View Full Version : I'm screwed, can anybody help me?

Paul Pless
09-29-2005, 09:52 AM
A few days ago I stopped by a friend's shop and borrowed his jumper cables. After leaving my warehouse and jumping off my MG, a woman hit me in my truck which was then towed to an body shop. Got my truck back today, guess what? No jumper cables in the back. No big deal right? Wrong, these were the best jumper cables I've ever seen. They were like really heavy arc welding leads about 20 feet long with the best alligator clips on the end I've ever seen. Not your standard Walmart specials.

So I stop by my friend's place to ask him where he got them so I can go get him another set. Thinking to myself, hell, I'm buying myself a set too. He tells me, "I don't know, my wife, Pearl, bought those for me, for Christmas, the first year we were married, 34 years ago." I almost cried when I left.

I can find multiple places to focus my anger:

1. Darn British Car
2. Darn Woman for wrecking me
3. Darn Myself, for borrowing someone else's tools (something I never, ever do)
4. Gosh Darn, whoever stole those cables.
5. Darn jumper cable manufacturers for not making sets like that easily available nowadays.

Anyway does anyone know where to buy the baddest set of jumper cables around?

much thanks,

[ 09-29-2005, 10:53 AM: Message edited by: Paul Pless ]

09-29-2005, 10:00 AM
Not sure if these are "the best" but that's what JCWhitney says

100% copper conductor, multi-stranded for greater flexibility
These 2-gauge cables are rated 500 ampsó60% more copper conductor than heavy-duty 4-gauge cables. Rugged thermo-plastic rubber insulation resists oil, grease, moisture, stays flexible to -50 degrees F. Zinc-plated steel clamps. Serrated jaws tightly grip all top, side terminals. 3 lengths: 15, 20 or 25 ft.

Jim Hillman
09-29-2005, 10:05 AM
Go back to the body shop, talk to the owner, then with his help go through all of the employee's vehicles. Most likely they're in someone's trunk.

[ 09-29-2005, 11:06 AM: Message edited by: Jim Hillman ]

Matt J.
09-29-2005, 10:08 AM
Are they at the shop? I'd call and innocently ask if maybe they borrowed them, and give 'em the story why it was important.

Then again ;) maybe I'd be better off calling the shop and rudely demanding them back "or else" (see my other thread).

Alan D. Hyde
09-29-2005, 10:14 AM

Those Whitney cables do look above average, although copper alligators would be better...

Does anyone make those now?


Al Kahawl
09-29-2005, 10:21 AM
Geezuz kriist, stay away from JC witless. Try yer lowcal NAPA deela

Ross M
09-29-2005, 10:32 AM
These 'uns look good:

autopn.com (http://www.autopn.com/store/pc/viewPrd.asp?idcategory=89&idproduct=2769)

Griot's Garage (http://www.griotsgarage.com/catalog.jsp?&SKU=42000) has some nice looking cables - depending on how you feel about ABS clamp bodies - but the cool thing is their cable bags:


09-29-2005, 10:54 AM
what JimH said. Someone at the shop is a thief. The owner should know about it and should attempt to get 'your' property back to you.


Al Kahawl
09-29-2005, 11:02 AM
Originally posted by stevenj:
what JimH said. Someone at the shop is a thief. The owner should know about it and should attempt to get 'your' property back to you.

stevenjDat gowz witout sayin. Dey chargin ya fur keepin yur 'car' der? Ifso dey be respondsibal. Lotza dem guys iz krookz, happened ta me wonce, but Ah took kaired of it.

gary porter
09-29-2005, 12:01 PM
You got it right with the arc welding leads.
Go to an electrical shop or store and get some copper welding cable. Get the best clamps you can find and put heat shrink tubing over the connections. You won't be able to buy better. Still, I like the idea of finding who got the others. Had to be someone who works there and perhaps someone there knows who.
Good Luck

09-29-2005, 12:09 PM
AW Direct in Connecticut sells tow truck supplies. I bought a winch from them last year so I get thier catalog and junk mail. They have jumper cables up to #1 AWG
www.awdirect.com (http://www.awdirect.com)

Old Bingey
09-29-2005, 12:13 PM
I run a bunch of junk Diesel equipment and can't afford the big batteries it takes to crank them but they'll run without the benefit of electricity once they are running so I finally got tired of lugging a big battery around to start everything up in the morning and built myself a pair of real good jumper cables out of salvaged electric welding leads I got from the welding supply place where they were traded in for the copper scrap value. The wires are heavy duty welding style and the clips are solid copper ground clamps from old welders. They'll start a bulldozer on a cold morning. They'll also make a lot of sparks if the positive one jumps off the starter lug and falls on the tracks.

Paul Pless
09-29-2005, 12:59 PM
Thanks all,

I found a set at NAPA (thanks Al Kahawl). They are twenty-five foot, 2 gauge, copper wire. They come with the wrong end on them but the guy at the counter said he would change them to all copper hognose for an additional $13.00. Oh yeah, total price $112.50.

The important thing is to get my friend back square again. Next stop will be the paint and body shop. Oh yeah, the guys at NAPA seem like great guys, I'll be going back there for sure.


09-29-2005, 01:55 PM
Nice link for AW Direct.

