Has anyone tried the Chinese cheapo "gps" trackers?

Joined: October 1st, 2014, 8:46 pm

November 19th, 2017, 8:15 pm #1

Last year we bought one of those Star Shower Lazer christmas lights.

We are in a small town of probably 5000 people. These lights are all over the place and crime is really low.

Out of all of them, someone stole ours. I knew it was going to happen. My daughter at the time was devastated.

All year I've been thinking of ideas of how to boonie trap one. I've thought of everything from wrapping the shell in copper tape hooked up to 110v, to a box with a stick holding it up or a big snare like onBugs Bunny.

Most things i came up with are of course are going to lame me in some trouble. 😆

I'd thought about some sort of leds that would cast a flashing blue red light and a siren.


It's actually been a fun thinking exercise.

So instead of a giant rube Goldberg being started when it's pulled out of the ground, i thought it would be fun if i could track it to whoever stole its house.

The Chinese sellers have all kinds of "gps" trackers that i just know by the size and price I know they're not what's advertised.

Is there a device that's really cheap that would work to track it?

I've got a bluetooth beacon that sends out a signal for supposedly 100 or more meters. I'd thought I could always put that inside. But then I'd just end up wardriving around looking for it's signal. It's funny, i lost it and tracked its signal to down in my couch cushions!


I don't want to spend a lot to protect a $40 gadget, or spend a ton of time. I know if i do that it won't get stolen this year.




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Joined: February 2nd, 2017, 2:27 pm

November 19th, 2017, 9:11 pm #2

You rig it up, gimme your address and I'll steal it. Agree in writing to cover 50% of the hospital bill and put the video on Youtube and we have the makings of a new podcast.
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Joined: November 8th, 2017, 3:33 am

November 19th, 2017, 9:18 pm #3

Last year we bought one of those Star Shower Lazer christmas lights.

We are in a small town of probably 5000 people. These lights are all over the place and crime is really low.

Out of all of them, someone stole ours. I knew it was going to happen. My daughter at the time was devastated.

All year I've been thinking of ideas of how to boonie trap one. I've thought of everything from wrapping the shell in copper tape hooked up to 110v, to a box with a stick holding it up or a big snare like onBugs Bunny.

Most things i came up with are of course are going to lame me in some trouble. 😆

I'd thought about some sort of leds that would cast a flashing blue red light and a siren.


It's actually been a fun thinking exercise.

So instead of a giant rube Goldberg being started when it's pulled out of the ground, i thought it would be fun if i could track it to whoever stole its house.

The Chinese sellers have all kinds of "gps" trackers that i just know by the size and price I know they're not what's advertised.

Is there a device that's really cheap that would work to track it?

I've got a bluetooth beacon that sends out a signal for supposedly 100 or more meters. I'd thought I could always put that inside. But then I'd just end up wardriving around looking for it's signal. It's funny, i lost it and tracked its signal to down in my couch cushions!


I don't want to spend a lot to protect a $40 gadget, or spend a ton of time. I know if i do that it won't get stolen this year.



Most of the ones that report the location, as seen on a web site or smartphone app, require a subscription to a cellular or satellite data service and are 50 buck and up. The others, like your Bluetooth device, are limited distance and requires you to DF (direction find) the signal. What about a deterrent of monofilament from it to a switch that turns on a bazillion watts of light aimed at that spot and a few more strands tied to tent anchors that would keep them from running off with it in the confusion.

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Joined: June 28th, 2017, 11:03 pm

November 19th, 2017, 9:28 pm #4

Actually, add in a stadium buzzer (like they use for basketball games) and then a few heavier strands of monofilament at face / neck height.
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Joined: March 8th, 2004, 11:48 pm

November 19th, 2017, 10:24 pm #5

Last year we bought one of those Star Shower Lazer christmas lights.

We are in a small town of probably 5000 people. These lights are all over the place and crime is really low.

Out of all of them, someone stole ours. I knew it was going to happen. My daughter at the time was devastated.

All year I've been thinking of ideas of how to boonie trap one. I've thought of everything from wrapping the shell in copper tape hooked up to 110v, to a box with a stick holding it up or a big snare like onBugs Bunny.

Most things i came up with are of course are going to lame me in some trouble. 😆

I'd thought about some sort of leds that would cast a flashing blue red light and a siren.


It's actually been a fun thinking exercise.

So instead of a giant rube Goldberg being started when it's pulled out of the ground, i thought it would be fun if i could track it to whoever stole its house.

The Chinese sellers have all kinds of "gps" trackers that i just know by the size and price I know they're not what's advertised.

Is there a device that's really cheap that would work to track it?

I've got a bluetooth beacon that sends out a signal for supposedly 100 or more meters. I'd thought I could always put that inside. But then I'd just end up wardriving around looking for it's signal. It's funny, i lost it and tracked its signal to down in my couch cushions!


I don't want to spend a lot to protect a $40 gadget, or spend a ton of time. I know if i do that it won't get stolen this year.



So that the theft is a felony, not just a misdemeanor.
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Joined: February 2nd, 2015, 4:36 pm

November 20th, 2017, 12:13 am #6

Smells sadly like entrapment. But--bwahaha!
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Joined: October 8th, 2014, 2:05 pm

November 20th, 2017, 12:49 am #7

Last year we bought one of those Star Shower Lazer christmas lights.

We are in a small town of probably 5000 people. These lights are all over the place and crime is really low.

Out of all of them, someone stole ours. I knew it was going to happen. My daughter at the time was devastated.

