security

soundmind

Well-Known Member
I need help on good pad-locks, door locks, vinyl window ideas, and some info on security cameras...any wi-fi? Can anyone point me in the right direction? Also any tricks or traps. I know this question is high profile on the public forum, If it compromises the security of your own shop you can pm me. Thanks for the help - even just brand names. I've had some reputable common locks broken recently and lo and behold "coarse grain." lol.
 
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Sean Jones

Well-Known Member
You might want to look at a security alarm company such as ADT. My 'shop' is half a garage attached to our house. So while the garage itself isn't covered by our alarm the doors are.
If local code will let you, consider putting bars across all your doors accept the one you will exit by. Depending on aesthetics even that door could have a bar across it on the outside with a solid lock. As far as locks go buy the best you can afford and make sure on dead bolts that they do far enough into the door frame.

And though this may seem self evident, the less people know about what you have the better. Though that can be difficult. I almost always keep the garage door most of the way down and yet I've had neighbors comment on what a nice shop I have. :rolleyes:

As far as cameras go there are numerous ones on Amazon. I've looked several times to put cameras around our house and it seems like the best ones are really expensive, particularly if you want night vision clear enough to identify someone. But they're always coming down in price.

There's so many different ways of implementing good security. In my opinion a layered approach is the best defense using separate systems to perform separate things. Thus while we have ADT for the house, I'd go with hard wired cameras from Amazon if I were to install cameras.

I can't really offer anything more specific without knowing what your particular situation is. Feel free to PM me if you want. I'm no expert but my work in IT has led me down many a security path.
 
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ADT is a really good monitored system. My alarms have went off twice at my gunshop and both times an adt employee called to see if they needed to call the police within seconds of the alarm going off. Luckily both times were hail and heavy rain hitting the front glass door setting off my glass break alarm even though the glass was not broke. But it's good to know you can get help right away if needed. They can also send help in case of fire or medical as well.
 

EdCaffreyMS

Forum Owner - Moderator
Even though I don't really need them for actual security, for a couple of years now I've used WyzeCam products. They are the least expensive cameras you'll find, and aside from a flaw that they "eat" SD cards, they are a good product. I have 7 of them scattered around the house/shop, and even though they say they are "indoor" only...... I've had both the WyzeCam V2, and the PanCam versions mounted outdoors for 2 years....and if they can survive a Montana winter........

I use an android software called Bluestacks to emulate android on my computer, and have a dedicated monitor that I can view from 1 to 10 cameras at a time.

When it comes to physical security, reenforce swing in doors' frames with a steel bar added to the interior of frame where the latch/lock is located. On windows and doors..... nothing says "you're NOT getting in" like expanded metal over windows and other openings (but it also makes it tough to get out in case a fire blocks you from the door(s).

Another perk of living in Montana..... here it's EXPECTED that everyone has a gun on them.... and in the shop I have two..... each hid on magnets in areas that I most frequent.....and my little SIG P365 goes most places with me. ;)
 

soundmind

Well-Known Member
Those all look pretty good. I'm starting to get the idea of what they are and do, and what would work for us. Brand names were helpful too. Thanks again. Sean I'll probably pm you sometime soon to give you an idea of our situation.

Anyone still have any knowledge of good pad locks and door lock hardware?

edit: Or ideas for reinforcing vinyl windows? I don't think your supposed to screw/drill into them or they lose their insulating value....
 
Living in the great State of WV with the highest drug deaths trust me I know a few things about security systems. As a electrical contractor and doing security installs for 35 years I can't imagine NOT having both a security system and HD video cameras. Even then intelligent thieves, not drug addicts are extremely careful knowing full well cameras are everywhere now days.

Now I'm going to say a few things that may ruffle some feathers but here's my thoughts.
1. A thief if he decides to break in he's coming in. I'd rather the break in be easy than bust my door out of the frame. I have dead bolts on all my doors but only lock them at night to hopefully give me more time. 99% of burglaries happen in broad day light while most people aren't home. I have dozens of videos including my own home for proof. Be very suspicious of people that knock on your door asking for someone that doesn't live there. If you wasn't home to answer you most likely was going to be broken into.

