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TorqueNut
TorqueNut New Reader
1/6/10 9:15 a.m.

Drat,

I came home yesterday to find my front door bashed in and sure enough we had a break-in. My wife and I have been planning on putting in security system but apparently we were not fast enough.

The Police Officer who wrote the report said off the record he would not recommend going with a subscription service, just get something that makes a lot of noise when it goes off. That's good because that is what I was originally thinking of anyway. In doing some casual research I was hoping to find a DIY book on installing your own security system but there is nothing I could find on Amazon. I'm assuming that is because the technology changes every 6 months.

There are a ton of websites out there. Does anyone have any recommendations on equipment and/or websites I should check out? I would like to have some system where I can add sensors and potentially cameras and it would be great it I can hook it up to my network so that it will text my phone when an 'event' is recorded.

Thanks.

alex
alex Dork
1/6/10 9:20 a.m.

I'm watching this one. We have a bare-bones system in my house that I'd like to supplement (including getting the garage on the system) but I really don't like the security company prices.

I'm betting we have just the guys here to make the right recommendations.

RX Reven'
RX Reven' Reader
1/6/10 9:30 a.m.

Just steal a security sign from one of your neighbors’ yards, install the casing for a Pan-Tilt-Zoom camera, rig up a blinky light system out of Radio Shack parts, and one last thing, be sure to get one of these:

Grtechguy
Grtechguy SuperDork
1/6/10 9:39 a.m.

nothing better than a pissed off dog

foxtrapper
foxtrapper SuperDork
1/6/10 9:40 a.m.

Motion lights up under the eaves of the roof, all around the house. Not only do they light up icky people, but they make visible walking for you at night quite nice. Up high so they can't easily be swatted and knocked off. Use the metal box type with the halogen bulb because they don't break easily. Use quite a few of them, all around the house and property.

You can buy remote sensors for doors that join a central box dirt cheap at places like Walmart. As in like $10. Use that as the main trigger for the sirens. You and your significant other have to use the remote before entering the house.

Mount the siren (and perhaps a strobe) outside, aimed at the neighbors, or at least the street. I'd suggest more than one siren, of different types. Maximize the cacophony.

Dogs in general are wonderful for security.

Surveillance cameras have become cheap. Problem usually is recording. Tie it to PC though. You can also have dummy cameras.

Unacceptable to many is to make your house so trashy and icky that thieves and vandals simply pass you by.

bigbrainonbrad
bigbrainonbrad New Reader
1/6/10 9:42 a.m.

Off Topic, could you have found a more scary picture of a shepherd. My grandparents used to breed them so I have a huge soft spot for those dogs. It is amazing how they can tell if someone is welcome or not, but at the same time can let little kids tug on their ears and tail, poke at em, etc and remain as docile and kind as can be. Short of the dog from Man's Best Friend (anyone remember that one?) you couldn't ask for a better security dog (imho). Back to the topic.

Autolex
Autolex HalfDork
1/6/10 9:43 a.m.

Striker reinforcing plates work excellently, as well as steel door frames (assuming the door is getting replaced). I would just rig up some cheapie survelliance cameras to a TV in card on an old computer (HIDDEN) somewhere in the house.

Big Angry Dogs work wonders. :)

Keith
Keith SuperDork
1/6/10 9:44 a.m.

I agree - motion lights. Miscreants don't appreciate a sudden spotlight. I've read that they're much more effective at stopping vandalism than always-on lights. Plus they're really nice to have when you're moving around the house at night. We have a bunch on our house for that reason.

My sister in law lives in a crappy part of town. They never lock their doors - because they have a monstrous yellow lab that sounds like Cererbus when you walk up to the house.

Gearheadotaku
Gearheadotaku HalfDork
1/6/10 9:59 a.m.

Loudest fire alarm you can find. Something like in the movies when the nuke reactor is melting down. So loud you can only cover your ears and run. 130+db. Throw in some mega bright strobes to confuse and blind your 'guests'.

skruffy
skruffy Dork
1/6/10 10:04 a.m.
bigbrainonbrad wrote: Off Topic, could you have found a more scary picture of a shepherd. My grandparents used to breed them so I have a huge soft spot for those dogs. It is amazing how they can tell if someone is welcome or not, but at the same time can let little kids tug on their ears and tail, poke at em, etc and remain as docile and kind as can be. Short of the dog from Man's Best Friend (anyone remember that one?) you couldn't ask for a better security dog (imho). Back to the topic.

What a less scary GSD might look like:

John Brown
John Brown SuperDork
1/6/10 10:04 a.m.