They have 1 guage for 70 bucks


Peter Malcolm Jardine
09-29-2005, 01:56 PM
Well at least it ended okay... ;)

I was gonna comment that I made a set out of old welding cable and some clamps a few years back... Old Bingey beat me to it. Best cables I have ever had.

09-29-2005, 02:02 PM
Paul, when you get the new cables, check the crimps that attach the cables to the jaws. For some reason, seemingly high quality cables, have a tendency to use cheap a$$ crimps. These can cause the cables to over heat or have enough resistence that the juice doesn't flow through in some situations.

Peter Malcolm Jardine
09-29-2005, 02:05 PM
Oh thank god you're here Katherine. Whew, I was beginning to worry.

09-29-2005, 02:11 PM
Considering the fact that I'm in the middle setting up cold cranking tests with several sets of jumper cables, vehicles, and enviormental chambers to test just this issue, I do know what I'm talking about.

Peter Malcolm Jardine
09-29-2005, 02:21 PM
All the best clamps have screw terminals for the wire. In addition, treating the cable ends with a contact preserver is a good idea.

Thanks Katherine. I thought you designed roof racks. :D

09-29-2005, 02:30 PM
Some have screws, some have crimps, and some have a combination. Whatever the connection, a high quality one will perform better in cold temps.

PMJ, at last count I have better then a dozen different projects currently running.

Peter Malcolm Jardine
09-29-2005, 02:34 PM
and you still have time to save all of us. So charitable. :D

09-29-2005, 02:44 PM
PMJ, you must have some serious personal issues to work out if my politely answering a question, on a subject of which I am knowledgeable, bothers you so much. :rolleyes:

edited for spelling because I type to fast. :D

[ 09-29-2005, 03:54 PM: Message edited by: Katherine ]

Peter Malcolm Jardine
09-29-2005, 02:47 PM
No, I work half the time for myself, so personnel issues aren't a problem. ;)

Paul Pless
09-29-2005, 04:09 PM
Katherine, thankyou for your kind suggestion, actually the NAPA guy did screw the new clamps on very tightly.

PMJ, your a jackass

09-29-2005, 04:14 PM
Paul, good luck with the cables, I hope they work out well. I'd still go back to the body shop and try to get those others back.

Paul Pless
09-29-2005, 04:17 PM
Already been there, they blamed the tow truck driver, go figure. Wonder if I can add them to my insurance claim?

09-29-2005, 04:22 PM
You could try. Did you ask the driver?

09-29-2005, 05:31 PM
Originally posted by Jim Hillman:
Go back to the body shop, talk to the owner, then with his help go through all of the employee's vehicles. Most likely they're in someone's trunk.Yeah, forget the constitution and go for it! :D

09-29-2005, 05:33 PM
Meer, some employment agreements include the right to search your private vehicle if it's on company property.

[ 09-29-2005, 06:45 PM: Message edited by: Katherine ]

Domesticated_Mr. Know It All
09-29-2005, 07:12 PM
In the old days jumper cables weren't needed.
We just slapped the sucker in low gear, rolled down the hill and popped the clutch. :D
Away we went. smile.gif
When It stalled we just did it again.
I once put off buying a battery for about 3 months. ;)


I'm tellin ya, those old German cars were so simple.

Paul Pless
09-29-2005, 07:29 PM
once put off buying a battery for about 3 months.

While in college I put off buying a starter for my Triumph for my entire senior year :D

Del Lansing
09-29-2005, 08:10 PM
Graingers has some nice ones (I've been abusing a set for 20 years)
grainger cables (http://www.grainger.com/Grainger/productdetail.jsp?xi=xi&ItemId=1613540345&ccitem=)

Al Kahawl
09-29-2005, 08:31 PM
Ya kwite wellcum Paul, I likez ta help when ah kan but ah shoulda warned ya bring ya banqua

[ 09-29-2005, 09:32 PM: Message edited by: Al Kahawl ]

Paul Pless
09-29-2005, 08:38 PM
I'm quite willing to pay for quality and service, and that is exactly what I got.

09-30-2005, 09:39 AM
A pair of jumper cables walks into a bar. Bartender says, "Ok, I'll serve ya...just don't start anything"

09-30-2005, 12:33 PM
Paul....I left Myrtle Beach S.C. from the air base on a Thursday after lunch with all my personal effects in my old TR3A....first time I stopped for gas the battery wuz dead....I would put it in nuetral, push it myself to get it rolling...jump into the drivers seat and slam it into gear.....drove all the way to S.F. docks like that arriving late sat. night...bought a new battery when the car arrived in the Philippines 2 months later....and ...you may have gussed...the stole the battery enroute....

10-01-2005, 10:59 AM
Originally posted by Katherine:
Meer, some employment agreements include the right to search your private vehicle if it's on company property.If it came to it, a lawyer could beat any evidence found based on such an agreement. It's cohersive.

Paul Pless
10-01-2005, 11:06 AM
that may be true from a criminal law oerspective, however there's know reason that under civil law the right for an employer to search an employee's vehicle could not be a condition of employment or even continued employment.

BTW, the insurance company is going to cover the loss. They didn't seem concerned about it, but hell they cover 5 cars, 2 tractors, and a boat for me.

Domesticated_Mr. Know It All
10-01-2005, 11:22 AM
When dealing with the government, IRS and insurance companys, I'd suggest getting a big tube of this. ;) :D