2. Monitoring is a JOKE! I know most people feel it's awesome when they false alarm and the monitoring service calls them. In reality most intelligent burglars will cut your phone line, tv cable first thing which is ground level outside on most homes. Then all that monitoring you've paid for years (usually $15 to $40 a month) is worthless. Exception is for a system with fire alarm. Now you can purchase a cell phone monitoring and along with the monitoring service you have another cell phone line.
Even if a stoned out drug addict DOESN'T cut your lines first thing happens is monitoring service calls your home. Time killed. Then they call the local authorities. Unless they are in the immediate area if you don't live in a city they rank that call right up with a cat up a tree. 45 minutes to 1 1/2 hour they may show up. They could care less about finding out who broke in to your house as they probably just released the same dude or dudess 2 days ago. They are there to write up a report so you can turn something into your insurance company.

3. 99% of the time they are coming through you door. The exception may be if you have double hung windows. Double hung windows are the easiest thing in the world to come through with out breaking glass. A simple hack saw blade slide between the windows make short work of plastic or cast latches. Battery powers saw saws are big sellers in this state as every drug addict has a few. Thieves rarely break a window out since double glazing makes that a lot of work and noise. Now a block of wood cut to proper length and held in place with Velcro works wonders here but your still going to loose the latches on your windows.

4. Copper or wired systems are the best for both security and video. What do we always read here buy once cry once. I have heard a lot of good things about simply safe systems though. But most "wireless" systems are down more than up because of dead batteries. Think about it every time you go through a door or walk through a motion detector your using battery power. Then the owner keeps putting off replacing the batteries and simply doesn't arm the system. Your mileage may vary.

I could go on and on. Without me divulging any details of how I prefer installs. I will say I do not have monitoring but have my security system contact my cell phone by text if the wires weren't cut. There is no monthly fees that way. I hope and pray it doesn't call me but if it does I'm calling 911 and tell them someone called and said my house is on fire. I know I'll have 12 drunk VFD members surrounding my house in 5 minutes! lol And I can watch it all remotely from my video cameras on my phone. While I'm reviewing the video to get a description of person vehicle etc and calling my neighbors to be on the look out.
 

Sean Jones

Well-Known Member
Larry I agree with 99% of what you are saying. Monitored lines can be a joke, depending on where you live. However Insurance companies like them and usually give a decent discount for having one.
 
I'm sure States vary with regards to insurance coverage compared to having a security system monitored or not monitored. As a dealer I can have my home monitored for $5 a month or $60 dollars a year. My insurance deduction wouldn't even cover that cost.

Monitoring is a money maker for installers and companies. It's basically to have a monthly income but also to cover their A$$. They also have proof that you did or did not have the system armed if you are ever broken into. Even if you did arm your system they have proof they contacted local authorities and then you can blame your local authorities the for response time. It may seem like I'm coming down hard on local law enforcement. I'm not actually. Speaking locally the local State Police detachment is so unstaffed they no longer take rotation calls from 911. That leaves the local county police to respond to the bank robberies (yes they are common here), vehicle accidents, gas station robberies, rapes, domestic violence, drug over doses, murders, suicides, etc. The list goes on. They are not enough of them. Heck a home invasion doesn't even make the news around here anymore. Sad days.
 
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Owl

KNIFE MAKER
Interesting discussion.
Our house has a wired in monitoring system with a local company, but no cameras.
We live out in the country about 8 miles from a nearby small town, but we can't depend on law enforcement helping out very quickly.
My shop is a separate building about 85 feet from the main house. It does not have an alarm system and I have been trying to figure out what to do.
I have been under the impression that a thief is going to want things he can fence quickly, like electronics, jewelry and guns.
All that stuff is in the house except for a shotgun I keep out in my shop.
Unless my shop is burglarized by a drug crazed knifemaker I would think that common hand tools would be the main things they would take, and maybe my lawnmower.
Most of the expensive items seem like they would be too heavy to carry off quickly or else too difficult to sell ( anvils, hydraulic press, heat treat oven, forge, saws, drill presses, grinders, etc ).
So what would you guys suggest in this situation?
Is there any way to get past problems with cut phone lines?
 

