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Joined: Apr 2004
Posts: 811
Our old downstairs-window A/C was sitting in our shed awaiting scrap (freon removed, etc.) Our neighbors' 17 year-old daughter (with two-year old in tow) and her addict-boyfriend pull up in their pickup full of scrap garbage.

Shed was locked, A/C was inside the shed.

Come morning, lock's broken and on the ground, A/C is gone.

We called the police, two half-asleep officers show up, take two notes and leave. Neighbor's pull in later with our A/C in the back of their truck! mad Call the police again, they never show up.

Time to move to Middletown Twp.

Ian A.

Last edited by Theelectrikid; 08/07/07 09:41 PM.

Is there anyone on board who knows how to fly a plane?
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,143
I moved out of my old house and have been using it as storage for a bunch of stuff that will eventually find a home in the garage at the new house.

Well, appparantly scrappers have been watching the house - they came in and took a bunch of old tools I'd gotten from a friend, and a bunch of wire - several partial rolls of 12 & 14 and (this hurts) a spool of #6 that I paid $74 for six years ago.

Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 202
For those who have lost copper, its good to know that sometimes you can have a win:

Shock burns cable thief beyond recognition

From correspondents in Berlin
October 09, 2007 01:27am
Article from: Reuters

A THIEF in Germany was charred beyond recognition by a 10,000 volt electric shock when he tried to steal a live copper cable.

Police in the western city of Duisburg found the 32-year-old man's blackened remains by a set of cable cutters and pile of non-live cables he had already stolen.

Only because one of his hands survived incineration were officers able to identify the man as a German of Kazakh origin.

“His fingerprints were already logged on police files,” a local police spokesman said.

“The force of the shock was so great that the hand was severed from his body.”,23599,22555158-23109,00.html

Joined: Nov 2005
Posts: 826
Only because one of his hands survived incineration were officers able to identify the man as a German of Kazakh origin.

I was wondering what Borat was up to these days. He must've thought the gypsy tears would protect him from the HV. Oh well, should've stuck with his very best potassium.

Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 745
My best friend is an operations manager for the local power company. He told me that thieves are even starting to steal aluminum cable, in fact he mentioned that someone used a backhoe to pull about 1,000 feet of 4/0 triplex out of conduit at a construction site. It's not just copper anymore.

I read an article in the newspaper recently about the extremes that recyclers are having to go through to curb metal theft. They require a photo ID, they take a photo of the seller and they copy the license plate number of their vehicle. One thief came into a recycler with seven brand-new 2,500' reels of #10 copper THHN. In an effort to stall him, the told him that they couldn't take it on the reels, so they asked him to take it outside and remove it from them. This gave them enough time to contact the police who arrived and promptly arrested the guy and his accomplice. It turns out that the wire was stolen from a job site where my son is working.


"But the guy at Home Depot said it would work."
Joined: Mar 2001
Posts: 333
I went to sell scrap metal today. They took down my driver's and truck license numbers before I even entered the building. When getting paid, the cashier asked if I had been there before. I said yes, maybe two years ago. He said, oh, you have a different truck now. I didn't see them taking down the vehicle license last time I was there, but they had a record of it.

BTW: #1 insulated copper= $1.25/lb
#2 copper = $2.20
shiny copper = $2.40
AL. extrusions = $ .60
AL sheet = $ .50
yellow plb. brass = $1.40


Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,668
Likes: 6
We have a guy here who dumpster dives for a living. (they are building next door). He seemed very happy to haul away my old garage door. At 60c a lb I guess I see why but that is a hard way to make a living. He did look funny going up the road with a 16' garage door in a little asian pickup. I would be surprised if the cops didn't stop him.

Greg Fretwell
Joined: May 2006
Posts: 17
Junior Member
They steal it off radio towers where I live at and from the abandoned railroad power lines. I worked on a school addition/ renovation in Jackson Ohio one time and before I got to the job, my foreman told me that the wire we had was stolen along with the plumbers pipe one time and the police seen 2 guys in a field burning a pretty high pile of copper wire that came from our job.

Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 202
Stolen copper trail leads to Olympics

By Mark Buttler
March 13, 2008 02:27am
Article from: Herald Sun, Melbourne, Australia

A MOUNTAIN of copper ripped off from train lines, power companies and Telstra is being used to build stadiums for the Beijing Olympics, police suspect.

A Melbourne crime gang is believed to have raked in $20 million on the Chinese black market.

The group, allegedly headed by a wealthy woman, has been making up to $150 a kilogram after paying thieves as little as a few dollars to steal copper from public utilities.

The metal, mostly wiring, was then shipped to companies in China where a construction boom and the huge Olympic development has driven prices through the roof.

Tonnes of copper were required for big projects such as the new Bird's Nest stadium in Beijing.

Tens of thousands of Melbourne commuters have been left stranded by copper wire thieves who have stolen hundreds of metres of cabling.

Thieves risk their lives to steal the copper wiring. Some of the train line cabling carries up to 1500 volts.

Transit police have made three major copper seizures in recent weeks.

Eight days ago, they confiscated 5.7 tonnes from a major Melbourne metal merchant.

Two days earlier, police found four tonnes in a shipping container at Laverton ready for export.

A search of an eastern suburbs second-hand dealing store last week uncovered another four tonnes.

Investigators are sifting through a complex paper trail, including shipping documents, uncovered by the Melbourne probe.

Interpreters will be used to analyse documents and investigate Chinese receivers of the stolen copper.

It is believed police are investigating the Melbourne crime group's activities over the past five years.

A police spokeswoman refused to comment.

Connex spokesman John Rees said thieves cut power to sections of track so they could steal copper.

"They were really getting to be quite sophisticated. We're glad to see what looks like one of the major crews off the tracks," he said.

The UK has also been hit by major copper thefts in the past year. There have been reports of the metal being sold to scrapyards, melted down, then shipped to China.,23599,23366534-421,00.html

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 625
Originally Posted by 32VAC
... $150 a kilogram...

That does not make sense. The spot price for (legal) copper is only about US$3.80 per pound. There's no way China is paying upwards of AU$150 per kilo for stolen copper.

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