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How to make sure no one steals my Ammo Cans!


CacheFreakTim
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So I just completed my first two Ammo can caches which are pictured below. What I would like to make sure is that no one steals them when they are hidden.

 

The only thing so far I can think of is a bike lock to a tree but the ones I found are too long and dont camo well in the woods. Does anyone have any suggestions on what I could use to secure them??

 

4182968153_f9c111ee3c.jpg

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No ammo can will be 100% safe.

 

There was an ammo can I visited that was chained (with a loggers chain) to a tree. It was muggled about 6 months ago and archived.

 

I have one that was muggled but they left the ammo can behind. Yeah, you read it right. They took the contents that they wanted but left the ammo can behind. It wasn't tethered to anything but it did have 80lbs of concrete in it. (It's a HUGE ammo can).

 

As far as I can tell, the best way to make your can last is to make it undesirable. I'm guessing being filled with concrete makes it undesirable.

 

Good luck. Your containers look very good and, unfortunately, appealing.

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Hide them well and in places where non geocachers are unlikely to find them and you should be good. No need for locks.

 

There have been rare instances of people targeting caches in ammo boxes and taking them, but generally it's not an issue.

 

For one don't mention its an ammo box on the cache page. The rare ammo box thief isn't going to make the trek out there if he doesn't know its an ammo box. Besides, if someone really wants your ammo box a lock isn't going to stop him.

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I must say that is a nice pair of cans! :D

 

Once you decide to make your cans available for searching by the geocaching public your best option is to choose locations that will be unlikely to be visited by the type of folks who might like to do what ever they feel like with your cans. Trying to secure your cans will not deter those who are intent on grabbing them, so you need to think carefully about where you leave them. If you choose well you should not need to chain them to a tree or otherwise secure them.

 

I hope you make good choices and many cachers are able to enjoy your cans over the years. :D

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WOW, those are pretty awesome looking. Where did you get those? All the ones ive seen so far were old army surplus, just blah army green.

 

They have cammo tape on them.

 

Back on topic, I have one that has a combination lock on the can, and it's chained around a tree, with a keyed lock. The combo is in the hint for that stage. It's the first stage for my Glow in the Dark multi night cache, and it contains a black light, which is why I went to the effort to lock it down, after the original blacklight was stolen. I wouldn't bother for just an average cache.

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I'm not sure but A decent hike in to find would be the best deterant. I agree that "forgetting" to mention AMMO on your description would be a good idea,use the size but not the actual physical description. Good luck and may your awesome ammo (shh don't say it too loudly) cans be safe for a long time and be enjoyed.

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I'm not sure but A decent hike in to find would be the best deterant. I agree that "forgetting" to mention AMMO on your description would be a good idea,use the size but not the actual physical description. Good luck and may your awesome ammo (shh don't say it too loudly) cans be safe for a long time and be enjoyed.

 

I think one of my caches say it's a tupperware container when it isn't. It's a little white lie thats designed to be insurance.

 

I don't think people will be upset if they are looking for tupperware and find a MUCH better container.

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For the most part, (sans exceptions), there are four types of folks who could locate your cache:

 

1 ) Geocachers.

 

2 ) Curious folks.

 

3 ) Common thieves.

 

4 ) Dedicated thieves.

 

Unless they also belong to the third group, cachers are not going to take your can. For them, a lock & chain would be unnecessary, though it might serve to deter Gentle Ben from taking your can. Curious folks might take your cache home with them, in which case a simple lock will let them know it is supposed to be right where it's at. Thieves will not respect your lock, and will do whatever they can to take your can. As most thieves are lazy, (contrary to Hollywood's opinion), a stout enough lock should cause most of them to rethink how they are spending their time. A truly dedicated thief will steal it, regardless of your safety measures, as evidenced by the theft of one of my cans, which was chained 30' off the ground, in the top of a palm tree.

 

So, in reflection, a lock wouldn't be a bad idea.

 

Your local hardware store would likely sell you a cable at whatever length you need.

 

Post script: I should add that none of my caches are locked to anything. With just a few exceptions, (such as the one that was 30' up a tree), my hides are pretty deep in the woods, and are unlikely to be found by anyone who is not in the first group. I do, however, tether most of my hides, mostly to keep critters from carting them off. Out of 75 physical hides, I've only had two grow legs.

