Household Vulnerability

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by E.L., Jun 26, 2006.

  1. E.L.

    E.L. Moderator of Lead Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Monday, June 19, 2006
    Household Vulnerability

    Here’s something to ponder. Have you ever broken into your own home? If so, were you surprised how easy it was? Learning how easy it was, aren’t you glad that you believe in self-defense and keep a gun in the house?

    Bill and I spent part of the weekend fixing a door to our condo. You see, a little while ago, Bill locked himself out of the house after I had left for work. If you’ve ever wondered why he’s called Yosemite Sam, well wonder no more. He simply kicked the door in and it gave him little trouble. Granted, only a door knob lock was on and not the dead bolt, but the dead bolt wouldn’t have been that much more difficult to kick open.

    Of course, the door frame was broke all to hell including the jamb with the lock faces, the molding alongside the door frame and bits and pieces. Hmmm…. Neither of us are carpenters, but we pulled off the molding, cut out the broken jamb, cut a new piece of hardwood to fit, planed it, mortised places for the lock faces, and then screwed it all together. We still have to nail up the molding and then paint, but it’s stronger now than it was a few days ago.

    The lesson here is that it’s too easy to break into a house. We may call a modern house our castle, but in reality a modern house is not fortified. It has glass windows and it doesn’t have armed retainers manning the walls. You get the idea.

    That leads us to two related lessons:

    When not at home, lock your guns and ammunition into something that would at least slow down a burglar. I don’t want to “donate” my guns to the illegal market and a safe or a very secure cabinet is a good idea and the law in certain states.

    When home, keep a gun loaded and under your control. A home invasion can happen in the length of time it takes for someone to kick a door a few times. A quiet break in can happen anytime and your first clue that an unwanted quest is present might be a confrontation. In either case, you won’t have time to get to a locked up gun and its ammunition.

    Given the reality of home invasions and burglaries and the impossibility of truly burglar-proofing your house, what other good choices are there?

    posted by Denise w
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  2. stimpy117

    stimpy117 Monkey+++


    Yes I have. Since then I've changed a few things. Now, I would have to break glass and most likely leave DNA.........then there's the dog........

    ThanKs for the topic, causes one to stop and think.
  3. E.L.

    E.L. Moderator of Lead Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Luckily I have never had to kick in a door, but I would imagine it would not be that difficult. My house has way too many windows, and the door is really ornate with a lot of glass. I really don't like it, because of the security aspect but it goes with the design of the house. I have been contemplating buying some metal doors for interior rooms, such as the master bedroom, kid's rooms, etc. So each would be a bit more secure. I do envy my in-law's house, it is very secure with iron bars across the windows and doors. Mutant Zombie Biker proof.
  4. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Yes I have. Since then I've changed a few things. Now, I would have to break glass and most likely leave DNA.........then there's the dog........

    Dont fool yourself on the DNA thing, unless your neighbors are politicians and folks who own the area such that the chief of police fears for his job if he dosnt find someone to hang for it then the cops are not at all likely to even bother takeing fingerprints on a burglary. I used to live in a low income area of Kansas City and my apartment was burglarized about 10 or 12 times while I lived there with guns being stolen most of these times and after the first time or 2 there was even a 200+ pound rodesian ridgeback (huge mean looking dog) in the apartment. I filed the reports and so on the first several times with no satisfaction and one time even got an honest officer out who asked if I had insurance and when I said no put away his note pad and asked why I bothered to call then. The next few I didnt bother to report but then had it happen once and was able to find out who did it, and where he pawned the 2 swordes he had stolen. I knew his name, where he worked and the halfway house he was in and was able to find out his SS number and who his PO was. I called the pawn shop and made sure thestuff was still there and it was under his name and social with his prints on the stuff and the pawn ticket then called the cops and gave them all the info. They decided there wasnt even enpouph evidence to bother to question him and let me know the pawn shop had a couple of months to decide IF THEY WANTED TO GIVE MY STUFF UP OR IF i HAD TO SUE THEM TO TRY TO GET IT BACK, most folks would go to jail for being in possesion of stolen goods but pawn shops have a leagle right top make you buy it back. The pawn shop released one of them and claimed not to have the other so got ONE of the 2 swords, both pawned on the same account, back after about 4 or 5 months. If you cant stop them your self then the cops arent going to do jack about it especialy unless you are in the highly afflent areas.

