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Larry Edgerton
06-13-2012, 10:12 PM
I was out working at my new shop/house complex today and noticed a large copper kitchen hood I had setting next to my shop weathering was missing. It was there Sunday when my wife mowed. Looked around and they got some of my structural steel from out back. Not a lot, but enough that it ticks me off. They will be back, there is more steel, and I will have cameras up.

Thing that worries me is there is about $250K in tools in the two building. They didn't break in, but if they looked in the windows......

I have been trying to finish the house for cash, and when I live there I will be there to protect my tools, but until then I have been stressing out about this very thing. I may have to think about borrowing a little money to get moved out there. Don't want to, but being there would stop that stuff. My tools are my lifes work, many of them irreplaceable, and I dread the though of getting cleaned out.

Just the thought of at least a couple of guys walking around my property looking for things to steal makes me sick. I got by for years because no one messed with the Edgerton boys, but we are getting old and I knew this would happen eventually. Still, if I find out who it was before the cops........

Annoyed in Michigan

Larry

John McClanahan
06-13-2012, 10:20 PM
We live in an age where if it isn't locked up, it's OK to take. (and if it is locked up, it might be OK to take!)

John

Myk Rian
06-13-2012, 10:24 PM
It's all over, Larry. Sign of the times.
Should think about covering the windows when you aren't there.

Brian Elfert
06-13-2012, 10:32 PM
I have no idea on your building configurations, but will being there really help? Are the buildings close enough to hear any thieves?

A Scout camp out in the middle of nowhere was ripped off last winter while they were closed for the season. A bunch of copper and scrap metal was stolen. The camp is 20 minutes off the closest paved road. Only four people live there over the winter and I suspect they tend to stay inside a lot. Two are employees and the other two are their wives.

Ted Calver
06-13-2012, 10:53 PM
Had a guy stop at my place today who was just cruising the neighborhood looking for recyclables. There is a junk yard out on the main drag that has a line of pickups stacked with scrap metal out onto the street all day long, every day. Craigslist is full of people volunteering to remove your scrap metal for free. A/C units are being pilfered from vacant homes and copper pipes and electrical wiring in new construction disappear overnight. Times are tough...ya gotta protect your stuff. Cameras where you can get license plates and faces might work. Just remember...in most places the use of deadly force to protect property will get you slammer time.

Larry Edgerton
06-13-2012, 11:00 PM
The house is about 75 feet from the shop and at this point I guess I will put an alarm on the shop door to wake me up. For years I never locked my house, but since the downsizing of the national economy this stuff moved in here. Times are tough, and some people have no conscience. I have been locking my doors for a couple of years now. Sad......

Larry

Dave Lehnert
06-13-2012, 11:33 PM
I think your tools will be ok, They were most likely after the scrap metal and that's it.

greg lindsey
06-14-2012, 12:41 AM
I was in a resturant last week that had probabaly 40 tables with faily thick pounded copper tops(fancy place) on them. I was checking them out thinking, man the "crack heads" would love to hit this place.

Here in Texas, we would probably get some more copper put out and wait :) just sayin...

Kevin W Johnson
06-14-2012, 12:59 AM
I think your tools will be ok, They were most likely after the scrap metal and that's it.

That may well be true, but it's the casual discussion they have with others that may send real thieves (people taking more than scrap lying about) that you have to worry about. I absolutely avoid having people I don't know in my house or shop. We'll be buying new furniture soon as we sold our present couch, recliner and another chair this past saturday. I will be going to pick it up myself rather than having it delivered. While I can fetch it myself cheaper than the delivery charge, more importantly, I won't have to worry if someone will pay me a visit later when I'm not home.

Mac McQuinn
06-14-2012, 1:39 AM
Seems like a trip to your local scrap metal dealers might come in handy, if they're required to keep records of all metals purchased by walk-ins, you can track down your materials & the culprits.

As far as future protection against theft, a well trained security dog should deter things.

Mac

Belinda Williamson
06-14-2012, 7:19 AM
Larry, my house was broken in to years ago. Once I got past the anger I just felt sick. My biggest concern was that the theives would return because the took a key that I believe they assumed was a spare to my house. I'm sorry to hear that you were robbed. I agree that you should cover the windows of your shop. Tools go missing in our area as fast as you can put them down and turn around. We have recently added on to our shop and had several different trades come and go. There were some light fixtures that we yet to be installed, and a good bit of wiring that have just disappeared. I really don't want to stand over someone the entire time they work but it seems things have come to that.

Brian Elfert
06-14-2012, 12:40 PM
There is a scrap yard in a questionable part of town here that is really busy. I was going to go there once, but the lines were out the entrance and there was a block long line of vehicles waiting in the street. There were some real clunkers waiting to cash in. I do question where some of the guys who show up multiple times a week get their scrap metal. I go to a scrap yard in the suburbs that is easier to get in and out of.

