12 Homemade Booby Traps When SHTF

Homemade Booby Traps

Have you ever built a booby trap as a kid?

I thought so.

Today, you are going to learn how to build some REAL booby traps that have the potential to stop an intruder in its tracks.

Some of the booby traps listed here are also non-lethal and focused more as a warning system.

I am going to cover seven alarm system type traps and also five traps that are potentially deadly.

During the Vietnam war, traps have been used excessively by the native soldiers to break the morale of the invading US force.

Guess what happened next.

It worked.

Most of the fighting took place in dense forests which made it ideal for installing booby traps.

Enough history let’s get to the first trap which is the sonic tripwire.

Alarm System Boobie Traps

It does not matter if you are in your home or camping somewhere in the open; it is always a good idea to get a warning if someone is approaching your area.

In this section, I am going to cover seven warning type boobie traps that you can use. They are also non-lethal.

I will also provide a video with a short description of each method.

Sonic Tripwire

What you will need:

  • A cheap alarm clock that has a loud beep.
  • Braided or nylon fishing line.
  • An old gift or credit card.
  • Two strips of electrical wire.
  • A piece of tin foil.
  • Electrical tape.
  • Laundry peg.
  • Allen key.
  • Glue.

Now that you have all of the ingredients for this boobie trap let’s put them all together.

Step 1. Connect the battery

Remove the battery from the alarm clock and attach the one end of the electrical wire to the spring contact point of the alarm which will come into contact with the positive end of the battery. Take the second wire and attach it to the positive side of the battery with the help of electrical tape.

Make sure that the electrical tape covers the positive end of the battery so that it does not come into contact with the spring point of the alarm. Place the battery back into the alarm clock in its original position.

Touch the opposite ends of the electrical wire together to complete the circuit. The alarm will start to ring once you do this. You can also replace the back cover of the alarm clock to make it look better.

Step 2. Create the tripwire switch

First, you need to glue two strips of tin foil to the jaws of the laundry peg. You then need to connect each point of the electrical wires to the backside of the jaw so that it comes into contact with the tin foil.

You can attach the wires onto the foil with the help of glue. Once you close the jaws of the laundry peg, the circuit will close and will result in the alarm to go off. You should open and close the peg several times to test it.

Step 4. Attach the peg and Allen key onto the alarm

Now that your setup is almost complete, you can start to glue the laundry peg onto the top of the alarm. You should also attach the Allen key to the bottom of the alarm which will allow you to anchor the system onto almost anything.

You can use cable ties, some duct tape or wire to attach this device to almost anything. If you want to camouflage the alarm clock then you have the option to spray it another color.

Step 5. Create your trigger pin

You were probably wondering where the old credit card comes into play? Now you will learn more on the role it is going to play.

Cut out a small square out of the credit card and punch a hole into that piece. Attach the string or fishing line to the credit card by threading it through the hole and tying it accordingly.

Now that you have the trigger pin, you should place it between the jaws of the laundry pin to disturb the connection of the circuit. Once someone triggers the trip wire or fishing line, the trigger pin will slip out, and the circuit will be completed which will activate the alarm.

Using A Mouse Trap

Materials needed:

  • Mousetrap.
  • Permanent marker.
  • Ring caps.
  • Glue.
  • Fishing line.

To build this trap, you can use everyday household items, but you might want to buy some ring caps which will intensify the noise.

Step 1. Mark a line

Take a permanent marker and mark out a line where the hammer is supposed to be in the resting position. If you do not have a permanent marker, you can pull back the hammer and allow it to hit the wood a couple of times which will leave a mark.

Step 2. Glue on some ring caps (optional)

This step is optional because the mousetrap alone might make enough noise. If the sound is too soft for you and you would like to intensify it, then you can add some ring caps. Ring caps are those small red plastic rings which will simulate the noise from a gunshot when triggered.

You should at least add two ring caps, or you can fill the whole line. It will all depend on the volume you desire.

Step 3. Modify the trigger

The next step is to modify the trigger by attaching some fishing line to it. The fishing line will act as the trip wire and will release the trigger when pulled.

When the trigger is released the hammer will hit the ring caps and make a considerable noise. You can attach this trap to doors and also the floor. As long as you have an imagination, the possibilities are limited.

Boat Horn Tripwire

This trap is also very useful and will make a big noise. It is straightforward to make and does not require any craftsmanship.

