Hacked Gadgets Forum

June 8, 2009

Stealth Surveillance or Mobile Office Vehicle

at 5:41 am. Filed under Complex Hacks, Computer Hacks, Crazy Hacks, Insane Equipment, What Were They Thinking

Rich Harley from Suspicion Industries sent in some pictures of a vehicle that they just completed. This is what I call a office away from home! I know where to go if I ever start a career as a super secret spy! Instead of a limo could I rent this van for an evening?

“Here is a rather large home project we have completed – a surveillance
vehicle or mobile office. The project took around 9 months to finish
and we have pictures and build information to document progress. The
van has:

* onboard power system/batteries (10 hour runtime), plug sockets etc
* lighting
* onboard computers x 2 + TFT wall mounted monitors
* wireless router
* desk + chair setup
* furnished walls and floor
* climate control

We’ve also added a Pan-Tilt-Zoom Camera connected to the computers
for surveillance or recording use. Our aim is to hire the van to
individuals/small business, or perhaps to sell the vehicle outright.”


 

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33 Responses to “Stealth Surveillance or Mobile Office Vehicle”

  1. Dave Says:

    Its just a van with 2 computers, a camera and and airco.. Sure, it looks great.. But anyone can make it. Not impressed.

  2. iride Says:

    not so much discrete with the plate in clear 🙂

  3. Brian Says:

    I have that exact same keyboard and mouse it was 3 off ebay lol

  4. Alan Parekh Says:

    I didn’t notice the plate, good eye. I am sure that is the dealer plate of Suspicion Industries though. When the customer gets delivery they would need to get their own plate.

  5. qwijybo Says:

    Looks like they should have invested in a level the monitors are not square to the desk or each other.

  6. roula Says:

    At first I wondered about the use of this vehicle and I’m still not quite sure about it.
    But whats really nice are the 10hours runtime

  7. eric Says:

    I hope they used SSDs, harddrives will NOT appreciate the vibration of driving around, and they will fail miserably very quickly from the abuse. Very clean install though, neat stuff

  8. iride Says:

    i think that this could be a good basis for any sort of major improvement, like the ones in spy movies. Very interesting the overall uptime. A rotating plate would be interesting 🙂

  9. jim Says:

    this isn’t one of the best project ive seen on this site, i could do this same project for about 450 if you bring me a transit van, or much less (around 100) if you supply the inverter and pc’s to.

  10. Rich Harley Says:

    Hi there

    We built this van – thanks for your comments! The van was actually completed quite a while ago, we’ve just been toying with surveillance spec options recently and recording hardware.

    iride: Indeed, plates will be swapped for any potential customer or operation. The camera works great in night vision too..if that’s spy movie enough for you!

    Brian: Yes I probably should invest in some nicer keyboards and mice! I’ll get on it…

    qwijybo: I did the best I could! Can’t say I or anyone else complained too much 🙂 We’ve learnt a lot since building this about general construction/design.

    roula: I believe the applications are quite numerous: IT skills training at local sites/schools, surveillance, photography events, mobile computer workshop etc. We’ve interest in hiring the van for these things. The battery is 260AH – upgradable of course..

    jim: I wonder if you are joking? The power system (inverter, battery, wiring etc) alone cost 4000 (not sure of current exchange rate to $), let alone the base system.. furnishing etc.

    Here’s some other stats if anyone’s interested:
    150 Carpet tiles, 9 litres of glue
    40m of electrical wiring
    75Kg of battery
    Over 600 screws
    300 man hours
    48 high intensity LEDs
    60m of insulation

    Give me a shout if anyone would like any more info about the build.

    Regards
    Rich

  11. Steve Says:

    Do I get a discount, because it has a wacking great dent in the drivers side rear quater, or is that just to make it look like all other vans in the UK?

  12. Macka Says:

    THey should replace the backlights in the monitors with LED’s to squeze a bit more life out of the batteries.

  13. Chris Rybitski Says:

    Eric: Normal hard drives do much better than you would think in a mobile environment. The hdd in my car pc is a standard sata drive and it has been running smoothly for 2 years. I am not arguing that an ssd would not be better suited, just stating that the normal drives are more durable than you give them credit for.

  14. Dave Says:

    And still, I think its highly overrated. It’s just a van with 2 computers.

    “skills training at local sites/schools, surveillance, photography events, mobile computer workshop etc”

    Of course, computers are really expensive. No school can afford them. Let them pay for a van and ask extra for the gas. That was sarcasm.

  15. jim Says:

    @Rich Harley, thanks for getting back to us all.
    i did forget to include carpets, glue, battery, and lighting in my original quote which adds about 550 to the total, but i have made a breakdown of what i would expect to pay for the hardware used. i havent included an air-con unit as i personaly wouldn’t include one in my build, for the fact it would kill the battery life by more than half.

    here is my breakdown –>
    3000w inverter on ebay aprox 150
    2x pc with 19inch display aprox 200 (cheep pc’s)
    40m square mdf aprox 85
    insulation fiber fire resistant aprox 65
    5m 240v 13 amp cable for inverter extention aprox 3
    15m power cable for inverter aprox 10
    15m cable for led lighting aprox 5
    48 led’s aprox 20 (@ aprox 40p each, that seems like overkill tho)
    variety of screws aprox 15
    carpet tiles aprox 100
    glue aprox 30
    battery as specified aprox 400

    this all totals to just over 1000, half of the total is from the bits i didnt original count, and also build time is not included in the price.

    i will mention i used to refit caravans for a private business untill the recent resession, and all the stuff we used to buy was from internet sources, except wood and insulation bought local.

