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The Emergency Preparedness
Tip o'da Week

How to Secure Your Computer Equipment in Quake Zones

The material presented on this page is intended to start you thinking about what you can do today that might someday save your life. If nothing else, our "Tip o' da Week" might just make your life a bit easier when a disaster strikes. We do not present topics that cost a lot of money (like structure reinforcement.) These are "do it yourself" projects and are relatively inexpensive.


FireBox stove in use with fire powered pan charger - Hatsuden Nabe

Introducing the Hatsuden Nabe

The Fire-Powered USB Thermoelectric Generator and the Firebox Folding Stove

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How to Secure Your Expensive Computer Equipment

We've looked at several ways to secure our own computers and monitors.  We thought that there must be a way to take advantage of the screw holes on the bottom and back side of our PCs and monitors.  We looked at using braided ground straps with crimped and soldered eye hole lugs, and attaching them to the equipment with the existing screws.  We gave up on the idea for several reasons:

We recently discovered a few new products we found so cool, we wanted to pass the info along. Although our "Tip o' da Week" is not a product showcase, this week we can't help sharing a few products produced by a company in California that solved our problems; they might solve yours as well.  We will start carrying these items in the near future.  In the meantime, we have several sets that we will make available to visitors to the Tip o' da Week.

You might be able to find these kits at emergency suppliers in your area.

Lots of colors, lots of bucks.

We all know how expensive computer monitors are.  If you live in a quake zone, that expensive monitor might end up a pile of broken glass and plastic if it shimmies off your desk.  Even worse, your monitor is typically at eye level and is near the edge of your desk.  It could end up in your lap, or  impede your pathway to safe cover (under your desk) if a quake hits.  (Safety is number one in our minds. Remember to duck and cover!)

We found a product that will help prevent catastrophic damage to your monitor.  Better yet, this product can also be used for securing your CPU box (desk type) as shown below.  It can also be used on your printer, scanner, fax machine, and even your stereo!


Monitor and computer secured

The product is called "VersaBUCKLE".  (The diagram above shows two kits installed.)  A VersaBUCKLE kit consists of four buckles and two nylon straps.  The buckles are high strength plastic and have 3M VHB (very high bond) adhesive on the back side.  These buckles use a 1.0"x 1.25" piece of VHB adhesive tape, resulting in a strength of 100 pounds per buckle!

How do I get them off to get inside the equipment?

This was a major concern of ours, since we mess around with the guts of our equipment regularly.  With this securing system, all you need to do is release the buckle locking lever, and pull the strap through as shown below.


Release lever, and lift computer up

Now for the down side

The problem comes when you want to remove the buckles from your desk or computer equipment.  The VHB adhesive that is used is so strong, you will need a small pry bar tool to remove it.  A screwdriver will work, but you run the risk of marring the desk top or scratching the paint on your computer equipment.

Once the buckle is removed, it is not difficult to remove the adhesive in small pieces, starting from a corner.  When all the adhesive is removed, a new adhesive pad can be installed on the buckle, and the buckle can then be reinstalled at another location, or on another piece of equipment.

What about tower cases?

Many CPU boxes are of the tower type and are located under a desk.  There is another product that is ideal for this application.  It is called a GrommetGRIP. This uses a buckle like the above product, but the strap is longer and has Grommets installed at one end to allow screws to be installed through the nylon.


A tower case installation

To install this kit, you first install the buckles on opposite sides of the tower.  Then you install the straps to the underside of the desk with screws and tension the straps via the buckle release levers.


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384 Wallis Street #2
Eugene, OR 97402
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