Catalytic Converter Theft Ring Busted!

Milspec

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Considering there's 3-7 grams of platinum in the average catalytic converter, and platinum goes for about $1000 per oz (roughly 28gm per oz), you'd need at least 10 cats to get that kind of dough, and you'd have to process the metal yourself for 100% of that profit. My comment stands. That's too much damn work! But different strokes...

Your calcualtions aside, I can only tell you what I have seen every week with my neighbor. He picks up a junker, gets under it with a sawzall, inspects the numbers, calls the recycler for a quote, and gets paid. Some go for as little as $150 and some go for as much as a $1,000....same labor and the junker gets picked up by the auto salvage company for additional cash.

I don't see a lot of effort involved, just don't want to litter my driveway with junked cars all week.
 

Ironwolf

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Considering there's 3-7 grams of platinum in the average catalytic converter, and platinum goes for about $1000 per oz (roughly 28gm per oz), you'd need at least 10 cats to get that kind of dough, and you'd have to process the metal yourself for 100% of that profit. My comment stands. That's too much damn work! But different strokes...

There is also about 2 to seven grams of palladium at $1700 dollars per ounce.
 

Rockinvet

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The car companies are dragging their feet on this issue. I recall seeing a letter online to the justice department on the issue. For a few bucks they can change the location of the converter like some have already done or install theft prevention devices. It is possible. No need to buy a new Ford F 150 and have your cat ripped off. Actually hear that a Prius is also a target vehicle.
 

Recce

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I am kind of surprised this hasn’t been closed. A whole lot of walking on the edge of that fence.
 

Mouth

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Perfect excuse for

SmartSelect_20211214-202650_Samsung Internet.jpg


Get under this(not mine). Doubt it has converters anyway.

"It takes all kinds." That is a diverse crew.

Where do the stolen converters go? Is someone really extracting precious metals from them? Or is there a network of garages putting them on cars?
 

charlie chitlin

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Where do you fence a cat?
Scrap metal dealers and junk yards, I'd guess.
They should be forbidden to buy.
 

DesmoDog

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The car companies are dragging their feet on this issue. I recall seeing a letter online to the justice department on the issue. For a few bucks they can change the location of the converter like some have already done or install theft prevention devices. It is possible. No need to buy a new Ford F 150 and have your cat ripped off. Actually hear that a Prius is also a target vehicle.

For a few bucks they can change the location of the converter? Yeah.... Not so much. As someone who spent 30+ years in the exhaust industry, and more than a few of those years in hot end (converter) development, let me assure you moving a converter is not at all trivial. Look under a new F150 and tell me how the converters could be moved any closer to the manifolds. Well, turbos in most cases on an F150 but still. (I spent the last two years of my career working on the F150 exhaust). There is about 3" of pipe between the turbo outlet and the converter inlet, and that section of pipe has a sensor boss in it. Full disclosure the turbos also have a second converter on eaach downpipe that's easier to access from under the truck, but it's hard to slide that one forward too. Ford spent more money adding that instead of using a single can per side like on the 5.0L, there's a reason they needed to do it that way.

Crash testing, emissions, clearances, pipe routing, packaging sensors, etc, they all play a part. 3mm can make or break a design.

Someone asked about a converter overheating if a shield was put under it. Not a worry - a lot of them are wrapped in heat shields to begin with to protect the components around them. These things can see inlet temps of over 900C (1650 F) and get stuffed in tight confines around wires and such.

Yes, if they had to they could come up with some sort of anti-theft device. They could also use bullet proof glass to keep windows from getting smashed, use gorilla glass windshields to help those from getting broken, etc. They don't put wheel locks on them either, and people have been stealing wheels since before converters existed. There was a mid-engined Corvette that made the news here because it's wheels got stolen. Why was it news? Because it happened before the car had even been released to the public. The vast majority of those Wranglers you see running around don't have locking hoods. All those convertibles are just a pocket knife away from being unlocked.
 

Wound_Up

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Good luck cutting mine off lol


Its been gone for over a decade. The insides broke up and were blocking my exhaust up so, the truck wouldn't run.

So, it got replaced with a test pipe to see if that was the issue.


I'm still testing it lol
 

Rockinvet

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For a few bucks they can change the location of the converter? Yeah.... Not so much. As someone who spent 30+ years in the exhaust industry, and more than a few of those years in hot end (converter) development, let me assure you moving a converter is not at all trivial. Look under a new F150 and tell me how the converters could be moved any closer to the manifolds. Well, turbos in most cases on an F150 but still. (I spent the last two years of my career working on the F150 exhaust). There is about 3" of pipe between the turbo outlet and the converter inlet, and that section of pipe has a sensor boss in it. Full disclosure the turbos also have a second converter on eaach downpipe that's easier to access from under the truck, but it's hard to slide that one forward too. Ford spent more money adding that instead of using a single can per side like on the 5.0L, there's a reason they needed to do it that way.

Crash testing, emissions, clearances, pipe routing, packaging sensors, etc, they all play a part. 3mm can make or break a design.

Someone asked about a converter overheating if a shield was put under it. Not a worry - a lot of them are wrapped in heat shields to begin with to protect the components around them. These things can see inlet temps of over 900C (1650 F) and get stuffed in tight confines around wires and such.

Yes, if they had to they could come up with some sort of anti-theft device. They could also use bullet proof glass to keep windows from getting smashed, use gorilla glass windshields to help those from getting broken, etc. They don't put wheel locks on them either, and people have been stealing wheels since before converters existed. There was a mid-engined Corvette that made the news here because it's wheels got stolen. Why was it news? Because it happened before the car had even been released to the public. The vast majority of those Wranglers you see running around don't have locking hoods. All those convertibles are just a pocket knife away from being unlocked.
Yes I was speaking from a layman’s terms, I stand corrected but I did read a letter from the automotive industry addressing the issue. Some models do have Cats installed in the engine compartment. That is all I meant. I know it would be gargantuan task to re engineer all vehicles. Until then it’s up to the consumer to protect their investment. And I should have another cup of coffee before I have an opinion on a subject. Lol.
All in all it’s the criminal not the car. Thanks for the information.
 




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