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Thread: Advise with a Big problem ???

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    359

    Default Advise with a Big problem ???

    A customer (walk in) brings in a 100 yr old 'Luninburg" worm drive steering
    sailboat gear that has a lot of play in the center of the worm. It is quite
    big and heavy mostly brass and bronze about 3 feet, worm is about 3 inches
    diameter. Problem I 'think' it was brought in maybe April this year. Next I
    find the customer had shoulder surgery in May and recovery maybe June
    and July. About most of August I didn't even come out of the house big time
    alleagies. My son employs four in the main shop, machine shop is in the
    rear so somebodys always there. The part was marked and tagged and
    c clamped to the bench. Around Sept. it was gone? So with no tag I have
    no phone number or owners name. I presume he picked it up. So he pops
    in last week. I and employees have no clue, he says He did not pick it up.
    Building is secure well lit up at night, building 40x70 is between my sons
    house and mine. Odd thing is the C clamps used are machine shop items and
    they are where they belong, set up blocks etc are on the shelf. Its gone its
    too big and heavy to be swept under the table. So he ask's if we have insurance? I am retired sgt from this police dept. so now I know his name
    I did a record check & found he did time for mob activities. :red flag:
    Police report now in progress. My logic says if taken for brass scrap why
    not take a $1000 plasma cutter or even my truck. Problem with investigating scrap yards is the 7 month time element. My mind still says
    he had a friend or cell mate pick the thing up (a form of blackmail) allthough
    he is in mid 70's yrs old !!! If so my help would OK it being picked up I would say........watch me get a lawyers letter So what would you do??
    I say no one out of a million would not have a clue what it is or what its
    worth.. This is a first for me Sam

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Maine USA
    Posts
    117

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    More likely it walked off with a visitor who saw an opportunity.

  3. #3
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    Jun 2004
    Location
    N.J.
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    " I am retired Sgt from this police dept. so now I know his name I did a record check & found he did time for mob activities.",..... I'd say misuse of (former) Police powers.

    How did someone get into you closed shop unnoticed? No alarm? How would a thief know to put things back where they belonged. Time to use your insurance policy unless an theft investigation proves otherwise.

  4. #4
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    Jan 2010
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    359

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    Quote Originally Posted by reggie_obe View Post
    " I am retired Sgt from this police dept. so now I know his name I did a record check & found he did time for mob activities.",..... I'd say misuse of (former) Police powers.

    How did someone get into you closed shop unnoticed? No alarm? How would a thief know to put things back where they belonged. Time to use your insurance policy unless an theft investigation proves otherwise.
    Misuse of police powers no my brother in law still works there. As for putting things back,
    most likely I did when we or I thought He or a friend picked it up after when I was sick. My problem is
    this guy waiting all this time like 7 months, we do have not responsible signs, fire/ theft also
    one way glass- double dead bolts. And any visitors are long time friends mostly police and
    fire.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Toronto
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    9,240

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    why'd they take the brass and not other things? they heard a buddy saying the scrapper was paying big bucks for brass and saw it there. Thieves aren't exactly the sharpest knives in the drawer, the career choice is the first hint. As a former cop I'm sure you know that. imo its hard to have virtue making accusations with no evidence, perhaps even wrong - thats how everyone gets railroaded according to on my law enforcement education (TV) (lol)

    I've seen a few instances where things were stolen by pretty much passer bys, delivery man, service man etc saw something and grabbed it. Over the months I doubt anyone has perfect recollection of every person who darkened the doorstep. a 3' brass box isn't walking away under the jacket, but still, you do not know how many people saw it and had the idea

    Since you know the cops, can you report it stolen? Its going to be expensive to make a new one, so its value probably qualifies as some sort of major theft. The cops should ask around the yard/marina where his boat is, someone might know something or even have info that miraculously the thing is fixed and reinstalled.

