back light anyone crossing the fence. He's already made one for his driveway gate with the lights facing outside the fence.

Apartments & Rentals
You can't extensively install systems, but the battery powered alarm units are usually loud enough in an apartment, condo or townhome. A simple 2x4 long enough to wedge under the door knob and brace against an opposite wall will delay kick-ins.
BillCA in CA (Unfortunately)
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Old March 1, 2010, 01:06 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by EdInk
Here is one that is very effective but a little extreme. If you have wooden fence around your yard, you can take single edged razor blades, line the sharp edge just slightly (so you can't see it easily from the other side) above the top of the fence and staple gun them into place. If anyone tries to leap over that fence they won't be too happy. However, if the neighbor kids climb on it ot you put your hands on it when talking to your neighbor, you'll get cut up really bad. Plus when they rust they add the joy of tetanus
You have to be really careful doing this kind of thing. Many states have laws against "deadly traps" or devices designed to maim indiscriminately. You can also be civilly liable if there are no warning signs. If the fence is shared between neighbors the odds of a civil suit increase dramatically if you didn't get them to agree in writing beforehand.
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