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Old 08-07-2016, 09:47 AM   #1
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Stolen solar panels

One of the reasons folks don't like the idea of portable solar panels is because they think they will be stolen. I have one on the roof and a portable panel. My portable panel has never been stolen. Now I've heard rumors of panels being stolen but I've never known someone that actually had theirs stolen. So I'm curious. Has anyone that visits this forum had their solar panel stolen? How often does this really happen?
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Old 08-07-2016, 10:14 AM   #2
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I know a few folks with portables, no issues reported, I have yet to use mine. Come to think of it, in 10+ years I don't personally know anyone who's had anything ripped off while camping in a campground. Occasionally I'll read about such though on one of the other forums, but not about solar panels.
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Old 08-07-2016, 10:23 AM   #3
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I've never had a problem but then again, I'm pretty careful about keeping it tethered with a cable lock and always deploy it in a very visible area, crooks need to be inconspicuous. I never leave it out when we're gone long either.
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Old 08-07-2016, 10:34 AM   #4
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I've never had a problem but then again, I'm pretty careful about keeping it tethered with a cable lock and always deploy it in a very visible area, crooks need to be inconspicuous. I never leave it out when we're gone long either.
Hi Gregg . Same here , everything you do . On another note ,We now have a nice big , organized new Harbor Freight store in town . Bought the torque wrench on sale to carry . Very nice store . You sure made it with your new trailer in the nick of time . Can't wait to see it sometime . Pat
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Old 08-07-2016, 10:39 AM   #5
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Hi Pat. The 21's been great! Good shakedown cruise and it's headed to DMV next week. Almost finished with our mod's, only partioning off the wardrobe and pullout drawers left. Not sure I'm going to need my portable solar but it's good thing to hang onto.

All the best, see you on the trail one of these days!

Greg
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Old 08-07-2016, 10:42 AM   #6
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Hi Pat. The 21's been great! Good shakedown cruise and it's headed to DMV next week. Almost finished with our mod's, only partioning off the wardrobe and pullout drawers left. Not sure I'm going to need my portable solar but it's good thing to hang onto.

All the best, see you on the trail one of these days!

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You got it Gregg ! Pat
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Old 08-07-2016, 11:22 AM   #7
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I know a few folks with portables, no issues reported, I have yet to use mine. Come to think of it, in 10+ years I don't personally know anyone who's had anything ripped off while camping in a campground. Occasionally I'll read about such though on one of the other forums, but not about solar panels.
I am in the same boat. I have never personally heard from anyone of having anything stolen from a campsite. Depending on where I am I will take some minor precautions and just not worry. Karma will get those who do wrong by people.
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Old 08-07-2016, 03:29 PM   #8
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I am in the same boat. I have never personally heard from anyone of having anything stolen from a campsite. Depending on where I am I will take some minor precautions and just not worry. Karma will get those who do wrong by people.
Hi: Jim Bennett... What happens if your Karma runs over my dogma? Alf
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Old 08-07-2016, 04:15 PM   #9
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Thirty years ago we were camped in a Missouri State Campground when a bunch of young guys who had camped the night before decided to leave in the morning and swiped a cooler that belonged to one of the other campers on the way out. Not a real big deal and the only time I am aware of a theft in a campground where I was camped in 50 years of camping. Remember the old public service campaign "'don't let a good kid go bad, take your keys, lock your car"' still true today. A little caution and forethought avoids most problems. I used to tell the Parks people to check the door for being locked twice because I knew that every door was tested every night and if not, some were tested twice. Kind of like owning a desirable sportscar. If yours isn't stolen someone else's will be twice.
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Old 08-07-2016, 07:19 PM   #10
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...Has anyone that visits this forum had their solar panel stolen? How often does this really happen?
I did worry about that possibility, since my idea of a good camping trip is to be fishing all day, far from the trailer. So, I bought a couple of ground screws and a chain and lock and screw down the screws and run the chain through the handles and anchored to the solar panel (its on a welded aluminum A-frame). With the chain tight the screws can't be unscrewed and it would take a bolt cutter to steal the contraption. Bolt cutters I don't worry about...

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Old 08-07-2016, 07:50 PM   #11
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Okay, so I've been around on these all-molded-towable forum for more than most. AND while I don't read every single post, there was a time I did. Once-upon-a-time.. there were THREE major forums (no Facebook or other social media). The ONE post that broke my heart, was from a young family (on FiberglassRV) that decided to go down some dirt road to camp at an "unimproved" campsite, close to a river. The only reason it was a campsite was based on a crude campfire ring. It was a Dad and Mom and two young children... they set up camp, folded out the tent trailer, put out the lawn chairs... then left, for (my rememberer) about two hours to go to a small general store about 30 minutes away. When they got back to their campsite, EVERYTHING was gone... tent trailer, chairs, cooler, EVERTHING. It made my heart weep. Here was a young family trying to make a memory and provide an experience for their two kids... and some A$$hats took that away. Yes, it did happen exactly as I described. I really wish I could provide a URL so you could read the story, but that was Pre-Hack on FiberglassRV, but I've never forgotten the story...
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Old 08-07-2016, 07:50 PM   #12
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I did worry about that possibility, since my idea of a good camping trip is to be fishing all day, far from the trailer. So, I bought a couple of ground screws and a chain and lock and screw down the screws and run the chain through the handles and anchored to the solar panel (its on a welded aluminum A-frame). With the chain tight the screws can't be unscrewed and it would take a bolt cutter to steal the contraption. Bolt cutters I don't worry about...

