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Fortifying Windows

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Fortifying Windows

Postby jimmyjr » Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:46 pm

I have many ground level windows that would need to be beefed up. What is the best way to fortify these weak spots? I like my current landscaping so planting thorny bushes in front of these windows is not an option. I'm thinking ply wood on the inside of the house over the blinds would be an option. That way no one would notice the wood from the road. But is that the best option? Please don't suggest steel bars...
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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby armycommoguy » Wed Jul 18, 2012 9:52 pm

There are a couple of things that come to mind. First you can put a mylar (not sure if I spelled it correctly) coating over windows. This is what they use to make bullet restraint glass. Just by putting it on the inside of your windows will make it hard for someone to break it out. It comes in clear, different levels of tint and also mirror effect. The next think I can think of are the window blinds the German’s use. I saw them for the first time while I was stationed in Germany. Not sure what they are called and I am sure they are not cheap here in America. They lower down over the outside of the window. Almost like something you would see in a store front inside of a shopping mall to keep people from breaking in. No they do not look like prison bars, as a matter of fact they look very nice and you can control the amount of light coming into the house. You raise and lower them from the inside of the house with a simple draw string. Anyone trying to break through that will have to work like hell, I know, one of my soldiers got drunk one night and thought he would try to break back into a bar, he never got in.
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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby dale011 » Wed Jul 18, 2012 10:43 pm

You can use a layer of Lexan that is what banks and secure windows use these days cheaper and lighter than bullet resistant glass. All houses built in hurricane areas like Florida now have to have metal shutters installed on all windows. Home depot carries both Lexan or the shutters I listed.
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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby cityhomesteader » Thu Jul 19, 2012 9:23 am

installing working shutters on the house for rough weather is something I am looking into. Can't convince the wife about bars on the lower windows..To getto.. Thanks for the advice on Mylar and the other material..i WONDER HOW MUCH THAT STUFF COSTS AND WHERE TO BUY IT... I hate my new keyboard!! Sorry for the caps..
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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby cityhomesteader » Thu Jul 19, 2012 9:25 am

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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby dale011 » Thu Jul 19, 2012 11:19 am

If you want bullet proof lexan you need 2 sheets 1- 1.5 inch thick with 1 inch air space between them will stop most small arms. Any one who carries lexan would order it for you or you could bolt or glue smaller thickness together every one carries 3/8 " in stock, not many places would stock it in the 1" thick size. If you have a custom fish tank maker in area they would know where to get heavy lexan.
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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby Lance » Thu Jul 19, 2012 11:32 am

I don't have any close pics but you can see the electric roll up storm shutters on this beach house. One is closed. As I recall they were pretty heavy duty and would work great for keeping the turds out.

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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby bane5150 » Thu Jul 19, 2012 12:01 pm

You can try protective window films, Several layers of lexan instead of plywood (Many layers not 1 thick peice).
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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby cityhomesteader » Thu Jul 19, 2012 12:05 pm

I lie those...They are not powered? they work y pulling a cord indoors?? That is cool..IS there a link?
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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby TheLight » Thu Jul 19, 2012 12:53 pm

Hurricane Shutters come in clear and opaque varieties. They install into tracks above and below the windows in short order. They don't stand out too badly, either. Here is one example:
Image

You can also do the traditional storm shutter, but made out of something other than wood. This one is made of PVC:
Image
I found a place at one point that could make them out of steel. I like this because it keeps a more traditional look, but is easy to button up.

Third, there are security screens. Not metal bars, but a fine wire mosquito netting that can take a sledge hammer or 2x4 flying at hurricane force speeds. And they don't look bad at all!
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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby dale011 » Thu Jul 19, 2012 2:03 pm

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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby cityhomesteader » Thu Jul 19, 2012 2:45 pm

dale011 wrote:http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/catalog/servlet/Search?storeId=10051&langId=-1&catalogId=10053&keyword=hurracane%20shutters&Ns=None&Ntpr=1&Ntpc=1&selectedCatgry=SEARCH+ALL


EGADS!!!!!! $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ could not begin to imagine encasing 7 of my downstairs windows at $500 a pop LOL even the lower prices ones are beyond me right now...
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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby kr105 » Thu Jul 19, 2012 4:39 pm

A lot of FL window dealers sell hurricane film (made by 3m) and it will protect your windows from being smashed in. It's what the Army used to reimfirce HumVee windows in theatre. Back in 2005, it ran $50 a window but it's probably doubled by now.

I had plywood cut for each window and the sliding glass doors. It's painted black on the outside and white on the inside, with a rubber insulating gasket around the outside edges (hat tip to Bannor and Spoon at Plan for pademic for the original idea.). I also have handles screwed onto the inside so they are easy to lift up. Metal backets hold them in place. These act to prevent entry, insulation and blackout all at the same time.
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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby jimmyjr » Fri Jul 20, 2012 10:14 am

Awesome! thanks for all the help. I had no idea that Mylar coating for your windows even existed. This is a perfect example of why I love this forum. Thanks all.
There are two ways of exerting one's strength; one is pushing down, the other is pulling up.

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Re: Fortifying Windows

Postby Y2KNOWAY » Fri Jul 20, 2012 12:33 pm

Where can I apply for the job to shoot projectiles at security screens to test them? That looked like fun! :D

If I had the $$, that's what I would get. But, as mentioned, the 3M product looks workable. I'd have to see an actual window with it applied though. Applying a decal that large is difficult. Easy to get wrinkles, bubbles, etc.

We will be saving up to do the whole house (new windows & doors) for next year. I want to look into all of the possiblities now. I know replacing all the doors & windows 'normally' will cost a lot. But... I would rather spend more $$ and get a security upgrade at the same time.
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