What you will need:

  • Small portable boat horn.
  • Electrical tape.
  • Small rock.
  • A short stick.
  • Fishing line. 
  • A Flat rock or brick.

Step 1. Extending the button

The type of boat horn that I would recommend is the small and portable version with a button/trigger on top. Instead of your finger, a large brick or rock with a flat surface will trigger the noise.

It is because of this reason, why the button needs to be extended. You can put a small rock which is smaller than the surface area of the button on top of it and use electrical tape over the button so that the pebble will not fall off and stay in place.

Step 2. Digging a small hole

The rock needs to fall at nearly a 180° angle for it to trigger the horn. Depending on the height of the horn, you will need to dig a shallow hole for it to be shorter so that the rock can fall on the trigger at the preferred angle.

Step 3. Setting up the trap

Now you should place the rock over the horn while supporting the one side with a short stick. The stick will allow the rock to rest on it. You can also break off small pieces of the stick to adjust its length.

Attach the fishing line to the bottom end of the stick while the rock is resting on it. Once the tripwire is triggered, the rock will fall on the horn which will make a noise.

Keychain Alarm Trip Wire

This alarm is the easiest and most effective DIY trigger alarm that you can build. It is deafening, but the keychain alarm might cost you some money upfront. Many people use this item for self-defense to scare off potential attackers.

  • At least 130 decibels keychain alarm.
  • A piece of wire or cable ties.
  • Hammer and nails.
  • Fishing line.

Step 1. Attach fishing line to trigger pin

When buying a keychain alarm, make sure you get one which makes use of a trigger pin that must be pulled out for the alarm to sound otherwise it will not work.

Attach the fishing line to the pin and move onto the next step.

Step 2. Attach the keychain alarm to something

There are no set rules as to where you should set this device as long as you can attach it to something to provide enough support for the pin to be pulled out.

If you have a wooden porch, you can attach it with the help of a hammer and some nails. You can also connect it to the leg of a table with wire, rope and even cable ties.

Now you are set, and the alarm will go off once someone triggers the trip wire.

Tin Can Bell Alarm 

This method is the cheapest to do and is also low tech which means it does not require batteries or electricity to work. You can use this method while camping, bugging out and even at your home.

Here is what you will need:

  • You need 4 to 5 empty cans.
  • Paracord rope or something else with similar strength.
  • Two sticks.
  • And a “V” fork shaved tree.

Step 1. Find a “V” shaped tree

If you do not know how one of these trees look like, you can have a look at the video above. It is a tree where the trunk splits into two starting from the ground.

Tie the paracord rope between the two trunks so that you can hang the cans from the center of it.

Step 2. Hanging the cans

You can start by taking your knife to make a small hole near the opening of each can. By creating a hole in each can, you can attach a rope to it. You can also connect the rope to the tabs of the cans.

Once this is finished, you should attach the end of each rope together so that the cans can come into contact with one another.

Step 3. Winding up the trigger stick

Once the cans are hanging, you can now wind up the stick which will trigger them. To do this, you need to place and tie a paracord rope around the base of the two trunks just below the cans.

The rope will now be like a loop around the tree. Just make sure that it is not very tight. Take a stick and put it in between the loop that you created and start to wind it up.

This process should be done until enough tension has built up. Make sure the stick is high enough to hit the cans.

Step 4. Placing the release stick

Now that your stick is set up and there is enough tension built up, you need to keep it in place so that it does not go off automatically. You can do this with the help of a trigger stick.

The trigger stick will be placed horizontally behind the tension stick to keep it in place. Once this stick is released, the trigger stick will start to spin and trigger the cans which will make a noise.

Step 5. Setting up the tripwire

It is important not to choose a brightly colored tripwire when setting up a trap. Choose a color which will blend in with the surrounding colors.

The most popular color for tripwires is black. Tie the tripwire to the release stick and span it across the floor.

Once a person or animal triggers the tripwire, it will pull the release stick out of position. This action will cause the trigger stick to release its tension which will result in ti hitting the cans.

Party Popper Alarm

When partying time is over, and it is time to get serious, then a party popper can play a role in an early detection system. This method is also very straightforward to use.

Usually, these devices can only be used once, so you need to work sparingly with them if you have limited supply. If you want to buy a party popper for this purpose, then you need to make sure you get those with the pullable string.

