Zimmatic Blog

Tired of Thieves Stealing the Copper off Your Pivot?

Jun 7, 2021

Tired of Thieves Stealing the Copper off Your Pivot?

The first time copper thieves hit one of Dean Heikes’ pivots, they caused about $13,000 worth of damage.

When thieves struck a second time, they targeted his big pivot, and the damage added up to almost $21,000.

“After that, I finally decided I needed to do something,” he said.

Heikes installed FieldNET™ CircleScout™ on his machines. The 24/7 pivot monitoring solution also includes a theft alarm that sends alerts if a span cable is disconnected. Because it operates via satellite, it connects even the most remote pivots and those that are out of cell signal range.

When there was a third theft attempt, Heikes was immediately notified, and he caught the thief by following his snowmobile tracks into town. The thief was convicted and is now paying restitution.

“It definitely helps, because I know that I’m not going to go out to move my pivot and find out there’s no wire there,” he said. “And, if thieves hit, you know you’re not going to be completely wiped out.”

While thieves are always on the prowl, most thefts occur from early March through early May. With copper prices trending toward 2011- 2012 highs, experts are concerned thefts will begin to tick up again this year.

“While FieldNET CircleScout may not deter every copper thief, it will help limit the damage they’re able to do - saving on repairs and reducing downtime,” said Lauren Smith, FieldNET sales at Lindsay.  “Because it delivers real-time alerts, it also increases the likelihood that authorities will be able to apprehend the suspects - sometimes even catching them in the act.”

For grower Hank Wunderlink, the investment paid off almost immediately.

“Probably six months after we installed it, we got a call in the middle of the night that a wire was cut. So, we rushed out to the field and ran down the pivot,” he said. “One of the guys was laying alongside the tire, right at the pivot point. I had my shotgun with me, so we held it on him and called 911. The county Sheriff came out and apprehended him. It’s definitely a good investment - saved us a lot of damage.”

For more information about FieldNET CircleScout and how it can provide you with the peace of mind you need, talk to your local Zimmatic dealer or visit www.lindsay.com.