Edited by Clan Riffster
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I was planInng to ask a similar question. How exactly do you secure a cable to itself after you've wrapped it around a branch and ammo can?

 

So I just completed my first two Ammo can caches which are pictured below. What I would like to make sure is that no one steals them when they are hidden.

 

The only thing so far I can think of is a bike lock to a tree but the ones I found are too long and dont camo well in the woods. Does anyone have any suggestions on what I could use to secure them??

 

4182968153_f9c111ee3c.jpg

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I am getting ready to put out a TB hotel in my front yard. Using an ammo can with a chain around a tree just so it doesn't get walked off easily by neighborhood kids. I feel a little more secure having a chain here, however, this is where you think you are getting more security but in reality you aren't.

 

No one is going to take the time to try to saw through the chain or bust the lock when the thing is 25 feet away from my front door. But you put it out in the woods, way out there so there is less chance it will be found and you got a nice private area for people to work on it all they want till they get the can or the stuff inside. Best security is going to be a good, well thought out hide. Something that is going to require a little bit of bushwacking so it isn't right on the trail (however, within the first couple of weeks, cachers will have a trail worn down to where your hide is anyway. Great looking caches. Good luck and have fun.

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My main goal is to deter anyone who would steal them casually. Obviously if someone is determined or goes around stealing ammo boxes for fun there is nothing you can do.

 

I have looked and cant for the life of me find anywhere that sells a bike lock that isn’t bright yellow or is really thick. I need one that is either really thin or has a brown tree type color. If anyone knows of any let me know.

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You can always use this. LOL

 

31qj-8H8txL._SS400_.jpg

 

I saw a video (can't find it now) where someone drilled a hole in the end of the box and put in a big eye bolt and used Locktite the nuts. Also smeared J-B Weld over the nuts inside and out. A bike cable was used to attache box to tree etc..

Edited by DaveBrews
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Put it at the end of a long trail or in the middle of nowhere. The harder it is to reach, the less chance somebody will take the time to go get it.

 

However, you may have less cachers searching for it too. This may or may not be an issue for you. The skirt-lifting numbers runners will probably avoid it, but the people that like a good long hike will likely thank you for it. Again, this may or may not be an issue for you.

 

I have one that was muggled but they left the ammo can behind. Yeah, you read it right. They took the contents that they wanted but left the ammo can behind. It wasn't tethered to anything but it did have 80lbs of concrete in it. (It's a HUGE ammo can).

 

I was wondering how that was going to work out. That stinks. I guess there's some consolation in that you still have the ammo can.

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My main goal is to deter anyone who would steal them casually. Obviously if someone is determined or goes around stealing ammo boxes for fun there is nothing you can do.

 

I have looked and cant for the life of me find anywhere that sells a bike lock that isn’t bright yellow or is really thick. I need one that is either really thin or has a brown tree type color. If anyone knows of any let me know.

 

If you hide it well and off the beaten path you don't have to worry much about the casual thief. The determined thief will get it no matter what.

 

I have roughly 80 - 100 ammo boxes out there and knock on wood, have never lost one. My caches that go missing tend to be ones hidden in popular parks and other higher traffic areas. I'm not sure what people want with camoflaged Lock n Locks and Nalgene cryo tubes, but I've lost a few. Ammo boxes? Not one yet and I've been hiding ammo boxes for close to 8 years. I think it's a matter of where and how they are hidden.

Edited by briansnat
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Put it at the end of a long trail or in the middle of nowhere. The harder it is to reach, the less chance somebody will take the time to go get it.

 

However, you may have less cachers searching for it too. This may or may not be an issue for you. The skirt-lifting numbers runners will probably avoid it, but the people that like a good long hike will likely thank you for it. Again, this may or may not be an issue for you.

 

I have one that was muggled but they left the ammo can behind. Yeah, you read it right. They took the contents that they wanted but left the ammo can behind. It wasn't tethered to anything but it did have 80lbs of concrete in it. (It's a HUGE ammo can).

 

I was wondering how that was going to work out. That stinks. I guess there's some consolation in that you still have the ammo can.

 

Only losing a couple dollars worth of swag doesn't bother me. What bothers me is that someones TB was in there and was muggled.

