I wish one of us would come up with a tracking device for high end tools. I have has several contractor buddies who were ripped off and I tell you what they would give anything to find the jerk who did it. Someone let me know what they think of this idea.
It does not matter if you win or lose but how you lay the blame :-)
Well, they've got micro-implantable GPS tracking devices for people and pets.... I suppose they could be used for tools as well. I don;t know about the range in the "implant" sized ones, or the battery life.
I've heard that some GC's and masonry contractors around here have had GPS units installed on towable air compressors, and I think the rental yards have 'something' in their rental units. Are you looking for something to put on power tools, or big equipment???
#49627 - 03/11/0505:13 PMRe: Lo-Jak Device For Tools
The GPS link Doug had is a GPS locator for a PC. The software is ment to give the PC user a location. I tried and returned one like it. Was slow to work and was not accurate to show the corect street you are on.
One idea is to put a cell phone with GPS tracking with the equipment. Nextel has GPS on all their phones and offer an online tracking map to the phones last fix. If you sign up to a basic plan with almost no minuits and the GPS service. They might give you a bottom line phone free. The problem is you would have to keep charging the phone, baterys, leave the charger pluged in, or ??. Can't say how well the GPS would work if it is in a metal case.
#49629 - 03/12/0508:27 AMRe: Lo-Jak Device For Tools
Sorry... thought that was a transponder, not just a locator.
I do know that there are wireless alarm systems out there, that (with the help of an extension cord into the gang box) could be rigged on said box (door lift, box tilt, or motion inside the box), and the larger tools like benders (tilt/motion), but you'd be relying on a cell phone to call a central station monitoring service to tell them there's a problem..... then they call either you or the PD.... then you/PD get there. Maybe in time, maybe not.
As far as the smaller (hand portable) tools.. who knows. Maybe if the manufacturers and trades got together and had a law passed about tools going in for service that are listed as stolen having to be reported to the police, or if the law differentiated between "merchandise" of a certain value and tools and materials used to earn a living.
#49633 - 03/13/0509:21 PMRe: Lo-Jak Device For Tools
If the manufacturer wanted, they could mold an RFID chip in every tool's case,maybe more than one, that would report the serial number to any appropriate scanner. Then stolen tools could be in a national registry and worthless at a pawn shop, flea market or anywhere else where the merchant could be charged with selling stolen goods. Scanners are getting cheap. The RFID chip is pennies.