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Old 17-06-2008, 11:13   #16
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This unit is about $50.00. Seems to work.Marine Technologies Boat Intruder Alarm
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Old 17-06-2008, 12:16   #17
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Originally Posted by Southern Star View Post
Thanks Dan - Flagship Marine sells a 12 volt security system with magnetic door switches but has optional 'exterior' wide gap switches (@ 19.95 each) that are recommended for exterior locations. This leads me to believe that the standard magnetic reed switches aren't really waterproof. The standard ones do appear identical to the ones used in house alarms, however, so I suspect that the voltage won't be a problem.

Brad
Brad,

I think the interior switches are sealed everywhere except for the area of the connection. That is, the connections themselves are not protected, and the connections could let water inside the switch. I'd use liquid rubber insulation (like you use for coating handles of plyers) to seal the connections, both for insulation and for sealant. Then if you think necessary, liberally cover the connection area with silicone. I bet the exterior ones have the connections inside a cover to protect them. That would probably be the most obvious difference. But what is good enough for home exterior may not be good enough for the marine environment. ALL the switches should be mounted internally, of course, else the crook could get to them. The main reason to worry about sealing (even exterior) switches in this case however, is because it's in a marine environment. I'd encase any questionable area of any switch, whether rated exterior or not.

But you sound like a logical thinking person, so I'm sure you can look at them and decide which makes the most sense to buy and what precautions to take.

-dan
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Old 17-06-2008, 13:02   #18
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Thanks Dan. Clearly the switches have to be mounted in the interior (or under the lid in the case of cockpit lockers), but they will still be subject to water and likely some salt spray when the doors/hatches are open and the alarm system is shut off. Of course, I will do my best to seal off all electrical connections, but it strikes me that when the same company sells interior magnetic door switches for under $5.00 and 'exterior' ones for four times as much, there must be some difference beyond a rubber cover for the connections (although, perhaps not). One additional difference is that they are called 'wide gap' magnetic door/window switches and they apparently permit installation with a gap of an inch or so between the magnet and reed switch - this should ease installation in that the switch need not be mounted out past the opening for the door or hatch.

In any case, I am going to order about 5 of these for the companionway door and the 4 deck hatches that are large enough to permit entry by a normal sized human (I will likely also order a pressure sensitive strip for strategic placement. I will try the normal switches for the cockpit lockers. Time will tell.

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Old 17-06-2008, 13:03   #19
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The standard magnetic reed switches use a reed contact in a GLASS CAPSULE so they are pretty much environmental-proof. You used to be able to buy a packet of five or six (without magnets, NC type) for a buck at most electronics and surplus stores. And then solder onto the exposed ends. Any 'alarm supply' store will sell them to you, NO type housed in plastic cases with screw terminals and matching magnets to keep them closed instead of NC type, for maybe $2-$5 each set.

Do check that you are getting NO or NC, to match what your alarm system uses. Most conventional "home" alarms run a closed circuit and alarm when it is broken (opened) while car alarms keep an open circuit that alarms when it is closed (grounded) as well. They may use just the grounding trip, or both types, depending on how fancy they are.

There are passive IR and active ultrasound attachments for car alarms, which would work on boats, but they're pitched more at "overnight" use than being left on for a week or two at a time. the current drain on them still adds up.
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Old 17-06-2008, 13:47   #20
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Thanks Hello Sailor, I am thinking of purchasing one of these and adding additional outdoor wide-gap magnetic door switches and a strip to mount on a discreet location or two on deck, as indicated in an earlier post: http://flagshipsentry.com/basicalarm.htmls

At $200.00 plus another couple of hundred for additional switches it is reasonable in cost - although admittedly, for such a basic system I am sure it seems to be a complete rip to those more skilled than myself at electronics. For me, the postives are as follows:
1. They do seem to have made some efforts at building it for the marine environment.
2. It is a complete kit with everything required including instructions and tinned wire.
3. As indicated, all I am interested in is alarm sensors for the companionway door, four larger deck hatches, two cockpit lockers and a concealed deck strip. (I worry about motion detectors getting false positives on a boat under anchor with potential for the wind/waves/wakes moving cockpit covers, sail covers, lines, cockpit cushions etc.
4. Power consumption is minimal.

My only dislike is the use of a standard (albiet stainless steel) key, rather than electronic keys with panic buttons. It strikes me that you would not be able to activate and deactivate from both on and below deck. Does anyone have any other suggestions?

Brad
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Old 17-06-2008, 14:06   #21
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I assume you mean one of those cylindrical, notched keys to arm/disarm? If so, ANY switch that does a MOMENTARY, not on/off, switching function will suffice. You can wire it instead, or in addition (in parallel) with another arm/disarm switch. Or you can have a keyless entry card, or a keypad, or a retinal scanner, or a programmable access control system. It's the momentary aspect that tells the unit to turn on or off.
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Old 17-06-2008, 14:49   #22
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Brad, it doesn't seem unreasonable for what they are offering, and considering they are pitching it to a non-tech audience as a package.

