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My way to stop cat theft

Discussion in 'Technical Chat' started by ph16drive, Sep 7, 2008.

  1. Sep 7, 2008 at 7:14 AM
    #1
    ph16drive

    ph16drive [OP] \m/.....\m/

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    I finally finished an armor plate for my catalytic converters (more of a theft prevention than skid plate).

    Here's the finished plate (unmounted) coated with POR-15. I added louvers so air could keep moving across the cats. The louvers point towards the front of the truck so they grab air . . . not suggested if you're going to offroad and hit rocks and such. It's made of 16GA CDS as that is the thickest material I could get louvers put in at work. I would have liked to make it out of thicker material but after the bolts are tightened, it's solid.
    [​IMG]

    Below is the drill jig I used to keep the tap drill perpendicular to the frame:
    [​IMG]

    Here's the stock location without the armor plate:
    [​IMG]

    Here it is mounted on the truck with 1/4-28 stainless steel screws:
    [​IMG]

    Here's a view of all the armor/skid plates under my Taco. Top right is the factory skid plates, followed by the cat armor plate, then in the back my fuel tank armor plate.
    [​IMG]

    Special thanks to my 2 year old son for helping me mount the plate (note the security blankie he can't live without):
    [​IMG]

    I mounted it a week ago and have been testing it since. My main concern was heat. When the vehicle is moving, it cools very well. When the truck is sitting, it gets warm. I say warm because you can put your hand on it for about 5 seconds before it gets too warm for comfort. I estimate that that is about 150 to 180 degrees or so. I may put some temp dots on it to see what the temperature really is. It gets warm only in stop and go traffic or sitting at idle for a while. Once the truck moves, it cools quickly. The plate is about 3" away from the lowest cat (on the drivers side) and further on the passenger side cat. The drivers side cat is significantly closer to the frame and cross member than it is to my plate so they definitely get warmer than my plate does. I thought of putting some reflective material on the inside of the plate but I didn't want to reflect that heat up towards the cabin. Also, the plate is black which doesn't reflect anything. I guess I'm telling you all this because I want some feedback as to whether you all think this is detrimental to the cats or not. I placed the louvers directely under each cat so I think that I'm actually helping to cool them, but you tell me. I have a drawing of the plate if anyone wants that too.

    Thanks for reading all this and tell me what you think . . .
     
    Spencer97TJ likes this.
  2. Sep 7, 2008 at 7:18 AM
    #2
    luk8272

    luk8272 Poodoo

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    Looks nice.
     
  3. Sep 7, 2008 at 7:42 AM
    #3
    Oscar 319

    Oscar 319 Senior Citizen

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    It looks good. Cat thefts are a huge problem in the city I work, and nationwide. Toyota's are the prime targets, especially lifted SUV's and trucks. A good Toyota catalitic converter can fetch up to $300 at a recycle yard because of the high ammount of precious metals contained in them. The typical thief usually works with a look out and only carries with him a Sawzall and a duffle bag. In broad daylight, they slide under your rig, and when the coast is clear they chop it off and are gone. You then return to your truck and start it and note it sounds like a Sherman Tank....meanwhile, Tweeker Bob is collecting his $200 for the $1000 in damage he caused to your rig. That skid plate WILL deter these thefts, because you just eliminated the "quick and easiness" to this crime. It will be faster and easier to break into the cab and steal your stereo....meth is such a wonderful drug.
     
  4. Sep 7, 2008 at 7:45 AM
    #4
    chris4x4

    chris4x4 With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine. Moderator

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    Very WELL DONE! I have come up with a similar design, just havent had time to build it yet. Not sure about its detriment to the cats, but when idle, the cats shouldnt be excessively hot, and there should be ample flow when in motion. Gives the truck a clean look underneith! :)
     
  5. Sep 7, 2008 at 9:37 AM
    #5
    kubota man

    kubota man Well-Known Member

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    just a thought what if you cut out the area just where the cat is and moved the guard a little closer so the thefts could not get the saw blade on the piping on either side
     
  6. Sep 7, 2008 at 10:04 AM
    #6
    silver07taco

    silver07taco Well-Known Member

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    Good work, I was thinkin of tryin somehting like that.
     
