How to Make a Super Secret Safe - for Less Than $3

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Introduction: How to Make a Super Secret Safe - for Less Than $3

About: Random Weekend Projects

In this project you'll learn how to make a super secret safe that nobody will recognize, even if they're looking straight at it.

I made a parts list for this project that you can have for free

For other project videos, check out: http://www.thekingofrandom.com

Step 1: Watch the Video!



I saw a picture of a hidden wall safe on http://www.lifehacker.com and found it was a product being sold for about $8.00 from ThinkGeek.com.

Rather than order one, it seemed feasible to make one with just a couple of materials from the hardware store.  Not to mention, much cheaper.

There are so many variations that could be made to this idea.  I demonstrated 4 that I came up with, and perhaps the best one was the fact that you could just use the box behind your cable.  If you use one of those, it's completely free, and you don't have to cut any new holes in your walls.

WARNING: Extreme caution should be used when cutting into sheetrock.  There may be electrical wires, or other sensitive materials behind the wall that can't be seen, and could be damaged when cutting.   Use of video content is at own risk.

Step 2: Why a Secret Safe?

Sometimes the best place to hide something, is where people least expect it. 

In this project we're making a super secret safe, that only you'll know about. 

For this project you'll need one of these extra long, electrical gang boxes, made for existing walls.  You'll also need a blank wall plate, like this.  

Click Here for parts list

Step 3: Installation

To place the safe, search around your house for a clean section of wall and use a stud finder, to locate an area between the studs.

 When you've found a spot that works, measure a height that matches the outlets nearby, and add half and inch. 

Next, line up the mark with the bottom left corner of the box, and trace around the sides.  This is where you'll need  to cut into the wall. 

I chose to stick an envelope under the markings, so that when cutting into the sheetrock, the envelope catches the dust, reducing the mess that has to be cleaned up later. 

It's important to cut carefully, and with shallow strokes, because there could be electrical wires behind the wall, and you don't want to cut them by accident.

Step 4: Securing to the Wall

When it's all cut out, you should find that your blue box pushes in perfectly, and rests flat against the wall. 

When you adjust the screws in the corners, you can see that it tightens the flaps at the back, securing the box tight to the wall. 

At this point you can start loading your safe, with something important.  Perhaps some stamps you want to save?  A set of spare keys?  ..what about emergency ammunition?

Step 5: Hiding Your Treasures

Whatever you put in there, when it's all tucked away, simply add the cover plate, and screw it together. 

Chances are, no one will ever guess there's anything hidden inside. 

If you want to go one step further, try pushing some furniture in front of the cover, because out of sight, means out of mind. 

Now, if the time comes where you need to open your safe, but you don't have a screwdriver, no problem.  Just use the prongs from a plug.  The blades fit perfectly into the screw-heads, allowing you full, and unlimited access.

Step 6: Easy Access & Modifications

Now there are plenty of modifications you can make to this thing. 

For example, if you plan on using this a lot, and can't be bothered, with unscrewing it every time, try drilling out the screw holes with a 9/64" drill bit.  Then add a dab of super glue, to where the screws meet the cover plate. 

This way the screws will be held fast in place, and now you can just line up the holes, and press it together, in an instant. 

If you want this to blend better with the surroundings, try adding an outlet to the front of the box, and a finishing plate over that.  Now your secret safe looks like all the other outlets in your house. 

Have you got so much stuff that you need a bigger safe?  Try upgrading, to a double-gang.  This gives you nearly twice the storage space, and installs just as easily as the others.

Step 7: Easy, Free, and Pre-existing!

As a final thought, if you don't want to spend the $3 on materials, or cut holes in your walls, just look for one of these cable jacks around the house. 

The cable's protected, there's plenty of space inside, and it's a great place for hiding things, like your list of computer passwords. 

Not only is this option free, but chances are, you've already got them all over the house.

Step 8:

Well now you know how to make an easy, secret safe, for hiding important stuff. 

If you liked this project, perhaps you'll like some of my others.  Check them out at www.thekingofrandom.com

If you haven't seen the video yet, you can still check it out below.

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    103 Comments

    Caveats on reusing an existing electic box: The standard duplex outlet has live screws on one side. A coin touching this screw and the box or a ground wire will short. In a plastic box, a coin touching a hot screw is itself hot, and can shock you.

    Placing it in a cable outlet box, or a ethernet networking wiring box is safe.

    Electric code requires that wires only be joined in a box, and that the box may not be covered over. So you occasionally see a box with just a cover plate. Usually it means someone did a reno, and a wire came up short. No one would normally ever open one. This is the best scenario.

    One good place for convenience is beside a window. Most windows will have a double stud framing the opening, so the box will be 2-4 inches from the trim, and will be covered by the overlap of the curtains. This allows a box at a height that doesn't require getting on your knees.

    Nice! But won't work in most european houses! ^^ We have concrete walls!

    3 replies

    Dwargh: How do you mount electric service boxes when your walls are concrete? I suppose you could build them in when the concrete is poured; but then how do you add more if you need them?

    Many euro homes have electrical and even plumbing just running on the interior face of the wall... It's not unusual to see conduit or pipes run along the top or bottom of a wall (where wall meets ceiling or meets floor). It looks odd to a non-European, but it sure makes servicing easier!

    hm... never faced the situation of needing a new electric service box :) But I guess I'll have to pry my walls open ^^

    Great idea, but yes, most european houses have concrete :-)

    Cool!

    I wanted to go with the cable jack option, but I just took a look and in my house all the electrical boxes have screwless face plates, is there any way of taking them off?

    6 replies

    the screwless outer trim just pops off. There is an inner piece that's held in with screws.

    I tried... :(

    After a lot of tries I managed to pop off one corner, but then when I did the other corner the outer rim was jammed with the inner ring and I pulled out the inner ring, on my outlet the inner ring does not seem to be screwed in place as it came off.

    image_20160310162822.jpg

    That is not what I had in mind when you said screwless face plates. You have wall-mounted junction boxes. Though it could work with yours (for very tiny stashes) I think this instructable was geared toward traditional junction boxes that are recessed inside the wall, with plates that are mounted flush on the wall.

    Can you post a front view of those wall-boxes?

    These are the screwless plates i was describing:

    screwlessoutlet.jpgscrewlessplates_dim.jpg

    Here you go....

    image_20160314201214.jpg

    Here you go....

    image_20160314201214.jpg

    My friends Smith&Wesson have no problems to stop any robbers in their tracks. Why hide things? Let Smith & Wesson have some fun too.

    2 replies

    You hide them because you and your friends may not be at home when thieves come to visit. Smarter thieves will do their best to visit when no one is home. Of course the thiefs may have friends with those names as well

    Maybe Smith and Wesson could even play hide and seek in there when they're not needed...