This is the reason I refuse to have nice things.

There are those who call me...Ross.
There are those who call me...Ross. HalfDork
1/6/10 10:08 a.m.

The allusion of a large dog helps too. Leave the biggest poop you can find scattered all over you yard. This can however backfire, if the burglar realizes you dont have a dog, you'll probably find poopy foot prints in your house as well as your door bashed in and your stuff missing.

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess SuperDork
1/6/10 10:09 a.m.

Spinout007
Spinout007 HalfDork
1/6/10 10:15 a.m.

Doc what kind of dog is the one on the right? I have a stray at home I picked up outta the road as a puppy that looks ALOT like em. Nobody seems to able to tell me what he is. He's really funny, he's got this puppy play bark that's not very intimidating, but sneak up on the porch and come near the door you'd think the nastiest dog on the block was on the other side of the door. Kinda funny when he looked like this 6 months ago.

bah can't get the picture to post from work, I'll fix it when I get home

tuna55
tuna55 Reader
1/6/10 10:18 a.m.

A dog for break ins when you are not home - a shotgun for when you are.

We have two dogs - both 75 lbs. Our "little" dog, Lucy, will literally bark at leaves blowing across the lawn. That will keep them from trying. Our "big" dog, Sandy, part Shepard, is very mild mannered until you piss her off. Someone breaking in would very much piss her off. When Lucy was 15 lbs, she got into it with a 100 lb Rottweiler, Sandy put an end to that really fast. if someone gets in the house despite Lucy barking her fool head off, Sandy will eat them.

EastCoastMojo
EastCoastMojo SuperDork
1/6/10 10:22 a.m.

Keep in mind that if the theives did not take certain things of value the first time around they likely will be back. For instance, if you have a nice big TV but they only took the stereo comopnents and the laptop they might have been worried that you had a silent alarm so they took the easy stuff. Now that they are pretty sure you don't have an alarm at all they may be more confident about the chances of getting the bigger stuff and come back. Whatever you do decide to do, act quickly

Spinout007
Spinout007 HalfDork
1/6/10 10:25 a.m.
tuna55 wrote: A dog for break ins when you are not home - a shotgun for when you are. We have two dogs - both 75 lbs. Our "little" dog, Lucy, will literally bark at leaves blowing across the lawn. That will keep them from trying. Our "big" dog, Sandy, part Shepard, is very mild mannered until you piss her off. Someone breaking in would very much piss her off. When Lucy was 15 lbs, she got into it with a 100 lb Rottweiler, Sandy put an end to that really fast. if someone gets in the house despite Lucy barking her fool head off, Sandy will eat them.

When I was growning up we raised springer spaniels, I watch in horror one day as my 2 girls got into it whith a BIG nasty looking rottie. looking back it was rather quite funny as the younger of the two went head to head with him, the older one came in from behind and took him off his feet. Luckily the rotties owner came out and we were able to get them separated, him by grabbing the dogs collar and me just calling my two, well yelling at them to return to me. No serious harm to any of the dogs involved but I, never quite looked at those two the same way again. Never underestimate a dogs ability and desire to look out for one of its pack.

stuart in mn
stuart in mn SuperDork
1/6/10 10:25 a.m.

That's funny, in these threads people usually post pictures of big guns before they post pictures of big dogs. Neither one will do you any good if you've gone out and brought your dog with you.

Based on personal experience I would recommend a security system with a monitoring service. You can arrange with them who they call and in what order - for instance, they can call your house first to see if you're okay and then you tell them to call the police, or if you're out of town they can call your cell or someone you've designated to watch things for you. Another very important benefit (assuming you have your smoke detectors hooked to the security system, which you should) is if there's a fire they'll call the fire department for you. There's also generally a panic button you can press on the security keypad in the event of a medical emergency.

Surveillance cameras aren't going to stop them, you'll just have pictures afterwards of them carrying your stuff out the door. If your system is good enough you may be able to get good pictures of them for evidence later on, but cameras won't stop them - if they did, convenience stores would be the most secure places on earth.

Before the security system, I agree that you want to try to keep them from breaking in in the first place. Get better locks, reinforcement plates for the door jamb, lights that come on when people walk up to the house, etc. If a thief wants to get in bad enough, they will, but all those things will help. If you slow them down enough or make it difficult enough, chances are they'll move on and look for easier pickings.

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess SuperDork
1/6/10 10:33 a.m.