The state requires photo IDs and payment by check only. I don't believe they have to photograph the items. I don't know how you would prove ownership of metal unless it was unique. Someone stole over 100 vases from local cemeteries just before Memorial day. They were worth perhaps $30 each as scrap, but they cost $200 to $500 each to replace. The scrap yards were on the lookout and someone left them in a local park and they were returned.

Ron Natalie
06-14-2012, 1:54 PM
I had lowlife idiots steal my temporary power drop. At least they knew to turn it off before they took it. What they hadn't realized is that the cable they saw which they cut off after it went underground was really only buried shallowly under the temporary driveway and it then emerged on the other side and ran about 150 to the site. They got about 20' of wire.

Lee Schierer
06-14-2012, 2:34 PM
Copper is in high demand and fetches a premium amount at the scrap yards. I've heard of thieves pulling copper water lines out of homes while people are away as well as stripping out their wiring. It must be a royal pain for contractors building new homes.

Recently our local Habitat for Humanity project was robbed of some lumber, so no one is immune. We had to board up the houses every night when we quit and reopen everything the next morning. It took several people almost 30 minutes each day to do this.

Don Jarvie
06-14-2012, 2:40 PM
Sadly if something is valuable then it needs to be locked up. Add a few motion lights to the building especially by the doors, put some blinds on the windows and good locks on the doors. If you have more than 1 door then lock them all from the inside. I have my 2nd set of double doors on my garage padlocked from the inside on top of the outside.

At least make them work for it if they come back. Most likely they were looking for stuff laying around that was easy to grab.

ray hampton
06-14-2012, 3:07 PM
the only thing that would keep me from stealing your tools from the inside would be a team of hungry DOGS that stay in the building, you can sell toothpicks at a flea market if you steal them ,tools are metal

phil harold
06-14-2012, 6:36 PM
The symbol for copper is Cu
lately in the building trade we are calling it "C U later"
if you leave it will be gone

Larry Edgerton
06-14-2012, 6:44 PM
I have never really been into security because I never really needed it, so I am a bit lost. I need a camera setup, preferably with two cameras, and I don't want to spend a fortune because it is temporary. Any suggestions on packages or what to look for would be appreciated.

I moved all my structural steel today to a location harder to get to and put a lock on the walkout basement, but I did not have time to go looking for cameras. I'm going to look around the net right now. Wonder if trail cams would work?

Larry

Todd Burch
06-14-2012, 6:48 PM
Saw this on facebook today. Made me think of this thread.

Jeff Nicol
06-14-2012, 7:37 PM
Sorry to hear about the theft of your stuff, as has already been said when times are tough and the babies need milk and food, a desperate man will do most anything to keep his family alive. But on the other hand when the economy is in the tank and there is no end in sight, the price of precious and semi-precious metals go through the roof for scrap prices, and in turn makes it worth while for thieves, derilicts and drug addicts makes it worth the effort and the risk to steal what is readily available. We had a rash of copper stolen from the ground wires on old power poles to the copper braided connectors on the rails of the train track switching stations, which was very dangerous to say the least. It is going to be happening for months to come, or potentially years until the world gets back on track.

So to help you out with some sort of protection that is inexpensive, a motion sensing light or two or a light that comes on with a timer that you change the time setting so it does not become obvious that it is on a timer. Another thing is to use dummy cameras and put signage stating that the property is under video surveilance. These little things will make a fly by thief pass on by just because the danger of getting caught becomes more real, because the real pros do not care what is on anything as if they want it they will get it!

One last thing the infrared cameras are all around and I use the "Moultrie" m-80 for trail pictures of deer and they work well and have no flash and are small. There are many brands and $$$ amounts you can spend, they even have some that will send you a picture to your phone or computer when they are triggered and some of the web-cams can be hooked up as a surveilance camera that can be accessed from any computer, but then you will need a computer at the new house/shop.

Good luck and hopefully the thieves will get caught,

Jeff

Dan Hintz
06-14-2012, 8:00 PM
Q-See sells some decent camera systems with DVR for reasonable prices... a few hundred $s for a DVR, 2 wired cameras, 2 wireless, with night vision.

Ryan Baker
06-14-2012, 8:01 PM
All metals, especially copper, have a really high vapor pressure around here. There are hordes of old pickups circulating the neighborhoods every trash night picking up anything metal. All of the vacant houses have had the pipes and wiring ripped out of the walls. Wiring has been stolen from out of the street lights, as well as parts of the lights themselves. Pretty much anything that can be taken will be. There are numerous scrap places around town that buy the stuff, and they advertise heavily for more people to bring them scrap. Generally, the scrap buyers are more crooked than the guys selling the stuff. Downtown, some people stole all the cast iron manhole covers from the streets and sold them to a scrap dealer. They all had "City of Detroit" cast right into them and nobody asked anything about it ... even the next days when it was all over the news and cars had wheels dropping into holes. The dealer just hurries to melt down the evidence and goes on.

