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  #1  
Old 12-20-2018, 03:35 PM
HarryO45 HarryO45 is offline
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Hardened Home

What physical improvements or architectural designs have you done, or want to do, that would make your home more secure?
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  #2  
Old 12-20-2018, 08:21 PM
USMM guy USMM guy is online now
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My wife and I have made our master bedroom suite.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryO45 View Post
What physical improvements or architectural designs have you done, or want to do, that would make your home more secure?
A quasi hardened room. When Australia came down hard on gun ownership a few years ago. They had a major uptick in home invasions on isolated residences. My wife and I certainly qualify insofar as isolated residence is concerned. Considering that we were building this new bedroom suite right about the time that Hillary Clinton was running for office. The bitch that was loudly proclaiming what great success the recent gun control effort had been down under.


We put a security door in that will withstand a pretty hefty amount of abuse. Additionally while we are on the second floor, we have windows. They are a concern, but they are also about ten feet off the ground. A little bit less of a concern. However we still elected to go with tempered glass with 3-M security film applied as well. these windows while not likely bullet proof should be pretty hard to breach from some goon perched on a ladder.
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  #3  
Old 12-21-2018, 06:03 AM
Cappi Cappi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryO45 View Post
What physical improvements or architectural designs have you done, or want to do, that would make your home more secure?
a moat and draw bridge .....

other than top quality locking storm doors and dead bolt strike plates w/screws that go well past jamb into the 2x4 ..not much really

that will slow someone a little ...or at least give enough noise notice to prepare if at home

beyond that...if I'm not home...
as a contractor, I know I could get into any home pretty quick with tools I could carry in one hand

you may be able to deter the average stupid smash 'n grab punk, but truth is, anyone with a BFH and 4ft wrecking bar can get into any wood framed home real quick

..L.T.A.
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  #4  
Old 12-21-2018, 08:43 AM
tray burge tray burge is offline
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Live video surveillance, hidden gun/safe room and a miniature Schnauzer.
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  #5  
Old 12-21-2018, 08:56 AM
HarryO45 HarryO45 is offline
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Originally Posted by Cappi View Post
a moat and draw bridge .....

...wrecking bar can get into any wood framed home real quick
Funny you mention a moat. I live on a relatively large freshwater body of water. Most of my property boundary is water. My house is remote. The roads to my home are not accidentally traveled.

99% of all strangers who “know of” my house, see it from the water in a recreational watercraft. I am very concerned about the physical security of my property. Especially when I am away.

I have plenty of cameras, early warning and alarms - to include dogs with big ears.

I created this topic because I am ready to start hardening the property. I am mostly interested in widow strengthening products as well as driveway gates, but I would love to hear and see other ideas / considerations in regards to the topic. I hope to stay on topic.

I love USSM’s door...and I want one of those (but I got greater priorities).

My concern is that a wrongdoer could operate a chain saw on my property and no one would hear it - or respond. So your point about the crowbar is especially valid. I am struggling with the idea of a hardened home if a Redneck with a “screwdriver and time” is all it takes to defeat.

Last edited by HarryO45; 12-21-2018 at 09:08 AM. Reason: My hope to stay on topic -no dogs, security lights ect...
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  #6  
Old 12-21-2018, 09:14 AM
USMM guy USMM guy is online now
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I wonder what happened to those things.

That they used to advertise in all of the gun magazines? As I recall it was a pepper gas dispenser that you could install in a room that could be set up to release in an unauthorized entry. Supposedly it would run anyone in the room out and keep them out for at least a couple of hours.

You do not see them advertised any more. I am wondering if they just were not selling them or there was another reason?

I just recently upgraded the chain and lock for the gate. Getting past this rig is not going to be easy.

https://www.westechrigging.com/pewag...3.html#reviews

Last edited by USMM guy; 12-21-2018 at 10:02 AM.
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  #7  
Old 12-21-2018, 10:04 AM
chrysanthemum chrysanthemum is online now
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A good thread, hopefully it will run for awhile.

I've given much thought to this subject in regard to decades of planning for a retirement home.

So in my first post in this thread, I'll start with the thought of avoidance ... that is, avoid creating impressions that there might be a hoarde of valuables in the home. Avoid creating an appearance that your home might be a more "profitable" target and/or an easier target than other homes in the same area.

