Picture of Fake-out Stolen Stereo
For about a year and a half I lived in a sketchy section Oakland. My car was broken into on a weekly basis. I didn't really care much about it wen I had a car I didn't really care much about, but when I traded up I actually cared. In the first week I had it, it was broken into and the radio was stolen. I vowed my radio would never be stolen again. Here's how I fool the theives.
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Step 1: The Set Up

Picture of The Set Up
For about a year and a half I lived in a sketchy section Oakland. My car was broken into on a weekly basis. I didn't really care much about it when I had a car I didn't really care much about, but when I traded up for an '83 Mercedes ready for a BioDiesel Conversion (You may be saying to yourself "That was trading UP?!") I actually cared, not because it was an awesome car, but because it was new-to-me and my pet project.

In the first week I had it, it was broken into and the radio was stolen. This was a factory installed radio from 1983, complete with tape deck. Apparently the theives knew more about resale value than me, because when I processed it with the insurance company they told me that the original radio was actually worth more than the car (approx. $1300) and I had to negotiate with them not to total the car out.

In the end they gave me enough money to make repairs, replace the golden radio with something fancy and new, and have some left over.

The new radio had an iPod attachment that I wired through the glovebox, but more importantly it had a removable faceplate (tre modern!). The catch with the removable faceplate, is that even when you take the faceplate off and have the car off, there is a blinking red light on the empty dock, alerting theives to the fact that there is a nice radio in there, and possibly a faceplate tossed around somewhere too.

But I wasn't going to let my fancy new radio get stolen again - my insurance company was already getting suspicious from my once-a-week calls. I had a plan.
jackrackam8 years ago
Great Idea or you could just put touch sensitive plates around your stereo and hook it up to your car battery line, so if anybody touches it... ZAAPPPP! Makes for more fun when you shock them 99.9% to death. And I live by Oakland so good job. Deep-east-o won't know what hit 'em.
12V doesn't hurt bad enough to be a deterrent, unfortunately.
coolguy Mz3FRS8 years ago
Salvage a dozen caps from disposable cameras to amp it up a bit then, wire the caps in series to stack the voltage to a higher level to make it more interesting. btw, car batteries can drive a lot of current even though they are 12v
ya. or, just run it through a transformer to put it at about 12k volts.....I can gurantee that will leave a mark.......
have fun paying for the thief's medical bills too when he sues you for damages. that'll really teach him.
jgomez11 jaysbob9 months ago

Not if you hide your assets well, place them in trusts, or are what the legal term is "execution proof" Can't squeeze blood out of a turnip, and liberal ambulance chasers hate that, so does our pathetic dictator, Hussein Obama.

n0ukf coolguy7 years ago
Yes, but 12v can't push high current through a high resistance. Unless you had wet hands, you wouldn't even feel a contact with 12v. You can't just wire a bunch of caps in series to get a higher voltage, you need to charge them up too, which means feeding them from a high voltage source (AC step-up transformer or DC-DC converter).
get some high power capacitors like when you hook up an amp in your car
'84 300d in central valley not far from you w egr delete Alda delete straight pipe and rack limiter removed car is super great now and only maint I need do is oil changes fuel filters and adj the valves once a year n she stays top notch. good idea for living in oakland
Nitidus4 years ago
Very nice idea, and a good instructible. I'll keep this in mind...
This sounds like what I need. my neghborhood is starting to get rough
i love Mercedes cars! we have about  6 of them in our yard.
great idea thanks
Fasteners6 years ago
HA! this is great
Pittsburgh PA area Oakland or something else?
Go to his profile. He's in cali i actually didn't care enough to look but figured it out when someone said move across the bay. I'm not being smart.
Matt D6556 years ago
If i caught someone breakin into my ride id beat the livin crap outta them.
Move across the Bay, man. . .
twocvbloke7 years ago
Thieves will take anything, even the old AM/MW radio taken from a Citroen 2CV I left on the passenger seat of my former Citroen BX, and the radio didn't even work!!! Can I suggest adding a pair of RCA audio cables to the setup? And a cluster of cables to look like the DIN or whatever it is has been chopped? It just makes it look more authentic, like a faceplate called "It's gone!" I saw in a car spares shop a while back (not cheap though for a bit of plastic, velcro and a few wires!!!)... :)
stripmind7 years ago
we've got an 81 with black console, and we're running WVO, but otherwise, same car! Also in oakland. We just lost 2 radios in a month. Sucks! I was thinking of doing something similar. but I was actually thinking of scarring or repainting the face-plate. I like this better, and wouldn't have thought of velcro. Thanks.
sfgabe (author)  stripmind7 years ago
Thanks! and good luck!
loppy967 years ago
so move?
coolguy8 years ago
you might even put a few metal strips on the inside of the fake panel so if they tried to pull it out they will touch both sides. don't forget the hidden disengage switch for when you have to take it out.
royalestel8 years ago
I like your ingenuity. This is the kind of thing I'd do. Heheh.
knexer18 years ago
That's a really good idea!
Aeshir8 years ago