Anchor all shelving to the wall studs to prevent the CD/Vinyl rack from being pulled down. If you have speaker grills, put them on. Exposed drivers are like magnets for toddlers.
Congratulations, the fun has only started!
Congratulations, you have now entered the 'lost years', when ever extra penny, and ever extra moment will be devoted to child, and maybe the many others to come. It will be necessary to 'drop out' of the hobby till the final college payment is made, it happened to me. So don't worry about 'child proof', retire it all to storage. Keep all the media, it never goes out of style. WAF will rein in the many years ahead. Listening to your rig will be considered 'child abuse/neglect'. Have faith, great listen will return, even if the kids move in with you after college, which today is a real possibility.
Trek on down to the nearest farm supply store and get some wire and a charger. Putting hot wire around "off limits" items is a great training tool!
Common sense, paying attention to infant activities and the word "no" will work just fine. Keep your stuff out and continue to use it.
Your analogue rig will b safe as long as you don't use it and keep it child-proof. Your records are not in danger where they are.
Digitizing frequently listened vinyls is a good idea as well as having some media computer to store even your CDs there and play.
Congrats and enjoy every minute. Before you know it, they will be grown and moved out :-(
Until you get a chance to rip the CDs, Slappa and others have notebook type CD storage w zippers all around. They can store dozens in each binder and you can put those nasty jewel cases away in storage.
Enjoy the ride.
Swampwalker is right, enjoy these moments, they go by quicker than you'll believe. Before you know it they will be....teenagers!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!
My 3 boys are in their 20's now, and I never really made any changes. My wife stayed home with the children, and she did a very good job of teaching them to 'not touch' certain things. Maybe I was lucky, but my worst damage was a VCR that my middle son (always the problem child) inserted a PB&J sandwich into the slot. Not much of a horror story, good for some laughs nowadays (if anyone still knows what a VCR is).
You just need to teach 'boundries'.
Some of my best memories were holding my boys on my lap while they listened to music with me. Once the pre-teen years hit, our music tastes diverged. I just stayed away from tube power amps to avoid any hazards, but they knew and understood to not touch- something young visitors seemed to not understand at times.
I have a two year old and we listen to music all the time, it's what we do together. Getting out of the hobby is a terrible idea unless all you listen to is death metal. Here's what I did:
-Digitize all my CD's
-Move my record collection into a spare bed room that I lock
-Move all of my expensive equipment up higher on the rack.
-Be very clear with the baby that she is not to touch the stereo stuff, they are smarter than you think
-All speaker grills on
Enjoy, audio is an awesome experience to share with your daughter.
All my gear was along one short wall of a family room with the speakers a few feet in front of the wall. I set up a fence with a gate across the entire wall in front of the speakers -- all the off-limits equipment was behind the fence and out of reach. We could listen to music and I never had to worry if my child (or, more importantly, friends while on a play date) was/were about to hurt themselves or the equipment. The fence and gate came down eventually.
I found the fence/gate at a baby-proofing site. The product was originally intended as a fireplace gate. Here's an example: http://www.onestepahead.com/catalog/product.jsp?productId=538171&parentCategoryId=85183&categoryId=85217
. I guess there isn't a market for "audiophile gates."
Congrats on the family. You'll be amazed how much kids love music if you can find some way to have both in the same room.
Growing up in the 60's/70's I had three brothers and a sister. My mom and dad were always into music and we had several tube stereos and a large console set with the turntable, radio and speakers built into a beautiful furniture cabinet with tweed grill cloth covering the speakers. You could see the orange glow from the tubes in the dark and a warm comforting sound.
Every Sunday after church while Mom was making dinner Dad would be spinning Big Band~(Dorsey, Miller, Cugat, Kaye, Lombardo, Cunniff, Sinatra, Como, Basie, Ellington, 101 Strings.)
We never messed with the stereos. We knew it was something important and should be respected. Neither my Mom or Dad told us to "like" music. They did,~ and we got use to it as a normal part of family life. (There were only three TV channels back then!)... When we wanted to listen Mom or Dad would put on the record and push play.
When we each were old enough my parents bought us boys our own record player and my sister got one for her a her girlfriends to listen to. (Bobby Sherman, Hermans Hermits, Monkees, Dave Clark Five.) The boys listened to Rascals, Turtles, Yardbirds, Beatles, Stones, Hendrix.
Don't make a big deal out of it and let the child know that the stereo system is one of your toys and that you want him/her to enjoy and respect it for it gives you a lot of pleasure. Set boundaries and you will be fine. Hopefully you will share this passion/hobby with them for many years to come.
I am really missing my DAD right about now.......
Wait it out and see how it goes. My first never looked at my stereo once. My second made a bee line right for it as soon as he started walking. So I just went downstairs and turned off the stereo breaker and my rig sat there for 15 years or so without being played.
Google the words "baby jail" and you'll find a way to coral your toddler to keep both the toddler and your equipment safe. Use words like "that's breakable" to differentiate whatÂs off limits. We day cared our five grandchildren and my wife used the words ÂthatÂs GrandpaÂs and itÂs breakableÂ and believe it or not that worked like a charm.
Im sure Im in the minority, but I really had little problems with my 2 boys. They were greeted with a stern
"NO!" and "Dont touch that,it's Daddys!" Worked fine, never had an issue. Now when other peoples kids came to the house....
Share your enjoyment of music with your loved ones. Your wife will understand and welcome your hobby when she sees you dancing around to your system with your kids. They will get older soon enough and put on their earbuds and tune you out. Put on fun danceable music that you might not normally listen to. I did this over the weekend and got a bunch of records cleaned with no signs of disapproval. Try it and see. And give your kids respect and they will give it back.
I had similar positive experiences with my two kids.They never touched the stereo equipment or cds.I used to play music they loved to sing and dance to and they had their own kiddie cassette decks and later on their own receivers,cd players,and speakers in their rooms.Other peoples kids were a problem at times.Enjoy and share with your little guy!
I've really enjoyed reading the responses. I too have children and have chosen not to move my rig. Aside from safety issues (securing equipment so that it can't fall over) I wouldn't change anything.
Interestingly, the marks and scratches on my speaker cabinets come not from children but from visiting adults! Go figure.
Thanks to all of you for your thoughts. So far I think I will keep the rig where it is and hope for the best. I still plan on taking down the wall of CDs and probably going with a bunch of Slappa cases to house the collection. The records will stay out. If anyone has experience with Slappa please let me know. I like the idea of the "d2i" which allows you to slide CD sleeves in and out, which would make it easier to keep the CDs in alphabetical order. Again input is appreciated, and thanks!
One practical choice I made when kids wee that age (as well as a general organization change) was to leave the plastic jewel boxes behind. I moved all my CDs to binders with CD pages - includes liner/artwork and my whole collection can sit on a higher shelf in 6 zippered Mead binders organized by genre. It was also great as moved all music to a NAS - just take binder to my computer. No dust, well organized, flexible - can add pages/binders.