Lock up everything, and do what you can to secure your buildings. As long as there are easier targets, most of these small guys will leave you alone.

Larry Edgerton
06-14-2012, 8:25 PM
Ok, I did some looking.

Most systems seem to be tied to the net. That won't work for this site, no internet connection. It has to have a self contained recording device, either tape,CD or SD card or whatever else works.

Thanks for the suggestions, I'll look them up.

Larry

Dan Hintz
06-14-2012, 8:33 PM
Q-See systems can be used through the net, but its definitely not a requirement. My system uses two wireless cameras on the garage, covering most of the front and side yard, driveway included.

ray hampton
06-14-2012, 8:33 PM
trail cameras will do the trick IF THEY WILL sent the pictures to a computer as soon as they get snap so if your camera get stolen then you will had a picture to show the police dept.

Kevin W Johnson
06-15-2012, 1:12 AM
Q-See sells some decent camera systems with DVR for reasonable prices... a few hundred $s for a DVR, 2 wired cameras, 2 wireless, with night vision.


Mine came with 8 camera's and was about $400 or so from Costco.

Greg Portland
06-20-2012, 2:07 PM
I have never really been into security because I never really needed it, so I am a bit lost. I need a camera setup, preferably with two cameras, and I don't want to spend a fortune because it is temporary. Any suggestions on packages or what to look for would be appreciated.

I moved all my structural steel today to a location harder to get to and put a lock on the walkout basement, but I did not have time to go looking for cameras. I'm going to look around the net right now. Wonder if trail cams would work?

Larry
Larry, IMO you are just going to get some great pictures of the local meth heads stealing / damaging your stuff with this solution. What will you do then? IMO, a large dog or two + "attack dog on premises" signs would go a lot further to deter folks. If you haven't already, permanently label your tools to make them easier to identify/track.

Keep in mind, most of these folks don't care about getting arrested & aren't thinking clearly... they just want some quick cash for drugs.

Matt Meiser
06-20-2012, 2:35 PM
We put in a QSee system more so I can see the driveway from my shop behind the house. Its decent but you aren't going to get license plates for the cops, especially at night. In the light you might get a decent vehicle description and maybe a description of the people.

We got ours at Costco.com.

Kevin Gregoire
06-20-2012, 4:09 PM
i have two words for you.... Land Mines!

set up a cot and sleeping bag some time and spend the night and see if you cant catch them red handed if they come back?
and if that dont work, game cameras are pretty cheap now days and will photograph anything that moves where you have them
pointed at.

get some of that christmas spray powder for windows and frost all of yours so nobody can see in but light can pass through to
keep the place bright inside.

or reinforce the doors with a big plank and set it up so it will lock when you shut the door and set up a heavy string or light rope
on a pully system to lift the beam when you want it and set it up so only you now how to pull the cord from outside. usually with
a stiff wire through a small hole in the wall. (hard to explain by writing, just have to use your imagination)

but my first thought above is the simplest and what thieves deserve! :-)

Larry Edgerton
06-20-2012, 8:47 PM
I went and checked out camera security systems and came to the same conclusion that has been mentioned. Unless you spend a lot more than I am willing to spend they don't provide much in the way of evidence that would stand up in court. The system on the house I am working on is roughly $20K, and I am not going there.

Ironically they did bust a Meth lab last week about ten miles away. Didn't think we had that stuff around here much, but what do I know I am an old man.

I decided to put up a fake camera and put an alarm system in the buildings with motions to set off the loudest siren I can find.

I have the perfect situation for gates, two driveways with a deep ditch on each side, but I don't want gates, thats not how I want to live. But I may until I can get moved out there.

I once saw a sign at a gate that was open in Texas. It said.....

Guard dogs
Mean, silent, hungry, and efficient.

It was effective.

Larry

ray hampton
06-20-2012, 9:34 PM
[QUOTE=Larry Edgerton;1944610
Ironically they did bust a Meth lab last week about ten miles away. Didn't think we had that stuff around here much, but what do I know I am an old man.

I


Larry[/QUOTE]

I understand from the news stories that the meth. lab can be in a moving car, so the lab are mobile

Rick Fisher
06-21-2012, 2:40 AM
I read somewhere that in North America, they bust 1000 meth labs a month .. Pretty sad..

Sorry about the thieves Larry, its a crappy feeling ..