Secret Room Construction- OK.. tell me this DOESN'T have you thinking...


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JWarren
January 27, 2008, 10:54 AM
This guy built a secret room behind a bookshelf. Wheels turning.....


http://blog.simonshea.com/2005/09/holly-shelf-unit-batman.html



-- John

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hankdatank1362
January 27, 2008, 11:00 AM
Isn't it ironic that it's opened by pulling a Sherlock Holmes book?

Cannonball888
January 27, 2008, 11:21 AM
It has me thinking I saw one at Kessler's home :D

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v45/Cannonball888/BookcaseDoor.jpg

Rembrandt
January 27, 2008, 11:58 AM
Always thought this was a classy one.... http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v405/Rembrandt51/hiddenwall2.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v405/Rembrandt51/hiddenwall1.jpg

Rule556
January 27, 2008, 12:03 PM
Of what use is a "secret" room if you post details about it on the 'net?

Javelin
January 27, 2008, 12:28 PM
Of what use is a "secret" room if you post details about it on the 'net?

Yeah! I mean it would be really easy to find the house somewhere in the country that has it.

:)

TexasRifleman
January 27, 2008, 12:45 PM
Of what use is a "secret" room if you post details about it on the 'net?

He said it was just done so he could get to the hot water heater.

Prolly not a tactical water heater I'm guessing......

Alan Fud
January 27, 2008, 12:49 PM
I recognize these images. They are from a website that builds secret rooms for people and these are examples of their work. I know because I've been interested in secret rooms ever since watching Dark Shadows in the 1960's.

For a cost perspective, the time to do this is if you are having a new house built because the costs will pretty much be the same with or without the secret roo. To add it later will be costly and it will be unlikely that one will get that investment back on a resale unless the person buying it is also interested in a secret room.

Eightball
January 27, 2008, 12:58 PM
Hmmmm.....awesome. I wonder if you could seal that secret room against moisture, make it a giant safe. No one expects secret rooms to be in houses anymore.

Or even better, have that be the secret entryway into the basement--more uses in a complete basement than a hot water heater.

Deer Hunter
January 27, 2008, 12:59 PM
I'm going to hve one in my dream house.

Which construction will be complete on when I'm 60.

Working Man
January 27, 2008, 01:10 PM
Of what use is a "secret" room if you post details about it on the 'net?

Not a secret room but a braging room. ;)
Nothing tatic-cool about.... unless you are into hot water.

primer
January 27, 2008, 01:28 PM
There was a movie a couple years ago, I think it had Jodie Foster in it. It was about a safe room. Basically anytime someone tried to break into your home you could hide your family in the room. I don't think it's a bad idea. If the room was made right you could also you it as a tornado shelter . I would like to have one in my next home. I would build it out of steel and wire in a separate phone line to call the police in case of an emergency. If it's bolted to the slab and has a door that can be locked from the inside it would be a great way to safeguard your family. As long as the invader can't get in.

W.E.G.
January 27, 2008, 01:42 PM
All in all, a Radio Shack alarm system, any noisy dog with decent hearing, and a 12 gauge shotgun will do 99% of what the secret room will do, and you can take the alarm, the dog, and the shotgun with you when you move.

I used to (try to) watch "Dark Shadows" too.

OMG that was a boring show.

The Jodie Foster movie was OK, except for the fact that there were no WEAPONS in the room.

Jodie is a big-time anti IIRC.

Cmdr. Gravez0r
January 27, 2008, 02:03 PM
In a very large house I built this summer, the owner was having a secret room put in for guns and other valuables. Not sure how he's going to disguise it though.

tuckerdog1
January 27, 2008, 02:04 PM
I think it's pretty cool. If he ever converted to one of those tankless water heaters, he'd have a nifty hiding place. I do think that in time, the casters might leave a tell tale mark on the wood floor, that would give the whole thing away.

Tuckerdog1

Hazwaste
January 27, 2008, 02:14 PM
If it's bolted to the slab and has a door that can be locked from the inside it would be a great way to safeguard your family. As long as the invader can't get in.

<Toughguy mode> The invader would need a secret room to hide from us! </Toughguy mode>

primer
January 27, 2008, 02:19 PM
Well my wife is a little scared of guns. If I'm offshore and somebody breaks in it would be a great place for my family to hide. Now if I'm home, that's a different story. If the invader breaks in I'll be waiting on him and my family will be in the saferoom.

Chris Rhines
January 27, 2008, 04:10 PM
Very cool, but not very secure. Burglars dump bookshelves, file cabinets, and such. They see a book that doesn't want to come off, and they'll probably start thinking there's something valuable (other than the water heater) behind the shelf.

Still cool though.

