Building an In Plain Sight Solution - Hiding Stuff

Started by MacWa77ace, March 22, 2023, 01:35:11 PM

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MacWa77ace

Referencing these topics regarding hiding valuables...
https://ufozs.com/smf/index.php?topic=1367.msg27750#msg27750

https://ufozs.com/smf/index.php?topic=932.msg17800#msg17800

And timing those posts with my work getting rid of some old PC's. I'm going to make a hiding place out of one of those PC's.

It's required we remove and destroy the HDD's before getting rid of the PC's, and when I opened these up I thought about making one into a 'safe'. Or at least a hiding place.



Looking at this unit the plan will be to remove the motherboard, And the accessory frame with the DVD drive. I'll leave all the exterior fans in place and the exterior rear accessory panels. So I'll probably have to cut that off the mother board as it looks like its attached. Once I get the board out I may consider desoldering it but I'll have to see it and right now I don't have a drill driver and torx bits at work. [the right tool and all]
 


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MacWa77ace


I don't have all the tools I need to do this here at work, even though I brought my SAK and ST300, I'm going to have to drill out some rivets, which we have a drill here but there are also some Torx screws so I'll need to bring in some tools.

So for todays installment, I cleaned the dust out and and made the front panel look like it still has a DVD player installed, even though I removed it.

Tools required:
Phillips head
Flat Head
Gel Superglue
Paperclip [to open the DVD door]



I took the faceplate and door cover off the unit and then used a gel type superglue to reattach those back to the PC's from panel. Then glued the DVD door to the DVD faceplate. Then Glued the faceplate to the PC front cover.

Completed.
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MacWa77ace

I didn't need a Torx bit to take the motherboard out. I hadn't noticed that there was also a slot for a flathead on the Torx screw heads.

Tools required:
Flathead Screwdriver



Looking at the motherboard's rear accessory plugs, the USB's, HDMI's etc etc and how they are soldered onto the board It'd be much faster to cut that section of board out and actually screw it back onto the case so it looks realistic in the back. These will take up a bit of the interior space but I'm leaving that cooling fan also for authenticity and they are mostly under that.
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MacWa77ace

See the power supply in the upper left corner of this photo?



I removed it, removed its guts, cut a couple wires and knocked out the transformer.



Then reinstalled it bending the sides down and will secure those with self tapping screws tomorrow. I wasn't originally going to remove that, but this was pretty easy and with the fan and plug outlet still visible in the back it works to keep the box's realism. And makes a lot more room inside.



Removing the accessories frame is looking like it might be difficult, there are a lot of rivets and it might be epoxied in place.
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Rednex

Mac round here someone see's a computer they take it. So if I hide something in it its gone too.

12_Gauge_Chimp

Quote from: Rednex on March 22, 2023, 05:38:59 PMMac round here someone see's a computer they take it. So if I hide something in it its gone too.

I was thinking the same thing.

One of the most stolen things in my AO is computers and whatever else isn't nailed down.

There was a time a couple years back where the local crackheads would steal truck tailgates. Nothing else, just the tailgates.

There could be a $10K Lincoln welder on the back of the truck (which there was on one truck) and these morons would steal just the tailgate. Not sure how the particular crime spree ended, but I get the feeling someone FAFO (f**ked around and found out) and ended up with some lead in their gut or ass. 

wolf_from_wv

Do you have any Windows Vista stickers to put on it?

"Pentium Inside"
"You know Grady, some people think I'm overprepared, paranoid, maybe even a little crazy. But they never met any Pre-Cambrian lifeforms did they?" -- Burt Gummer

tirls

You could still use it to hide your porn mags. :clownshoes:
Or chocolate, whatever you like more.

MacWa77ace

Really guys? I don't see it's value, its not a gaming tower with all the LED stuff and see thru sides. I'm going to attach a 480 VGA monitor to it also. I'd never look twice at this PC. Literally my Company is throwing away a bunch of them because there's no resale value at all on them. I like the Vista sticker idea, maybe a bunch of my pony stickers too. LOL.



Anyhow, they'll need to bring a cable cutter, or bolt cutter, I have these security cables and locks.



They lock the box closed and secure it to a large object in the room.

Even if its two guys without a vehicle to load up, I have way better stuff than an old PC tower sitting around for them to try to carry off if they get in the house. At least two armfuls with descent pawn/resale value.

