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Thread: TSA check-in baggage

  1. #1
    Enlightened Boss Hogg's Avatar
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    Default TSA check-in baggage

    Now if a knife is put into checked-in baggage will TSA still confiscate knives? The type of knives would be just your basic EDC folders, nothing too big. I've done a lot of traveling and I know they look all the bags because they leave a notice each time. Wondering if someone can provide a heads up on this.

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    *Flashaholic* Patriot's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    They won't confiscate knives but unfortunately they're easy to steal now since they're no longer locked. Last couple of times I had fly I only took two older, less expensive knives in order to avoid any heartbreak. There's some discussion about it over at bladeforums and knifeforums, but yes, there is some risk for your knives disappearing.

  3. #3
    Enlightened Boss Hogg's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    Thanks Patriot. I guess that about sums it up. Theft is the concern and don't put in any blade you not willing to part with.

  4. #4

    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    I normally carry mine in my pistol case since you can use your own locks on a firearms case and they inspect it in your presence. I have also heard of some photographers carrying starter pistols (non gun) in their camera case and could then use their own locks as if it was an actual pistol.

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    Flashaholic sed6's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    TSA actually searches very few checked bags. They all get x-rayed, etc but there is no time for visual searches. I fly 5-6 times a year and have never had anything turn up missing from my checked baggage; no missing guns, no missing knives, no missing anything. Sure things can happen but missing property is a rarity. No I'm no fan of TSA, I hate TSA but not as much as I hate perputated and unsubstantiated rumors.
    -Scott
    OKC, OK

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    Flashaholic* gallonoffuel's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    I fly every 2 weeks on average and haven't had to check a bag in about a year, except last week. Since I was checking it anyway, I brought some items I normally leave home like my KZ 'tactical' pen, CRKT M16-13SF, and my E2DL. On my return trip, I saw my zip tie was cut and a note from TSA in Huntsville that they checked my bag. Nothing was missing though. Not sure what they were interested in. Also, they did not re-secure the zippers.

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    Flashaholic commodorewheeler's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    Quote Originally Posted by Boss Hogg View Post
    Now if a knife is put into checked-in baggage will TSA still confiscate knives? The type of knives would be just your basic EDC folders, nothing too big. I've done a lot of traveling and I know they look all the bags because they leave a notice each time. Wondering if someone can provide a heads up on this.
    TSA will not confiscate any knife that is legal to carry where you are if it is in checked luggage, but on rare occasions, a dishonest TSA employee could steal your knife out of your checked luggage.

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    Flashaholic* Pellidon's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    If it is a suit case or a duffel type bag they usually x-ray and let it go. If it looks like a tool box or a camera case they still open it. Most of the time they close it back up properly. In their early days, they would lose or break something on 4 out of 5 of my trips. They are a lot better now. I have about 70 of the slips they leave in your bag when they inspect it taped to the wall behind my desk at work.

    Now if you try to 'cheat' the airline and put a tool box inside a suitcase to keep from paying for two bags, they will open and inspect as the x-ray shows a lump.

    The sticky finger people are mostly gone now. I recall an article where they sacked several thousand nationwide for getting caught nicking stuff on video.
    My doctor says I am a paranoid narcissist. I have the feeling I am plotting against myself.
    Rule #9: Always carry a knife. Rule #9a: Always carry a flashlight.

  9. #9
    Flashaholic tundratrader's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    I have never had a problem just throwing my knives in my shaving kit bag. I would say anything can be stolen. Most bags are not searched unless something else is suspicious. It might not be the best idea to carry a high end knife while traveling anyways but I feel naked without them. I like the idea of carrying a pistol case. I have thrown my knives into my rifle cases before. The problem with locks is that if you get one of the TSA locks. There are only a few different keys to open all of them.
    Zach
    New to being a Flashoholic but have always had a taste for the good stuff. I edc a Malkoff MD2 with M60W or Surefire C2 with m61. XM-18 along with Victorinox cybertool 29 and Leatherman crunch.

