Going over board in Protecting my catalytic converter!!!!

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by Kaptainkid1, May 29, 2021.

  1. Kaptainkid1

    Kaptainkid1 Active Member

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    I did a write up a few years ago about a cheap DIY steel mess grate. It worked great for 3 years no problem and no thefts.

    https://r.tapatalk.com/shareLink/topic?url=https://priuschat.com/threads/preventing-catalytic-converter-theft.205096/#post-2979278&share_tid=205096&share_pid=2979278&share_fid=1171&share_type=t&link_source=app

    OK here is the write up for the Steel Expanded Metal Sheet under carriage. <br /><br />First buy Steel Expanded Metal Sheet at Home depot or metal scrap yard. <br />They usually come in 48"x120" sheet. <br />Here is the part list; <br />1. Steel Expanded Metal Sheet<br />2. 20x 3/4 inch self-drilling screws<br />3. 20x Fender Washer 3/16" x 1-1/4" <br />4. Tools Angle Grinder to cut Steel Metal Sheet<br />5. I used a Metal DC Wheel: 4" x 1/8" x 5/8" <br />6. 2x 1/2 inch bolts with nuts. <br />[​IMG] <br />[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] <br /><br /><br />
    So looking at other designs I noticed other people cut out the oval or 1/2 circle by the engine bay. <br />If you take a cardboard by 60" x 40" should be large enough to make a template to transcribe to the Steel expanded metal sheet. <br />There are two floor rails under the car. <br />The width of the floor rails from driver side to Passenger side is 37" inches wide.<br />From engine bay side of the rail is 47" inches to the center body support beam.<br />I cut square Metal Sheet 37" x 47" I used a metal grinder because these are the tools I had available.<br />If you have metal cutter that tool can be used to cut the Metal Sheet as well.<br />The rails by the engine bay is curved by 2 1/2 inches long which I made sure to bend my metal sheet to follow the body line. I drilled holes in the floor rails with 1/8" drill bit every 5-8 inches apart. These are start hole to make it easier once I used the self tapping screws. <br />I attached the bolts, washer and nut to the center support beam at the back of the floor rails check diagram for notes. <br />The car should be on Jack stand to allow easier access to under the car. <br />A second hand is good thing to help hold up the Metal Sheet against the body as you start to drill in the tapping screws with washers. 10x screws on each side should be enough to hold the metal grate sheet. <br /> <br /><br />Good Luck,<br /><br /> <br /><br />[​IMG] <br />[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]



    PART 2 IN BEEF UP CATALYTIC!!


    Recently Pri's in my neighborhood has been getting hit hard. They came by one night and stole 10 Prius Catalytic converters but not mine. They also tried 4 times to steal my neighbor Jeep catalytic converters in his driveway but was caught all 4 times and they fled every time.
    So I decided to beef up my catalytic converter protection by welding steel bars to the pipe.
    I also decided to paint my steel mess grate so it wouldn't rust away. Here are a few photos. 20210529_123229.jpg 20210529_123233.jpg 20210529_123236.jpg 20210529_123324.jpg 20210529_123402.jpg 20210529_125038.jpg 20210529_142213.jpg 20210529_142232.jpg 20210529_142248.jpg 20210529_171741.jpg

    SM-A526U ?
     
    #1 Kaptainkid1, May 29, 2021
    Last edited: May 29, 2021
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    kaptain my captain, you are the man!
     
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  3. The Lizard King

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  4. DutchPrius

    DutchPrius Member

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    Nice work, I think you already nailed it with the structure welds on the pipes,. This way they can't use a cutter anymore but forces to use a grinder (which makes a h*ll lot more noise...).

    Not sure is the mesh will cause some drag or unwanted noise while driving. Did you experience any so far?

    On my gen 2 they only added some rebar to the pipe and spot welded the bolts to the manifold. Did order a guard plate but they advised me not to use it due to possible overheating. This was an aluminum plate with a few vent holes. Your solution is much better for this.

    Best regards, Nick

    Black 2007 Prius
     
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  5. Kaptainkid1

    Kaptainkid1 Active Member

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    The Steel grate been on for years. No noise or heat issues. I've been seeing people posting stolen cats even with a cat guard.
    Cat Security&#x2122; 2010 - 2015 Prius,excludes Prius C and V

    So I felt my grate wasn't up to par with the new crime wave for OEM Prius Catalytic converter. So I saw people welding metal bars and now I can sleep tight at night since my Prius is parked on the street all the time.
    Took me 3 hours and $20 in parts.
    Maybe people can learn from my DIY and keep their Cat safe.