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Rednex

Mac I agree people that knew what the computer looked like and its value would pass it up. Now the uneducated in the values of computers think  computer in general = $$$. By either the value of it or what's on it ( identity thief anyone). I happen to be dumb with computers and I cant look and know of that's  good or that's bad. I do know the crackheads from the place I used to live took everything, hell they took trash they mistook as valuable. Had a broken paper shredder they thought was something big money, hopped the fence to take it. 

Now the crackheads didn't spend time doing there stealing it's grab, yank, gone. I mean they take what they see first of big value like the big TV, game console, jewelry, cash laying around , or computers. The cable lock will stop them from grab and go, so they would grab something else.

Now professional burglar, they look at your trash to see the big tv box and stuff so they know what you have just gotten and what it is. They may know more of what to look for in a computer.

MacWa77ace

Exactly @Rednex, grab and gone is one thing this will protect against. Remember, I'm going to also attach a VGA monitor and SCSI printer to it which both have cables that have two screws on the attachment plug that have to be removed or they'll be dangling a monitor and a printer like an octopus. And all those accessories will lend to It's disguise and authenticity for the other people this will be in place to fool. It's camouflaged amongst all the other computer equipment in the room that would be easier to take but is just as valueless on the black market.

Additionally the crackheads will have to pass up two expendable laptops [decoys], a PS5, PS4, PS3, N64, 48" and 65" w/ 4K Firestick attached, stereo receiver, DVD player, PVR, and a bookcase full of DVDs and Blu-rays, and Game Disks, a bunch of airsoft's that look and feel real, crawl under my desk, and then cut the security cable or the padlock off the PC, then disconnect all the computer attachments to take that. If they even see it, its actually dark under my desk even with the lights on, and that is a black computer. Also I have a laser printer and a printer/copier under there. The PS5 and N64 are the only things that would be hard to replace right now due to their availability.

So with that setup, what would a crackhead go for [for a grab and go] and what would they pass up as to difficult to carry/get? The two laptops and a game console, maybe a pillowcase full of DVD's and that would be about all they [or I] could carry in my arms at one time.

WWY target in that setup?

Don't worry, I'm not going to put gold or cash in it, it's just to keep larger nunya stuff from prying eyes, mainly its a hiding spot not a security safe. This is also just an experiment of opportunity, if it doesn't work out I'm only out maybe an hour's work, but I kinda like doing this sort of thing.

[I re-use my big boxes to put on the ground under my cars when I work on them, after cutting them up, then fold them up with the planeside out when I dispose of them. Yeah when I drive thru my neighborhood on recycle day I can see exactly who go what.  :rolleyes1:  ]

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Raptor

#11
I like the concept especially for an office environment than my home. Camouflage needs to blend into the environment so where there is other computer stuff around this could do just that.

There things that I do keep out of site at home more along the lines of not avoiding a dash and grab but more towards not making it visible to any visitors.

So for instance using it hold extra keys, combinations and such in my home office it may not look out of place.

Folks you are on your own...Plan and act accordingly!

I will never claim to have all the answers. Depending upon the subject; I am also aware that I may not have all the questions much less the answers. As a result I am always willing to listen to others and work with them to arrive at the right answers to the applicable questions.

MacWa77ace



PRO TIP FOR CRACKHEADS:

This is worth at least a rock.



And if you see something like this...



Leave some cash 'cause the person you're ripping off is worse off than you. :shades:
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slipkid42

Quote from: MacWa77ace on March 24, 2023, 02:34:39 PMPRO TIP FOR CRACKHEADS:

This is worth at least a rock.



And if you see something like this...



Leave some cash 'cause the person you're ripping off is worse off than you. :shades:
I have that same joystick, it was the second one I ever bought, I wore out the first one I had playiing TIE Fighter.  This one is still going strong!  
"Savor the fruit of life, my young friends. It has a sweet taste when it is fresh from the vine, but don't live too long. The taste turns bitter ... after a time." --Kor, The Dahar Master

flybynight

Quote from: slipkid42 on March 25, 2023, 07:30:12 PM
Quote from: MacWa77ace on March 24, 2023, 02:34:39 PMPRO TIP FOR CRACKHEADS:

This is worth at least a rock.



And if you see something like this...