bladegrinder

Well-Known Member
I've sent Sound a pm with some of my past experiences, that said I'll add a couple things here.
I live in a really populated tourist area with lots of crime. most burglars are of the trash-lowlife variety, their not sneaking around cutting wires, they look for easy opportunity, in and out with whatever they can carry.
if their prepared to cut wires to gain access to your property, you've been targeted and they mean business, they have a good Idea what you have and what they want, not just things you have laying around.
I'm not going to divulge what I have as far as security but I will touch on ADT since that's one thing I do have and it's been brought up here.

twice I tripped mine, the first time I wasn't near my phone, the second time I heard it, looked at it and thought it was a BS call so I didn't answer it. both times the police showed up in about 4 min.
another time I got a call when I was across town, they said my side door sensor activated and if I was there, I told her no...notify the police. I got home 10 min. later and my house was surrounded by four police cars. it was lightning that set it off.
although I can't say for sure this is the norm because the police are familiar with me and my house..-in a good way, not bad-
I will say that ADT does carry a lot piece of mind with me.

The police in my town are generally proactive and look forward to catching criminals, unlike some places.

with simply safe...it's on you, you receive the notification on your phone and you call the police.
other things to think about are leaving things outside that can be used by Larry lowlife to get in your house, like gardening or automotive tools to be used as pry bars.

inside, stash away cutoff wheels and torch tips.
if your going away, tear gas canisters with trip strings work great to make people leave in a hurry. :D
 
It's not always what they take but the damage they leave behind. It varies around here and seems to go through stages. Homes during the day then garages at night. They are looking for prescription drugs, cash and jewelry on home breakins. My Buddies house got broken into they destroyed a custom made gun cabinet made by him self but didn't take a single gun. Since he had no security at the time they had plenty of time ransacking his house. Every room in his house looked like a tornado went through. Drawers pulled out and dumped, beds turned over. They broke into his house during the day time while he was working at his wood working shop 180 yards away. 3 months later they broke into his shop and took chop saws, small tools. He now has security at both places with video cameras. Four wheelers and UTV's are hot items around here too.

As for cutting wires it's not difficult. A pair of diagonal wire cutters and usually 10 seconds standing beside your electric meter and all low voltage wires will be worthless without opening a single box. It's not just professional thieves doing this now days. It's full time drug addicts looking for money for their next fix. Years ago I was big on installing phone line monitoring. If wires were cut security would sound locally. Problem is your phone lines intermittently go out of service more than you think. It's not like electric where you see lights blink. Rude awakening in the middle of the night and your security system is your wake up call.
 
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bladegrinder

Well-Known Member
As for cutting wires it's not difficult

I understand wires aren't difficult to cut, I'm just saying most hood rats don't have the intelligence to find wires entering homes and cutting them.
I know quite a few people that have been hit including myself and the phone lines were never cut. I'm sure it happens, but I even know a man that owned a pharmacy, they cut a whole thru the roof with a torch, and went in and out with a rope yet never cut any wires....and never got caught.
I feel for your friend that got hit because I been there, but did they cut his wires?

any security system can be defeated. that shouldn't deter someone from considering and using any option available.
 

Sean Jones

Well-Known Member
When I was really into photography I had thousands of dollars of camera equipment in a basement room, which I've since sold the majority of. In addition to the ADT system we have, I installed a separate internal system just for the windows in that room. It was a simple laser trip type from Radio Shack, but quite effective. I think it cost me thirty dollars and was extremely loud when tripped.

So for those of us overly paranoid, or with very expensive equipment, a secondary system certainly isn't out of the question.

However lasers that trip aren't very effective if you have pets. They just seem to know :rolleyes:

When the system was armed I had to keep the door closed so the cats couldn't get in.
 

soundmind

Well-Known Member
I knew there was some answers out there. I appreciate all the replies.

I'm in and out of this place. I pastor in two different towns with parsonages for us in both places. I don't have break in problems where I've been living, but we do here. It's not personal, it's just an empty house and harder drugs are making their way out here so people are looking for either a place to party or easy money. Most of the time the house is left undamaged. But not these past two times. I think people had keys before. Cameras, fresh plywood, and screws every two inches is probably my best option for when I'm gone. I still need some good door hardware that's sledgehammer proof and built with solid internal components.