All you then need to do is to tie a tripwire to the string and then set it up somewhere. The trigger mechanism is already sorted, but the biggest challenge comes to setting up this alarm system.

The party popper needs to be in a fixed position so that enough counter force is available for the string to be pulled out.

The shape of the party popper also makes it a challenge to be fixed. Below, I will give you two tips on how to set up this device.

Materials used:

  • Party popper.
  • Fishing line or rope.
  • Two small sticks.

Method 1. Tying it up to something.

If you have some extra rope, then you can tie the party popper up to something. You can tie it up to the branch of a tree or the foot of a table. You can also plant a stick into the ground and tie it up that way.

Method 2. Setting it between two planted sticks.

For this method to work, you need to make use of a champagne party popper. It will work because it comes in the shape of a bottle which is wide but get narrower in the direction of the string.

Plant two sticks next to each other with enough space so that only the neck of the party popper fits through. Make sure the sticks are planted deep enough so that it will create enough resistance.

Talking Boobie Trap

There are few instances more frightening than hearing a random voice when you are snooping around someone else’s stuff.

What if you could make some trap which will activate a voice over once triggered?

It sounds like an excellent idea.

This trap is a little more sophisticated than most and requires you to buy a recording module.

Materials needed:

  • Recording module.
  • Tin foil.
  • Plastic cap.
  • Zip Ties.
  • Rubber bands.
  • Duct tape or aluminum tape.
  • Double sided tape.
  • Batteries.
  • Superglue.
  • Laundry pin.

Step 1. Configuring the laundry pin

The laundry pin will be the starting point on which the device will be built upon. But first, you need to take it apart.

Remove the spring and then flip it over so that it acts as a pivot or fulcrum. Next, you need to take the rubber band and wrap it around the pin near the middle inside the groove.

Take the tin foil and wrap it around the jaws of the pin. Make sure the tin foil is decently wrapped so that the point of contact in the inside is covered.

The pin has two purposes which are the foundation of which this device is built upon and also as the switch.

Once the two jaws covered by the foil come together, they will complete the circuit and activate the recording module.

Step 2. Connecting the wires

The recording module needs to be connected to the switch with the help of wires. You need to start by attaching the pair of wires to the jaws of the pin.

You can attach the wires with the help of duct tape of aluminum tape. Connect the wires on the outside of each jaw so that you do not disturb the circuit.

Step 3. Customizing the recording module

Make yourself familiar with the device and test it to learn how it works. Start by recording a short sentence with your voice.

You can say almost anything as long as it will deter the person responsible from triggering the device from snooping around in your stuff.

You can test and glue the plastic cap onto the speaker to amplify the noise. Next, you might want to remove the switch on the circuit board because the pin which you created will replace it.

There will be two wires visible which should be connected to the wires from the pin.

When you are finished, you should test the device to see if it works. If it does not work, then you should exchange the wires.

Step 4. Assembling the trap

You can use either double sided tape or zip ties to connect all of the pieces. Start by stacking the battery on top of the laundry pin, and then put the small circuit board on top.

On top of the circuit board, you want to place the speaker. Once everything is stacked on one another, you can use zip ties for reinforcement.

Step 5. How to use it

Using the trap is simple.

The switch will be activated once the weight or pressure is released which allow the jaws to come into contact with one another.

This device is triggered by weight and can be effectively used if you want to warn someone to put something down which is yours.

Deadly Outdoor Boobie Traps

Warning!!! (Using At Your Own Risk)

The traps in this section are potentially dangerous and also illegal to build or install in and around your house. The traps in this section are for informational purposes only.

Frequently, you will find irresponsible people that will install these traps randomly in public areas which can severely cripple innocent civilians.

Using these traps should only be recommended when you are faced with total anarchy or lawlessness as a last resort to defend yourself or your property from people that intent to harm you and your family.

Noose Trap

Depending on the size, you can catch almost anything including small animals, deer and also people. The size of the “prey” will depend on the strength of the noose, the height and even the mass of the counterweight.

Here is what you will need:

  • Sturdy rope (preferably paracord).
  • Two peg shaped sticks.
  • One long stabilizer stick.
  • Trigger stick.
  • Heavy Counterweight.

The video above will show you exactly how to set it up. Make sure to set this trap next to a trail under a large tree.

