Introduction: Hidden in Wall Gun Cabinet With Hidden Keypad

Picture of Hidden in Wall Gun Cabinet With Hidden Keypad

I wanted to have a place to secure my firearms that wasn't visible all the time, so I came up with the idea of a recessed in the wall gun cabinet that doubles as a Full body mirror. Then I wanted to go one step further with a hidden keypad behind a picture to control a solenoid lock. 

ps. check out the video below for a quick look at almost final product.
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Step 1: Find a Place, Buy Supplies

Picture of Find a Place, Buy Supplies

First thing you need to do is find a place suitable for a in the wall cabinet. You need to be careful of plumbing and wires.
I purchased the keypad for around $13.00 and the soleniod around $12.00 on amazon. The keypad even reads rfid tags that came with it. I also used three 8 ft  1x4's and two 8 ft 2x4's.

Step 2: Cut the Holes

Picture of Cut the Holes

The outside edge of the door is 2ft by 4ft so the hole in the wall needs to be smaller than that so that it is concealed by the door.
Be careful cutting into the wall I used a cheap multi tool from harbor freight to cut the holes.
I had a stud in the way I had to cut out, I measured 1 1/2 " behind the drywall to cut the stud so that a 2x4 would fit behind the drywall on top of the cut out stud. you need to the frame out behind the drywall with the 2x4's  see pictures.

If your concerned about removing or cutting any stud in the wall you can easily work around them I just didnt want one in the middle of my cabinet.

also there is plenty of room for 1/2" foam insulation behind the cabinet so I would recommend putting it there if your on an outside wall.

Step 3: Wires

Run wires to the keypad, you may be able to go through the attic or under the house or in my case I pulled up floor molding to run the wires behind it to the keypad.

Step 4: Build a Box

Picture of Build a Box

Build a box out of the 1x4s to fit into the hole since the box is going to be slid out to the edge of the drywall there is going to be a 1/2 gap behind the box and the other side of the wall. I  attached plastic to the backside of the 1x4 frame for a back, but you could use paneling, thin plywood, etc. 

Slide (or pound in my case) the box into place and attach with screws.

Step 5:

Pick a place for the keypad , cut hole in wall and run wires to it .
I made a recessed box out of plastic on my vacuum former but you could make a small wood box to mount the keypad in.

Step 6: The Doors

Picture of The Doors

I used 1x4's to make a 2' by 4' door.
using a table saw I cut a groove into the side of the 1x4 to hold the mirror then cut a 45 degree angle on the ends of the 1x4's then assembled . Then add cabinet hinges...  see pics
Ok so my 45's didnt come out quite right I will be covering them with rosettes in the near future.
Put hinges on a picture frame to cover up the keypad. I also put a screw in the wall for a magnet thats on the back of the picture frame to attach to. 

Step 7: The Lock

Picture of The Lock

Figure out a way to attach the solenoid, I used a small steel strap with holes in it to screw the solenoid to the door.(also used epoxy)
I could have attached the solenoid to the frame instead but it never crossed my mind until just now.( I might change it)
then figure out a way to have the solenoid to catch onto something. I used a metal pipe strap that I bent into the shape I needed then attached it to the door frame.
Wire it all up and test the wiring BEFORE closing the door.

Step 8: Almost Final Product

ok so the final product has been tweaked a little, the plexi with mirrored tint did not work out, so I replaced that with an actual glass mirror.

I covered the 4 corners of the door with rosettes because of my poor cutting.(I think I like it better that way anyway).

I also put a diode across the solenoid to take care of inductive kick.

so I say almost because I still have to put a piece of wood across the inside to hold the barrels of the rifle and a place to mount a pistol.

Make sure to check out the video below.
I really Hope you enjoyed this instructable and VOTE for me  in the "Secret doors and compartments contest"


angpal59 (author)2013-12-22

You got my vote, that is great, if everybody who owns guns had the mindset you have, we would be in a safer place and kids wouldn't be killing each other, it seems like everyday you see in the news where a toddler picked up a gun and either shot them selves or a playmate, great instructable. Angpal59

JeremyA (author)angpal592014-01-25

It is funny that I don't see stuff like that everyday. I think it is perception. The news likes to sensationalize everything to get ratings. Most gun owners are responsible and do keep their guns in safe locations. For context just think of the tens of millions of guns owned in this country. The math doesn't support the assumption that this stuff happens all the time. Please don't fall prey to that type of thinking.