- Chris

Wedge
January 27, 2008, 04:14 PM
We had a "secret" room in one house. It was also a bookshelf, but the bookshelf pushed inwards. We always thought it was pretty neat.

JWarren
January 27, 2008, 04:44 PM
One thing about secret rooms:



Don't Freakin' Tell ANYONE About It.


Just within 20 miles of me, I know of TWO people who have "secret" vault rooms built into their homes.

One, a member of my community recently built his house. He showed it to several people, and I've heard about it from several difference sources even though I've never been in his home.


Another... a guy I used to know years ago... built a house. He showed it to only a couple people that he trusted. However, one of the people that he trusted also trusts ME. So he told me about it while he was contracted on my home restoration.

Now, I'd never do anything to this guy, and I am not of the character that I would harm him or his property. But I DON'T LIKE the guy. I didn't 20 years ago. I didn't 10 years ago. I don't today. Incidently, that guy doesn't LIKE me either. And I am certain that I would be on the list of people that he would not want to know things about him. And yet, I do.

People YOU trust may trust people that you DON'T trust, like, or want to deal with. People YOU trust may tell a person who does not value your privacy as much as you would like. People YOU trust may have kids who later become Crack or Meth addicts.


Build it, Hide it, and Zip it!


-- John

Keb
January 27, 2008, 05:01 PM
You can't use carpenters either. They talk it up.

JWarren
January 27, 2008, 05:05 PM
You can't use carpenters either. They talk it up.


Yep...that's who told me about the guy's stuff in the above post-- carpenters working on my house.


-- John

Blackbeard
January 27, 2008, 05:32 PM
Definitely need to keep the secret room a secret. Do the construction yourself, don't show it off to friends & family. It'd be a great place to keep your safe, so that people who come to your house don't know you have a gun safe, like the ones in this thread (http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost.php?p=4131314&postcount=27)

JeremySmith
January 27, 2008, 07:03 PM
I put one in a house I designed years ago, but it was only on the owner's drawings. It showed up as a study niche off of one of the halls on the plans the contractor's plans. I'd detailed up a pivoting shelf mechanism that would have allowed a fully functional bookcase (books are heavy! I calced it at close to 2500# full!) to have been unlatched and pivoted by just about anyone. And yes, it did involve a pivoting wall light fixture. I don't know if the owner ever completed it, but I'd suggested bringing in an out-of-state contractor to do the work. I've always been a fan of hollow walls that would access a room on another level. It's usually pretty easy to find extra space if the entrance is on the same level. A little hard to do in modern houses, but you could make it to where you had to crawl through a crawlspace or attic.

tblt
January 27, 2008, 07:44 PM
If I had extra money I would build one

Warren
January 27, 2008, 08:22 PM
....

Warren
January 27, 2008, 08:23 PM
......

Warren
January 27, 2008, 08:26 PM
"Put ze candle back!"

RoadkingLarry
January 27, 2008, 08:31 PM
People YOU trust may trust people that you DON'T trust, like, or want to deal with. People YOU trust may tell a person who does not value your privacy as much as you would like. People YOU trust may have kids who later become Crack or Meth addicts.


Remember, Three can keep a secret, if two are dead.

Safe room as secret room could be pretty nifty. Safe rooms are getting pretty popular around Oklahoma and some I've seen are pretty big. I'd have to have at least 8'X10' - and keep the gun safe in there as well.

Double Naught Spy
January 27, 2008, 08:52 PM
The problem with the secret room in the original post is multifold. First, there is an obvious loss of space in the house. What you have is a hidden entry, but not so much a secret room.

The second problem is the haunted castle hinge book door mechanism. People who ransack home will often spill the contents of books shelves. The mechanism will be discovered. Even worse is that it may be discovered by casual looking by a house guest.

Third, the construction is such that you can see gaps in the build. You can see part of the wall behind the "secret door and the fact that the wood does not match up property. The guy should have at least painted the back wall behind the unit to match the stain of the wood, but he didn't. Also, you can see the door isn't hung property.

GRB
January 27, 2008, 09:11 PM
I too have a secret room under my backyard. It is under my yard and is accessed by a secret trap door next to our oak tree under the wired down leaf litter. You step into a passageway that is under the oak tree in our back yard. It goes down a small set of steps 6 feet to a small tunnel that zizags twice to act as a radiation deterent in case of fallout (radiation only travels in a straight line). It opens after 8 feet, into a main room and two smaller rooms. Each are 8 feet deep/high - whatever you want to call em in depth. The room walls and ceilings are all reinfirced concrete, the walls with rebar, and the ceilings with I beam construction and rebar. We have a supply of food to last us over a year, a well that has a pipe coming into one of the smaller rooms, spare water in pastic jerry cans, medical supplies, and a generator hooked up oth to exterior solar panels (these on the back roof of the house to make it appear they run into the house) and to a small exercise bike (this only to run ventilation fans in an ultra emergency). The filters all are capable of deterring threats from chemical/nuclear/biological. We also have a state of the art chemical sanitation system (put in last year), and it flushes into an undergorund septic system built even deeper that are the rooms. It is quite an effective set up.

