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Anti-theft option/deterrents kill-switch and catalytic converter

Discussion in '1st Gen Tundras (2000-2006)' started by tunyota, Sep 27, 2021.

  1. Sep 27, 2021 at 6:04 PM
    #1
    tunyota

    tunyota [OP] Wrenching w/ the beautiful wife.

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    Greetings, fellow community members!

    Have you or anyone you know of installed a kill-switch on their 1st gen Tundra? I saw a video of someone installing a switch between the fuel pump and ignition wire on another vehicle. Curious if anyone on the forums has done this with our specific make/model.

    Also has anyone installed a cover plate or wire rope to prevent catalytic converter theft? I saw previous threads with links to various sites but have yet to see or hear from someone who has an anti-theft device installed on the 1st gen Tundra. A neighbor recently had his old beater of a truck (Ford) stolen off the street days after having the catalytic converter stolen just days before. I guess the thieves figured it was easier to just steal the truck instead of cutting out the newly replaced catalytic converter. Another video recommended using a high temperature spray paint and engraving the VIN to help to deter thieves. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000CPCRDQ?ie=UTF8

    I am planning to spray mine and engrave the VIN. I am also thinking to buy some thick wire rope to wrap around the catalytic converters and frame. I will post pictures once I have painted and installed.
     
    w666 likes this.
  2. Sep 27, 2021 at 6:44 PM
    #2
    Tundra234

    Tundra234 New Member

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    Alot of them
    Spray paint won't work. Call around to some local fabricators. It shouldn't be too hard for them to make you a plate.
     
  3. Sep 27, 2021 at 6:46 PM
    #3
    Teutonics

    Teutonics New Member

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    I'm doing the same to all of my vehicles. I just received the paint last week, and it's on my to-do list for this weekend. :thumbsup:
     
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  4. Sep 27, 2021 at 7:20 PM
    #4
    Cock-A-Doddle-Do

    Cock-A-Doddle-Do New Member

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    A wast of time..get a cat plate installed!
     
  5. Sep 27, 2021 at 7:37 PM
    #5
    Darkness

    Darkness Allergic to white

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    If these guys are willing to crawl under your car to cut your cats out, you don't think they're willing to hit the cat with paint thinner or a flap disk? Even craving your vin in does nothing. The scrap yard can't look up your vin and call you to ask if these are your cats.

    Get a plate. They can be had for $300 or custom built for less.
     
  6. Sep 27, 2021 at 7:47 PM
    #6
    tunyota

    tunyota [OP] Wrenching w/ the beautiful wife.

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    Thanks for the prompt responses!

    @Tundra234 to clarify the primary purpose of the brightly covered spray paint is to make it a little more difficult for thieves to sell to scrap yards and draw attention on a budget. Thanks for the suggestion! I think I have to do that. I imagine I wouldn't be the first to inquire. My primary concerns with the plate option as the obvious cost, added weight, burden of removing and installing whenever doing routine inspections and preventative maintenance etc., and potential for heat building up if there isn't enough airflow particularly during idle. These are primarily the reasons for my inquiry.

    In addition, having the VIN engraved and/or welded one will enable authorities to identify the respective owner and hold the thief to account. I heard it is fairly easy for a thief to get away when found in possession of a catalytic converter if authorities can't identify a VIN/License#.

    @Teutonics smart idea :thumbsup: I am planning to crawl under the Highlander Hybrid and Civic Hybrid tomorrow to see how accessible the catalytic converters are and do the same if it is.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2021
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  7. Sep 27, 2021 at 8:00 PM
    #7
    Darkness

    Darkness Allergic to white

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  8. Sep 27, 2021 at 8:21 PM
    #8
    tunyota

    tunyota [OP] Wrenching w/ the beautiful wife.

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    The ultimate goal is to deter the would be thief. As a DIYer I am inclined to consider affordable effective solutions I can implement myself before immediately consider paying $$$ for a steel plate which I can't seem to find any good information for our make/model and is the reason for this thread. Combined with my existing concerns previously mentioned.

    Engraving or welding the VIN number allows authorities who may come in contact with a suspected stolen catalytic converter(s) the ability to track down the vehicles owner(s) and not the scrap yard unless they are honest and find suspicion/reason to do so. The brightly colored paint is intended to act as an obvious sign to the thief indicating effort has been taken and increasingly the likelihood for them to move onto the next/easier target. The wire rope wrapping is also harder to cut through with a reciprocating saw adding an additional layer of deterrence. Welding rebar around and along the pipes was another consideration. I don't foresee a tweaker/thief taking the time to strip, sand, and grind when they can just knock off another easier target. Hopefully the day never comes but for a couple $ its a peace of mind.

