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Old 10-15-2018, 10:53 AM
johnmcd johnmcd is offline
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Default Ballistic wall protection thought



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I realize that there's been a lot of discussion re: providing ballistic protection for walls, and I've been noodling with ideas on how to accomplish that with limited options and assets. Our house is standard stick frame construction, and making any expensive changes to the existing structure wouldn't get past the wife. I looked at some steel plates, but they're not cheap and I don't have anywhere to store them. I also considered sandbags (I have a couple of hundred empty ones stored as part of my preps), but I'm concerned about the amount of labor that would require and how I'd be able to accomplish it in the winter. The one resource I have in abundance is wood, since our house backs up to a large wooded area and is across the street from a state park woodland, so I'm consider using logs. What I had in mind was to cut 6"-8" diameter logs into 3' lengths and place them vertically in a staggered pattern inside the house against the exterior walls underneath the windows. It would look something like this:




https://drive.google.com/open?id=1eV...H0dZE83sifMYl4

I'd attach furring strips to the walls near the top and bottom with spacers and use wire to attach the logs (I have several thousand feet of #17 steel wire I got on sale). That approach should give me decent ballistic protection for all of my firing positions (windows). I was also thinking I could expand the approach and add 5'-6' vertical logs to cover the rest of the walls. I have one gas chainsaw and plenty of fuel, and an electric one I can recharge using my solar system if need be, so cutting the trees shouldn't be a problem.

Any thoughts/comments/suggestions?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 10-15-2018, 12:06 PM
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Why stack up kindling against your house. Your wood might be effective against up to medium handgun rounds but tracers or Molotov cocktails and you could have new problems besides real rifle bullets passing into your house.
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Old 10-15-2018, 12:33 PM
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I realize financial resources are always an issue, but you might look into bullet resistive fiberglass panels. compare to the todays cost of steel, it may be an options. BR protection was my career, but Ive been retired for a few years and am now out of the loop regarding current pricing . Can be cut with circular saw (although itchy to due), different levels of protection is available.
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Old 10-15-2018, 02:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by charliemeyer007 View Post
Why stack up kindling against your house. Your wood might be effective against up to medium handgun rounds but tracers or Molotov cocktails and you could have new problems besides real rifle bullets passing into your house.
The logs would be inside the house, not outside.
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Old 10-15-2018, 03:40 PM
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Sure, but I don’t think it would be any less work than sandbags which would work better anyway.
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Old 10-15-2018, 04:53 PM
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I like it. I assume you keep the logs outside and then when SHTF, bring them inside? It would only take you a day or so for line the front half of the house. If your house is up on blocks you probably only need to get them up 4 feet high to give protection, given the angle from the street, of course YMMD.

I agree with Aerial sandbags would be better protection but unless you prefilled them, that would be a time and energy-consuming process. Before you commit to your log plan though, bundle up a dozen logs and test out the protection factor.
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Old 10-15-2018, 04:55 PM
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Default Not cheap, but.......

http://gigacrete.com/ballisticrete/

Expensive, but for a specific location, ie a safe room, or half walls ( 4' up from floor ), might be an option. Applied outside and painted it would be all but invisible. I was going to buy a small amount and run my own tests but never got around to it.
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Old 10-15-2018, 05:17 PM
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Another idea on the same lines that could be easier, is to simply install a wood burning stove, which as a prepper you need anyway if your in a place that gets cold, and stock firewood, which can be duel purpose heating and protection.

I don't know about your area of course, but all my heating is done with wood so I have a shed filled with firewood rounds, often 12-20" in diameter and 14-16" long. About as heavy as a sandbag but 'pre filled' so to speak and duel purpose.

I already have bullet resistant walls but the firewood is part of my plan to rapidly convert a room of my house into a fallout shelter.

Maye be easier to move and stack firewood rounds than logs.



And at least in my local the cost for a 4' high wall, 16'-20' long of wood like this is about $150 delivered.
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Old 10-15-2018, 06:11 PM
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Build a line of planters along the front of the house and fill them with pea gravel.
6" is enough to stop most common rounds
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Old 10-15-2018, 06:12 PM
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Build a line of planters along the front of the house and fill them with pea gravel.
6" is enough to stop most common rounds
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Old 10-15-2018, 06:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aerindel View Post
Sure, but I don’t think it would be any less work than sandbags which would work better anyway.
My issue with sandbags is that I live in the Northeast, and in the winter the ground is frozen (frost line is 3'-4') so digging would be difficult. I might consider having both approaches available so I can implement the appropriate one depending on the time of year.
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Old 10-15-2018, 06:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snyper708 View Post
Build a line of planters along the front of the house and fill them with pea gravel.
6" is enough to stop most common rounds
Most sensible idea on the forum in a while.
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Old 10-15-2018, 06:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Snyper708 View Post
Build a line of planters along the front of the house and fill them with pea gravel.
6" is enough to stop most common rounds
Possible, but I'd like to have protection for the windows on all 4 sides of the house, plus some of the 2nd floor windows. I'm not sure I could convince my wife to put in that many planters 8-)
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Old 10-15-2018, 06:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnmcd View Post
Possible, but I'd like to have protection for the windows on all 4 sides of the house, plus some of the 2nd floor windows. I'm not sure I could convince my wife to put in that many planters 8-)
Also would probably be an order of magnitude more expensive. This forum has a really bad habit of countering someones $100 solution with a $1000 solution as if its a real alternative.

