Home made home security system

Home made home security system

This is a discussion on Home made home security system within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; Has anyone used/put together a home security system from sources outside an alarm company? I am talking about a system that is, preferably, wireless, with ...

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Thread: Home made home security system

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array sheepdog's Avatar
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    Home made home security system

    Has anyone used/put together a home security system from sources outside an alarm company? I am talking about a system that is, preferably, wireless, with motion/infrared detectors, coupled to audible alarms and an auto dialer. I'm thinking about an alarm system, but wondering about this route. I've heard claims that you can make one "just as good" as the alarm companies, and have had some negative impressions of some alarm companies.
    THX
    What Would Gumby Do?


  2. #2
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    Array SIXTO's Avatar
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    I have made two on a smaller scale for a barn and tool trailer. Radio Shack and electric supply houses everything you need.
    "Just blame Sixto"

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    Distinguished Member Array Paymeister's Avatar
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    I built a fine system from parts purchased separately. It was a wired system, and I used the long drill bit to get into the attic from the windowframe. The hard part was getting to the eaves while balancing on the rafters with nose into the dusty insulation, but it was certainly do-able. I was told by a pro that my installation was better than that done by most alarm companies.

    The control box you buy will be programmable; you just need to contract with an alarm company which has equipment with the right protocol to accept your calls. Reed switches are inexpensive, and you can add all sorts of other sensors, too. If you get two control panels, you can have one in the bedroom which will display the zone that was tripped (you wire the sensors so the kitchen windows and door into the garage are one zone, main garage door and garage side door are on the other and so on). The control box will also have an input for a fire alarm.

    You'll need to remember to do something to eliminate the vulnerability of an underground phone line: ours ran out of the wall and down a foot or so into the ground, visible from the street. I chipped out the stucco, buried the true wire in the wet patching stucco, and replaced it with a dummy wire. It's going to be a bit puzzling to the folks who bought the house if they ever need to fix it, but it will keep the bad guys from disabling the phone.

    Another tip: put a large terminal strip in the attic above the closet where you mount the control box, then get a length of multi-conductor phone wire to fish down through the hole you drill in the top plate of the wall to reach down to the control box. Wire the multi-conductor wire to one side of the terminal strip, and run all of your other sensor wires to the other side (I'm talking about the two-screws-on-a-metal-plate-assembly-on-a-long-piece-of-black-plastic-with-little-walls-between-each-conductor-assembly). And do what I should have done: mount it so you can work on it comfortably sitting on a bucket set on a board bridging a couple of rafters: I had to bend over and came up with some rather vivid descriptions of my installation after only a short while.

    Finally, when your wife is in labor and your parents drive 500 miles to be there: when you tell your mom "Press 1, 2, 7 then Enter", be sure to tell her you mean for her to "Press 1, press 2, press 7, then PRESS THE LITTLE BUTTON THAT SAYS 'ENTER'" (instead of 1, 2, 7, then "walk in"). Hey, the neighborhood knew when our daughter was born! As did the cops, who left chuckling rather than choosing to apprehend the proud but embarrassed first-time new grandparents.
    Recently updated website: http://www.damagedphotorepair.com

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    Distinguished Member Array Paymeister's Avatar
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    Radio Shack will certainly have what you need; lots of other options can be found online, such as at Bass Home Electronics: Home Security, Home Alarm Systems, Burglar Alarms, Home Automation, Security Systems (FAQ). I did a quick Google seach to find them - you may find better prices and more info elsewhere, but they certainly have the sort of stuff I used - for example, an inexpensive control box)
    Recently updated website: http://www.damagedphotorepair.com

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    Member Array gicts's Avatar
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    I haven't looked but I assume youtube would be great for visuals

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    Paymeister, great info

    Quote Originally Posted by Paymeister View Post
    Radio Shack will certainly have what you need; lots of other options can be found online, such as at Bass Home Electronics: Home Security, Home Alarm Systems, Burglar Alarms, Home Automation, Security Systems (FAQ). I did a quick Google seach to find them - you may find better prices and more info elsewhere, but they certainly have the sort of stuff I used - for example, an inexpensive control box)
    Paymeister, that is good info. I never could quite find what I wanted at Radio Shack, but that Bass site has it all at good prices.
    Thanks for posting.

