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Thread: Elderly relative's home broken into

  1. #1
    *Flashaholic* PhotonWrangler's Avatar
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    Default Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    An elderly aunt just had her home broken into while she was out. You can probably imagine what I'd like to do to the perp right now [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/xyxgun.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/whoopin.gif[/img] but I'm in the market for a decent DIY alarm system and I'm looking for suggestions from our security/LEO friends here.

    Looking for outdoor PIR sensors with the ability to discriminate humans from small mammals. Also looking for 4-input mux/DVR combo wirh composite video inputs and removable HD and alarm inputs to integrate with PIRs.

    Oh, and it has to be affordable by mortals. Any thoughts?

  2. #2
    *Flashaholic* PlayboyJoeShmoe's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    We have eleven noisy mutts and one pissed off homeowner packing heat here!

    It is entirely possible that drug transactions are taking place across the road... so don't get me started!

  3. #3

    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    Burglary isn't my specialty, but I will tell you what I can.

    Burglars choose places that are easily entered and have something of value. Keep doors and windows locked. Try to harden the windows and doors with reinforced locks, frames or even bars (that open quickly in case of fire). I would look at shatterproof glass.

    If burglars can't get in the main house, they will often hit the garage and take what they can--bikes, cars, tools.

    Most burglars have no desire to confront a resident, so I have a timer that turns my lights on at night when I'm at work to make it look as though someone is home.

    Alarm systems are probably the final option, once you've done everything else first. They can be expensive and I have read that it's a high pressure sales business, instilling paranoia in potential customers to sell contracts. The police absolutely despise false alarms. They might get a thousand false alarms before one turns out to be legitimate. Do you know what that does to your motivation? Some companies will call the house to check for a password or code. If they don't get it, they call the police or send a security officer. This greatly slows down the whole process, but would be good to catch a bad guy who isn't in a hurry.

    I would talk to the police in your relative's area. They should be able to give more concrete advice.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    soory that some creeps did that. hope they go to jail and spend 10 years there at least i actulay prefare a more strict punsiment for crimes. i think dogs are one of the best defenses a good dog thatis my old house was in bad place and i never once lokcked back door never c losed it in summer but had a big chow mix who slept and lived in back yard and he loved me was a angel to me but didnt care for trespasers .he was great dog he wanted to eat thiefs lol

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    What can help with alarms is to have the 2nd call-up numbers be friends/relatives close by...

    We got a call for my in-laws place early in the morning. Must have taken me 30 minutes to get up and get there. I still beat the police by 20 minutes. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]

    Yep, 98%+ are false alarms. Having neighbors watching and taking down license plate numbers for suspicious folks can help too.

    Unfortunately, most common door locks appear to be pretty easy to pick. My in-laws avoided a lock-pick entry because 1) a neighbor asked the person why they were standing by the front door and 2) because they had a "door jam flip lock" on the front door. (they always used a garage door opener to enter the house). The home was alarmed with stickers, but the perp was not very worried. And nobody took down the plate numbers…

    Anyone here know of good/bad brands of common door locks that, at least, slow the crooks down a bit? I remember a few years ago a Japanese news segment item which had a report on a very popular and complex “pick proof” key lock. The reporter was able to quickly pick the lock with a tool and just a few minutes of instructions.

    When my wife locked herself out once the locksmith (who, by the way, never even asked to see her identification [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img] ) was not worried at all by the Kwikset (sp?) brand lock, but was very happy that our cheap screen door (kind of a 1/2 weight security door) key lock was not locked...

    -Bill

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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    Never underestimate the power of a small dog. They are great companions and make great alarms for anything out of the ordinary. Like others have said most criminals prey on the weak or easy. Even a small dog yapping loudly makes that house less appealing then the one next door with no dog.

    Go to the pound and find a nice companion. Train them and love them and they will adopt you as their pack and will protect you to their dying breath.

    Course there is always the "This House Protected By 12 Gauge Shotgun 4 Days a Week........Guess Which 4." sign. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

    Chris

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    Flashaholic flashlite's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    Security system service providers love to prey on your fears too.

    Two houses in my neihborhood were just broken into recently. Both times, the thieves were able to see a purse through the back door. They were somehow able to get through the door to snatch the purse and then they just ran off with it.....in and out in seconds. I'm guessing it was just kids.

    Shortly after the first break-in, the victims had a security system installed and the company that installed it proceeded to alert everyone in my neighborhood that a neighbor’s house had been broken into and that we should all have security systems installed - by them of course. When I look up the street now, just about everyone has this company's logo on their mailbox post. I'm sure the security system provider failed to mention that this type of security system probably won't prevent or deter this type of break-in. The thieves would be long gone before the alarm company even had a chance to call you for your password.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    My mother and father [RIP] had a monitored alarm system. It had a false alarm once and my poor dad, who was in in 80's at the time, didn't understand that he needed to reset the system [enter PIN + off + off]. He called the alarm company and instead of just telling him this over the phone, they sent out a repairman and billed him $70 to punch a few numbers on his keypad. So he was basically robbed by the alarm company.

    There should be a special place for people who rip off the elderly, and it is not a nice place.

    PS: I heard that something like 80% of the effectiveness of an alarm system is just having the sign posted in a plainly visible place.