    Other than that, call insurance and put up video cameras.
    Last edited by Mcgyver; 11-14-2017 at 08:28 AM.
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    Michigan
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    1,035

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    Quote Originally Posted by big job View Post
    A customer (walk in) brings in a 100 yr old 'Luninburg" worm drive steering sailboat gear that has a lot of play in the center of the worm. It is quite big and heavy mostly brass and bronze about 3 feet, worm is about 3 inches diameter. Problem I 'think' it was brought in maybe April this year. The part was marked and tagged and c clamped to the bench. Around Sept. it was gone?
    So, on the topic of machining, how were you going to fix that worm? Was the brass-bronze going to grow back from being clamped to the bench for months? Do you re-machine it to even out the form and then make a new nut?

    Years ago a family member dropped a nice German sewing machine off for service. The owner said it was just like his daughter's, except our machine had the special foot pedal. When the family member picked it up and got it home, her foot pedal had been swapped for the basic model.

    That experience underscored how the customer and merchant each need to protect against similar. With cheap digital cameras and phones, that is a lot easier. Both parties can snap photos of the merchandise during the transaction.

    Also, is it time for some cameras in your shop? Even fake cameras have their place. As far as good old fashioned process and paperwork, you'll probably agree you need more rigor. Now, if you had a piece of paper that says someone picked it up on a certain date, does that solve this? What if the guy says 'that wasn't me who picked it up. You still owe me.'? Does a scrawled signature prove who picked it up? Cameras would be better. Maybe this is a one off, and you just be more careful in the future, and don't bother with any of this.

    This scrap would be easy for someone to sell. You'd almost immediately notice the loss of a plasma cutter. And a truck is hard to sell. You're a cop, so you know more about schemes than most any of us.

    Since this is a business process issue, you might ask the question over on the practical machinist shop owner forum. Ask those business owners how they document these types of transactions.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    san jose, ca. usa
    Posts
    417

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    get online and find a used replacement. in the long run, you'll be miles ahead. seriously, been there.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    N.J.
    Posts
    694

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    Quote Originally Posted by big job View Post
    Misuse of police powers no my brother in law still works there. As for putting things back,
    most likely I did when we or I thought He or a friend picked it up after when I was sick. My problem is
    this guy waiting all this time like 7 months, we do have not responsible signs, fire/ theft also
    one way glass- double dead bolts. And any visitors are long time friends mostly police and
    fire.
    Was the check done as party of an on-going investigation? No, it sounds as if it was requested as a favor by you.
    Misuse of Police Powers by your BIL, just as me asking my niece to put a BOLO out on you, just for laughs.

    How could someone come in to a business and remove a part without someone noting it and getting a signature?
    Not responsible signs don't mean squat, every restaurant has them. When they lose something, they and their insurance are responsible, just as you are.

  9. #9

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    As a LEO myself, you did not misuse police powers, arrests and convictions are public record so the armchair attorneys can rest easy.
    As far as the part, you said you tagged it? did you give him a stub? does he have the stub? Might be time to pull the old " No Tikey No Laundry" card. He very well could be pulling a scam on you with his mob background, or then he could be out of his mind and forgot he picked it up, or you could have lost it. It all boils down to what you can prove and what he can prove, but you very well may be having to pay or build a new worm. I would tear up my shop looking for the thing on the off chance someone needed those clamps and the part rolled into the corner.

    Sometimes the best lessons learned in business are the expensive ones.

  10. #10

    Default

    There's another option, but nobody wants to say it. That one of the four weighed it in thinking it had been forgotten about.
    If I displayed masses of patience with a machine shop, then went to pick up my sailboat gear they had lost, and have the guy fire accusations at me about how I'd picked it up, I'd be mightily upset indeed.
    I also had a similar situation once to the sewing machine earlier, I put (well my insurance company did) a rare semi race italian motorcycle into a shop for assessment and subsequent repairs after it was damaged in a accident and insured fully comprehensive. It took 6 months to get it back out, and I had to accept it without plastic repairs to the faring and paint to get it released in the end, and when I got it home it had normal production carbs in place of the rare race carburettors it went in with. They swore blind it never had them. I'd never put any of my bikes into a shop again after that experience. Assessor comes to my shop, where its parked for inspection.

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