IkilledKenny (author)JeremyA2014-08-06

Well said sir, well said.

gadget-man (author)angpal592013-12-23

Thank you, I really appreciate the vote:-)

DrDon-MCES (author)2013-12-23

Excellent work!

gadget-man (author)DrDon-MCES2013-12-23

Thank You!

JasonE (author)2013-12-17

Wow! Very cool and nicely demonstrated! Two thumbs up!

gadget-man (author)JasonE2013-12-18

Thanks, I really appreciate that.

jessyratfink (author)2013-12-17

That's awesome! What a great idea for a gun cabinet :D

gadget-man (author)jessyratfink2013-12-17

Thank You so so much.

Penolopy Bulnick (author)2013-12-17

That is really awesome! Having a keypad hidden behind another picture on the wall is genius!

Thank you. :)

AndrewH457 (author)2018-01-12

If i wanted to pay for a gun cabinet

Orleck (author)2017-03-28

This is a great idea, I especially commend the clever idea of having the keypad 'off-site' in a sense, very, very cool.

I just can't get your video to load for some reason. xD I'd really like to see it!

RobinA39 (author)2016-03-28

what size wire am i running

gadget-man (author)RobinA392016-03-28

it doesn't need to be heavy 14 or 16 is what I used ,and I think either on would still be overkill.

TimB174 (author)2016-03-23

Awesome Job. Ijust wanted to buy something like this:, but it is better construct than buy :)

ScottG66 (author)2015-12-25

I love it. I am going to make one to. i always fear someone breaking into my house and finding my guns.

ramseyj1979 (author)2015-08-28

1 do you remember of have a name of the solenoid and key pad you purchased. 2 is there any movement in the door with the latch.

gadget-man (author)ramseyj19792015-08-28

i havent noticed any movement in the door with the latch.

here are the links to the ones i bought

and here is something else another commenter mentioned might be worth looking in to

Acrid (author)2015-08-26

I found 2 things that may be of use. instead of using the keypad, for a little more security, you could use a biometric scanner here:

and as far as a power failure goes, theres a much easier option here:

thought this might help.

gadget-man: Awesome Job!!!!!!!

If I get around to this project, i will most likely try the biometric, we shall see how that works...

gadget-man (author)Acrid2015-08-26

thanks, I like the scanner and if I had the extra 30.00 that would be a cool way to go.

mdegiova (author)2013-12-26

Awesome Job. Do you have any pics of the keypad wiring? I bought one to do this myself but it is extremely hard to read the English translation of a Chinese manual.....

gadget-man (author)mdegiova2013-12-26

Its a late tonight but I will help you out tomorrow,

gadget-man (author)gadget-man2014-01-04

Here is a diagram I just made.
It took me quite a while to make sense of there instructions.

BrianM45 (author)gadget-man2015-08-02

Hey man, cool project. I am building an in wall gun safe with the same deadbolt and keypad. I have the keypad wired up just like the hand-drawn diagram you had posted (minus the diode, which I will be adding later), but every time I hook up the power, the keypad starts beeping with the red light going nonstop. Can't make sense out of the instructions to find a remedy to this. Did you have this issue before or know what to do about it?

BrianM45 (author)BrianM452015-08-02

fixed the beeping...was just because the back cover was removed, so i just pushed down the spring-triggered button to stop the beeping...I'm an idiot.

However, everytime I power it up, the red LED just stays lit solid, whereas it sounds like (from the instructions) all lights should light up...I have no idea what I'm doing. Any suggestions?

gadget-man (author)gadget-man2014-01-04

their not there

gadget-man (author)gadget-man2014-01-04

Dont forget to vote! :)

bucell (author)2014-11-12

i was wondering if you also had to purchase the power converter for this keypad as well to be able to connect it to standard household power. Also any good place were i wouild be able to find instructions for the "pin" setup for use incase the solenoid fails?

gadget-man (author)bucell2014-11-12

I used a random 12v power supply I had lying arround something similar to this

I'm not unerstand the second part of your question.

bucell (author)gadget-man2014-11-12

i was trying to understand, in one of your previous comments you mentioned having a way to still open it incase the solenoid fails to work electronically.

also i am thinking about ordering this up, do you happen to still have a pic of how you hooked the diode up? its been a long time since i have gotten into things like this but im slowing getting it back up again.

gadget-man (author)bucell2014-11-12

well the first part is a secret all I will say is that it is a manual way(have never had to use it). as far as the diode put it across the terminals of the solenoid if the solenoid engages as it should you have it the right way. if nothing happens to the solenoid when it should be engaging then the voltage is going through the diode before it gets to the solenoid so just turn it around.

bucell (author)gadget-man2014-11-13

Thanks, sorry to be a bother but i guess my last question would how did you go about connecting the power supply for the keypad to the house electrical supply

bucell (author)2014-11-12

i was wondering if you also had to purchase the power converter for this keypad as well to be able to connect it to standard household power. Also any good place were i wouild be able to find instructions for the "pin" setup for use incase the solenoid fails?