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Hi Alan have a nice 15 ft heavy vinyl covered cable . Lock one end on handle of panels , the other around frame or truck . Sometimes where we camp at beach lots of characters looking for a easy opportunity to walk away with what they can get . This way they just can't . Campgrounds really never had any problems , but then usually will have electric anyway . Pat
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Old 08-07-2016, 09:09 PM   #13
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O...<Donna's sad story>...
There are bad people and a wise person will take that into consideration at all times - not just camping, of course.

My wife and I went on a backpack in a popular area over a summer weekend. When we returned we found out that ALL cars at the trailhead were broken in to. I lost a $6 cooler with a can of coke that I was really looking forward to, and a bunch of ratty camping clothes that truly belonged in the trash. Others lost wallets and valuables. So I lock my bike and solar panel and Escape hitch connector. Just a good habit in my opinion - to make a thief work a bit harder to get my stuff.

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Old 08-07-2016, 10:13 PM   #14
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Okay, so I've been around on these all-molded-towable forum for more than most. AND while I don't read every single post, there was a time I did. Once-upon-a-time.. there were THREE major forums (no Facebook or other social media). The ONE post that broke my heart, was from a young family (on FiberglassRV) that decided to go down some dirt road to camp at an "unimproved" campsite, close to a river. The only reason it was a campsite was based on a crude campfire ring. It was a Dad and Mom and two young children... they set up camp, folded out the tent trailer, put out the lawn chairs... then left, for (my rememberer) about two hours to go to a small general store about 30 minutes away. When they got back to their campsite, EVERYTHING was gone... tent trailer, chairs, cooler, EVERTHING. It made my heart weep. Here was a young family trying to make a memory and provide an experience for their two kids... and some A$$hats took that away. Yes, it did happen exactly as I described. I really wish I could provide a URL so you could read the story, but that was Pre-Hack on FiberglassRV, but I've never forgotten the story...
That musta been before my time on FGRV. What a terrible thing to happen. The A-holes that did it are scum.
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Old 08-08-2016, 12:07 AM   #15
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This is what I got for our panel. With a cable and lock it works great.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 08-08-2016, 09:00 AM   #16
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This is what I got for our panel. With a cable and lock it works great.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
A rash of bicycle thefts in Greater Vancouver have prompted the RCMP to advise that all cable locks can fall prey to an interested thief. I would imagine a pair of bolt cutters would go through this system as easily as a cable lock. Best bet is out of sight, out of (thieves) mind.
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Old 08-08-2016, 09:37 AM   #17
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A rash of bicycle thefts in Greater Vancouver have prompted the RCMP to advise that all cable locks can fall prey to an interested thief. I would imagine a pair of bolt cutters would go through this system as easily as a cable lock. Best bet is out of sight, out of (thieves) mind.
Bolt cutters will have no problem with a cable lock.

I had my $1500 bike stolen a few years ago. It was inside our locked storage locker inside a locked storage room in the parkade of our condo building. I had locked it up inside the locker with a 15mm heavy duty cable lock and small U-lock to close the cable. We have some video and a decent photo of the guy kicking the door in, cutting the locks and the cable (like butter) and stealing the bike... even better he came back three nights in a row and stole even more bikes. The RCMP couldn't do anything when we discovered the thefts.

I now use a u-lock through the front wheel, frame and a rack plus a cable lock to prevent the rear wheel from being stolen. If the area is at all sketchy I use two u-locks - one for each wheel through the frame.

It makes me wonder why companies make and sell products like foldable Bolt Cutters... might as well offer a thieves starter pack including black backpack, balaclava, folding bolt cutters, etc.
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Old 08-08-2016, 09:55 AM   #18
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A rash of bicycle thefts in Greater Vancouver have prompted the RCMP to advise that all cable locks can fall prey to an interested thief. I would imagine a pair of bolt cutters would go through this system as easily as a cable lock. Best bet is out of sight, out of (thieves) mind.
You're absolutely right, what one is trying to do is create a deterrent.
Heck with a screwdriver, I could pry our Escape door open in about 4 seconds and have access to everything inside.
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Old 08-08-2016, 07:46 PM   #19
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I've been camping for over forty years and personally have never been a victim. I have heard stories.
I think the incidence must be the same as for stuff being taken from your home.
Just like i wouldn't leave a radial arm saw in my driveway overnight i wouldn't leave a solar panel out when I wasn't there.
Quite a few places we camp people will show up thursday night of a long weekend and set up their trailer and carpet and some chairs and then drive away. They return friday night of course but anyone sitting there knows that trailer is in the wild by itself.
Still, for the little portable type things don't tempt people.


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Old 08-08-2016, 07:53 PM   #20
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I had a Honda EU2000i generator taken. It was locked to the rear trailer bumper using a bicycle cable lock. Bolt cutters made short work of the lock.

While I was less than pleased, 1 generator in 45 years of camping seems low risk. I put the generator inside the camper, these days; but that's about it.
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