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GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH MegaDork
9/28/13 5:38 p.m.

Anyone ever carried brake pads in their carry-on luggage? Any unusual-looking circuit boards since 9/11? Computer internals? Weirdest thing I carried post-9/11 was a bunch of wickedly-sharp pencils (by accident).

Sometimes luggage gets pilfered coming home and I want to minimize what valuable stuff is in the checked luggage, just in case.

clownkiller
clownkiller HalfDork
9/28/13 6:38 p.m.

I put hand tools and an electrical pouch with assorted electrical stuff neatly in my checked, in plastic bags for containment. When I picked up my bag, TSA had stickers on it saying it was inspected. They tossed everything in a pile and zipped it up, fun...

Carry on just make sure its not a "weapon" or "explosive" and carry on!

Datsun310Guy
Datsun310Guy PowerDork
9/28/13 7:51 p.m.

I put a 12"ID x 20"OAL braided pump connector to take back to QC from Midway to MSP. It came smashing down the conveyor belt LOUDLY. I have also packed a lot of braided flexes in my luggage.

Appleseed
Appleseed UltimaDork
9/28/13 7:53 p.m.

Nine time out of ten its an electric razor, but every once in a while...

DrBoost
DrBoost PowerDork
9/28/13 8:44 p.m.

Let me tell you what NOT to pack.
Don't take a 9V battery, connect that to an automotive flasher, put that in a box, and connect it all to a timer. It is used for priming a fuel system for a specific purpose, but looks like a bomb timer. I wasn't thinking about that one After that, I'd ship them ahead of me so it was at the shop when I got there.

Kenny_McCormic
Kenny_McCormic SuperDork
9/28/13 9:01 p.m.

I know from a land border crossing gone wrong that because George Liquor, American, the customs agent doesn't posses an electrical engineering degree, any old hacked together electronics device is automatically for terrorism in his eyes. This is especially problematic when said electronic device, in this case a transistor radio crudely powered by some D cells, is actually for berkeleying with people.

Basil Exposition
Basil Exposition HalfDork
9/28/13 9:51 p.m.

I took a couple of disassembled SU carbs in my onboard bag in ziploc bags. The TSA agent spotted them in the Xray, pulled me aside and opened the luggage. Fortunately, he knew what carbs were. I also had some racing gear in there. He had his supervisor sniff them for fuel smell since he "had a cold." He said if they had smelled of fuel they would have made me check them through.

He also said it was better to tell them about something like that or pull them out separately before sending them through the machine, rather than waiting for them to find them in the bag. Now I know!

The0retical
The0retical HalfDork
9/29/13 5:33 a.m.

I once had TSA seize my drafting tools, the compass and dividers. Luckily they were my cheap ones.

To the question: I've carried naked hard drives though before. They didn't have much of a problem with it once I told the TSA inspector what it was. I've also carried through naked motherboards which also earned me a weird look.

Never tried car parts before though.

mndsm
mndsm UltimaDork
9/29/13 8:05 a.m.

I carried a ps2 and two bottles of shampoo post 9-11. Lemme tell ya, a big black box fulla circuit boards and cords coming out, with two bottles of unknown liquid looks mighty odd on xrays. I was selected for a "random search" after I set the metal detector off. I was wearing a 3 row pyramid belt, was hung over, and completely forgot I had it on.

rebelgtp
rebelgtp UltraDork
9/29/13 9:13 a.m.

I remember walking through airport security with knives in my pocket, my cell in my jacket and a gun on my hip and the metal detector not going off. I was there meeting someone.

Back when I was a kid I use to go through security all the time without emptying my pockets when we would go pick my mom up from a business trip. Always had a pocket knife and/or a multi tool with me. Never set off the metal detector once.

I have only flown once since 9/11 and I actually got more scrutiny then because I was flying with no luggage. I had riven across Oregon and Idaho to drop off a car then flew back to Portland.

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH MegaDork
9/29/13 9:34 a.m.

Thanks all. I think I'll check the weird circuit board, any potential thieves wouldn't have a clue what it is anyway.

freestyle
freestyle New Reader
9/29/13 9:40 a.m.

I was recently amazed at the sensitivity of the "hold your arms above your head, we can see you naked" machine. I had a foil/paper gum wrapper that I overlooked when I emptied my pockets. "Please step aside sir, there's something in your right front pocket"

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH MegaDork
9/29/13 9:45 a.m.

On some of those machines, if you strap a metal case to your side, you can carry anything you want in there. It's because they only view you from in front and behind, and metal shows as the same color as the background.

Basil Exposition
Basil Exposition HalfDork
9/29/13 9:52 a.m.
freestyle wrote: I was recently amazed at the sensitivity of the "hold your arms above your head, we can see you naked" machine. I had a foil/paper gum wrapper that I overlooked when I emptied my pockets. "Please step aside sir, there's something in your right front pocket"

I had the same experience, though it was a solitary dime.

Schmidlap
Schmidlap HalfDork
9/29/13 4:45 p.m.