A long time ago, my then-living grandparents lived in a very humble house. Almost primitive. And no one ever bothered them.

Again, just a first thought to contribute.
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  #8  
Old 12-21-2018, 10:20 AM
USMM guy USMM guy is online now
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There are any number of things to consider.

When you are thinking about the security of your home. People write books on it. Keeping a low profile surely helps. And while physical security measures are certainly important, both passive and active. Your behavior makes a big difference also.

A lot of times people get ripped off by people that they know. A lot of times people get ripped off by people that have been inside their homes, service people etc. My wife and I have done extensive renovations to our home over the years. We have used the same contractor over the years for a number of reasons. One of which is that they are discreet and honest. This is important. On the rare occasions when we have to allow unknown, thus not entirely trustworthy people into our home. We will make arrangements to display a more modest circumstance. Not making yourself a good target is crucial.
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  #9  
Old 12-21-2018, 03:07 PM
Cappi Cappi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryO45 View Post
I am mostly interested in widow strengthening products.
that's the weakest link in any structure

no clue how much glass impervious to a sledge hammer costs


..L.T.A.
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  #10  
Old 12-21-2018, 03:27 PM
Taxed2death Taxed2death is offline
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Funny, this discussion was hit on just a bit in another thread where I described some of what I have done on mine. First, I refuse to live in a bunker, so when my wife and I sat down with her Dad (an architectural engineer) several years ago to design our "forever home", we wanted as much security as we could get, and as much protection from Mother Nature as we could get, while still having a warm and inviting home to live in. We did not want the security aspects to be all that obvious to the casual observer either.

What we ended up with when we finally built this place three years ago is a solid stucco exterior with 18" thick walls, metal roof and, as I just found out, Level 1 windows (which are rated to 9mm FMJ). Actually was not aware of the Level 1 thing until this week and just thought I had high-end hurricane windows, but that other thread lead me to discovering this "gift" from my builder who is also my best friend. Lots and LOTS of security cameras, all recorded and with a monitor running 24-7 in two locations in the house and well-placed signs letting folks know that they need to smile. Steel gate out front and THICK woods around the house to make it more difficult for vehicles to enter. We have a creek running across the back of the property as well, so a partial moat . Motion detectors around the perimeter of the house, although I do not always have those on since I have a lot of deer which cause false trips. The master walk in closet is built as a safe room and one of the central storage closets is also reinforced as a storm refuge in case of a tornado. Armored doors and jams on all exterior doors and on the safe room and storm closet. Other things that are a LOT less obvious, like all walls on 12" centers, all roof joists strapped, etc.

Not a fortress, but tougher than the average home. I'm pretty anal about security, but I also want to enjoy where I live and not have visitors see anything but a nice, livable home. Frankly, most of the "hardening" was done to prevent storm damage and to minimize exterior risks to fires since the periphery of my property is all dense forest with my home centrally located in it, but I did want to make it hard to break into since it is also fairly remote from neighboring homes. I've done what I can, but again, no bunkers to live in for this boy.
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  #11  
Old 12-21-2018, 04:04 PM
scubadad scubadad is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by USMM guy View Post
When you are thinking about the security of your home. People write books on it. Keeping a low profile surely helps. And while physical security measures are certainly important, both passive and active. Your behavior makes a big difference also.

A lot of times people get ripped off by people that they know. A lot of times people get ripped off by people that have been inside their homes, service people etc. My wife and I have done extensive renovations to our home over the years. We have used the same contractor over the years for a number of reasons. One of which is that they are discreet and honest. This is important. On the rare occasions when we have to allow unknown, thus not entirely trustworthy people into our home. We will make arrangements to display a more modest circumstance. Not making yourself a good target is crucial.
The cable guy sitting at a bar with his buddies telling them about this huge gun safe he saw in a house today and Keeping the garage door open and people seeing your big snap on tool box. All red flags that mark your house.
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  #12  
Old 12-22-2018, 06:35 AM
USMM guy USMM guy is online now
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It is very expensive.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cappi View Post
that's the weakest link in any structure

no clue how much glass impervious to a sledge hammer costs


..L.T.A.
I have priced it out. Additionally it is very heavy. So that you have supporting structure considerations.
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  #13  
Old 12-22-2018, 09:51 AM
scubadad scubadad is offline
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A few years back as a just for fun exercise I talked to a friend who designs houses about a hurricane proof/shtf/zombie proof house.

