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Old 12-02-2012, 09:55 PM   #1
discochris OP
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childproofing my home theater equipment

So Disco Jr. is nearing his first birthday, and is quite mobile at this point. Like his father, he's drawn to shiny things, thus my posting this here. Among these shiny things, is my stereo equipment. The TV is wall mounted, so that's not a concern yet, but my components are on a wall mounted shelf. That's how we had them in our old house, so when we moved here, I did the same thing, not thinking about the possibility of curious little hands (we found out we were expecting two days after we moved in).

The basement family room is where we spend most of our time with him, as it's the easiest room to childproof in general. The upstairs has a formal living room which is too open to gate off, and has tiled steps to the front door - not good. There's also a main floor family room, but it has a brick fireplace and hearth which would also invite injury, so that leaves the basement.

I don't have a lot of equipment. The speakers are now all wall mounted (got rid of the stands for safety reasons) and I ran the speaker wiring through the walls or through cable enclosures, so all we're talking about is the receiver, the PS3, and the cable box/DVR. The wall that everything is on backs up to the utility room (furnace, water heater, my brewing equipment) so all the wiring goes through the wall, but there's still enough exposed to cause problems. Plus there's a lot of wiring, as I'm running surround sound, plus an extra set of outdoor speakers.

I'd initially wanted to build a recessed shelf unit into the wall, but that's a no-go. There's a drain stack as well as the water softener plumbing behind the wall in that exact spot, and it's too close to the wall for me to make a recessed unit deep enough for the receiver.

So now I'm thinking about something like this:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16816228011

I could either wall mount it, or put legs on it and just leave it on the floor. I want something with a locking front and no exposed wiring so I don't have to constantly be grabbing the boy and pulling him away.

Anyone do this, or have a similar situation? I don't want to just gate it off as that's kind of unsightly.
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Old 12-03-2012, 01:45 AM   #2
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Teach the young fella not to touch stuff. If he learns boundries and care in early years it will do you, him, wife and us much good as the years roll on.

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Old 12-03-2012, 04:05 AM   #3
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I can't be of any help, but your post reminded me of a great article:
http://deadspin.com/5954947/do-not-t...ys-electronics
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Old 12-03-2012, 05:22 AM   #4
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I like the Salamander furniture stuff. Looks nice, well made, and comes in a lot of different styles and configurations. They also have a lock option. I do sell the stuff where I work. It holds up very well. Not the cheapest stuff out there but you get what you pay for.
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Old 12-03-2012, 05:39 AM   #5
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Shock collar around his neck with a remote. Give him a quick buss when he nears the equip...

In all serious though.. Teach him not to touch things. I have a pretty large family room in my basement that houses similar stuff that you have along with a PA system, karaoke gear, a couple mandolins, bodhrans, banjo, and a guitar. My kids never touched anything but I did have the higher up stuff safety wired (tethered) so it wouldn't fall on them. This room also has a woodstove and large brick hearth.

Having said that, when other toddlers visited it was brutal to protect my gear from the other rugrats. Their parents didn't seem to give a shit if they attempted to destroy anything. They feel if it's in public view, then it's for public use.

My kids are 10 and 6 now and when they have friends over they know what they can let others touch and are protective of "dads' gear that I won't let them play with.

Good luck
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:05 AM   #6
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At the time the 10 year old asked if you could tear apart the DVD player that stopped working. Only thing is it ended up that he tore apart the Yamaha surround sound processor not the broken DVD player. I came out to the garage and found him beating on it with a hammer with the cover off. f***. There was a thousand dollar mistake and you're worried about a toddler. Hahaha.
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Old 12-03-2012, 07:29 AM   #7
discochris OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maggot12 View Post
Shock collar around his neck with a remote. Give him a quick buss when he nears the equip...

In all serious though.. Teach him not to touch things. I have a pretty large family room in my basement that houses similar stuff that you have along with a PA system, karaoke gear, a couple mandolins, bodhrans, banjo, and a guitar. My kids never touched anything but I did have the higher up stuff safety wired (tethered) so it wouldn't fall on them. This room also has a woodstove and large brick hearth.