I thought for sure someone would have mentioned this, but Ford had a PR stunt where they took a 1L Ecoboost engine block (maybe the whole short block) in carry-on luggage from Detroit to LA for the LA auto show. The TSA had no problem with it.

Autoblog article

mndsm
mndsm UltimaDork
9/29/13 7:35 p.m.
Schmidlap wrote: I thought for sure someone would have mentioned this, but Ford had a PR stunt where they took a 1L Ecoboost engine block (maybe the whole short block) in carry-on luggage from Detroit to LA for the LA auto show. The TSA had no problem with it. Autoblog article

I remember reading about that- and the power they're getting out of it is ridiculous. Ford's onto something with that.

Knurled
Knurled UberDork
9/29/13 7:43 p.m.
Appleseed wrote: Nine time out of ten its an electric razor, but every once in a while...

Knurled
Knurled UberDork
9/29/13 7:45 p.m.
Schmidlap wrote: I thought for sure someone would have mentioned this, but Ford had a PR stunt where they took a 1L Ecoboost engine block (maybe the whole short block) in carry-on luggage from Detroit to LA for the LA auto show. The TSA had no problem with it.

Dave Lemon (of Mazdatrix) said he did that with a 13B one time and had to pay a hefty over-weight charge.

I don't know how much the Ecoboost three block weighs, but it can't be much. (A bare Saturn block is like a box of Kleenex and it's a much larger casting) A bare 13B, on the other hand, is around 240 pounds.

The water pump and thermostat placement make that block look like a sawn-off Audi 034 block. Or an 06A.

glueguy
glueguy Reader
9/30/13 9:27 a.m.

It's not that bad. tsa.gov has a clear list of what's allowed ad what's not. When I carry something odd, which is frequent - tools, parts, electronics, whatever, I always take it out of my bag and put it into the bin. You know they'll be curious and it saves time. This way as the bin pops out they'll crane their neck to see what it is and keep going. Unless it's a spark plug where the box shows a mini-explosion at the electrode and they have to debate for five minutes as to whether it's a prohibited explosive device. Finally a mechanically inclined TSA came over, rolled his eyes at his coworkers, and said, "not unless it's hooked up to, oh, an engine. Got one of those in there too, sir?"

JohnRW1621
JohnRW1621 UltimaDork
9/30/13 9:45 a.m.

Odd items:
I spent a lot of years in the cell phone business.
In the retail stores, they put out those dummy phones that look exactly like the real phones but have no real guts in them. Actually, inside is a metal weight to mimic the exact weight.

A co-worker had about three of these in a laptop bag going through TSA. They sort of freak when you bring through "electronics" that can not be turned on. After some additional questions, seizure and forfeiture of the devices was the easiest answer.

Personally, in Detroit, I was charged and found guilty of a Federal Misdemeanor for having a small blade knife in a carry on. It was a duffel that had been last used on a sailboat race and I missed the fact that a rigging knife was in one of the pouches.
I learned that Romulus Court and the airport had quite the racket going making millions off fines. I also learned that there were other airports in the country that had never issues a single "ticket" but rather just seized. This was back in '04 but the fine was like $300.

MadScientistMatt
MadScientistMatt UltraDork
9/30/13 9:57 a.m.
DrBoost wrote: Let me tell you what NOT to pack. Don't take a 9V battery, connect that to an automotive flasher, put that in a box, and connect it all to a timer. It is used for priming a fuel system for a specific purpose, but looks like a bomb timer. I wasn't thinking about that one After that, I'd ship them ahead of me so it was at the shop when I got there.

Had a tuner who often works for our customers report that any nitromethane residue on your checked baggage will also cause a lot of trouble. Apparently, it sets off chemical bomb detectors.

mfennell
mfennell New Reader
9/30/13 9:59 a.m.

I've been pulled aside for lots of various WiFi devices with different antennas and cabling but had no real problems. They are totally inconsistent about whether to pull things out ahead of time or not. For every "you should have pulled this out of your bag" I've had a "you didn't need to pull this out". Drives me crazy.

slefain
slefain UltraDork
9/30/13 10:21 a.m.

I brought several live lobsters in a carry-on sized cooler back from the Keys once. Does that count?

Rob_Mopar
Rob_Mopar SuperDork
9/30/13 10:51 a.m.
MadScientistMatt wrote:
DrBoost wrote: Let me tell you what NOT to pack. Don't take a 9V battery, connect that to an automotive flasher, put that in a box, and connect it all to a timer. It is used for priming a fuel system for a specific purpose, but looks like a bomb timer. I wasn't thinking about that one After that, I'd ship them ahead of me so it was at the shop when I got there.

Had a tuner who often works for our customers report that any nitromethane residue on your checked baggage will also cause a lot of trouble. Apparently, it sets off chemical bomb detectors.

The editor of Car Craft ran into that trouble a couple years ago bringing back a souvenir Top Fuel piston. It was a pretty good editorial that month.

glueguy
glueguy Reader
9/30/13 2:24 p.m.

If you play golf (think lots of fertilizers) the day of a flight and they swab your hands, you'll get special attention. Three times before I figured that one out.

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