MochaMorphine (author)2014-10-23

Very cool build. What did you use for a power source? If you hard wired it where did you wire it. If you used a battery what kind of hookup did you use and what battery? Thanks!!!

CoyoteQuick (author)2014-09-08 that's why you get the shiny tools. I'm still trying to locate the images of my gun stash, but if you can imagine a closet with double sliding mirror doors cut short to accommodate a pair of thirty inch wide by fourteen inch high full extension drawers at the bottom, then imagine those drawers not going all the way to the back of the closet but leaving a 14x10x60 cavity with a pop-up lid underneath the carpet. What I'm gathering material for now is a false in-wall breaker panel for my pistols, not sure when I'll have the time to assemble because a bike event is coming up and my shop is getting busy. Feel free to take a crack at it, I would have to say it's one of my better ideas.

CoyoteQuick (author)2014-09-08

Cool idea, I did one similar (pics are in the works) thing you need though is a fail-safe trigger to disengage the latch for the "Murphy Moments". I used magnets that disengage when a pin is pulled.

gadget-man (author)CoyoteQuick2014-09-08

it's there, just not in my instructable. super secret way to open I just wont tell anybody. Just in case one of the few people I told about it turns evil.

CoyoteQuick (author)gadget-man2014-09-08

Ah-ha....I knew there was a reason you get the shiny tools. I'm trying to track down the images of my gun stash. If you can imagine a closet with double sliding doors that were cut short to accommodate a pair of two foot wide by twelve inch high drawers with full extension slides...but, they don't go all the way to the back wall of the closet. They fall short about ten inches. The top appears like the bottom of a carpeted floor in a closet should. Access is a door that flips up near the back after the carpet is pulled back and the pin is pulled. I'm working on a false breaker box for a wall for pistols right now, you might want to try your hand at it....ingenious if I do say so myself.

cuteandsmart1241 (author)2013-12-24

Are u gonna shoot people in their sleep?

Only if he sees them in the mirror silly.

ryan.burris.33 (author)2014-09-02

"I also put a diode across the solenoid to take care of inductive kick.

What exactly is the diode and where do you get it from?

a diode only lets voltage go in one direction. you put it across the terminals of the solenoid coil. you do this to protect the circuitry of the keypad because when you take away the voltage from the coil by turning it off it gives an inductive kickback voltage back to the controller(keypad). I believe I used a 1n4002 diode can be picked up at radio shack.

starwarsgeek1 (author)2014-08-08

this s such an awsome project we are about to move and I am sooooo gonna do this to my new room thanks for the help

paveman69 (author)2014-07-20

What kind of key pad and solenoid did you get off amazon?

gadget-man (author)paveman692014-07-20

here are the links

cgosh (author)2014-04-25

I'm not big on guns, but you've done some great work here.

Also, you're right about the diode on the solenoid. Failing to add this cheap device could cause your keypad to fail, locking you out. Oddly enough, the correct way to add this particular diode is backwards. The positive end of the diode goes to the negative-powered lead of the keypad wiring, and the negative end of the diode (with a band around the case) goes to the positive lead. The purpose is to take the "reverse EMF" voltage that's generated when the solenoid turns OFF and shunt it through the diode. This is caused by the collapse of the magnetic field in the solenoid which generates a brief spike backward through the wiring to the keypad. Try a 1N4004 or other high-voltage 1 Amp diode. (NOTE: Ordinarily, diodes are NOT connected this way.)

DrDon-MCES (author)2014-01-04

Your project has sparked me to try a similar hidden cabinet. I purchased the components as listed, but the keypad instuctions are extremely poor. Do you mind sharing how you wired the keypad.
Thank you in advance,

gadget-man (author)DrDon-MCES2014-01-04

Here is a diagram I just made.
It took me quite a while to make sense of there instructions.

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