That's Duke on the right. That's his momma, Cheyenne on the left. Duke passed about 2 years ago. He was the best watch dog, and the smartest dog I ever had. If someone came to my house and waited for me to get home, he would bark nonstop until I got home. Even if it was 6 hours. And not just a little woof bark either, but a "I'm gonna kill you if you get closer" bark, although he never bit anyone. He weighed 106 lbs. At one point, I had him trained to bark when the 'coon was on the porch, actually eating the kitty food, not before. Sometimes he'd bark, I'd go look and it was a 'possum. I'd open the door and say "No, Duke, that's a 'possum" and he'd quiet down. Other times I'd tell him "Not tonight, Duke, I'm too tired to bag 'em up" and he'd not go off for the rest of the night.

Duke's Pedegree: Momma - full blood Black Mouth Cur. Daddy: Bruzer - 11/16 Rhodesian Ridgeback (AKA "African Lion Hound"), 1/8 Doberman, 1/8 Pit Bull, 1/16 Cow Dog. That made Duke - 1/2 Black Mouth Cur, 11/32 Ridgeback, 1/16 Doberman, 1/16 Pit BUll, 1/32 Cow Dog. You can just see the end of the ridge on his back in the pic above. I had that line of dogs since 1983. Unfortunately, he passed before I got a puppy from him, and that ended the line.

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess SuperDork
1/6/10 10:47 a.m.

Here's a small business opportunity for anyone interested. Run with it and make enough money to live on and buy car parts from GRM advertisers:

In Isreal, they sell doors. House front doors. Real, ZOMG LOOK AT THAT BERKELEYING DOOR front doors of super re-inforced everything and multiple bolts shooting out of the edges like a safe. They look relatively plain until you really check them out. They are kick proof. I have not seen doors like that sold here. So, YOUR BUSINESS OPPORTUNITY is to go to Isreal and secure a wholesale source for the doors and import them to the US, then install them on US homes. CWH, you listening? This could dove-tail in with your camera business.

I saw these doors on TV on one of those "Latest weapons" shows before I dropped the satellite TV. Apparently these super-doors are used almost everywhere there, expensive houses and dumps. The Isrealis, of course, developed a counter measure to the doors so they can bust in and shoot the Arabs behind them. The countermeasure was a backpack based hydraulic ram system that they put in the door frame, turned on the hydraulic pump which sprung the whole door frame/walls apart so the door could be opened. It is unlikely that the typical burglar will have such equipment with them.

alex
alex Dork
1/6/10 11:00 a.m.

Doc, I'm not having much luck searching for the doors in question. Any more specifics that might help me in combing the intertubes?

mrwillie
mrwillie Reader
1/6/10 11:13 a.m.
Spinout007 wrote: Doc what kind of dog is the one on the right? I have a stray at home I picked up outta the road as a puppy that looks ALOT like em. Nobody seems to able to tell me what he is. He's really funny, he's got this puppy play bark that's not very intimidating, but sneak up on the porch and come near the door you'd think the nastiest dog on the block was on the other side of the door. Kinda funny when he looked like this 6 months ago. bah can't get the picture to post from work, I'll fix it when I get home

Maybe part this ........... http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/rhodesianridgeback.htm

slefain
slefain Dork
1/6/10 11:17 a.m.

A note about the dogs: a ghetto rat STILL tried to kick in my basement door even with the black lab barking on the other side of the door. Luckily the old Bosnian lady next door heard the banging and ran the ghetto rat off. No idea what his plan was once he got inside, but he was still giving it a go.

All my doors have steel door frames and loooooong screws holding everything in place.

Oh yeah, and the alarm with multiple horns rated at "permanent hearing damage" decibel level. Gotta have multiple horns, with separate redundant power supplies.

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess SuperDork
1/6/10 11:31 a.m.

I don't have any other info on the doors, Alex. I think it was the "Future Weapons" TV show, maybe 1-2 years ago, with the former SEAL guy. I haven't been to Isreal since '82, so I haven't seen the doors in person.

Here's Bubba, Duke's successor, when I got him:

I need to up a current pic. He's all grown up now and looks a lot like the one in the linky above. He's full Rhodesian Ridgeback. And the linky is wrong, Zimbabwe (formerly known as Rhodesia) is not part of South Africa, but found in south Africa. I knew a black Pathology resident (M.D.) from Zimbabwe. One day while looking at some colon or something on his table, I told him I had Rhodesian Ridgebacks and he got physically scared at the mention of them. He was funny. I still remember him saying "You have to be very careful what you tell the surgeon on a frozen section, otherwise the next thing you get back is the whole face."

joey48442
joey48442 SuperDork
1/6/10 11:38 a.m.

No matter how sweet your door is, they could still throw a rock through a window...

Joey

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