  16. NoBody Says:

    I just purchased an old Ford F250 cargo van that is completly bare on the inside. I am also going to make tech improvements. I am intrigued by your mobile spy hut. No doubt that anything imaginable could be accomplished with opportunity and funding. what I like is the fact that it is completed and not just a concept or idea. Kudos to all of you who worked on it! BTW if it is nothing more than a van with two computers and some electronics in it, it still has two more computers and electronics in it than almost every other vehicle on the road. I LIKE IT!!!!

  17. yajivtech Says:

    Really cool one. I like to have these kind of office. Thanks for sharing this nice concept.!!!! keep writing more! 🙂

  18. Seven Says:

    Needs a “FREE CANDY INSIDE” sign to make it epic.

  19. jas Says:

    has a big dent on the side.

    also not a very discrete color.

  20. phonz Says:

    Inspector Gadget’s Van!? lol… but apparently im the only one who see’s this I guess LoL

  21. cormac Says:

    very nice build. Not too good for secret spying though since the world now knows its registration.

  22. not_random Says:

    If you plan to use to computers, I would HIGHLY recommend the software at “synergy2.sourceforge.net” or any equivalent. Been using it for two years now, so I can use one keyboard for all my 4 computers.

    Nothing fancy with the exterior, though that’s okay on a surveillance truck.

    I’m missing some pictures for the interior though. There is no proof that you actually have the computers INSIDE the van. I would also like to remind you what Eric and Chris said, you can ONLY use SSD’s on a car, anything else would be short-lived.

  23. rincewind Says:

    Desktop computers on a van is a bad idea, they aren’t built to stand vibrations. At least you should switch the hdds to 2.5″ laptop hdds with acceleration sensors, otherwise you’ll have a headcrash in no time 😀 I’d switch the desktops for laptops. That should also make the batteries last longer. You should also consider to buy an umts router so you get internet without w-lan. If you put some advertising on the roof you could hide a laser micro and a camera in that…

  24. drew Says:

    Your all a bunch of wankers. Build your own van!

  25. dong Says:

    Kind of an oxymoron… a bright red van that is “Stealth Surveillance” more like, hey look at me, i am spying on ya.

  26. Rich Says:

    Hi all

    Rich here again – thanks for all your comments! Although this has mainly been talked about as a surveillance vehicle, all the people we’ve hired it out too so far have just wanted the mobile office features – no camera’s or anything. So we’ve been prepping it without the camera’s the last few weeks, which extends the battery life nicely!

    @Steve – No you don’t! 🙂 The price we have the vehicle for at the moment reflects the damage (which is only aesthetic anyway).

    @Macka – Good idea, but I don’t think this wouldn’t make enough difference to the battery life to be worthwhile.

    @Cormac – the plates will obviously be changed for a surveillance vehicle sale. Most of the work we are doing at the moment is just with the mobile office market, so the registration isn’t an issue.

    @not_random – thanks for the tip, I’ll check that out. I assure you, the computers and seating and furnishings are all inside the van! Send me an email if you’d like some more detailed pictures.

    @rincewind – that’s kind of the setup we have the moment, although you can’t see it in these pictures. A UMTS router would be useful and very easy to do, but our location means the internet would be dead slow anyway. Definitely something that’s easily upgradable though.

    @drew – 🙂

  27. me Says:

    This is a gay mans truck. Like Tom Cruise in tights.

  28. mrsleep Says:

    AMD processor…fail.

  29. taco man Says:

    lol, doin all that surveillance with windows,

    hope you dont get any viuses spying on folks,
    meanwhile ill sit over here on my linux box all discreet like

  30. Jonathan Says:

    I do think this is an alright start for a first time thing, but could use A lot of improvement. and yes it con not be done very well with $400 unless you have the tolls already and know the right stores. but 4000 even in euros is too much. The monitors are alright but I would replace it with one large 70in maybe a 50in but no smaller. the computers are ok, you can choose what you need for processing power. Personally I would go way above those. also you need CCTV for surveillance. with a 40in or larger TV, not only will it save power for you dont need anything but the one Camera DVR on, but its not doing anything else that could cause it to freeze like on a PC. for the air conditioning its ok, but I would have goton one designed for data centers. One, they are efficient, they produce little condensation (no puddle under the car in hot weather, and the water tank wont fill as quickly) Two Datacenter air handling systems have predone drains so they can run 24/7 in any condition without dripping. as for the mention of HDDS not liking vibrations, get A good one, like Western Digital or Seagate (I would go with WD). But you can also install an anti vibration desk/cabinet. do note the PC doesnt have to be anywhere close to the monitors, but that reduces all vibration and if its sealed, then it protects from moisture when the Van isnt running. the interior design varies per person, but a few rules remain, Modules and weatherproofing.

  31. inviktus Says:

    You went with one intel, and one AMD from the stickers on those cases…

    How bizarre.

  32. Mobile Geeks Says:

    I have just purchased a new VW Transporter LWB. Thanks for the idea. Im doing the same.

  33. JARED OGUTU Says:

    hi is this van for sale and how much if yes, kindly email me pics and details

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