But it sounds to me like your primary problem is your wife. (which I realize is probably the most expensive solution of them all.)


But back to the topic. Home defenses are one of the main interests of mine (and often not given the priority they should be given IMO)

I would first ask, is your home in a defensible location in the first place? Some places are simply not worth making into an alamo and that money and work would be better put into a really good bug out vehicle instead of thicker walls.
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Old 10-15-2018, 06:48 PM
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Water is surprisingly effective at stopping bullets. Empty gallon jugs filled with water. One jug would almost stop a 9MM. Two jugs would almost stop a .308. Surprising I know.

Shooters would most likely be using .223 or 9MM I would guess. Some .38 and .45 as well.

Hard to plan for assaults on the house. I'm thinking along the lines of mostly underground next time. Unless we magically hit a long patch of smooth sailing.
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Old 10-15-2018, 07:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aerindel View Post
Also would probably be an order of magnitude more expensive. This forum has a really bad habit of countering someones $100 solution with a $1000 solution as if its a real alternative.

But it sounds to me like your primary problem is your wife. (which I realize is probably the most expensive solution of them all.)


But back to the topic. Home defenses are one of the main interests of mine (and often not given the priority they should be given IMO)

I would first ask, is your home in a defensible location in the first place? Some places are simply not worth making into an alamo and that money and work would be better put into a really good bug out vehicle instead of thicker walls.
It's reasonably defensible - we have woods in the back, a lake on one side and a state park across the street, and I have between 200' and 250' feet of clear sight lines all the way around. We're also on a private road that's not too noticeable, and any attackers would most likely target some of the nicer houses that they would encounter a few miles before they got to ours, which should provide some advanced notice. It's far from ideal, but I think it's workable. I have a number of other obstacles and diversions planned, but right now I'm just focusing on the problem of ballistic protection.
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Old 10-15-2018, 07:20 PM
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Quote:
It's far from ideal, but I think it's workable
I agree. Sounds doable.

Quote:
Water
Sure. It makes a great bullet stop. Once per container.

And of course, you need all those containers ready...For armor its really completely impractical.

I don't know if the little women would allow this...but what I've done in my stick built outbuildings is fill sections of 2x4 wall with gravel to make fortified fighting positions around he windows in what other wise is a none resistant building.

Maybe you could get away with building 4" wall panels over your existing walls in strategic locations and sand filling them.

Something else if you really can't armor your house, armor yourself. For defense from fixed locations you can very heavily armor yourself fairly cheaply with AR500 armor. Emphasis on heavy, its not armor you would want to bug out in, but if your just moving a few dozen yards around your house you can turn yourself into a human tank.

Or a hybrid of everything. Stack of firewood under the eves on the south side. Planters on the front porch, sand panels on the north side...you get the idea. Don't have to have just one.
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Old 10-15-2018, 07:33 PM
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Hmm, reasonable idea for some protection, thanks!

Steel is out, IMO, simply due to cost and weight. How much would a 3’ high AR400 plate weigh, even at minimal ballistic width? Milled steel? Don’t bother (IMO), would still have the weight issue to deal with anyways.

Now if your house was designed for the weight bearing allready? And you could afford the cost. And you had a reasonable method of setting them up? Sure steel ballistic plate. But then this thread wouldn’t be happening...

Water? Yup, good idea, until the first “attack” rounds are fired, then zero ballistic protection and no way to get it back until “it” is over. Not knocking the idea at all, as we have some cubes setup now exactly as such, but also are well aware of there limitations. Just to give us an extra few seconds, that’s it.

Other idea, again if your structure can handle the load, cinder blocks. Inexpensive, easy to setup, easy to store (lawn features or simply just stacked for some future “project”). Not great, by far. But can be supplemented with your existing protection, or used to supplement it. Idea on a way to make just cinder block better: use them as a form for fill & also fill them, can use grades you wouldn’t use in sandbags. Just wheel barrel whatever you have and dump/fill.
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Old 10-15-2018, 07:40 PM
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If you plan on using ballistic wood log armor, you might want to look into what kind of penetration you can expect with wood. I think you will need bigger heavier logs than you think. There is also the extreme drawback that 2/3rd of the log will be narrower than the center 1/3rd that will provide protection. Trees are usually not sight enough to just stack and fit together. Even select logs are hewn to fit then utilize chinking to fill the gaps. Is your house a slab home? This would also be quite a bit of weight. Do you think your house is up to it? Since you said it is a conventional framed house, you can be sure it is not.

Plain cinder blocks or really CMU are easily destroyed by small arms fire. Filling them solid with grout would be great but this would be a costly endeavour. Your wife is not keen on your ideas? Try putting a solid filled CMU wall around your house. It is not something you can just throw up in a couple hours. Despite what you see on YouTube.
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Old 10-15-2018, 07:49 PM
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I'm going to go outside right now and put some rounds in a chunk of firewood, split it open to measure penetration just so we have some hard numbers to go with this thread. I've done this before but honestly don't remember the results as its been a long time.

556, 308 and 9mm sound good?

Quote:
Plain cinder blocks or really CMU are easily destroyed by small arms fire
Agree. I know 556 has little problem with them unless filled.
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