What he came up with was a 1800 sq ft above ground concrete bunker with exterior features to make it look like a normal house. Had all the goodies like hurricane windows with steel shutters, back up generator, back up well/septic air filtration and solar . Estimated cost was close to a million.
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  #14  
Old 12-22-2018, 06:20 PM
Huski92 Huski92 is online now
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Added motion lighting, security system, cameras, gun/safety room, and hidden a few guns around the house.

And I hardened me with training.


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  #15  
Old 12-22-2018, 08:56 PM
Timbo3 Timbo3 is offline
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Reinforced exterior doors and door jambs. Replaced door from garage to house with solid wood door, original was hollow core. Alarm system. Getting ready to do a camera system from a friend that does it on a commercial basis. Slowly upgrading Windows to impact glass mainly for better hurricane protection. Plan to make M B a safe room.
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  #16  
Old 12-22-2018, 09:00 PM
PatientWolf PatientWolf is offline
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I can “blow” the culvert at the end of the cul-du-sac to keep the invaders out.
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  #17  
Old 12-22-2018, 10:23 PM
HarryO45 HarryO45 is offline
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I can “blow” the culvert at the end of the cul-du-sac to keep the invaders out.
Always cover obstacles with fire.
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  #18  
Old 12-23-2018, 11:25 AM
ballman6711 ballman6711 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cappi View Post
that's the weakest link in any structure

no clue how much glass impervious to a sledge hammer costs


..L.T.A.
I did glass work for a living for twenty years, mostly cars, and I can tell you there is no such thing as bullet proof (or sledge hammer proof) glass. Enough impacts in the same spot and you will get through it eventually, although it may/will take time depending on the glass and what's being used to penetrate it. The key here is "enough impacts in the same spot".

I had a neighbor years ago who was a driver for diplomats. All the cars had "bullet proof" glass. He was trained to drive the car away if an attack occured, since the glass would be breached at some point during an attack if it lasted long enough.

I also got the good fortune of seeing one of the late President Reagan's limo's up close during my career, and the door windows were between two and three inches thick. I estimated the front and rear window to be the same thickness. Not impenetrable but thick enough to give a well trained driver time enough to get the limo away from the threat.

For a truly hardened house, I would have no glass on the ground floor, and would have some sort of shutters for all windows.

chris
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  #19  
Old 12-23-2018, 12:00 PM
f1racefan f1racefan is offline
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I live in a mid-sized town in Kentucky. We certainly have our fair share of crime. When I bought my house 4 years ago, I chose to not continue the alarm monitoring plan that was in place at the house. I did however elect to leave all the signs up in the yard. As they say in poker, sometimes a good bluff is better than a good hand.

I also installed enlarged, hardened strike plates on all doors with long screws that drove into the 2"x4" framing around the doors. My back door and garage entry door have windows. Anytime you see a breakin in a movie or on TV, they simply smash the window, then reach in and unlock the door. So I changed the deadbolt on the house back door to one that requires a key to unlock both inside and outside. The key is actually hung near the door frame on the inside, but it's doubtful a hand reaching inside would find it. For the garage door, I didn't have a second deadbolt like described above, so after I lock it, I simply remove the lever on the inside and store it in a nearby toolbox. Since that particular deadbolt locks so hard to begin with, I'd highly doubt that someone could twist the little stud that the lever mounts to.

Finally, I installed motion sensors on my front and rear lights. At the very least, if someone gets close, the lights will come on. My hope is that being lit up will persuade them to try another house.

Of course should any bold fool decide to go thru all these barriers while I'm home, there's a Beretta PX4 with laser/light loaded with 18 rounds of Federal HST.
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  #20  
Old 12-23-2018, 01:55 PM
USMM guy USMM guy is online now
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Even tempered glass is pretty tough.

Not talking bullet proof here. But it is pretty tough. I have a pair of French doors leading out onto my deck. They are mostly glass, tempered glass. They have unintentionally been subjected to some pretty high K.E. impacts over the years that surprised me in that the glass held.

