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Keni

Equipment Stolen Within The Last 2 Weeks!

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In most states and Canada, 2nd hand stores and pawnshops, turn over a list of the items they bought that day to the police who compare it with their list of reported stolen items.

(I wrote the software for one of the chain stores).

That being said, there is a special place in hell for those who steal from musicians:   Muzak is piped in 24/7.

 

 

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14 minutes ago, RobertWS said:

In most states and Canada, 2nd hand stores and pawnshops, turn over a list of the items they bought that day to the police who compare it with their list of reported stolen items.

(I wrote the software for one of the chain stores).

That being said, there is a special place in hell for those who steal from musicians:   Muzak is piped in 24/7.

 

 

Thanks Robert...

 

I've reported it to the police here, but after losing my house, it appears I can’t find the folder with my receipts and serial numbers, so it's gonna be difficult...

 

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If you paid originally with a credit card (or bought from a music store), there's a chance they could get you at least some proof that you bought the equipment that was stolen.

 

I'd get the word out to the local music stores too.  Someone might overhear something.  Musicians may not agree on lots of things, but they will team up against a gear thief!

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5 hours ago, craigb said:

If you paid originally with a credit card (or bought from a music store), there's a chance they could get you at least some proof that you bought the equipment that was stolen.

 

I'd get the word out to the local music stores too.  Someone might overhear something.  Musicians may not agree on lots of things, but they will team up against a gear thief!

Good thought Craig...

This is gear I bought over the last 50 years or so. Much of it before credit cards and internet.

 I live in a one horse town. The nearest music store is over a hundred miles away...

 

...but I am spreading the word wherever I can.

 

 Thanks...

 

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This prompts the question...

What info on our gear do we need to store just in case?

Do any of you scratch initials in?

Id stickers?

Photos of serial numbers?

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In the past, I used an etcher to scribe my name and other ID info into metal parts of the item. I put it in visible areas and hidden areas.

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4 hours ago, Gswitz said:

This prompts the question...

What info on our gear do we need to store just in case?

Do any of you scratch initials in?

Id stickers?

Photos of serial numbers?

I think in this day and age the best approach is to take a video of everything (showing models and serial numbers), then upload it to the cloud (Google Drive, Evernote and Dropbox all have free tiers, as do others, so there's no excuse not to!).

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19 hours ago, craigb said:

I think in this day and age the best approach is to take a video of everything (showing models and serial numbers), then upload it to the cloud (Google Drive, Evernote and Dropbox all have free tiers, as do others, so there's no excuse not to!).

To add to this... insurance companies are fine and dandy about taking premiums from you and it is not until you submit a claim that they show their other side. A video is the easiest way to catalog things, and good to get SNs as you go. Although many do not require a "detailed catalog" of property for loss, that can also very much work in their favor when a claim is submitted. They will dispute, require proof, etc. With cell phones, a video with narration (and witnesses) is good to make and store where it cannot be lost.

Also, read the details of any property policy... although they may say "do not require declaration of most items," there is often a clause in there requiring declaration of specific items (jewelry, electronics, musical gear, etc.). If in doubt, call them and clarify this, and also keep a record of who you talked to, when, what was said, etc. In potential legal issues (should it come to that), the person who comes to the table with the most documentation often wins. Also, some states have pretty liberal small claims court limits, and you do not need a lawyer to pursue one, just go to the courthouse and file (with the information you compiled above).

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4 hours ago, mettelus said:

Also, read the details of any property policy... although they may say "do not require declaration of most items," there is often a clause in there requiring declaration of specific items (jewelry, electronics, musical gear, etc.). If in doubt, call them and clarify this, and also keep a record of who you talked to, when, what was said, etc. In potential legal issues (should it come to that), the person who comes to the table with the most documentation often wins. Also, some states have pretty liberal small claims court limits, and you do not need a lawyer to pursue one, just go to the courthouse and file (with the information you compiled above).

Also be aware that many homeowners policies specifically exclude any items used in a business enterprise, although some companies will include a rider with limits for business property kept in the home or vehicle for an additional fee. S if you are a professional musician, you may have to take special steps to insure your gear. Most other people just have to worry about their home office equipment. There is also sometimes a cap on coverage for items kept in a separate rented storage unit, that is lower than the coverage for items kept in the residence. 

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Another thing to be aware of if you are relying on home owner's insurance. My company covers everything personal property that could be lost. Advised by the agent to keep photos and serial numbers, etch identifiers on the inside as well as outside.

Catch is that although everything is covered, about 2500 is payable, so I guess I could pick what items to max out on.  Catastrophic fire loss, theft would get me back 2500 dollars on losses many times that. The agent says that this coverage limit is about standard on most policies and not advertised as the downside of content loss. Was told of course that if I want to start paying much higher premiums, I could cover about anything.  My point here is to look closely at your policy and know what the replacement amount is if you were to lose everything.

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Sorry to hear about your misfortune. I wish there was a better way for us to band together against these types of thieves because theft is usually low on the priority list of local authorities. I remember using some of my gear to volunteer at a playhouse raising money for cancer. After a long night (the last night of the play) I took my gear home, too tired to put it all away and left it in my garage. I went on vacation the next day for a week away with my family and came back to find all the equipment in my garage was gone. It wasn't near the loss that people here have mentioned but still about $5k or more worth of equipment. Equipment that I could not, at the time, justify replacing so I just had to do with out. Such a shame that some people feel they are more entitled to your stuff than you are, who spent a lifetime purchasing and saving up for the gear. My deepest sympathies go out to you.