PM me if you know good door hardware, I don't want people knowing what I have. I'll be looking, too.
 
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My wife and I have a gunshop. We live in half of a commercial building, the other half being our store and workshops. We installed a Simpli-Safe alarm system several years ago, and are completely happy with it. I customized the package, and installed it. It is wireless, so every now and then you need to change batteries. The system notifies you which devices need to be changed before it shuts down. There are panic buttons, including a keychain fob that works from the parking lot. The monitoring is wireless, so phone lines can be cut, and it still works. It only costs $15.00 per month, with no contract. We also have a video camera system, that records on a loop. It is hard wired, so no batteries to change. Two cameras inside, and two outside- watching entrances and parking lot. It works by infrared at night, but the video is grainy. I bought the system on-line. Not the greatest, but works for us. We can go back about 4 weeks and review the video if we suspect any problems with any customers. We also have motion detection lighting outside on the parking lot, and all entrances. (Goes without saying, we are both armed!)
 

soundmind

Well-Known Member
My wife and I have a gunshop. We live in half of a commercial building, the other half being our store and workshops. We installed a Simpli-Safe alarm system several years ago, and are completely happy with it. I customized the package, and installed it. It is wireless, so every now and then you need to change batteries. The system notifies you which devices need to be changed before it shuts down. There are panic buttons, including a keychain fob that works from the parking lot. The monitoring is wireless, so phone lines can be cut, and it still works. It only costs $15.00 per month, with no contract. We also have a video camera system, that records on a loop. It is hard wired, so no batteries to change. Two cameras inside, and two outside- watching entrances and parking lot. It works by infrared at night, but the video is grainy. I bought the system on-line. Not the greatest, but works for us. We can go back about 4 weeks and review the video if we suspect any problems with any customers. We also have motion detection lighting outside on the parking lot, and all entrances. (Goes without saying, we are both armed!)
A worthy post for an "old guard dog."

I was also thinking of going with both wireless and hard wired. Although, I know that mine will need to have a clear picture, since the crooks are long gone by the time there's any investigating. There are no police out here. Also it's when were not here that's the issue for us, it's when the place is empty.

One thing I'm worried about is once they're in they have time to find the dvr and take it. Anyone know of a way to avoid that?
 
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To be clear I believe that everyone should have both a security system and video surveillance. The price of good HD cameras now adays is incredibly cheap. I've even installed several of the package deals from local Sams club that customers bought. They have worked great with a few exceptions. Their major drawback to me is the preassembled video power cables. It's difficult enough running cabling but when they have preinstalled ends it's even tougher. But I've installed rough in cabling and installed ends after the fact. Their cheap plug in power supply transformers are the first thing to die but easy enough to replace.

But expect to see a lot of hooded jerks! Even video of the vehicle helps but don't expect the license plate number to be good if your lucky enough to get it. Some are stupid enough to not have a hood up over their head when they first approach to make sure your away at work. AND yes have your recorder in a hidden location or better yet in a locked box. But with a security system blaring the average time they stay in your home or shop is 20 seconds or less based on tons of personal video I have saved. THATS a lot better than 8 to 10 minutes if YOU DON'T have security system. But keep in mind video is also useful in a lot of other instances. Packages delivered or NOT delivered. I've several times had delivery companies say they tried to deliver to my house and no one was home even though package was not signature required. A simple check with video and a phone call telling them you have video and no one stopped at my house their story changes QUICK.

I guess WV drug addicts here are smarter than the average addicts nationwide. It's totally normal here for them to cut your cable and or phone line first thing. Folks who get broke into here without security are even more mad when their internet or phone doesn't work after the break-in and they have no clue why. If your relying on your internet for monitoring and it comes in on your TV cable or phone cable it's vulnerable. PERIOD. Don't believe me walk over to your OUTSIDE electrical service entrance and imagine with a pair of diagonal cutters how long it takes to cut all your low voltage wire by the meter socket. No need to go inside or open any boxes to cut all wires to eliminate monitoring relying on your internet or land line.

I knew I'd take some heat for saying paid monitoring is a joke. Just saying 35 years in the security industry you see a few things.
 
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