Shop Security

  • Advertise with us

« back to Focus on the Workspace forum

Forum topic by sillac posted 11-06-2010 12:17 AM 1876 views 0 times favorited 41 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View sillac's profile


644 posts in 1579 days

11-06-2010 12:17 AM

Topic tags/keywords: tip shop security

First of all I am new to LJ but in looking around for forums, blogs or information about, shop security, I have found very little on this subject and what I did find was a closed for further comment.

I am just buillding my shop and am very interested in shop security. I was ripped off once, remodeling an old house and the basement door was hard to get locked and I think a real estate person left it unlock after showing the house to someone, anyway I lost about $400 in hand tools, of course it was under the deductable.

What I wold like is if any of you have been ripped off, how was it done and how will you prevent it the next time. Also ideas on how to make the shop more secure.

A few things I am doing or will do are;

I have put lag screws/bolts into my door jams on the hindge side and cut the heads off so about 3/4 of an inch sticks out and a drilled hole in the edge of the door that lines up with the cut off bolt, (this hole has to be enlonggated for the door to close) so that even if the hidge pins are pulled the door still can’t be removed. On the other side of the door is a good dead bolt that is keyed on both sides. I have done this on all of the shop doors.

The windows will have heavy screens on the outside (these may be in metal frams on hindges and bars on the inside.

All hand and small power tools will be out of sight in drawers or cabinets that can be locked.

I will install a motion detector for the inside of the shop with a 30 to 60 second delay for a code to be entered or both an inside and outside alarm will sound.

Record serial numbers and have photos of all tools.

Can anyone think of anything else? I hope this information can be of help to others.

Thanks for your input, Steve

-- Steve in Oregon,

41 replies so far

View Gregn's profile


1642 posts in 1798 days

#1 posted 11-06-2010 12:52 AM

Welcome to Lumber Jocks Steve,
I use expanded metal on my windows myself. If others will be allowed access to the shop signs posted to keep all doors and windows locked. Security camera’s that have off site storage to possibly identify thieves. Oh ya one other thing a big shop dog. LOL

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

View NBeener's profile


4806 posts in 1989 days

#2 posted 11-06-2010 12:58 AM

Somewhere, I got a BIG booklet, from the San Diego (California) Police Department on securing your property.

You may check online, or give them a call, and see if they’ll mail you a copy. GOOD stuff.

They HANDED me the booklet when they CAME to my house to conduct a “security audit.”

Maybe your local law enforcement folks will do the same for you ?

I thought it was time well spent. I thought I’d thought of everything, but they gave me a few very valuable pointers that I had missed.

EDIT: I found their web page, with all kinds of good info. I imagine the PD website for any major city would be FULL of useful tips !

-- -- Neil

View Abbott's profile


2570 posts in 2118 days

#3 posted 11-06-2010 01:04 AM

I have photos of everything, insurance and of course decent locks. I also have 3 large windows in my shop that I don’t feel like building bars for as I don’t want to look at them. So I have my bets on photos and insurance. If I do get a break-in I hope that will be good enough to cover it.

Welcome to our forums!

-- Ohh mann...pancakes and boobies...I'll bet that's what Heaven is like! ♣ ♣ ♣ ♣

View sillac's profile


644 posts in 1579 days

#4 posted 11-06-2010 01:07 AM

Thanks for the good comments. So Neil, what are some of the very valuable pointers that the security audit opened your eyes to?

-- Steve in Oregon,

View juniorjock's profile


1930 posts in 2580 days

#5 posted 11-06-2010 01:13 AM

Photos and ser. numbers are great, like mentioned, but where do you keep these photos? If you keep them in your home and there’s a fire, you’ve lost your photos. And if your shop is attached to the house, you’ve lost your tools too. I can’t say too much about it, cause my lazy ass hasn’t taken any photos or recorded numbers yet. Just like everything else, you need a back-up….. a safety deposit box or something…..

View NBeener's profile


4806 posts in 1989 days

#6 posted 11-06-2010 01:14 AM


- asked me to put ply over our screened glass, within our back door
- suggested I lag some eye bolts into the garage joists and put a long security cable through the eye hooks and through the frames and wheels of our six bicycles
- told me that gravel and thorny plants, around the house, would both let me HEAR somebody milling around out there, AND make breaking into a window much less enticing,
- told me to use security deadbolt ‘receivers’ that were much sturdier, and install them with 3” or greater screws
- liked the lock I put on our back gate
- liked my solar powered, motion-sensing flood lights on the front of the garage, and the front of the house
- advised a video inventory of all our valuables—just walk and talk, with a camera, and explain what everything is
- suggested pin locks for all our double-hung windows
- obviously, if your shop is accessed via a hollow-core door, replace it with a solid-core/steel door.