    Going back to the kill-switch as a means to prevent grand theft, I am considering either a negative battery disconnect or on/off switch inline with the fuel pump. Again the idea here is simple and effective means to delay and prevent theft as I would hate to find my truck wasn't where I parked it. :spy:
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2021
  9. Sep 27, 2021 at 8:41 PM
    #9
    tunyota

    tunyota [OP] Wrenching w/ the beautiful wife.

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    This was one of the links I was referring to in my initial post. It would be nice if they had better photos of it installed to get an idea as to convince someone to drop close to $500 for a steel plate to prevent a potential theft. Since I park off the street in an area with surveillance cameras and work from home I do not feel I am at immediate high risk on a daily basis as those who are forced to park on the streets. Maybe after I experience a theft I will feel more inclined to spend the $500 upfront. I was surprised to find really no one on the forums has first hand experience with installing a plate. The intention was to try to solicit the experience from others who have installed catalytic theft deterrent devices and/or a kill switch.

    I live in SoCal so if anyone knows of any shops that could produce a custom build plate for around half the price I would be inclined to hit them up for sure.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2021
  10. Sep 27, 2021 at 9:19 PM
    #10
    tunyota

    tunyota [OP] Wrenching w/ the beautiful wife.

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  11. Sep 27, 2021 at 9:43 PM
    #11
    tunyota

    tunyota [OP] Wrenching w/ the beautiful wife.

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    Another cheap and effective idea is to weld the bolts as per this article which has already been done by the previous owner. This forces the would be thief to cut the pipes instead which will produce noise and attraction attention.

    https://ktla.com/news/local-news/to...catalytic-converters-amid-increase-in-thefts/

    I imagine more municipalities will offer similar programs as the one mentioned in the article as catalytic converter thefts continue to rise/persist. Hopefully one day manufactures will include the vehicles VIN on the catalytic converters in an effort to help to address this problem.
     
  12. Sep 27, 2021 at 9:44 PM
    #12
    alb1k

    alb1k Always Coming From Take Me Down

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    Here's the problem with the engraving. Best case scenario, the stars align and the cops catch the thief, see it's engraved, look it up and determine it's yours. Maybe you get it back at some point, maybe you don't. In the meantime, you still pay your deductible or full replacement cost to fix your truck because you can't wait around for what might happen. There is zero deterrent with engraving. There is a deterrent with a plate - these are smash and grab jobs, and plates take too long to bypass for most thieves.

    Nobody is making stock plates for Gen 1. You may be able to design it and have it cut at a shop / metal supply. But, best bet is to have a shop just make it, as suggested.
     
  13. Sep 27, 2021 at 9:59 PM
    #13
    Sunnier

    Sunnier Pity the warrior that slays all his foes

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    Ok, I understand your reasoning. But if you’re going to engrave so cops know who to call, engrave your drivers license. AND/ or your phone number. Because if you engrave your vin, the DMV probably doesn’t have your phone number. Once your cat gets stolen, you can file a police report, at which point a record will be created matching your vin to your phone number… but that’s after your cat gets stolen. As someone else pointed out, a metal yard won’t have access to your vin records… even if they made a practice of running records checks. Which they don’t. Basically, any place taking in catalytic converters from individuals is a fence— they don’t want to know.

    If they cared about doing right, or if we had any kinda descent regulations about buying used cats, there’d be no market for these. But we don’t, so… you gotta make it harder to steal yours than your neighbor’s.
     
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  14. Sep 27, 2021 at 10:00 PM
    #14
    Sunnier

    Sunnier Pity the warrior that slays all his foes

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    I guess I was typing while you were posting. :pccoffee:
     
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  15. Sep 27, 2021 at 10:05 PM
    #15
    Darkness

    Darkness Allergic to white

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    They were $400 not long ago. If you can track down an OR Fab plate they are about $200. The company went out of business but I think there are left overs around.
     
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  16. Sep 27, 2021 at 10:27 PM
    #16
    tunyota

    tunyota [OP] Wrenching w/ the beautiful wife.

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    @alb1k, completely agreed!

    One of the few/only downfalls of owning a first gen is the lack of options. At least there a few people trying to meet the need. $485 doesn't see so bad when you factor in materials, labor, and shipping. I would much rather invest that amount if not more somewhere else and pay the deductible if a theft occurs. I think our deductible is around $300.

    It would be awesome to have a cnc plasma cutter to fab parts for personal projects and as a side hustle.

    I may inquire with some local shops to see what prices they quote and share my experience. With enough openings/holes in the shield heat accumulation shouldn't be too much of a problem I feel.

    Since the paint has already been paid for spraying it is nearly guaranteed even with a plate installed.
     
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  17. Sep 27, 2021 at 11:38 PM
    #17
    tunyota

    tunyota [OP] Wrenching w/ the beautiful wife.

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    @Sunnier that is the name of the game. Deter them just enough without breaking the bank so they opt to steal from someone else instead.

