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Psst, wanna buy some copper?

By johnboy - 22 May 2007 15

The Police alert us to the theft of $60,000 worth of copper from a building site in Barton.

Now the OLEX price of copper appears to be smidge over $9,000 a tonne at the moment, so we’re talking something in the order of seven tonnes of copper made off with.

From the media release our Holmes-like police observe:

Police believe that because of the weight and volume of the material stolen, a vehicle had been used in the theft.

Make that a rather large vehicle or a large number of them perhaps?

Gotta love a tight metals market.

What’s Your opinion?


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15 Responses to
Psst, wanna buy some copper?
gurunik 9:16 pm 22 May 07

i took 22kg of insulated wire scraps to sims and got $50 for it last week. keeps the workshop in beer.
big diameter cable is pricey stuff, and it is used in all large buildings to feed the power distribution boxes etc. your looking at a kilo or so per metre for the big stuff.
power lines on the outside poles are aluminium alloy.
and the entire roof of the war memorial is copper cliplock sheet, as well as the dome. only a matter of time if the price keeps going up!

tybreaker 7:23 pm 22 May 07

Maybe it was an inside job – Copper takes copper?

johnboy 5:43 pm 22 May 07

Well if it was all coiled up on one of those big rolls it’s possible the thieves made use of a large number of trained hamsters.

VYBerlinaV8 now_with 4:18 pm 22 May 07

“Police believe that because of the weight and volume of the material stolen, a vehicle had been used in the theft.”

How the f*** did they join those dots?

Thumper 3:44 pm 22 May 07

I reckon they should be looking for someone with a truck AND a forklift….

Mr Evil 3:26 pm 22 May 07

I bet Amber did it!

johnboy 3:25 pm 22 May 07

Any idea on the weight per metre ash?

ash 3:02 pm 22 May 07

Gas pipes are made of copper. I can’t remember the price, but I think your looking at something like $20 per meter (wholesale). $9000 would get you 450 meters. For an insurance claim (and to look good in the media) you can bet the price per meter is going to be a whole lot higher.

captainwhorebags 1:56 pm 22 May 07

Copper is of course still used extensively in the electrical distribution of buildings. When you’re talking big buildings, the cables and the bus bars used to carry high loads of electricity have a huge amount of copper in them.

I’m no sparky, but I’ve seen bus bars in the infrastructure at work, and they’re around 5mm thick, 100mm wide and can run from one end of the building to the other.

Copper recyclers will take cable ripped out of walls and still pay a hefty price for it, even though it still has all the insulation on it.

Danman 1:06 pm 22 May 07

theres a huge industry out there for stripping copper cable fom abandonments.
I should have also said

“And the associated Beagle Boy tom Thuggery activities associated with that”

Danman 1:05 pm 22 May 07

JB – I think they no longer use copper for piping – maybe PVC – I dunno – but (i think and correct me if I am wrong) copper pipe is rarely used in new developments for plumbing as its not cost effective. Maybe wrapped aluminium pipes for the HWS?

My mate who works for a data wholesaler has suggested that copper wire is being withdrawn from construction in favour of aluminium strand wire – based on cost of manufacture alone.

Bonfire would be of good mind to watch himself when doing his photo-journalism of derelict buildings – theres a huge industry out there for stripping copper cable fom abandonments.

Ralph 12:43 pm 22 May 07

The Sherlocks at ACT police also figured that the robbery occurred in the ‘hours of darkness’.

johnboy 12:41 pm 22 May 07

there’s more weight to the cat5 than just the copper, but the copper itself is the main price component.

As we’re talking about a building site here I’m guessing we’re not talking about an overly machined form of it. Piping maybe.

fnaah 12:36 pm 22 May 07

Wait, i just did the math, and that makes 8 tonnes of cat5. :/ Clearly I’ve screwed up somewhere…

fnaah 12:33 pm 22 May 07

Raw copper and manufactured copper wire would have substantially different values.

A 100 metre roll of Cat5 networking cable weighs about 10kg, and is worth $70.

I could do the math, but I’m lazy.

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