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41 minutes ago, Patrick Derbidge said:

Sorry to hear about your misfortune. I wish there was a better way for us to band together against these types of thieves because theft is usually low on the priority list of local authorities. I remember using some of my gear to volunteer at a playhouse raising money for cancer. After a long night (the last night of the play) I took my gear home, too tired to put it all away and left it in my garage. I went on vacation the next day for a week away with my family and came back to find all the equipment in my garage was gone. It wasn't near the loss that people here have mentioned but still about $5k or more worth of equipment. Equipment that I could not, at the time, justify replacing so I just had to do with out. Such a shame that some people feel they are more entitled to your stuff than you are, who spent a lifetime purchasing and saving up for the gear. My deepest sympathies go out to you.

Thanks Patrick.

 

 I’m in a similar position. I will be dead long before I could find cash to replace this gear...

BTW, A few more items added to the list. So much was taken that it's hard to think of everything.

 

  2 Behringer mdx4600 quad compressors

Custom built 2x12 speaker (Celestion) cabinet

...and the Fender 2x12 closed back cabinet is loaded with EVL speakers.

 

 

Edited by Keni

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Thanks Notes...

 

With how my life has been unraveling the last few years, this is a crushing blow I may never recover from...

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Try to stay positive Keni. I know it must be hard with jerks in the world that stole your gear but I have seen negative feelings bring people down.

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Ok, hopefully this doesn't sound too weird, but SOMEWHERE in all of this is a positive, it just may take a bit of looking to find it.

 

I just had this idea:  Call up your local newspaper(s).  Maybe they can make a story that people will see which might catch the thieves or, possibly, catch the attention of someone who can help.  It's worth a shot!

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I know it's only an outside chance: Cruise pawn shops, if you see your gear there, don't say anything, step outside and call the police. You'll get that gear back, and with a surprise visit perhaps the police can find out who pawned it.

 

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On 12/1/2019 at 5:26 AM, Gswitz said:

This prompts the question...

What info on our gear do we need to store just in case?

Do any of you scratch initials in?

Id stickers?

Photos of serial numbers?

My burglary took me completely by surprise. Even if I had anticipated it, I don't think I would have been adequately prepared. For one thing, I couldn't even list all my stuff. Lots of little (but still expensive) items such as stompboxes, cables and software.

So first step is to make a list. Create a spreadsheet that you can continually add to as you acquire new items or think of things you'd forgotten you had. Make sure you regularly back up that spreadsheet offsite, e.g. a thumb drive that you can stash in your car's glove box. In the list, note descriptions, price originally paid, serial numbers, model numbers and the date you acquired it. The insurance company will want all that information. When the cops arrive, they'll want that list, too, so keep a printed copy on hand because it's hard to think of everything when you're still in shock.

Next, take photos of everything, front and back with a closeup of the serial number. Again, back those photos up in case the thieves make off with your computer and/or phone as well. Photos taken with you in the picture, e.g. at a gig or during a recording session, carry more weight than just a static photo because they lend proof that it's really your stuff.

Assume the police will be little or no help. Theft is so rampant these days that they'll usually come right out and tell you that your gear is gone for good. Even if you find items at a music store or pawn shop, in most locales they are not obligated to give them back to you, even if you can prove ownership.

So just let it go. In fact, the worst outcome if you are insured is that the police do recover your stuff, but after you've already been reimbursed by insurance. At that point you have to pay back the insurance company, and now you have duplicate gear. That means having to unload your old stuff on Craigslist, which could be complicated because all that stuff has been already been reported as stolen.

My advice to Keni: think of it as being magically transported back to your 20's, a time when you also had nothing. Now you get to start over, this time with decades of wisdom to inform your choices about what's truly essential. Maybe that's a second-hand Chinese Strat copy and a no-name amp. What's important is that you still have the ability to make music - with two sticks if that's all you have - and that can't ever be stolen from you.

 

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Also, Keni, have you considered a GoFundMe page? I've never done that so I don't know how effective it is, but you've got a lot of friends here. I know I'd gladly throw something into the hat.

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22 hours ago, John K said:

Catch is that although everything is covered, about 2500 is payable, so I guess I could pick what items to max out on.  Catastrophic fire loss, theft would get me back 2500 dollars on losses many times that. The agent says that this coverage limit is about standard on most policies and not advertised as the downside of content loss. Was told of course that if I want to start paying much higher premiums, I could cover about anything.  My point here is to look closely at your policy and know what the replacement amount is if you were to lose everything.

And be sure that if you expect to replace anything you have "replacement cost" coverage.  It is not that rare for policies to cover  depreciated value of some items where the money you receive will be what they assess the value a used item is worth. Anyone who has tried to sell a used_but-new-condition item will tell you that the price they can get is not what they paid for it in many cases. And if they cover the cost you paid for the item based on your original receipt, you may have a problem getting a replacement for an old guitar that you bought forty years ago for half a grand that is selling at auction now for five times that price. In some cases there is just no off the shelf policy that will provide what you need, and special riders or policies requiring professional appraisals may be too expensive to be practical. 

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