    I do envy my in-law's house, it is very secure with iron bars across the windows and doors. Mutant Zombie Biker proof.

    The bars can help if they are securely ancored but its also a trade off on saftey. I lost 2 girls that I always called my little sisters when they were 12 and 15 in a house fire and their mom got 2nd and 3rd degree burns on most of her body because they couldnt get out and noone could get in to help them due to bars on the windows. If they have the releases to prevent this then they may work as a deterant like idiot locking a padlock but they can still be easily released by thievs also.

    Steel doors help as long as you have steel jams that are bolted into the framing also since if the frame is wood it is still just as easy to kick open. Huricane glass or even just heavy plexiglass is super hard to break but if the window is opened then can still make a means of escape in case of fire and such. Things like planting thorn bushes outside all the windows will also help to keep thievs away from them especialy if they dont already know you have something realy worth a lot to them. The dog can help but dont count on them for to much especialy since stats show over 80-90% of burglaries are comited by someone you know and so they also likely know the dog. Weather you have the alarm or not the signs or decals that say you do sometimes help. Creative DIY alarm systems can also go a long ways especialy if no one else knows about them. Everyone is used to motion lights by the pourches and such now and have seen interviews and such with thievs who say anymore the lights like those are no problem to them it just gives them more light to see what they are doing, on the other hand if you put that light inside the door so they open the door or window and it comes on then thats not expected to be an automatic thing and would be more likely to scare them off. Take it a step further and get a tape recorder (or if you can record to DVD all the better) and record the sound as you rack a shell into a pump shotgun, truely the scariest sound anyone can hear in a dark room, and maybe follow it with something like 'WHO THEY HELLS THERE?!? GET THE HELL OUT OF MY HOUSE BEFORE I BLOW YOU OUT!!!'. Now put that in a player that you leave turned on and remove the bulbs from the motion light and replace one with a screw in outlet and plug the player into that. Now when the motion sensor is tripped the player comes on and whoever tripped it hears a shotgun being racked from the shadows followed by the yelling of a pissed off home owner and iff the speakers can make it convinceing maybe a couple of blasts.

    Theres a lot that can be done but if they really want in and want what you have the ONLY things likely to stop them is at least a pair of well trained attack dogs or a person with a gun at home when they show up and the if its stolen and the cops actualy get it back to you make sure to buy a lotto ticket cause you have about as good of chance at winning there.
  5. TailorMadeHell

    TailorMadeHell Lurking Shadow Creature

    Here is a little trick. I don't know if someone has done it or what. Just a thought. How about making a plastic 'shoebox'. Plastic on all sides and have the top have sides that come down a little. Basically make it look exactly like a shoebox, of course, just big enough for your keys. The lid shape helps keep rain water out of the box and for added security you could add a little weather stripping to make it a snug fit. You can place this near the base of a tree in the ground in a hole that is just big enough to accomodate the box. You can take the 'plug' and cover the bottom of it in polyurathene to keep it from falling into the hole. I'd suggest several coats. You could also lay some pine straw over the plug so that it is disguised. Sounds like a plan to me, then again I am crazy. Or you could just go buy one of those fake rocks or metal garden frogs. Depends on how bad you want others to know where your keys are. Your thoughts?
  6. CRC

    CRC Survivor of Tidal Waves | RIP 7-24-2015 Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I had a hole in my window where someone broke in not that long ago...

    When the police came..they never took fingerprints ..They "assumed" they knew who it was and never checked further....