    The police are the ones recommending the use of the VIN and/or license plate#. This is in order to link it to a specific vehicle and its register owner which would be someone other than the person in possession. DMV has the registered owners address and cops will have additional contact information if a report was made. I agree having ones drive license number listed as well wouldn't hurt but I personally would not want a thief in possession of that piece of information. Also considering the fact that the truck may be resold eventually.

    According to an online source, in the state of CA scrap metal businesses are required to record a substantial amount of information and make that available to local law enforcement upon request. I don't deny there will always be shady criminal business operations not following necessary protocols. Until cats have the vehicles VIN included in the manufacturing process it will continue to be nearly impossible for local law enforcement and scrap yards to identify a cat which has been stolen. If a cat has a VIN listed and a legitimate scrap yard has been supplied with records of vehicle VINs with stolen cats which matched then they are required by law to report it to local enforcement.
    Wire rope, high temperature spray paint, and engraving or welding the VIN or license plate# seems like the most immediate and cost effective solution for me at least for the time being. I will see about getting some quotes from some local machinists for a custom plate/shield which I am assuming will be several $$$ for materials and labor. Luckily we have a fairly low deductible in the event that they are ever stolen.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2021
  18. Sep 28, 2021 at 12:04 AM
    #18
    ZappBrannigan

    ZappBrannigan The mind is willing but the flesh is weak

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    The people buying the cats don’t give a rats ass in hell if you paint the cat pink and engrave your your face and phone number next to the vin. They buy crackhead cats cheaper than legit ones and they will take that risk all day long.

    This is what insurance is for. If you want extra insurance put a plate over the cat.
     
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  19. Sep 28, 2021 at 5:18 AM
    #19
    Sirfive

    Sirfive Master Procrastinator

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    I installed a talons garage plate on grandpas tacoma. It wouldnt even slow me down. 12” sawzall blade could still cut through the pipes and the rear cats would slide out the back. Cant get the front cats out anyway cause they’re bolted to the heads.

    id rather catch the thieves than send em to steal someone elses.
     
  20. Sep 29, 2021 at 11:18 PM
    #20
    tunyota

    tunyota [OP] Wrenching w/ the beautiful wife.

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    If you guys haven't seen @NomadicFrog post yet check it out: https://www.tundras.com/threads/cat-cages-theft-deterrent-option.95807/
    This prompted me to start looking at expanded, perforated, and mesh options in aluminum, steel, and stainless: https://www.metalsdepot.com
    I began searching further and found this option that I am probably going to end up ordering since its already powder coated with free shipping to the store and can easily be returned if I changed my mind later: https://www.homedepot.com/p/Storage...teel-Wire-Mesh-Decking-200-WMHS4848/307565631

    The plan would be to use a dozen or more self driller torx fasteners combined with large washers to secure it to the frame etc.
     
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  21. Oct 23, 2021 at 4:12 PM
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    Teutonics

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    I finally got around to finishing this. Cost me all of less than $2 per cat (I did 7 and still have paint in the can) and about 10 minutes of time. Cheap and easy (possible) deterrent.

    Will it work? Who knows… but it was minimal cost and effort, and if it does prevent a theft then it will be worth avoiding the hassle and cost of replacement. And, if I can find or make a reasonably priced plate, I can always add that later.
    541F2289-435D-4E7F-ACB0-CDC704967E76.jpg
     
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  22. Oct 23, 2021 at 5:07 PM
    #22
    snomoman

    snomoman New Member

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    Well I have to say, the colors you chose are in the right spirit for the holiday Halloween season.. ha ha
     
  23. Oct 23, 2021 at 7:25 PM
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    Lil Steve

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  24. Oct 23, 2021 at 7:48 PM
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    shifty`

    shifty` call-response overturns conviction every time

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  25. Oct 23, 2021 at 8:06 PM
    #25
    Jack McCarthy

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    Cover the cats in barbed wire?
     
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  26. Oct 23, 2021 at 8:20 PM
    #26
    Lil Steve

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  27. Oct 23, 2021 at 8:24 PM
    #27
    alb1k

    alb1k Always Coming From Take Me Down

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  28. Oct 23, 2021 at 8:32 PM
    #28
    Lil Steve

    Lil Steve Living the dream

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    Yes, I think yesterday. The website wasn't working so I called to check on the status of my order. Seems he's selling out the batches quickly but we should have them soon.
     
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  29. Oct 23, 2021 at 8:34 PM
    #29
    koditten

    koditten New Member

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    I like the idea of steel fishing leader and treble hooks. The cat might get cut off, but the thief will definitely be seeing a doctor.
     
  30. Oct 23, 2021 at 10:02 PM
    #30
    alb1k

    alb1k Always Coming From Take Me Down

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    Yeah they are switching to an updated website. I lose track of time, but I think I ordered yesterday as well after checking a measurement the day before.
     

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