Those tubular cylinder keys are, indeed, designed to be unPICKable. They are not very secure though, there have been some major embarassments about them being picked with a Bic pen barrel (Chinese knockoffs) and they can all be physically removed very quickly. That's not a momentary contact, but also a standard "on/off" switch where the key can be removed in either position, so substitutes can be made. Among them--you can replace the keyswitch with a magnetic contact, and "disarm" the boat by placing a magnet over a discrete spot in the coaming, etc.
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Old 17-06-2008, 15:57   #23
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The key lesson one learns in the security industry is that there are no absolute guarantees. You are paying great heaps of money to make something so time-consuming and noisy that the bad guys become anxious that the good guys will arrive in such numbers and capacity that things will turn out badly. So, one can do nothing, or one can put in some reasonable cost system to thwart the common thief, or one can spend some pretty sizeable chunks of change for the hope that the uncommon thief will select another target of opportunity. Fort Knox is more than a gold repository....
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Old 17-06-2008, 18:19   #24
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This has been a great thread for me. Thanks a lot for everybody giving such helpful info. I emailed Flagship Marine earlier today with my needs and they got right back to me with a system for about 400 dollars that includes protecting the outboard and the instrument panel. It is a zoned system like a house so some zones can work and others won't (while on board you will need to turn off some sensors) but you will still want outboard and intruder protection.
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Old 17-06-2008, 20:33   #25
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This has been a great thread for me. Thanks a lot for everybody giving such helpful info. I emailed Flagship Marine earlier today with my needs and they got right back to me with a system for about 400 dollars that includes protecting the outboard and the instrument panel. It is a zoned system like a house so some zones can work and others won't (while on board you will need to turn off some sensors) but you will still want outboard and intruder protection.
Cool.

How much wire needs to be run?
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Old 18-06-2008, 04:55   #26
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Typically, it is best if each sensor is wired all the way to the control panel (home run). I don't know about this unit but some controllers don't work well with sensors hooked in a series. Also, the more zones, the more flexibility when not on board with the outboard sensorsor when on board with different intruder sensors.
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Old 18-06-2008, 08:48   #27
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Some sensors, for example, magnetic switches that are normally closed (N.C.), can be set up in series. All of them, in the same zone, would have to be closed before the system would arm. Opening any one of them would set off an alarm. These are NOT momentary switches, those are used only for the arm/disarm function, not the guarding function.

For zones, I suggest one for those areas you want guarded when you are aboard, but unlikely to trespass, such as a deck or cockpit locker, a hatch that you don't normally open beyond a certain point (you can insert a small, concealed magnet in two positions of a hatch, allowing it to be fully closed, or in a venting position when armed). Another circuit, also connected to the loop, in series, could attach to a dinghy, outboard, or other exposed equipment. Cutting a cable would open a N.C. sensor, setting off an alarm. You would then have to reconnect the cable to arm the system afterwards. Brighter, more sophisticated bad guys could always take the time to circumvent this, but they know that there is a risk that you might have substituted a N.O switch. Brighter bad guys don't comprise the majority of the population, and besides, these folks are looking for softer targets. Maybe word will get out and they will target your neighbors instead.

The second zone is for when you are away from the boat and need the maximum coverage. The third zone is for your most secret storage spots, and the fourth is the panic/tamper zone, for folks who wake in the middle of the night to undesired guests, or a workman who desires to disable the alarm system for a later visit. It's all explained in the manual for your particular unit.
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Old 02-07-2008, 22:00   #28
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i dont have a boat yet, but

why not use a car alarm, they are/can be pretty cheap and are designed to take bouncing around. the cheap house hold alarm contacts can be used with the car alarm, you just have to run a ground on grp boats. also some higher end ones have aux relays for things like lighting, power windows what ever. they also can come with remotes that receive an alarm signal from miles away. also your standard motion senor with a 12 volt supply as well will trip the car alarm.
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Old 03-07-2008, 21:49   #29
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Many many years ago I used to install burglar alarms. And while I install alarms for businesses I remember seeing alarm panels, door contacts, glass break sensors, key pads, infra-red sensors, ...... and on and on were stocked by Radio Shack. I viewed their web site and found these:

Manetic Contacts - RadioShack.com - Home & Office: Home security & safety: Modules & switches: Directed 8601 Magnetic Switch

RadioShack.com - Home & Office: Home security & safety: Modules & switches: Directed 8600 Magnetic Micro Switch

Linear (R) 23- Zone Complete Wireless Home Security System
RadioShack.com - Home & Office: Home security & safety: Home security systems: Linear® 12-Zone Complete Wireless Home Security System


A lot of places carry car alarms, but I would be worried about the motion sensors in car alarms. If a wake hit the boat it would set off the alarm.

Also note: Many cities and counties required a permit or lic. for alarms 20 yrs ago. Some cities also required that all alarm systems be monitored, (costing about $20 a month 20 yrs ago). They will also fine you over false alarms. My guess is they still do.

Good Luck
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