2012 - Volume #36, Issue #4, Page #27[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Clamps Deter Irrigation Thieves
In Maryland, Paul Yiannakis, his brother, Dennis, and stepbrother, Ed McDowell, developed a set of clamps and angle iron to help out a farmer who had wiring stolen several times.
“The clamps hold the angle iron in place over the wiring,” Yiannakis says.
The men made their own clamp-making press out of cylinders off old farm equipment. The patent-pending clamps are made with 1/8 by 1 1/2-in. flat iron and carriage bolts. The angle iron is placed over the wiring and clamped down every 7 to 8 ft. so wiring can’t be pulled.
Yiannakis and his partners started the company, Pivot Protection, to install their anti-theft system. They take a bandsaw to the field to cut the angle iron to length, and it takes 45 min. to an hour per tower section.
At the request of the first farmer, they painted the angle iron yellow and continue to do so.
“He said paint it as bright as you can so thieves see there’s no reason to stop,” Yiannakis says.
Customers have told him many horror stories of multiple thefts and insurance companies dropping coverage because of it. Alarms and other efforts have failed as thieves can pull electric wire in 20 min. or less. So far the angle iron system has been an effective deterrent.
Yiannakis and his partners charge $4.50/foot to install the system and will travel outside their Maryland base. They are also considering selling their clamps to irrigators in other regions of the country.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Paul Yiannakis, 25782 Goldsboro Rd., Goldsboro, Md. 21636 (ph 410 482-9028).
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