Most of this was already there when we bought out home, unknown to us at that time. I stumbled upon it one afternoon a few years back while doing some major tree removals (roots and all). The previous owner apaprently was quite the builder, and quite the anti-commie fanatic back in the 60s. I think his name was gun-kid.

Whoops I guess it is not seKrit no more.

All the best,
Glenn B

Actually it is a nice looking room that guy has built, but it would be very easy to find.

JWarren
January 27, 2008, 09:16 PM
I think his name was gun-kid.


If that secret bunker was created by GK, it would have been 2 or 3 dozen rusty 55 gallon drums welded together with a doghouse built over the entrance.

-- John

Cosmoline
January 27, 2008, 09:18 PM
"Put ze candle back!"

http://www.extrememortman.com/wp-content/uploads/2006/10/Young%20Frankenstein.jpg

gym
January 27, 2008, 09:21 PM
That's why they killed all the Egyptions who built the Secret rooms, in the Pyramids. Once 1 other person knows it ain't no secret.

Cannonball888
January 27, 2008, 09:26 PM
How about a fireplace instead?

http://www.hiddenpassageway.com/images/Closed%20Fireplace.jpg

http://www.hiddenpassageway.com/images/Open%20Fireplace.jpg

Cannonball888
January 27, 2008, 09:33 PM
http://img.youtube.com/vi/sO3qJGKs9gw/default.jpg
PLAY (http://rds.yahoo.com/_ylt=A0geu.VLMJ1HMFwADnBXNyoA;_ylu=X3oDMTE4cmk4ZjZmBHNlYwNzcgRwb3MDMgRjb2xvA2FjMgR2dGlkA0Y2NTRfNzQEbANXUzE-/SIG=120f0gtrb/EXP=1201570251/**http%3a//www.youtube.com/watch%3fv=sO3qJGKs9gw)

Avenger
January 27, 2008, 09:34 PM
There's a bookstore near me that has several "secret" rooms. The building was originally two seperate houses, and they sub-divided the old rooms into the new ones, creating all kinds of little nooks and crannies. They turned some of these into stock closets with bookshelf/doors in front of them. No real effort to CONCEAL them, but if you aren't looking, you won't see them. The carpet did track up somewhat, but only where they used thicker pile carpet, and it's not really worn, just that the grain of the carpet shows the door sweep.
BTW the place is the Book Loft in Columbus, Ohio. If you like getting lost in bookstores, this is the place....32 little room all helter-skelter. Get a map at the checkout first!

iiibdsiil
January 27, 2008, 09:41 PM
My ex's parents have a rental house in the Florida Keys. In one of the closets, one that is directly under the stairs, the back wall is peg board, which is actually a door. It's got a dead bolt on it, and they just keep some cooking stuff in there, some pool toys, a land line phone to hook up to get service, and a couple other things. It isn't hidden great, but it made a great use of a space in an area that you would never think was there.

Another friend has the book case deal in one of the bedrooms. The way the house is designed, it's right behind the fireplace, so you'd never know it was there except for the hinges you can kinda see ;)

One day when I finally build my own house, I'll be sure to make something similar. You never know, you might have to hide some people in it... seriously.

Javelin
January 27, 2008, 09:46 PM
One day when I finally build my own house, I'll be sure to make something similar. You never know, you might have to hide some people in it... seriously

Um.. Thanks for all the info Anne Frank!

:)

Grizfire
January 27, 2008, 09:47 PM
What I really want is a secret laboratory, Dexter style.

DiN_BLiX
January 27, 2008, 10:04 PM
A secret storage room, for guns, emergency food/water, and other shtf supplies would go nicely in an attic. Youd have a hard time getting a safe up there however.

mekender
January 27, 2008, 10:25 PM
i did a cable tv install on a house years back that had a 20foot hallway with mirrored walls... the mirrors were 4-5 ft squares and behind one of them, a tunnel about 5ft in diameter dropped down, went under the next door neighbors house and popped up in a thicket on the other side...

the new owners of the house had discovered it that morning and were stoked about showing it off... they had been told that the previous owner was investigated by the feds or something... i would believe it too, there was about 45 or so phone lines running through the beams in the roof... oh, and the pantry was a solid concrete room about 8x10 or so... concrete walls, floor and ceiling with a really heavy metal door...

geekWithA.45
January 27, 2008, 10:41 PM
a tunnel about 5ft in diameter dropped down, went under the next door neighbors house and popped up in a thicket on the other side...