  7. Sep 7, 2008 at 10:08 AM
    #7
    RealSouthernPride

    RealSouthernPride Well-Known Member

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    hmmmmmmm, maybe
     
  8. Sep 7, 2008 at 12:23 PM
    #8
    concrete jedi

    concrete jedi Well-Known Member

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    Broken and scratched tailgate, cracked rear tail light lens, coffee stain in driver seat.
    Although there are a few reports of theft in my neck of the woods I haven't felt the need, until mine gets stolen then I'll bitch like a girl. The design and workmanship looks stellar, I hope it's never needed. :thumbsup:
     
  9. Sep 9, 2008 at 2:00 AM
    #9
    ph16drive

    ph16drive [OP] \m/.....\m/

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    Update: Well I ended up making a 1/2" spacer plate to move the plate farther from the cats and to move the louvers farther into the air stream. The plate is still not lower than the cross members on either side of it. I'm waiting for the coating to dry on the 1/2" spacers and then I'll mount them.

    Thanks for the input so far . . . anyone else want to weigh in on the cats?
     
  10. Sep 9, 2008 at 2:19 AM
    #10
    ERdept

    ERdept Well-Known Member

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    I was told by a neighbor that all his three Toys trucks had their cats taken and mine was lifted, which they said makes it easier.

    But, they also suggested putting a tack weld on the cat. So I went to a muffler shop, paid the guy 20 buck and he put two tack welds on the cat.

    Safe so far.
     
  11. Sep 9, 2008 at 2:30 AM
    #11
    ph16drive

    ph16drive [OP] \m/.....\m/

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    Where did you have them tack weld the cats? Don't the thieves just saw them off such that a tack weld would not stop them?
     
  12. Sep 9, 2008 at 3:49 AM
    #12
    Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Well-Known Member

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    Just my humble opinion-but something that generates that much heat really shouldnt be enclosed in any way! Ever see those heavy security doors for houses with the lattice type work within a heavy frame? THAT would really solve circulation issues while still protecting the cat from theft:)
     
  13. Sep 9, 2008 at 5:23 AM
    #13
    taconinja

    taconinja Well-Known Member

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    I read something in Car & Driver a few years back about car jackers in South Africa. Motorists were rigging their cars with spring loaded bars mounted below the rockers. When a jacker would come up to their window, the driver could hit a button that released the tension on these steel rods, cable actuated or a solenoid. The bar would quickly deploy and break the jackers ankles, allowing the driver to escape. I love this idea. Do you think we could rig something similar to break wrists or gouge eyes under our trucks? One creative bastard even rigged a grill igniter to an extra fuel line, all actuated by valves and solenoids to make a mini-flamethrower. Few perpetrators were severely burned but it was enough to startle them and give the driver those moments to get away.
     
  14. Sep 9, 2008 at 5:27 AM
    #14
    ph16drive

    ph16drive [OP] \m/.....\m/

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    That would be cool but the thought of being sued by the car jacker would make me think twice about it.

    Testimony in court: "I was just approaching the vehicle to ask directions with the toy gun"
     
  15. Sep 9, 2008 at 6:14 AM
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    tdm156

    tdm156 Well-Known Member

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    I really like that one and I have been considering something like that myself but my huge concern is the heat and the collection of flammable materials such as dry grass as I drive in a lot of pastures and grass lands where fire hazards are huge for my job. Any thoughts about this?
     
  16. Sep 9, 2008 at 6:21 AM
    #16
    taconinja

    taconinja Well-Known Member

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    OK, maybe perpetrators WERE severely burned. And yeah, I would hate to go to court over it. I'll stick to breaking ankles and wrists.
     
  17. Sep 9, 2008 at 6:38 AM
    #17
    ph16drive

    ph16drive [OP] \m/.....\m/

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    The design is open in the back and shortening it between the plate and the cross member would allow any grass that enters to just be blown to the back of the plate and fall out the end of it.
     
  18. Sep 9, 2008 at 7:30 AM
    #18
    tdm156

    tdm156 Well-Known Member

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    Good point!
     
  19. Jul 13, 2009 at 10:06 AM
    #19
    Mandy3206

    Mandy3206 Well-Known Member

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    The only thing I would change is pointing the louvers back instead of the front.

    Great job
     
  20. Jul 13, 2009 at 10:23 AM
    #20
    ph16drive

    ph16drive [OP] \m/.....\m/

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    pointing forward lets them grab air similar to air passing by the cats before the plate was there
     
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