No spooky mansion is complete without a secret passage accessed through a book shelf — or so Hollywood has taught us. What works as a cliché in movies works equally well in an escape room, and whenever there’s escape rooms paired with technology, [Alastair Aitchison] isn’t far. His latest creation: you guessed it, is a secret bookcase door.
For this tutorial, he took a regular book shelf and mounted it onto a wooden door, with the door itself functioning as the shelf’s back panel, and using the door hinges as primary moving mechanism. Knowing how heavy it would become once it’s filled with books, he added some caster wheels hidden in the bottom as support. As for the (un)locking mechanism, [Alastair] did consider a mechanical lock attached on the door’s back side, pulled by a wire attached to a book. But with safety as one of his main concerns, he wanted to keep the risk of anyone getting locked in without an emergency exit at a minimum. A fail-safe magnetic lock hooked up to an Arduino, along with a kill switch served as solution instead.
Since his main target is an escape room, using an Arduino allows also for a whole lot more variety of integrating the secret door into its puzzles, as well as ways to actually unlock it. How about by solving a Rubik’s Cube or with the right touch on a plasma globe?
Continue reading “A Classic TV Trope For An Escape Room”
You enter a study and see a lightbulb hanging on the bookshelf. You try all the switches in the room — nothing is turning it on. Remembering you’re in [lonesoulsurfer]’s home, you realize that you’re going to have to start yanking on every book in sight.
While often associated with the likes of Bat-caves and other complicated hidden passageways, turning a shelved book into a secret switch isn’t complex in its own right. [lonesoulsurfer] is basing their build on one by B.Light Design revolving around a fan switch, some aluminium strips, a block terminal, fishing line, a hinge, and — of course — a book with a dust jacket and something to trigger.
Bend the aluminium into an angle bracket and drill a hole to attach the fan switch — ensuring the whole is small enough to fit behind and not distinguish the book you’re using. Cutting the hinge to the size of the book and screwing a strip of aluminium to it, both this lever and the fan switch’s bracket are then mounted on the shelf. Once a length of fishing twine is tethered to the lever and fitted through the book’s pages to the fan switch — ensuring the line is taut — sliding the dust jacket back onto the book completes the disguised switch!
Continue reading “Secret Book Light Switch”
We have very few books hanging around the house which makes this small attractive assembly quite enticing. It was built by [Eric Whyne] who wanted to make sure the casual observer didn’t think it was store-bought. In choosing wood he tried to find a couple of show pieces with visually appealing flaws like the broken out knot seen on the bookend.
In addition to the blemish, he chose joinery techniques that would show off craftsmanship not generally found on mass-produced goods. And we’d say he succeeded. The rails attach to the end pieces using a mortise and tenon joint with a wedge to hold things tight. It’s similar to how an ax handle is mated with the blade. The mortise gets a bit of a flair, and a slot cut in the tenon is forced to grip that flair using a small wooden wedge. Here’s an in-depth description of this type of joint.
We just have to mention that we endorse his reading selection. Snow Crash and Burning Chrome are among our favorite novels.
Taking on a giant build just to hide your shotgun collection may seem a bit over the top. But we couldn’t be more impressed with the project. [Korostelevm] did an amazing job of hiding a small closet with a bookcase-door. It’s something straight out of a Hardy Boys novel.
Possibly the most important part of the build is figuring out how to hinge all the weight a bookcase will carry. His solution was to use a set of four heavy-duty casters. He cut off the wheels from one pair and the mounting brackets from another. By welding the brackets on in place of the wheels he has a sturdy way to mount both the frame and the bookcase. When closed the unit latches using a strike plate and lock set from a door. This is connected to a book using some cabling and pulleys. As you’d expect, just find the right hard-cover and tilt it toward you to open the hidden storage behind. [Korostelevm] shows off the final product after the jump.
Continue reading “Door Hidden By Bookcase Is A Marvel Of DIY Engineering”
Want to enter your hidden lair in style? Well [Jimmy] simply wanted to create a cool prop for his school’s homecoming dance. This project includes some obvious inspiration from Wayne Manor. [Jimmy] wired up the automated entrance with a 12VDC motor. In order for it to be able to push the door , the motor had to be attached to a gearbox, which directly powered a wheel. Current consumption issues were solved by using a wall-wart. Because a real bookshelf would still be too heavy, [Jimmy] dressed up a regular door with some patterned wallpaper to give it the right look. Coupled with a Shakespearean bust concealing the button, and some other cosmetic touches, this project was sure to impress any student who knew its secret.