    I now have intricate locks on all doors and windows...bars in the sliding glass doors, downstairs AND upstairs....

    and bars on the window...

    Still if someone wanted in?

    Break the low windows in the front ....(about 2 feet off the ground??) and come right in...

    The cat will not be a deterant...I assure you...

    I need an alarm least one that makes noise...I had one that dialed in to the police station and everytime the power goes off? The alarm went off and the police were dispatched...Now, after 3 false alarms, you are charged...

    When you live next door to the "lightning capital" of the have a lot of false alarms...

    I was not home when it happened...and it turns out the police were right...but the fact that they didn't even take fingerprints or try to see if it was someone else bothered me then...and still does.
    chelloveck likes this.
  7. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    I'm a Carpenter... Well, Used to be.

    I can take your door or window out and put it back without you ever knowing it.

    Just a little prying on the door trim and I'm in. My brother bought a house a few yrs back and I was with him as he was looking at Locks for the doors. He was drawn to the MAXIMUM security section of the isle at Home Depot. $150ish locksets. I chuckled and pointed out the fact that each door was more Glass than wood. The lockset is only as strong as the glass...

    He bought the $20 cheapies after seeing my point. If a thief wants in, He'll get in. That's why I leave my Cabins unlocked before they sell. I've had to replace a $900 french door over a stolen $200 microwave.... If they want it, they'll get it. Just don't make me tear out a broken door, buy a new one, install it, and then match the stain.... that sux
  8. TailorMadeHell

    TailorMadeHell Lurking Shadow Creature

    You could put bars over your windows and doors. What happens if you are inside, lost the keys and the house is on fire? You can leave your doors unlocked. What if someone walks in? You can lock your doors with fancy locks that cost an arm and leg. What happens if the thieves have lockpicks? Just buy a good dog, a good gun and put faith in that you hit what you aim at.

    A nice saying I like, "Locks are for honest people". Another one, "I don't dial 911, I dial .357". Those two sayings are a sure fire way to how I act.
  9. E.L.

    E.L. Moderator of Lead Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Maybe shatter proof glass is something that should be considered for windows on the ground floor level. I wonder what a pane of Lexan would cost? Someone that really wants in is getting in, I am more concerned about the typical meth head, or low level thief that is looking for a quick smash and grab.
  10. TnAndy

    TnAndy Senior Member Founding Member

    I'm like Melbo......I do door and window replacement for a living, and I can get in almost ANY house about 6 different ways.....and that is BEFORE I start getting destructive.....If I get destructive, I can get in ANY house and the ways are nearly unlimited.

    Bars on windows are a don't see them much here, but I did a house several years ago that had them.....asked the guy if he wanted his brand new windows drilled out for the installation screws that go with the bars or not...he says "yeah....put 'em back up please.....we had them on all the houses 'up in Nu-Yak' where I come from"......I said, well, in Tennesse, we either shoot the crook, or lock THEM in places with bars and the rest of us wander around sorta free........ahahahahahaa

    Was doing a set of new windows for this ole lady one day......and the ole sourpuss had been bugging me anyway, so when I turn around to find her on my elbow, AGAIN, looking over my work as if she had some clue what I was doing.....she says "OHHHH, those windows have double locks ( two locks on the sashes.....standard on certain widths ).....THAT will keep the burglars out, won't it ? "

    "Yes mam....IF THEY DON'T OWN A DAMN ROCK "......she left me alone for the rest of the day....ahahahahahahaaaa

    Back when I lived in town in a subdivision, this gal down the street would lock herself out.....heck, she would lock the dadgum door to go out to the curb for the newspaper ! one early morning when she locks herself out, she shows up in her bathrobe at our door sniffling "Can I use your phone to call a locksmith ?"

    Well, can, or I can just go down and let you in.....

    So I pick up a few tools, and head down the street with her.....walk up to the garage door, and see it's lockset is held in with two flathead screws from the outside.....unscrew them real quick, and turn lock cylinder ( still 'locked' ) and all 90 degrees, pulling the door lock chains and opening the door.