How do you tunnel UNDER the neighbor without them noticing?

That's not a trivial bit of engineering at all!

Aguila Blanca
January 27, 2008, 10:43 PM
Construction costs aside, if you want a secret room and you want it to REMAIN a secret, do NOT have it built when you build the house. First, of course, is that construction guys are notorious busybodies, and they LOVE to tell their pals about the crazy secret room the just built for so-and-so in that big new house out on ___ Road. They'll not only tell every carpenter, painter and bricklayer in the county that it's there, they'll also tell exactly where in the house it is and how it works.

Beyond that, there the little aspect of ... the building inspectors. See, we have to inspect at various times during construction, to ensure that the codes are being met. The codes require access to small-ish spaces, even attics with only 30 inches of headroom. We check for this stuff. We're going to know if there's a secret room, because we're going to be there when the studs are put up, we're going to be there again where the wiring and plumbing pipes are roughed in, and we'll be there yet again when the insulation is up but before the place gets sheetrocked. We tend to worry about rooms that don't have doors, because they don't comply with the code for egress in case of fire.

You're not going to have any "secret" room if you do it while the house is being constructed.

You can't legally build it after the fact, without benefit of permit. But, if you want your secret room to be a secret -- that's what you'd better do.

bannockburn
January 27, 2008, 10:48 PM
I remember looking with my wife for our first house. One we looked at had a bedroom over the attached garage. Along the the one wall was a fairly long walk in closet, accessible through a door at one end. But what you didn't notice, unless you were really curious (like me), was that there was another room running parallel with the closet, with a small sliding door as its only entry way, inside the closet. The strange part was the only thing in it was a horizontal coat rack with about eight pegs on it. Kind of like the ultimate secret cloak room.

iiibdsiil
January 27, 2008, 10:54 PM
Um.. Thanks for all the info Anne Frank!

:)


I feel bad joking about it, but at the same time...

Javelin
January 27, 2008, 11:01 PM
Um.. Thanks for all the info Anne Frank!



I feel bad joking about it, but at the same time...

Yeah I was wondering about it myself. Too soon you think?

:)

cassandrasdaddy
January 27, 2008, 11:23 PM
nice place to hide that kinda room with a poured concrete foundation house is under garage. typically the area under garage slab is backfilled with gravel before pour. doesn't have to be have it poured as a slab suspended over the empty space below and after house is done cut your way in from house basement. fewer folks will know just whoever does slab pour and set up for it. and in my neighborhood they are used to crazy gringoes. another way to bypass the inspectors etc is to "build for a bonafide agricultural purpose. in my area anyway that escapes permitting

no_problem
January 27, 2008, 11:49 PM
:neener:

http://i26.tinypic.com/2coki87.jpg

lbmii
January 28, 2008, 05:19 PM
Why have a secret room when you can have a secret lair!

MyRoad
January 28, 2008, 08:41 PM
I brought this up when I was looking to buy the house I now live in, last June. (Hidden doors and unseen spaces (http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=281840)).

As several people here have noted, there was no way to even bring up the subject to contractors without all kinds of suspicion arising, as they wondered if I was a drug dealer or what I had to hide that was so valuable. Alternately, they would start telling me about others they've done, and you could see they just couldn't wait to add this one to their resume. In the end I found that a space big enough to walk into would be more difficult to conceal, and I just didn't have the room to spare, its not a big house.

So like anything else, you just need to figure out what your priority is.

Personally, I just want to hide things not necessarily hide myself. So in several locations as construction was being done, I requested that I'd like an "access door" put in to different areas adjacent to the eves of the house (upstairs, if that's not obvious). The contractor working on my house commended me for thinking ahead, since it would create easy access to wiring and plumbing. I suppose the rest of the story I'll keep a "secret".

U.S.SFC_RET
January 29, 2008, 07:35 AM
It is very easy to put up a false wall. Make it three to six full feet in depth. construct the wall with stud and drywall. Construct the door. Pegboard the wall with 4X8 sheets of pegboard vertical. run on the bottom a full length solid oak piece of molding to compliment the wall and to cover up youe "wear" where you step into the door. Locate the door where the least accessible place would be in the room instead of the most accessible. construct the outer skin that gets either pulled off or pulled up and swung away to reveal the real door. Construct shelving at the top to include where the door is. when you enter just pull off the piece. Hang tools where you want to. It will not be seen when fully enclosed.

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