Having said that, when other toddlers visited it was brutal to protect my gear from the other rugrats. Their parents didn't seem to give a shit if they attempted to destroy anything. They feel if it's in public view, then it's for public use.

My kids are 10 and 6 now and when they have friends over they know what they can let others touch and are protective of "dads' gear that I won't let them play with.

Good luck
We're working on teaching him boundaries as any parent would, and that's not going to change regardless of what we do, but I still want the piece of mind in the meantime. (he will be our only child - I took care of that already). The other kids visiting is a BIG reason for this. Short of alienating our friends, which I'd rather not do, there will be times when I have to deal with beastly children who don't behave, and I can't just sit downstairs with a taser.

I have a bunch of musical gear and guitars too - a couple of them expensive. That stuff is locked in my home office away from prying eyes and hands.
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Old 12-03-2012, 08:47 AM   #8
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Zip ties and Duct Tape....
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Old 12-03-2012, 09:00 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dbear View Post
Zip ties and Duct Tape....
Don't let anyone see the kid when your using the Zip ties and Duct Tape. You'll have child protective services all over your ass!
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Old 12-03-2012, 09:04 AM   #10
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He will get it to, so make sure that when he does he can't hurt himself...

and get some decent insurance
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Old 12-03-2012, 09:36 AM   #11
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My parents taught us at an early age to not touch anything that didn't belong to us. That applied no matter where we were. Violating that rule generally got a loud NO! and having your fingers smacked. Once we were old enough to understand, we were taught why as a part of learning good manners and politeness. It was a matter of being proud that your kids were well behaved and polite to others. They never had to put anything out of our reach.
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Old 12-03-2012, 09:52 AM   #12
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AH, I love internet parenting......

It really doesn't matter with your own kid, you will teach them how you want them to behave. You need to worry about the kids you will have over that are the spawn of parents with different parenting styles than your own.

Get it up out of reach (climbing reach as well), or lock it up. The other option is to watch them all the time.

I have a 4 and a 6 year old. My 6 year old would not think of touching something we told her not to. My 4 year old (also a girl) learns by touching and experiencing.

Needless to say, I have all my stuff packed away in a closet until she is older.
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Old 12-03-2012, 09:58 AM   #13
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Actually, Zip ties are not a bad idea - drill holes thru shelves, then strap hardware to solid shelves with zip ties - also ZT cords to secure stanchions to prevent 'em from being ripped out.

Look, the reality is this: The kids going to destroy anything at any time, you can either inure yourself to this fact or go crazy.

My approach was to lock up everything I wanted him to keep his hot little hands on, and to give up on the rest.

I lost a lot of tools and misc stuff over the years, but managed to keep my sanity.
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Old 12-03-2012, 12:01 PM   #14
discochris OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mud View Post
AH, I love internet parenting....
Wasn't looking so much for parenting advice (though I knew I'd get it). More for component security advice.

Quote:
You need to worry about the kids you will have over that are the spawn of parents with different parenting styles than your own.
This. A number of our best friends let their children run around like the children of the devil. Drives me nuts, but like I said, I'm not going to alienate our friends for the sake of a receiver. But I am going to protect my stuff.

Quote:
Needless to say, I have all my stuff packed away in a closet until she is older.
I refuse to do this. I'm not going to not have nice things that I can enjoy just because I'm now a parent. To me that's entirely unacceptable.
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Old 12-03-2012, 12:34 PM   #15
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I guess I do have some advice, from a friend of mine....

He put his components up in a rack like you posted. Up high enough to be out of reach, but still reasonable. He hung it on studs with some support from below also. This way it is not permanent. The cables went up instead of down to the floor. Then came down to the speakers. Where the cables had to be low he wrapped them in cable split wrap, that way in case they get chewed, it gives you a buffer. The one thing he never solved was kids denting the dust caps on his speaker cones. Once they figured out the grills came off, they got dented. We used a vacuum cleaner to pop them out, but they were a little funky from then on.
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