    Sooooo, about 6 months later, she does it again.....we go down to the house, and I start towards the garage door again when she pipes up "Oh....uh, Chuck fixed that....he has a couple screwdrivers in the track inside you have to take out to roll up the door now " (yeah...that Chuck is a real rocket scientist ) I walk on around the house, and see their sliding glass door, which I approach.... " can't get in that way either, see the broom stick inside there "

    I'm starting to feel like this is a test or "can he do it or not"

    So, I notice the fixed panel doesn't have the retainer clip installed.....I put my hands flat on the glass, and "bump" it toward the rolling panel, and it slides over easy as pie. I turned to Shirley and said " Carefull you don't trip over that fool broomstick on the way in......and QUIT LOCKING YOUR DAMN DOORS.....YOU AIN'T FOOLING ANYBODY BUT YOU "

    She never came back to the house.......ahahahahaaaaaaaaa
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  11. TailorMadeHell

    TailorMadeHell Lurking Shadow Creature

    My friend's mother had a sliding glass door and used the old broom handle trick. She learned from that when we showed her that it had to fit exactly all the way snug to the sides. If not we'd just open the door and close it again. Within a few seconds the handle would rock out of the way. Bingo, door open. Another thing are those bars on windows that are open. Most people hang the key just on the other side so you can reach in and grab the key, unlock the bars and you are in. Or a length of close hanger when it is out of arms reach. Don't even think about trying to keep someone out of a mobile home. Those crackerjack boxes wouldn't stop a strong wind.

    I remember my uncle's landlord had repaired a window on my uncle's trailer where the previous tenants had broken it. The landlord replaced it with plexiglass and put a metal border around it to bolt it to the trailer. My uncle locked himself out. I reached in my pocket, found a dime and proceeded to unscrew the screws. He was amazed. I was thinking, this isn't rocket science. There are numerous ways to get into a trailer. Also, I would get rid of the doors that are pre-made with the trailer and replace them with stronger ones and reinforce the door jambs. A screwdriver is your friend if you want in there. You can also use DLs for carding a door.

    I have seen people install the locks with the little sliding piece, (would have to ask a locksmith what that is), facing outwards and inwards. Doesn't make a difference. Can card both ways.

    Where is your attic ladder? If it is in your garage or carport then that can be a way in. Up the ladder, punch a hole in the ceiling and bingo. I have never heard of a security alarm put on that thing. I have done everything except the attic way in, though I know the attic is very accessible. Okay, so I have a thing for being with people who get locked out or I lock myself out. Sue me. Haha. It would do you good to take a 'stranger' look at your home. People who aren't around your house all the time have a way of seeing things that you don't. Could also have a locksmith come and give you a once over for obvious ways in. Just like that thief show on tv where those two guys help people secure their places, after they have broken in.

    I just thought about another training I'm going to get.... Locksmithing. Might be handy one day.
    Salted Weapon likes this.
  12. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I dont really worry about it where Im at and even when I lived in bad areas of the city didnt after I tried to secure an apartment. I had an apartment that got broke into several times so put a bar on the one door that chained in place with log chain and a pad lock and had the braces lag bolted through the frame and the heads of the bolts rounded, had bars on all the windows, deadbolts on the other door that were keyed from both sides and a large dog (rodesian ridge back) in the apartment that also happened to be on the second floor. It still got hit several more times before I moved.

