Introduction: Secret Book

Picture of Secret Book

How to: hollow out a book, for stashing your importaint items.

Step 1: Select Your Target

Picture of Select Your Target

Pick a good sized book, something that's easty to work with. I chose an old VB6 database book.

Step 2: Layout

Picture of Layout

For mine, I started at page 60. Turn to the selected page, and make guide lines, about 1 inch away from the edges of the book. These lines will be used for cutting straight. I used a pen and straight edge.

Step 3: Cut Away!!

Picture of Cut Away!!

use a very sharp knife (box cutter is advised) and begin to cut along the guide lines you made in the previous step. The best way is to make deep cuts, and not many of them. So press HARD. Once you have cut through about 10 pages or so, remove them from the book, and there will be a hollow spot where the paper once was.

Step 4: Finishing Up.

Picture of Finishing Up.

I only made it through about 50 pages or so, in half an hour. this is tedious work, but the end result is worth it.
Once you have cut away the desired number of pages, trim the edges so they are smooth.

Step 5: Hide Your Stuff!

Picture of Hide Your Stuff!

Jewelry, SD cards, drugs, illegal floppy disks conveniently labeled as "seekrit disk". You name it, you can probably hide it in a hollowed out book YOU have made. Just place it on a shelf, and your stuff is hidden. (though I did have one person break into my home and steal nothing but books a few years back.)


kirnex (author)2013-02-21

Okay, I have to say: CRAZY that you had someone break into your house and steal nothing but books. I have a living room with Cathedral ceilings and a platform surrounding my fireplace about ten feet up. I made built-in bookcases up there with a library ladder so my thousands of books would be out of the way. Now I'm thinking that they're harder to steal, too!

I think I'll definitely have to turn a few of those into a safe like this one. Thanks for sharing this--it's much easier than some of the other similar instructables for hidden compartment books. :)

techboy411 (author)2013-01-05

i think its a AWSOME idea

dogbeardbirdbeer (author)2007-10-06

the instructable did not include the use of glue so using a high speed rotary tool on the inside pages of a book would likely fall somewhere between messy and dangerous. your post was strange because you suggested that the use of glue which "can take a couple of weeks depending on the thickness of the bok" would make the project go "a whole lot faster." I'm pretty impressed that you took the "banned from the shop" thing seriously since i don't really have the ability to take away your shop keys though i guess i had ya scared! having said that i'm very impressed by your credentials, please say what up to Larry Bricks for me... and by the way, i'm new to the site so check back in a week, i hope to have posted my first instructable by then... i really like it here, most of the folks on instructables have a great sense of humor, including the fela who posted the one above. peace.

Yeah, I realize I didn't make that as clear here as it was in my head. When I mean "whole lot faster" I'm speaking in lazy man's terms. I guess it could also mean "A whole lot less tedious". You dunk the pages, set it to try, and come back to finish the job vs. spending eight or ten hours cutting out pages, which would drive me pretty well nuts. I've personally taken away power tool rights from people (being a university shop, ours is a learning environment, and some people just don't get it) so that could be construed as grievous insult. Anyway, I got a little incendiary in my response to your post, and for that I apologize, but nice to have you hear, and I look forward to seeing some of your work.

El Mano (author)0.775volts2009-08-22

I read about making a hollow book by dipping it in glue, but i like Kipkay's method, using hot glue to hold the inside of the hollow together. It would take a lot longer, but you would get better results, if you worked slowly and carefully. Also, if glued only on the edges of the cavity, the tips of the pages would still move, making it slightly more likely to avoid detection (and it would also look better).

stopherbailey (author)El Mano2012-04-13

I wonder if you could maybe use an electric flat iron to iron the pages together once you have a bit of "hot glue gun" glue between the pages this may allow you to work a bit faster( and messily) and thentidy it up after with the iron.
Just a thought and I do apreciate that Bleachworthy's Instructions are not for a solid book but a loose leafed one( if you get my meaning)

hey man, thanks for that response. it's a bit difficult to express humor in type form... thanks for your understanding and your comment. catch you later.

guitarfan (author)2012-01-27

man i'm gonna do this with a twilight book so no one will try to open it or steal it

cexmeyer (author)2011-06-18

i made one earlier today with a hard back book i used a drill and drilled a hole to cut it with a jig so it didnt work so well so i used clippers then i got lazzy so got a round dermal bit and pushed down on it till it cut pages out turn it at an angle and it cuts r a get a tool that cuts to attach to the dremal just clean it up nice and it works!

n1cod3mus (author)2010-10-26

I recently done this to hide my passport in when i went to Rome, but i used a dremmel to cut the pages was way easier and i got a much straighter line down the side of the pages.

JamesTB13 (author)2010-07-28

You must be joking. Seriously, a book thief?

zozo10 (author)2010-07-13


cre8vldy (author)2010-02-20

To keep the cut out uniform I just follow the outer edge of the measuring and large opening inside.

scottjones1998 (author)cre8vldy2010-04-02

what are you talking about

cre8vldy (author)scottjones19982010-04-03

You always start a few pages in.  A printed pages has borders.  I just put my straight edge along the print or inside the blank border of the page.  Usually around 1" .   I may not explain it well but if you look at the printed page in a novel you can see that the printing is all within the borders and are the same on all pages.

chanchanman (author)2008-10-19

i did this to a dictionary and now i can fit my gun my mom and dad dont no about. ands im not joking

bleachworthy (author)chanchanman2008-10-19

I'm not even sure how I should reply to this... I just hope that it's registered in your name.

cre8vldy (author)bleachworthy2010-02-20 sound young.