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    Member Array carver's Avatar
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    I have put together a wireless system form the same sources as mentioned above, on my windows and doors. I have also installed "shock" alarms on the doors. These will go off if the door is hit hard enough. The dogs jumping on the doors will set them off. All alarms go off with a 120dcb horn. I am installing camers right now, and will be able to monitor them from our computer room/living room/bed room. I have also installed a motion dector at the gate to our drive way, if you could call it a drive way! Jeff Foxworthy says that if you mow your drive you might be a Red Neck, well I guess I are one! The Insurance Co. won't give me any discounts as to the fact that I am not wired to reporting station. The alarm is inside the home, and since I live in the country, my neighbors won't hear it. It is strictly for when we are home.
    Y'all be safe now, ya hear!

    The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.
    Thomas Jefferson

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    Senior Member Array sheepdog's Avatar
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    I'm thinking that they can be set up to "trigger" if the phone cord is cut. How about false alarms from motion detectors...anybody having them? I see the sensors are "pet proof up to X size."
    What Would Gumby Do?

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    Distinguished Member Array Paymeister's Avatar
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    The cut-phone-line trigger would only work if 1) you were always connected to the monitoring center or 2) your system called in every x minutes. Either way, you would pretty much want a dedicated line the way we used to work. Nowadays with a DSL connection to the internet, you could probably set up a system that would 'ping' the monitoring center once a minute (for instance) and it would be unnoticable. I have no information one way or the other on what is actually available, but the tools we have now are better than the tools we had in the eighties.
    Recently updated website: http://www.damagedphotorepair.com

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    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    The old shotgun with a string tied to the door will get you in trouble
    "Outside of the killings, Washington has one of the lowest crime rates in the country,"
    --Mayor Marion Barry, Washington , DC .

  11. #11
    Senior Member Array A1C Lickey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dukalmighty View Post
    The old shotgun with a string tied to the door will get you in trouble
    I better take my system down then.....
    TSgt. Lickey

    It takes a college degree to break'em;
    and a high school education to fix'em!

  12. #12
    Senior Member Array paul45's Avatar
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    I put together a wireless RF system that is connect to a service by both telephone and cell backup. It includes windows, doors, motion detection, sound, heat, smoke and CO detection. I am working on a pressure floor pad for the approach to my Gun Room. It's pretty easy with all this new RF / wireless stuff - little drilling - some silicone and a feww screws. Batteries last 5+years. You do need a monitoring service plus I have it set-up to notify me via E-mail on my BB. I am looking into cameras and driveway monitoring. Just start web searching and reading. It does not cost much if you make a mistake or 2.
    PS - I could have had the same level installed for about 20% more than paid for the materials but needed a 3 year monitoring contract. I did not really save anything but I did it myself and learned a few things.
    "Being PARANOID is just plain smart thinking when they are really out to get you!"

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    VIP Member Array HKinNY's Avatar
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    May i suggest Tane Alarm Products: Magnetic Contacts, Alarm Switches, Sirens & B-Connectors they make these tane pills that can be installed inside the window track they can not be seen. If you install the sensor 6 inches back from window opening and install second magent contact you can leave you window open 6 inches for the warm nights with the window still alarmed.

    You can use a 4 pair wire (8 wires) use 2 wires for the phone 2 wires you make a closed loop to the panel and 2 wire you make a open loop. So if somebody cut the wire in half to kill the phone line the clsoed loop becomes open and triggers the alarm and/or the open loop become closed to trigger the alarm. Everybody should have a cellular back-up.

    The monthly service that the alarm company pays to Central station is about $4.00-$6.00 there is a HUGH mark-up on the service to you $19.00-$30.00 per/month. Knowing this you can chop up the alarm company on their price.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Array sheepdog's Avatar
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    I appreciate the info. Googling gives products, doesn't give experience. We set up and use a wireless system at work that is excellent, but costs 4500 bucks. But looking at a couple of the components-like sensors-they look a suspiciously like much cheaper units from some of the companies I have seen and were mentioned on this thread. Any other experience in the wireless RF stuff is appreciated, and I'm going to keep looking at this. Geez, another project...
    What Would Gumby Do?

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