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Securing the Model S While Surfing

I'm considering buying a model S.

I live in Hawaii and when I go surfing I don't want to take my key fob with me. With a traditional key, I can lock it in a lockbox and secure the lockbox to the body/frame of the vehicle. Does the key fob fit into a lock box? Would the proximity of the key fob in the lock box to the car allow a stranger to open my door? Have any owners run into this situation and if so what do you do?


Gee, I don't think I would surf in my Model S. ;>}

You have to take the key with you. Hiding is the only option if you leave it behind.

Make pouch out of alu foil or use a metal box ( altoids ) and put that is a lock box. As long you put it an rf tight metal enclosure the car can not communicate with the fob. I keep an empty altoids box in my car for the fob in case I want to sleep in car, but keep strangers out.


Genius. But how do you lock the car from the outside with the Fob in foil and altoids box?

You lock the car by pressing the fob on the roof once and then put the fob in the metal enclosure. Just tested it and works.

If you surf near a business, like a restaurant, perhaps you could drop the fob off with a reliable person there. OK, I can hear the jokes now; yes, it works better to surf in the ocean...ha, ha!

Where do you hide the KEY?

The fob is the key. No other exists.

Al foil shielding makes sense, thanks. What about surf board rack? Anyone fit a surf rack? Pics? Comments?

Psst, Hide it where you wish to hide it. But take the 2032 flat battery out of the fob and the fob is "turned off", until you put it back in.

Okay, I'm a SoCal surfer as well and this challenge has been on my mind since I took delivery of the car 7 months ago. Here's what I've come up with thus far.

1) The first quick solution was a "zip lock" bag of sorts called "LokSak". It's basically a heavier duty zip lock bag, which I purchased on Amazon. (I purchased the 5" x 4" which was the smallest I could fine). It works well. I zip it shut and drop it in my wetsuit (at the small of my back) and go. The nice part about this is you can easily test the bag and confirm it's water tight.

2) Next came the idea of using Silicone Tape, which I hadn't ever heard of until I saw it at a boat show and when I saw it the light bulb went off. Great product. The brand I have used is called "Rescue Tape". It comes in 1" and 2" rolls. I've used the 1" as it was readily available at the marine supply store. I first wrapped the key fob with one layer and minimal overlap and tested it in the sink. Everything seemed fine, but I thought I'll cut the tape off and check inside....and found some moisture. The key was fine, but needless to say this made me nervous. I tried again and this time pulled the silicone tape really tight (which is key) and went around the key twice to make sure the silicone tape (which adheres to itself) had plenty of chance to do so. I tested again, and cut the tape off (note the tape does NOT stick to the key fob which is nice) and it was bone dry. So, I've used this for awhile, but it made the key a bit bulky and much less attractive. So, idea #3 was born....and the best one yet....

3) Plasti Dip - A liquid rubber product you can buy in a 14 oz. can for about $12. First I tested it by dipping the key in half way and let it dry. (I wanted to see if the Plasti Dip would stick to the key and make it difficult/impossible to get off when it was time to change the battery, which it didn't surprisingly.) So, then I fully dipped the key, from a paperclip, let it dry (directions say 4 hours minimum before use), put it in a sink full of water, pulled it out, dried it off and proceed to peel off the Plasti Dip coating (which was easy). Again, the key was bone dry and I finally found the perfect solution for me.

My final configuration is a thin nylon string (like what you find at the end of a digital camera strap) and then two coats of the Plasti Dip, which fully coat the key fob and a small portion of the nylon string. I've only been using it for about a month now, but the Plasti Dip is surprisingly strong....and now I've got a key ring loop if I want to add it to my key chain, which I've gotten used to not having. I suppose it will save my key when it goes into the washing machine by mistake. I figure it's only a matter of time now that I don't keep it on a key chain!

Sorry, I couldn't figure out how to post pictures! I'm laying home with flu and I've lost my patients so the text is all I've got for you for now.

How many of your patients died? You must have a lot of patience. ;)

To post, the pix must be hosted on a website, like imageshack or tinypic or Flickr. They may have special posting URLs or code. If not, grab the picture URL from the context menu. Use in the following HTML:

<img src="URL" width="600">


This is an attempt to post a picture of the LokSak (heavier duty zip lock bag) with a key fob inside. This is one of three tested waterproof options I've come up with.

LokSak & Fob photo IMG_2392_zps7a41b79d.jpg

LokSak & Fob photo IMG_2392_zps7a41b79d.jpg width="600">

LokSak & Fob photo IMG_2392_zps7a41b79d.jpg" width="600">

Plasti Dip Can & Fob photo IMG_2394_zps92113e90.jpg

lol....I felt like I was the dying patient...butt (literally) feeling better now. (stomach flu) Making I figured out how to post a picture, but don't understand how to adjust/control the size.

Brian, can you provide any further instruction...I'm in uncharted waters...

Voila. Behold the OtterFob!

Very nice Kelly, thanks for posting. Feel better :)


When you copy the 'share' code that starts with <a href=... or <img src=... if the code already includes a "width=" item, change the number to be 600 to make it fit here; also delete the height="..." bit so that the picture retains its aspect ratio. If it doesn't, find the bit of the code that starts with <img src=... and find the > sign. Add width="600" just before it.

You should be good to go.

OtterFob! I like it! (Here's a pictures of the back of the OtterFob...hopefully).

Thanks Nick...your instructions were clear to see if it works! worked! Sorry, I could have done this in one fell swoop...if I only knew what I was doing!

Here's a picture of the Silicone Tape Option. (I'll let Robert22 come up with a name for it, as he seems to be good at that.)

And here's another picture of the "OtterFob" after it shed his (or her) first "test coat" (its inside out in this picture). Once I pierced the "Plasti-Coat" it peeled off easily because it doesn't stick to the keyfob, which is great...and will make changing the battery (when the time comes) much easier!

Stevie_Scott, you can go ahead and place that Model S order...where there's a will, there's a way!

They do make clear Plasti Dip, so the Tesla logo and art would still be visible:

When I go stand-up paddleboarding, I use a regular ziplock baggie...I don't ever fall in, so I've yet to "need" the ziplock bag...But obviously I feel a lot more secure knowing that if I did, it would be protected. I have a heavy-duty water-proof clear ziplock wallet-type thing somewhere that came with a pair of surf trunks...I'll be using that when I can dig it up from whatever "safe place" I've squirreled it away in. But I bet most surf shops carry things like that, have you tried you local shop?

As for a roof rack, I use a couple of foam beams that are specifically designed to sit on the roof of a car...Next time I have my board on the car, I'll take a couple of photos.

In the meantime, happy surfing/boarding to all my fellow watermen :)

A very timely thread. Waded in this weekend to call the kids out of the surf. Forgot the fob was in my pocket...of course, a "rouge" wave came in and wet me to the waist. Even though I don't think it was submerged at any point, enough water got in to fry the fob and the battery. Bummer. A $400 dip in the ocean!

Hmmmm.......... Would it be easy to take the battery out of one fob, dip it, and use that as your 'wet work' key? I know there's a spot where a key without a battery can be placed to unlock and start the car.

I wonder if Liquipel would agree to treat the keyfobs. I've used this on my last two iphones and my ipad. Never actually dropped it in water to test, but I grab my phone while I'm in the shower etc and have had zero issues.


Actually, that's a great idea for recycling my "dead" key (as a third wet duty key). Can you also start the car from the "magic spot" under the wipers or does it just open the doors?

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