  9. #9
    *Flashaholic* PhotonWrangler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    Thanks for all of the advice, guys. I really appreciate it.

    We're already in the process of hardening the premises; better locks, strategically placed plywood, etc. I'm going to look into Lexan windows (no pun intended).

    The alarm system will likely be something that we put together ourselves, so I'm not worried about high pressure sales weasels. I've done alarm systems before with good success so I know the drill. What I don't know are things such as which PIRs currently on the market have on-board temperature compensation and target discrimination. Some of the really cheap PIRs are dumb - no on-board CPU, just a pyroelectric detector, some op-amps to square up the signal and a monostable flip-flop or schmitt trigger to drive the alarm. Heat + movement = alarm. which means that an outdoor unit that's "dumb" can be false triggered by sunlit vegetation that sways in the wind. Not good.

    I'm probably going to do a layered approach with traditional permieter sensors as well as video w/motion detection that will trigger a recording on an embedded DVR device. My goal is to have a system that even I can't past without the alarm codes once I'm finished with it.

    I'm also working on some personal protection that my relative can carry on-person.

    And Raggie, I'm also considering an alarm pooch. Thank you for the suggestion. I like the idea of a guard dog that eats criminals!
    [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/evilgrin07.gif[/img]

  10. #10
    * The Arctic Moderator * Sigman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    How about a "Robo-Dog"?

    Don't laugh! I got a couple of these (one for my in-laws) and one for us! It's one of those "insurance" things - I thought about selling it, but "what if I need it" - truthfully, I've never plugged it in for actual "use", only to test it.

    Works great and he doesn't eat much at all! Bummer though, he never returns the stick! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

  11. #11
    *Flashaholic* KevinL's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    Not much I can say (apart from the fact I wish I had the Second Amendment, M4, M972XM or M910A grip, Eotech holographics, flat top receiver, SF M73 1913 rail for all the goodies), but remember we are flashaholics...

    Wire up some of your alarm stuff to turn on ridiculously overpowered 300W flood lights when the alarm goes off, give the guy a lumen bakin' he won't forget [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

    You have an advantage in this department because you can simply use 300W Osram Haloline AC-powered halogens, more powerful than anything we can (reasonably) carry. Or aircraft landing lights [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    [ QUOTE ]
    Sigman said:
    How about a "Robo-Dog"?

    LOL...I just clicked on the link and they have a link to click on so you can hear what it sounds like and it got my dog all stirred up. He thought it was "real"

  13. #13
    * The Arctic Moderator * Sigman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    [ QUOTE ]
    sbebenelli said:
    [ QUOTE ]
    Sigman said:
    How about a "Robo-Dog"?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    LOL...I just clicked on the link and they have a link to click on so you can hear what it sounds like and it got my dog all stirred up. He thought it was "real"

    [/ QUOTE ]
    It's supposed to be a digital sample of the real thing.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    instead of lexan windows try security film that is applied onto exsisting glass http://www.llumar.com/na-eng/Safety/...-security.html i saw a product very simaler to this on a show called "it takes a thief" on the discovery channel

  15. #15
    *Flashaholic* PhotonWrangler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    Signam, I've got one of those and it sounds pretty realistic. I'll have to dig it out of storage and think about deploying it. Thanks for the suggestion.

  16. #16
    * The Arctic Moderator * Sigman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    Mine runs off of AC or batteries and has a remote as well. I set it up today around the corner of our lower hallway and absolutely FREAKED out my sons!! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

    I'm thinking about putting it in my truck and when my buddy opens the door - checking his heart out! "Baaaaaaad Sigman!"

  17. #17
    *Flashaholic* PhotonWrangler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    I thought of a mod to add to the realism - have the trigger mechanism fire up an exteral motor or servo that would rattle a large, heavy chain randomly along with the barking. Place the chain near the door so it occasionally strikes it while it's rattling, and now you've got major realism. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

  18. #18

    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    I have one of those RoboDogs and I actually use it. I have a module that turns on a lamp a few seconds after the dog starts barking.

    About three years ago some kids in the neighborhood were going around TP'ing houses in the middle of the night. They hit mine twice before I installed the robodog. The third time, RoboDog caught 'em. They're lucky...when I heard the dog barking, I grabbed my pistol and went to the front window. Once they noticed I was watching them they took off. I haven't had a TP problem since.

  19. #19
    *Flashaholic* KevinL's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    [ QUOTE ]
    PhotonWrangler said:
    I thought of a mod to add to the realism - have the trigger mechanism fire up an exteral motor or servo that would rattle a large, heavy chain randomly along with the barking. Place the chain near the door so it occasionally strikes it while it's rattling, and now you've got major realism. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Voice recording of a guy shouting "what the heck's going on?" followed by other sounds of metal-on-metal (lead thrower being readied)..... [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

  20. #20
    * The Arctic Moderator * Sigman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    I ran across a "hack" for that "singing/talking bass", allows you to record whatever you want it to say - hmmmm, nope - don't suppose that would work! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

  21. #21
    *Flashaholic* PhotonWrangler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elderly relative\'s home broken into

    I think I've heard of that hack. But I don't have the singing bass to start with. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]

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