    My last place before moveing out of the city was in just as bad of an area, most of the windows didnt have locks and the locks on the doors were a joke and never used unless everyone was gone at the same time but the house was never bothered. Then too the neighbors warned new folks in the area that I was the crazy guy that would shoot them if they got stupid. I figure if no one is home and they have any intrest in getting in they will but if they are wrong and someone IS there then they arent likely to get back out in a vertical condition.
    Salted Weapon likes this.
  13. TailorMadeHell

    TailorMadeHell Lurking Shadow Creature

    That does tend to get attention. Nothing like word of mouth for burgular proofing. "Yeah, he's the gun nut. Guess he likes to kill people who trespass." Haha. I have lived in the city and country at times and I love the country, if you have a dependable vehicle to get you to town. Though the last country place I lived in, the crackheads and meth makers were moving in. Guess I wasn't too far into the country. Next time I think I'll be situated in the middle of a hundred acre spread so I can have some peace. Never know.
  14. CRC

    CRC Survivor of Tidal Waves | RIP 7-24-2015 Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I had to go to a trailer park across the bridge today to drop something off...and it was one of those "crackhead and meth maker" trailer parks..

    Creepy creepy place....:eek:

    I didn't like them even seeing my car there! was weird....
    chelloveck likes this.
  15. TailorMadeHell

    TailorMadeHell Lurking Shadow Creature

    Just wonder if LE was watching that park and tagged your tag as possible? Never can tell in this day and age. Sickens me how the blight has creeped across the American landscape like it has. Anyone know that it is perfectly legal here in the city of San Franpsycho to buy medicinal marijuana and smoke in public? Do you also know what they would do to people using heroin in this city? Why they make sure you have needle exchanges so you don't shoot up with a bad or dirty needle. Also, I see more arrests for 'drinking in public' than I do for 'shooting up in public'. That's one of the biggest reasons that I am trying to get out of dodge. Talk about your cesspool.
  16. Salted Weapon

    Salted Weapon Monkey+++

    One thing you can do that we do to make door entry a pain in the arse is put your screen door hinges opposite the main door lock.
    It makes it very hard to get the correct angle to kick the door. Most people think hold the screen open kick door now try it the opposite angle you cant get a very straight kick even police know this trick but wont share it very often because it makes their entry hard.
    Yes its a pain carrying in stuff thru the door but you get used to it and it really slows down entry. Another thing is put audible door chimes outside the doors and walk ways that are on a timer to go on at night and off it will give you notice a person is on your property we have several sensors some noticeable on purpose some hidden that chime in my bedroom at night so again I know when they are outside before they get in or dog notices.
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  17. arleigh

    arleigh Goophy monkey

    I have cameras and motion sensor lights all around the house there is no sneaking around.
    During certain times of the year, I have drive way alarms transmit 300' from harbor freight. they are perfect.
    There are also baby room monitors that are rigged out side so I can hear regardless of the motion sensor alert.
    All thins along with phony cameras that sit openly .
    Security cameras work .
    My brother had an event and was able to hand the cops the memory chip with the criminals in action.
    Paid off big time .
    Home or not that cameras keep on working inside or out.
    There are home security systems that can be accessed with the phone ,

    Another thing I thought was quite genius was making the bars on windows out of wood but coloring them to appear metal ,it is very effective and does not cost the same as the real thing and can easily be broken in the event of an emergency .
    for big windows make them in sections that you can remove easily from the inside for cleaning the windows , remember that they are a façade so they won't have the weight or reinforcement the real thing might require.
    1/4" doweling and 1/4" x2" wood strips and paint ,black works, but chrome might be better. take some 3/8" bolts and cut the head about 1/4 " below the head,, drill and and place these as you would the steel counter part remember the illusion of being steel not wood. they need to look like lag screws.
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 7, 2016
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  18. Dunerunner

    Dunerunner Brewery Monkey Moderator

    My entry doors are alarmed, garage and living room have motion sensors. The system does not call police, as they will stop for coffee and donuts so as not to have to confront a possibly armed intruder exiting my home with an arm full of my stuff, it just sets off the strobes and ear splitting siren....

    The house is posted that it is alarmed.

    I also have timers that turn on lights in various rooms from dusk up to 11PM. One also turns on the TV in the bedroom.

    I would like to get a dog but SWMBO isn't having it.
    arleigh likes this.
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