Frindledon3 (author)2010-01-21

At the library by my house they have free books in the front of the library that are thick, big and really really old. Check your library for super old books

naruto the ninja13 (author)2010-01-16

man this is awesome im making one right now... it takes forever

El Mano (author)2009-08-21

When I tried to cut deep, I ended up losing control of the blade and cutting through the endge of the page. Also, whats with seekrit?

carrotman42 (author)El Mano2009-09-01

it sounds like lolcat for 'secret' to me.

jemm (author)2009-07-06

so do i

p o s t i n g...................... i s ................... F_ _ _ _ _ g Awesome!!! (like this tutorial) :b

devicemodder (author)2009-05-03

Nice computer!!!!!! :-)

sir-zeke (author)2009-05-02

when i did this it just took me an hour to do this

sir-zeke (author)2009-05-02

to do this i would suggest getting a book from goodwill or some other thrift store

Coliflower (author)2009-04-11

"(though I did have one person break into my home and steal nothing but books a few years back.)" Really? Were they valuable or something?

poopmypants (author)2009-02-18

thats an awesome idea P.S. you misspelled secret on your disc

0.775volts (author)2006-10-14

you can make this go a whole lot faster. get a bucket and mix half elmers glue and half water to make a very thin glue holding the book by its covers, dip the pages into the mixture. let them soak a minute or two, then pull it out, and hang it up to dry (in the same position, covers not touching the wet pages) let it dry (can take a couple of weeks depending on the thickness of the bok) when it's dry, you can drill a pilot hole in the pages and cut out the shape you want with a jigsaw, the glued-together pages can be treated like wood that way. then glue the back cover to the pages and you're done. you can also use a jigsaw/rotozip if you clamp the beejesus out of the book, but it takes practice or you'll ruin the book whilst trying to cut out the pages. still, it's alot better than cutting out pages for 6+ hours.

Lazy Ape (author)0.775volts2009-01-08

I make these for a local headshop - if you dip the majority of the book into a liquid, as it dries the pages will warp and become wavy. Good thought tho.

If it can take a few weeks to dry, doesn't that mean it's categorically slower than this technique?

lol definitely . . .though it would be a lot less work . . .maybe that's what they meant?

... really?

berky93 (author)0.775volts2008-04-24

I wonder, since there are flaws with the glue idea, what would happen if you simply took 2 pieces of scrap wood and really tightly clamped them onto the pages then just used a jig-saw through that without using any adhesives...

dennis123123 (author)0.775volts2008-01-29

Would it be better to clamp the book pages together once its been "dunked" in the glue-water mix? Otherwise it will make the pages all wrinkly!

deathmango (author)0.775volts2007-12-01

I gave the dunk method a try. Perhaps because my Reader's Digest condensed book was made of very porous paper, the result was a poofy, "dropped in the bathtub" look. As it dried, the wrinkles did even out a bit more than I expected, but the book will not shut flat. It was a good idea, and worth the experiment, but I don't think I'd recommend it. I've made three so far in which I've brushed glue on the outsides and clamped. So far, it's worked pretty well that way. I did take your advice about the pilot holes and jigsaw. Works quite well, although I haven't gotten around the problem of the jigsaw blades getting dull very quickly. I had to finish with a coping saw, which wasn't too bad. Smoothing the edges of the hole with a dremel tool was necessary, yet not difficult.

what? "whole lot faster" - ??... "can take a couple of weeks depending on the thickness of the bok" what sort of drugs are smoking out of your book? and who ever recommended the router idea is N-U-T-S!!! how'd that rotozip idea work out?? you guys are banned from the wood shop until further notice...

Loveofchaos (author)0.775volts2007-06-11

im liking the rotozip idea, it just seems faster

FrenchCrawler (author)0.775volts2006-10-15

Or better yet, you could use a wood router (plunge-based ones would probably work the best) instead of a jigsaw. Less likely to ruin the book this way.

nibbler125 (author)2008-08-27

i made one and i stash all my lighters inside of it it can hold like 15 lighters and some zippo fuel

szechuan53 (author)2008-06-30

I pressed the pages with the hole flat and glued the edges with a paintbrush

grimfig (author)2008-06-16

It is better to use a hard bound book.

lucizzle (author)2008-06-10

What if you were to screw the pages together? Like in the Invisble bookshelf project - just the two outer corners, and then cut away all the pages? If you clamped the bulk of the pages before drilling, and used flat headed screws like in the tute I mentioned, you should get a fairly nice result... right? I might try it tonight myself... I'll let you know how it works. :)

estonianmk (author)2008-06-07


Cumbis (author)2008-04-27

How about, you glue the pages...then get a dremel tool! im totally trying that!

$ NAB $ (author)2008-01-31

How long did it take to hollow the book?

salaok (author)2008-01-26

i think that the coments helped more than the instructable but the instuctable was good for the idea i tryed it on an old phonebook and it was great but i had to use a saws-all srry for the spelling.

bensharn (author)2007-12-14

you spelled secret wrong.

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