All year I've been thinking of ideas of how to boonie trap one. I've thought of everything from wrapping the shell in copper tape hooked up to 110v, to a box with a stick holding it up or a big snare like onBugs Bunny.

Most things i came up with are of course are going to lame me in some trouble. 😆

I'd thought about some sort of leds that would cast a flashing blue red light and a siren.


It's actually been a fun thinking exercise.

So instead of a giant rube Goldberg being started when it's pulled out of the ground, i thought it would be fun if i could track it to whoever stole its house.

The Chinese sellers have all kinds of "gps" trackers that i just know by the size and price I know they're not what's advertised.

Is there a device that's really cheap that would work to track it?

I've got a bluetooth beacon that sends out a signal for supposedly 100 or more meters. I'd thought I could always put that inside. But then I'd just end up wardriving around looking for it's signal. It's funny, i lost it and tracked its signal to down in my couch cushions!


I don't want to spend a lot to protect a $40 gadget, or spend a ton of time. I know if i do that it won't get stolen this year.



Booby traps that can cause physical harm are pretty much illegal everywhere. So while it might be incredibly satisfying to find a smoking corpse next to your laser projector, the local police (who are usually responsible for cleaning up and documenting the mess) are unlikely to be amused.

As others have pointed out, most GPS trackers require a cellphone account to report their location. And even if you spring for the tracker and associated phone plan, the local police might not consider it a priority to collar whoever took your $40 projector.

My suggestion is to rig the device with tamper switches so if anyone comes near it, a bunch of floodlights and sirens announce their presence. Most petty thieves will soil themselves when they realize they've been made in such a dramatic fashion. And isn't that what you realy want?
If it ain't broke, I'll fix it!
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Joined: October 28th, 2014, 1:06 am

November 20th, 2017, 2:29 am #8

Last year we bought one of those Star Shower Lazer christmas lights.

We are in a small town of probably 5000 people. These lights are all over the place and crime is really low.

Out of all of them, someone stole ours. I knew it was going to happen. My daughter at the time was devastated.

All year I've been thinking of ideas of how to boonie trap one. I've thought of everything from wrapping the shell in copper tape hooked up to 110v, to a box with a stick holding it up or a big snare like onBugs Bunny.

Most things i came up with are of course are going to lame me in some trouble. 😆

I'd thought about some sort of leds that would cast a flashing blue red light and a siren.


It's actually been a fun thinking exercise.

So instead of a giant rube Goldberg being started when it's pulled out of the ground, i thought it would be fun if i could track it to whoever stole its house.

The Chinese sellers have all kinds of "gps" trackers that i just know by the size and price I know they're not what's advertised.

Is there a device that's really cheap that would work to track it?

I've got a bluetooth beacon that sends out a signal for supposedly 100 or more meters. I'd thought I could always put that inside. But then I'd just end up wardriving around looking for it's signal. It's funny, i lost it and tracked its signal to down in my couch cushions!


I don't want to spend a lot to protect a $40 gadget, or spend a ton of time. I know if i do that it won't get stolen this year.



Also known as a trail cam or many other various names. Sometimes they can be had at extremely good prices. They're battery powered, motion detecting, and camouflaged. Get a nice high resolution photo of the perp.

On a related note, a friend of mine had his vacation house badly burglarized a month ago. A neighbor noticed it and called him. He had motion detecting cameras installed, and a week later, his phone told him motion had been detected behind his house. He looked at the live video, realized it wasn't anyone authorized to be there, and set off a loud alarm. The would-be burglar fled at the sound of the alarm. The local sheriff was called and the video sent over. The Sheriff recognized the car as belonging to a local trouble maker. The Sheriff drove over, found the car, and now had probably cause to enter. They found some of the items stolen the week before. Especially a rifle. Too bad the suspect was a convicted felon, now caught with a stolen firearm. He's now looking at serious jail time. There's still many thousands of dollars worth of missing property, but at least one of the burglars is behind bars.
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Joined: August 16th, 2016, 11:47 am

November 20th, 2017, 2:57 am #9

Last year we bought one of those Star Shower Lazer christmas lights.

We are in a small town of probably 5000 people. These lights are all over the place and crime is really low.

Out of all of them, someone stole ours. I knew it was going to happen. My daughter at the time was devastated.

All year I've been thinking of ideas of how to boonie trap one. I've thought of everything from wrapping the shell in copper tape hooked up to 110v, to a box with a stick holding it up or a big snare like onBugs Bunny.

Most things i came up with are of course are going to lame me in some trouble. 😆

I'd thought about some sort of leds that would cast a flashing blue red light and a siren.


It's actually been a fun thinking exercise.

So instead of a giant rube Goldberg being started when it's pulled out of the ground, i thought it would be fun if i could track it to whoever stole its house.

The Chinese sellers have all kinds of "gps" trackers that i just know by the size and price I know they're not what's advertised.

Is there a device that's really cheap that would work to track it?

I've got a bluetooth beacon that sends out a signal for supposedly 100 or more meters. I'd thought I could always put that inside. But then I'd just end up wardriving around looking for it's signal. It's funny, i lost it and tracked its signal to down in my couch cushions!


I don't want to spend a lot to protect a $40 gadget, or spend a ton of time. I know if i do that it won't get stolen this year.



I like the line trigger.
Only trigger a water deluge (ok garden hose) and the game camera to document.
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Joined: October 8th, 2014, 2:06 pm

November 20th, 2017, 6:29 am #10

Mark the culprit with paintballs!
This is a test. Explosions are a happy side effect.
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