Flute Security

For Anything and Everything to do with Flute Playing and Music

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Tom144
Posts: 9
Joined: Mon Jan 14, 2013 1:05 pm

Flute Security

Post by Tom144 » Thu Mar 21, 2013 6:51 pm

Greetings again!

Since you all are such great help on just about all flut matters, I would like to get input on the subject of Flute security. My son is entering college, and has quite some investment in his instruments, without going into details, i'm sure you know how the value of professional flutes/piccolos/headjoints can go through the ceiling. As a supportive and concerned Father, i'm very concerned of his instruments "growing legs". One nice thing about Flute/Piccolos, are the ease of transporting them around, but on the other hand, they are easily stolen too.
OK, so what is the logical thing (things) to do? We know of insurance, photos, serial numbers recorded, but I really want to know how to recover them if they walk? Are there tracking devices, or anything else being used? I'm really scratching my head. I read the listings of stolen Flutes and they sicken me, I can just imagine the devastation to those who experience such losses. OK, enough rambling on, you guys get what i'm looking for, so any input would be much appreciated. :?

Thanks,

Tom

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Zevang
Posts: 580
Joined: Mon Jul 24, 2006 5:28 pm

Re: Flute Security

Post by Zevang » Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:44 pm

Hi, I own a very expensive flute. My option was to insure it at a major company called Anderson Group International, located at Fort Lauderdale.
Good Luck

az1983
Posts: 53
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2009 12:00 pm
Location: Phoenix, Arizona

Re: Flute Security

Post by az1983 » Fri Mar 22, 2013 7:35 am

I personally recommend the Snagg (https://www.snagg.com/) recovery/tracking system. A local repair tech can put the tracker almost anywhere because of its small size (like a single grain of rice). Mine is on the headjoint; my flute tech removed the headjoint cork, cut a small sliver or pocket and inserted the tracker. Replace the cork to its original loaction, and no one will ever know it's there. Check out their vids on YouTube.

If you're interested in insurance, try Clarion. Many musicians, including me, use Clarion because their coverage and customer service is top notch. I pay roughly $150/per year for $17,000.

Good luck!
www.cantabileflutequartet.com www.defproject.org

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pied_piper
Posts: 1849
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 1:31 pm
Location: Virginia

Re: Flute Security

Post by pied_piper » Fri Mar 22, 2013 11:53 am

The Snagg system is an interesting application of RFID technology. I am familiar with RFID use but I had not previously heard of Snagg. Thanks for the link.

For clarification though, this technology does not use GPS to locate a stolen item. It is only useful when the item is scanned by an RFID scanner to retrieve the chip ID. So, the Police or perhaps a pawn shop could scan the flute to lookup the ID number in the Snagg database to determine if the instrument was reported as stolen.

Az1983 - I watched some of their videos and for a flute they suggested gluing the RFID chip below the keywork. In your description of its installation, you mentioned that it was installed in the cork of your headjoint. I'm afraid that you and your tech may have made this technology ineffective due to its installation. RFID is a passive technology. To activate it, it must receive a specific radio frequency signal that causes it to transmit its internal ID number. Unless you have a wood headjoint, the metal headjoint tube combined with the metal cork end plate and metal retaining nut effectively encloses the RFID chip in metal and shields it from receiving the RF activation signal. Installed inside the cork, the RFID is essentially located in a Faraday Cage. A Faraday cage is used to prevent the reception or transmission of RF signals. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faraday_cage. So, bottom line, the RFID chip should not be installed inside the headjoint cork of a metal flute or you are effectively defeating its usefulness.
"Never give a flute player a screwdriver."
--anonymous--

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flutego12
Posts: 554
Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2012 2:51 am
Location: Southern Hemisphere, Earth

Re: Flute Security

Post by flutego12 » Sun Mar 24, 2013 4:52 pm

pied_piper wrote:The Snagg system is an interesting application of RFID technology. I am familiar with RFID use but I had not previously heard of Snagg. Thanks for the link.

For clarification though, this technology does not use GPS to locate a stolen item. It is only useful when the item is scanned by an RFID scanner to retrieve the chip ID. So, the Police or perhaps a pawn shop could scan the flute to lookup the ID number in the Snagg database to determine if the instrument was reported as stolen.

Az1983 - I watched some of their videos and for a flute they suggested gluing the RFID chip below the keywork. In your description of its installation, you mentioned that it was installed in the cork of your headjoint. I'm afraid that you and your tech may have made this technology ineffective due to its installation. RFID is a passive technology. To activate it, it must receive a specific radio frequency signal that causes it to transmit its internal ID number. Unless you have a wood headjoint, the metal headjoint tube combined with the metal cork end plate and metal retaining nut effectively encloses the RFID chip in metal and shields it from receiving the RF activation signal. Installed inside the cork, the RFID is essentially located in a Faraday Cage. A Faraday cage is used to prevent the reception or transmission of RF signals. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faraday_cage. So, bottom line, the RFID chip should not be installed inside the headjoint cork of a metal flute or you are effectively defeating its usefulness.
Thanks for that most relevant piece of advice, Pied Piper. You've confirmed my reservations about receptivity within the cork but hadn't thought of the metal shield. :idea: Also that it needed to be scanned would require moral suasion to work, hence tracking is very limited - though I understand about the need to preserve "battery life". which raises the Q how often does it need replacement either way
flutist with a screwdriver

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pied_piper
Posts: 1849
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 1:31 pm
Location: Virginia

Re: Flute Security

Post by pied_piper » Sun Mar 24, 2013 11:35 pm

As I mentioned, RFID is a passive technology and has no battery. The scanner emits an RF signal and when that hits the antenna built into the RFID, that signal actually provides the power that the RFID uses to transmit its own ID.

They can last a long, long time, perhaps even forever unless damaged. If you ever noticed, DVD and BlueRay cases often contain a different kind of RFID that looks like a a small circuit board on a heavy paper carrier. Those are used to protect against shoplifting. When you walk out the door without going through the checkout and paying, the scanners at the door activate the RFID which sends out its signal and trips the alarm. When you buy the DVD, the cashier wipes the DVD case over a black square that essentially overloads the RFID circuit and burns it out so that it cannot send out a signal to trip the alarm at the door.
"Never give a flute player a screwdriver."
--anonymous--

az1983
Posts: 53
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2009 12:00 pm
Location: Phoenix, Arizona

Re: Flute Security

Post by az1983 » Mon Mar 25, 2013 6:34 am

I questioned him on the headjoint thing, but he assured me. That's what I get for believing a saxophonist...
www.cantabileflutequartet.com www.defproject.org

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