Leave some cash 'cause the person you're ripping off is worse off than you. :shades:
I have that same joystick, it was the second one I ever bought, I wore out the first one I had playiing TIE Fighter.  This one is still going strong! 
crap I wish I had a working win 98 tower. I could play all those cool old games
"Hey idiot, you should feel your pulse, not see it."  Echo 83

EBuff75

My old Win98 machine went to my aunt, so I'm missing that generation.  However, my computer "boneyard" includes a Win3.1 tower, a Win XP tower, both a tower and laptop with Win 7, and my current tower and laptop with Win 10.  The one I really miss is my old Tandy 1000, which I think was running DOS 5.0!  :D
Information - it's all a battle for information. You have to know what's happening if you're going to do anything about it. - Tom Clancy, Patriot Games

MacWa77ace

Wow.

I have a Maxim xt clone DOS 3.X
Then switched to Apple so have an Apple SE and multiple PowerMacs 7100-8100 and upgraded some of their OS from 7.X to X.X.  Some I had to leave at the older OS's because I had some really expensive hardware attached that wasn't supported on the newer OS's. Plus the gaming software that won't work on the higher OS's LOL. Last one was/is a G5. Still have 'em all.

Then I switched careers and switched to windows, so I have a 98 tower and laptop, win7, Vista, and currently a win11 laptop.
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EBuff75

For a visual, here's the old Win3.1 machine.  It's a 386DX-40, and the dimensions are about 26in high, 8in wide, and 16in deep.  Interestingly, there wouldn't be much room inside it without gutting it, as there are 11 drive bays that take up the entire front half of the case (you can see the 7 that are exposed, but there are 4 more internal bays).  And the back half is taken up with various boards and the power supply.  It was meant for use as a mini-server, so there is a whole section of knockouts on the back that can be used for serial ports (this was made back before most computers had actual RJ45 network plugs in them).  This monster weighs in at 66 lbs!  I'd show you a picture of the inside, but that would require tools to disassemble the case. 

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And here's the spec sheet that I cut off the box when I got this thing over 30 years ago!  I added the CD-ROM (not DVD, that was still down the road a bit) and upgraded the modem to a 4800bps.  It's crazy to think that shooting a 30 second video on my phone now would be enough to fill the entire hard drive on that thing!

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Yes, this beast "ran when parked", although I haven't pulled it out to test it in probably 15 years.  I did bring out my old Win XP machine from the early 2000s a few years ago so that I could retrieve some data off an old 3.5" floppy.  It was still humming right along, although it was very, very slow. 

Back on topic now. 

If I wanted a place to actually hide things, there's a much easier solution at my house.  I've mentioned before that I have a few books.  It's maybe a bit more than a FEW books.  More like 5000-ish books, give or take a thousand...  That would make it easy to hide things either inside of large books, or just behind rows of books in the various bookcases throughout my house.  As an example, this is just ONE of the bookcases that I have.  Somehow I doubt that anyone breaking in for a quick buck would have nearly enough time to go through all of these in hope of finding something worthwhile!  :D

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Information - it's all a battle for information. You have to know what's happening if you're going to do anything about it. - Tom Clancy, Patriot Games

Raptor

Quote from: EBuff75 on March 26, 2023, 12:37:49 PMBack on topic now. 

If I wanted a place to actually hide things, there's a much easier solution at my house.  I've mentioned before that I have a few books.  It's maybe a bit more than a FEW books.  More like 5000-ish books, give or take a thousand...  That would make it easy to hide things either inside of large books, or just behind rows of books in the various bookcases throughout my house.  As an example, this is just ONE of the bookcases that I have.  Somehow I doubt that anyone breaking in for a quick buck would have nearly enough time to go through all of these in hope of finding something worthwhile!  :D

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I have a similar level of books and magazines (tax updates). I keep the magazines in magazine boxes like these:
https://www.ikea.com/us/en/p/tjabba-magazine-file-white-10492455/

An empty version of this holds a Glock 21, light and 2 spare mags nicely. They are hidden if it is turned around yet very quickly available. They blend in nicely.

People are used to looking for hollowed out books. These are slightly different.

Hiding behind the books is also a good thought.
Folks you are on your own...Plan and act accordingly!

I will never claim to have all the answers. Depending upon the subject; I am also aware that I may not have all the questions much less the answers. As a result I am always willing to listen to others and work with them to arrive at the right answers to the applicable questions.

MacWa77ace

I have freestanding bookcases with some voids behind the books and I can move the DVD's forward to create voids. I'm just a little worried that some asshat will tip them over just to tip them over. then they will hit the desk or chair and not go all the way down, in which case the hidden stuff will be visible.

I thought of mounting stuff behind them also but didn't for the same reason. I don't like them that much, so I don't secure them to the wall because I might get rid of them at some point.

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