Those are the majors that I can recall. It’s been about 3yrs….

-- -- Neil

View NBeener's profile


4806 posts in 1989 days

#7 posted 11-06-2010 01:14 AM

And … to juniorjock’s point …. storing those pictures in one of the online picture sites, and/or with a relative/friend … makes sense.

Or … a copy at the office.

-- -- Neil

View sillac's profile


644 posts in 1579 days

#8 posted 11-06-2010 01:46 AM

I remember in one of the blogs, that is closed to comment now, that the blogger or one of the bloggies, said that he had a gun to take care of the bad guys, then someone else said that he knew several DAs that know of people who get in a big pickle (not a good thing) from shooting unarmed bad guys. My comment is that if we want lower crime we should do as the country with the lowest crime rate does. Which would be….drum roll please…any guesses?.... Switzerland!!! yes where every household has a gun, and if the can’t afford a gun they are issued you a gun and everyone is trained on how to use it and use it effectively. Now that would make the bad guys think twice!

-- Steve in Oregon,

View NBeener's profile


4806 posts in 1989 days

#9 posted 11-06-2010 01:47 AM

Insurance IS a must. I totally agree with Bently, there.

The old saying, though, is that the goal is simply to make YOUR place LESS ATTRACTIVE a target than the next place.

But … the other old saying IS that you really can’t stop a true pro.

-- -- Neil

View NBeener's profile


4806 posts in 1989 days

#10 posted 11-06-2010 01:49 AM

Without taking this far afield, and in violation of the rules of this site …. Switzerland ranks 13th (#1 being the worst) in burglaries.

The US is 17th.

-- -- Neil

View greg's profile


88 posts in 2011 days

#11 posted 11-06-2010 01:50 AM

i have a hidden switch outside of my shop for the 220 volts going to the door knobs and a sign that says keep out and caution for electric

View sillac's profile


644 posts in 1579 days

#12 posted 11-06-2010 01:51 AM

Ben, thanks for the comment, and of course your right. I hope we all learned a good lesson from your bad expereance.

-- Steve in Oregon,

View sillac's profile


644 posts in 1579 days

#13 posted 11-06-2010 01:59 AM

Beener: I stand corrected, I read that from someone else that didnt’ know what he was talking about…LOL, but they are 20th in total crime and the best would be Yeman, but then it is not a crime to kill and cheating wife, in Yeman, or the guy she was with. Don’t think I want to live there, really really don’t want to.

-- Steve in Oregon,

View MayflowerDescendant's profile


414 posts in 1602 days

#14 posted 11-06-2010 02:03 AM

In addition to the many good points already mentioned …

1. Security decals visibly displayed on all windows and doors.
2. While it may be nice to openly display your tools, if that makes them too visible to passerby’s (pedestrians or in vehicles), reconsider the concept or enclose / cover them when not in use.
3. Use of cable locks or on/off switch locks – Certainly, whenever you leave your tools unattended outside. Not only for safety sake (kids can’t come along and start playing with your chop saw!!), but to make it more time-consuming for the thief (may re-consider or take less valued / unsecured items).
4. If you are already alarming things, consider adding motion-activated video monitoring.
5. Like Abbott above, I didn’t like the thought / look of bars on windows. I had a friend who works at a metal fab shop custom cut and weld a metal screen on the inside of my shop window, behind the window blinds. From the outside – no trace (or bars), just window and blinds. The metal screen has adequate holes to let light in when I open the blinds, but not large enough to pass anything major through. It’s welded to L-shaped steel that is pre-drilled and lag bolted into the window frame and studs – both from the side and inside. To see what I mean, check out my benchtop parts cabinet project … it’s in the background …
6. Put your automatic garage door opener on vacation or lockdown mode. This dissables the ability to come by with a transmitter and open your door from the street. Sure, that includes yourself, but you can still operate by entering the garage and hitting the switch manually. The trade-off is worth it in my mind.
7. Don’t let strangers come by / wander in the shop unattended. This goes for service folks, etc. I specifically meet unknowns outside the shop. You never know who they tell about your shop later.

If I think of anything else, I will append.

-- Glen - Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

View cabs4less's profile


235 posts in 1577 days

#15 posted 11-06-2010 02:15 AM

locks are just there to keep honest people out. Insurances is the key I hate admitt cause I really dont care for industry but they are necsary evil. I keep everything out of view and let my hundred pound doberman sleep in the shop at night if all that doesnt work I live in alabama we make texas look like the aclu

-- As Best I Can

showing 1 through 15 of 41 replies

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics :: gardening showcase