Cache is hidden a little better now (fall foliage had allowed it to be exposed before) and when spring comes it may be unfindable ~L

 

I have a new idea to make a cache less likely to be muggled. It involves skunk scent...

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One, possibly, simple way to repel ammo thievery is to make it a multi.

 

A local thief became a premium member to steal ammo cans in a popular hiking area. Of some 15 ammo cans he/she stoled, my multi was the only one he didn't go after - or missed. And it was an easy two-stage multi. He was just too lazy (or unaware, or dumb) to do the multi.

 

One word against camo-taping containers (from personal experience). In time the tape degrades and makes a sticky mess of the container. I have found it best to camo-paint containers.

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3 foot section of 5/8" log chain welded to the bottom. Put the chain around a tree, pole, signpost etc.

A good size bolt with 2 washers and a locknut through the end of the chain and next to the weld should make it resistant to theft. Hammer the threads if you are concerned some thief will use a wrench. The only way you will be able to remove it will be with 16" plus boltcutter.

I remember seeing a picture of an ammocan cache attached to a signpost near a curb in Las Vegas, NV.

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One, possibly, simple way to repel ammo thievery is to make it a multi.

 

A local thief became a premium member to steal ammo cans in a popular hiking area. Of some 15 ammo cans he/she stoled, my multi was the only one he didn't go after - or missed. And it was an easy two-stage multi. He was just too lazy (or unaware, or dumb) to do the multi.

 

One word against camo-taping containers (from personal experience). In time the tape degrades and makes a sticky mess of the container. I have found it best to camo-paint containers.

 

Are ammo cans worth so much that they are worth stealing? The 30mm size can be bought out here in Utah for about $5 at the surplus stores. And some guy paid for a $30 premium membership just to steal ammo cans? He'd have to steal six of them and get full price for them just to break even!

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I've lost two ammo cans up in trees. One I replaced and used two cheap bike locks with the plastic covering. I can't remember if I Kryloned the plastic, but I think I did. It's been there ever since.

 

I've lost a few caches in the woods due to flooding. Also, caches wander.

 

Here's what I've taken to doing: I bought a swaging tool, a length of 1/8" galvanized cable, swage sleeves, and a few "quick links." Then I made a few cables with simple loops on the ends then spray painted flat black. I loop the cable around an anchor and attach the ammo can with a quick link tightened down with a screwdriver and wrench.

 

I've taken to using steel cable because I seen far too many ropes and straps chewed through by rodents. Also, few casual explorers are going to have the tools necessary to remove the cable.

 

1/8" cable has about a ton of tensile strength, is easy to carry, easy to conceal in the wild, and cheap if you make your own after the initial tool purchase. The quick link is cheaper than a lock and they are all "keyed" the same. Use a daub of epoxy or Gorilla glue for an even tougher disassemble.

 

The reason I don't go any further this and use stronger materials is because of a weakness in the ammo can itself.

 

f2c4f244-6237-4006-a6a0-04010d4c4d54.jpg

 

A maggot attempting to get into an ammo can can cut at the attachment points shown above to open the can. Or cut the wire attaching the handle if the anchor is attached there. So, if you have it locked closed anyone with a decent multitool can open it. If they are dedicated and the cable, chain, or lock is too think, then cutting the can itself will do it. While true that it would destroy and deny them a can, I think the attitude of someone like this would mean they'd rather deny you than simply walk away.

 

Like briansnat said, the best security is obscurity. However, when they are standing there looking at your cache, a few extra precautions will move the pointer in your favor on the scale from the end of the person wouldn't take it even if offered towards the end where lives the super-dedicated professional thief. You can't make it absolutely safe, but you can hedge your bets.

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I'm not sure but A decent hike in to find would be the best deterant. I agree that "forgetting" to mention AMMO on your description would be a good idea,use the size but not the actual physical description. Good luck and may your awesome ammo (shh don't say it too loudly) cans be safe for a long time and be enjoyed.

 

I think one of my caches say it's a tupperware container when it isn't. It's a little white lie thats designed to be insurance.

 

I don't think people will be upset if they are looking for tupperware and find a MUCH better container.

 

I'd probably assume that the original had been muggled and subsequently replaced by another container - and the description hadn't been edited.

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