The tempered glass windows covered with 3M security film that I have in my bedroom, I suspect will withstand a pretty good amount of abuse prior to failure.
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  #21  
Old 12-24-2018, 07:43 AM
1911_Kid 1911_Kid is offline
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High tensile screening is a good addition to doors and windows.
Local companies will sell it under their own name/products, but its essentially all the same stuff
see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=04XbUK5eAfU
(note, CRL shows marine grade SS, but there is high-tensile SS which is better)
In almost every context of security, layered controls is a good proven strategy.

And since this is the DP forum, perhaps also connect to the screening the high voltage fencing unit, this way if you are inside and need additional "keep away" power, you turn on the high voltage.
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Last edited by 1911_Kid; 12-24-2018 at 07:48 AM.
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  #22  
Old 12-24-2018, 05:08 PM
chrysanthemum chrysanthemum is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1911_Kid View Post
......

And since this is the DP forum, perhaps also connect to the screening the high voltage fencing unit, this way if you are inside and need additional "keep away" power, you turn on the high voltage.
As James Bond once said: "Shocking ... positively shocking"

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Last edited by chrysanthemum; 12-24-2018 at 05:11 PM.
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  #23  
Old 12-24-2018, 10:54 PM
earlwb earlwb is offline
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I was thinking of having a house built underground with a shell house on top of it. Being here in Texas, you never know if a tornado might come ripping through during a storm or not. Plus it has the advantage of hiding your real home to some extent.

But as mentioned a really good set of doors is a plus, you don't want a thug to be able to kick the door open. Windows being secure from entry is the next thing to take care of. In higher crime areas most everyone has bars on the windows and barred door entrances too. Having a outdoor video camera setup to watch the front/back doors and garage would be on the list too.
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  #24  
Old 12-25-2018, 09:27 PM
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fast eddie fast eddie is offline
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Protecting your home is no different than protecting a school, a refinery or power plant. It takes time to do the analysis and develop an effective plan.

Start by asking some simple questions......

What do I have to protect, what do I have to protect it from and what do I have to protect it with. Ultimately, you have to balance this concept where you are confident that your protective measures are adequate to deter or defeat the threat (or a hazard - acts of god etc) at a reasonable or acceptable cost. You cannot afford to protect a $10 dollar bike with $100 lock.

This whole concept of greyman theory doesn't always set right with me. While I agree you don't want to advertise what you have, you need to make your home look lived in and cared for from the street. Sun Tzu says the best victory is the battle never fought. Next you need to decide where you want to start to detect potential intruders. For urbanites, it may be the front door, for folks like me, its at the perimeter of my 40 acre farm. BLUF, You should never learn of an intruder as they enter your house. You should know as soon as someone enters your yard or area over which you have some control. These detection devices can be as simple as dogs or geese or sophisticated with infrared, bluetooth, wireless, CCTV etc.

As far as hardening the skin of your house, there are numerous methods and recently, commercial products to exponentially harden the door that has only 1/2" of a 2x4 between you and a threat. Broom stick or metal brace in the sliding glass doors, lock the windows with a pin that goes into the jam and not just a latch btx the upper and lower shades. Avoid windows on or near the doors. 3M and some others make a security film that is resistant to breaching by slow heavy projectile like a hammer, brick, board etc. Its not bullet proof, but can buy you some time to initiate a response both within and outside of the house. If you have significant assets in a safe, consider a throw away safe with replaceable assets and some cash. Grand Ma's ring and other non-replaceables go in the "other" safe.

Know where in your house you have cover vice just concealment. Have a safe room where everyone goes in the event of an intruder. Pick a covered position that puts you btx the safe room and the avenue of approach from outside or downstairs. No matter your plan, rehearse it with your family to make sure it is feasible.

There are lots of other specifics I can go into, but the point is , know who comes onto your property as soon as possible and assess their intent, know when and where you can legally start to detect a potential intruder. Have a plan, practice it and adjust as needed.
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Old 12-27-2018, 12:21 AM
DaveVK DaveVK is offline
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Shoot, shovel and shut up! Make sure you kill every one of the invaders and bury them deep! If you are truly out in the sticks, you may well get away with it. Sad that our governments "evolve" to only protecting thugs. My prayers go out to you.
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