The counterweight must be heavier than the prey for it to work. The two peg shaped sticks should be planted deep enough so that the weight of the counterweight does not pull it out.

The reason why I chose to use a paracord rope is that it is very strong and durable. Also, make sure to cover this trap with leaves and branches to make it less visible.

Punji Stick Traps

Punji traps, in general, are one of the deadliest traps that you will ever encounter. They come in different sizes and types. The type I am going to discuss now is the punji stick trap.

All punji traps make use of the victims own weight to cause harm to them. It is done by digging a hole and then planting spikes inside. The hole is then covered with branches to make it invisible.

Once the person steps on this trap, they will fall into the hole where the spikes will penetrate their flesh.

Materials used:

  • Six pencil thick hardwood sticks.
  • A trusty knife.
  • A shovel.

You should start by collecting sticks that are straight and also the thickness of your pinky. The number of sticks will depend on the size of the hole.

Take a sharp knife and remove the bark from each stick. This process will reduce the friction which will allow for deeper penetration.

You can also trim the stick with your knife until it is straight. Once it is straightened and trimmed, you can shape the pointy ends. Some people also like to burn the tips and then sharpen them to make them harder.

Next, you want to dig a hole with the help of a shovel or digging stick. The hole should be around two feet deep. The deeper the hole, the further will the victim fall which will create even deeper wounds.

Place the sticks out evenly inside the hole and cover the surface area with thin and leafy branches.

There is no limit as to how deep or wide the hole should be.

Spring Spear Trap

This is another deadly trap that can cause puncture wounds when activated. This trap can easily be made in the woods as the materials needed are very primitive.

The height can be adjusted according to the type of animal that you want to catch. This trap makes use of tension that is being built up when a branch is pulled backward.

Materials needed:

  • One long wet flexible branch.
  • A couple of shorter wooden sticks.
  • A rope.
  • A trusty knife.
  • Strong tree.

You should find a location next to the trail where there is a tree that has multiple trunks growing from the ground. The one end of the long and thick branch will be placed between the two trunks and then pulled backward which will create tension.

It is time to create the trap once you found a suitable location. Next, you need to get your hands on a stick that is one foot in length and also as thick as your thumb.

Take your knife and skin the bark from it. You should also create a pointy end which will do the damage. You can use one or two of these sticks but not more than three.

Create a notch on both the puncture and tension stick and then connect it by tying it with a rope. Take two more sticks or pegs and plant them on both sides of the trail.

The peg closest to the tree will have a trigger stick attached to it. Attach a rope on the opposite peg with a small loop on end. Make sure the rope is long enough to reach the other end because it will function as the tripwire.

The video above will show you how to create the trigger mechanism in full.

The Spiked Board

Another great way to scare away pesky intruders is to plant a spiked board in front of your door. All you need is a wooden board, some nails, and a hammer.

Make sure the nails are longer than the thickness of the board so that it can extend one centimeter or more.

Hammer a couple of nails through the board and you have a boobie trap in your hands. It may not be lethal but can cause severe puncture wounds through the sole of a person’s foot.

Kleptsy Trap

This trap can be used to hunt smaller animals, larger ones such as deer which also includes intruders.

It follows the same principle as the spring spear trap but uses a different trigger and tension mechanism.

The good thing about this trap is that it works independent and you do not need a tree to set it up. You can place it almost anywhere.

Materials needed:

  • A couple of sticks.
  • A string of rope.
  • A trip wire.

First, you need to choose an area where you want to plant this trap. Take two thick and strong sticks and plant them into the ground near the trail.

The length of the sticks planted will depend on how high you want the trap to be. The higher the trap, the larger the potential target.

Tie a rope around these two sticks which will help provide tension to the arm when coiled. The arm will have two spikes which are also made out of sticks.

The points of the spikes can be burned to make them harder. Place the arm between the two ropes and start to wind it up.

The trigger mechanism will be made out of a notched stick which is planted at the back of the trap. The tripwire will run from the trigger stick below the trap to the opposite side of the trail connected to another planted stick.

Watch the video above to see the boobie trap in action.

Final Word

When setting up a boobie trap, make sure you choose the right location. Some boobie traps require a tree to work. You should also consider planting a trap next to a trail where most of the activity will be.

Some of the materials used are household items while some need to be purchased. Some more advanced traps will take some practice from your side to set them up correctly.

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