    SM-A526U ?
     
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  6. pasadena_commut

    pasadena_commut Active Member

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    Excellent work, those welded on steel "bridges" are a great idea.

    One thing, though, if they happen to be using carbide tipped blades they will still be able to cut through it.

    To prevent that it might be interesting to use hollow steel tubes, probably rectangular in cross section, filled with a blade killing substance. For instance, and this is just an idea, I have never tried it, take some potters clay and mix in your choice of heavy duty abrasive powders, like industrial diamond and silicon carbide (available as powder or grit in bags for not too much $$$). Pack that into the tube and weld the ends shut. Bake until the clay hardens. (As I understand it most pottery clay will harden at a temperature which a kitchen oven can reach.) Weld that onto the car. If somebody tries to cut through that it will destroy their blade in seconds. The downside would probably be that the hardened clay might shatter over time and rattle on bumps and such. But you get the general idea.
     
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  7. DutchPrius

    DutchPrius Member

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    Just make sure the pipe is "off shape" so their cutters can't reach it. I think with the bars welded to it, this will be a challenge for them to get the equipment around the pipe and perform a quick cut... I trust the rebar that's been welded to my cat. And if they want to steel it again, it's covered in my insurance, even though it has been stolen before. The added steel has been approved by my insurance that this is sufficient for extra prevention. But the extra mesh is a great solution to make your Prius less interesting as your neighbours' . It's like making sure your house is more secured that the other houses so they (hopefully) will skip yours and go for the easy ones...

    Best regards, Nick

    Black 2007 Prius
     
  8. privilege

    privilege Member

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    around here they'll just wrap a chain around it and drive away with your cat.

    but that's a good visual deterrent.
     
  9. Kaptainkid1

    Kaptainkid1 Active Member

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    At that point my Insurance will cover the damage. It sucks because I have a $1000 deductible and my Prius worth about $2500. So hopefully my mods will get thieves to go for the next easy target down the street since my block has 15 Prius now.

    SM-A526U ?
     
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  10. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    That’s the best alternative gives the cats some venting because they get wicked hot. Nice job.
     
  11. qmanqman

    qmanqman Member

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    That's badass. I was looking into the cat guards you can buy but they're $100+. Eff that. I'm gonna do what you did.
     
  12. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    What’s cool about this is they went at it with a sawzall the racket would be deafening. Oh man that would be so loud and time consuming.
    And I missed the welding that’s bitchin’.

    It’s now the high bar of cat protection.
     
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  13. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    How much extra for lower deductible? Up here one quasi gov insurer is the go-to, and typical comprehensive deductible is $300 ~.
     
  14. qmanqman

    qmanqman Member

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    The cheap high bar to boot LOL.

    You can't cut expanded metal with a sawzall. It grabs to the blade and shakes like mad and will knock your teeth out. You'd have to use a grinder. My neighbor uses a chisel and hammer.
     
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  15. Georgina Rudkus

    Georgina Rudkus Senior Member

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    Unfortunately, someone might come back with a battery powered angle grinder with a thin abrasive cut-off wheel. They even make them that will not clog with aluminum. Any cat shield is just a determinant.
     
  16. Kaptainkid1

    Kaptainkid1 Active Member

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    So far for under $75 in parts and 3.5 years and counting. My cat is a less an easy target over the 15 other Pri's on my block. Yes they can steal my cat with all the tools you mentioned and 30 mins no time flat. Knock on steel but my Cat is still around today. My low cost DIY solution can be implemented and help others Keep their Catalytic too. I have a whole bunch of worn out used carbide steel jigsaw blades that can be welded to the pipe and that would be a better solution. I would say that would wear out anyone jigsaw blades and suggest the next person to try that method.

    SM-A526U ?
     
  17. 120m256

    120m256 New Member

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    @Kaptainkid1 you can get a cat replacement on ebay for $110. Why would thieves even bother stealing that? Your wheels are worth more and easier to steal.
     
  18. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    Yes that’s why I said it would Be very loud.
     
  19. Kaptainkid1

    Kaptainkid1 Active Member

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    I live in California and they must be California approved stamped catalytic converter. They cost $2500 to replace here. They can only be purchased at dealerships. So those ebay $110 catalytic converters can only be purchased in 48 states. It's illegal to ship them here. I still have my OEM catalytic converter. The OEM catalytic high ticket item on the black market.

    SM-A526U ?
     
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  20. 120m256

    120m256 New Member

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    I live in AZ. Would be happy to help anyone in CA out with a cat for a reasonable price.
     
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