  10. #10
    *Flashaholic* Monocrom's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    As far as airports go, whether carry-on or checked luggage, never take anything that you're not willing to have confiscated or outright stolen by a TSA employee. As with all jobs, there are honest folks, low-life folks, and folks who fall somewhere in between.

    I rarely fly. But when I do, I don't bring my best gear.
    "The World is insane. With tiny spots of sanity, here and there... Not the other way around!" - John Cleese.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    Knives are allowed by TSA for checkin. As well as any other sharp object with seemingly no restrictions.
    http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/prohibited/permitted-prohibited-items.shtm

    (It is interesting that "Scissors - metal with pointed tips and blades shorter than four inches" are allowed as carry-on. Aren't they just two knives attached in the middle?)

    Anyway, I log about 100-150k miles per year flying both internationally and domestically. I usually have a small folding knife or sheathed fruit knife in my checkin and have never had a problem. Although once in China where security screening is very strict, they did open up my suitcase and look for the knife. They took it out, opened it, closed it, and put it back in, no questions asked. China did the same thing with a McGizmo flashlight once before too. In the US, I get those TSA inspection slips about 1/4 of the time. I don't mind it, in fact, I think it's pretty nice of them to let you know they've been in there.

    Personally, I haven't had any issues with theft, but my rule is that I don't checkin anything that I can't replace by spending money because that is what you will have to do if your suitcase gets lost or delayed. Stuff that can't be replaced stays with me as carry on.

  12. #12
    *Flashaholic* LuxLuthor's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    On a somewhat related, but absolutely shocking security breach, this ABC News story is linked on www.drudgereport.com today and further gives a link to download the entire TSA procedures 96 page PDF manual. Suddenly I feel a lot less interested in flying.

  13. #13
    Enlightened Boss Hogg's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    Why are there so many scissors and knives that have been confiscated up on Ebay? I mean I understand if someone accidentally tries to carry a Vic Classic on board, but some of the items are fairly large...poor packing? Just curious.

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    Flashaholic* Pellidon's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    Some people don't remember having the items in the pockets. Especially if they are not seasoned travellers. By the time they get to screening, they can't go back and pack it in checked bags. The alternative is go to the car if time allows and it is in the lot or ship it at a self ship kiosk. Most opt to leave it with the TSA. Several airports sell the stuff in large lots and some flea market vendors get them to sell. One knife seller at the gun shows cherry picks the Swiss Army knives to sell at a premium and sells the small ones for $2-3 each. I have gotten some good deals scrounging through his boxes of such knives.

    A little buffing with some simichrome polish and the grungy scales are spiffy.

    I did get a box of 10 Cadet models once off Ebay cheap. Made great gifts.

    It doesn't take TSA long to accumulate a bushel basket of such turn ins. We are a forgetful lot.
    My doctor says I am a paranoid narcissist. I have the feeling I am plotting against myself.
    Rule #9: Always carry a knife. Rule #9a: Always carry a flashlight.

  15. #15
    Flashaholic* RedLed's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    Quote Originally Posted by WillnTex View Post
    I normally carry mine in my pistol case since you can use your own locks on a firearms case and they inspect it in your presence. I have also heard of some photographers carrying starter pistols (non gun) in their camera case and could then use their own locks as if it was an actual pistol.
    I just send everything ahead via FedEx. No way are they going to have my 400 2.8, or any of my gear.

    I even send my suitcase ahead. It may cost you, but no TSA worries, and most of the time my clients understand, and I figure it in the expenses of the project.

  16. #16
    Flashaholic* Pellidon's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    Plus shipping ahead may save $$$ over some airlines baggage fees.
    My doctor says I am a paranoid narcissist. I have the feeling I am plotting against myself.
    Rule #9: Always carry a knife. Rule #9a: Always carry a flashlight.

  17. #17
    Flashaholic* skyfire's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    i work at a major airport, and have worked for a few different airlines.

    i never check a bag unless i have to. and would give the same advise to others. ive traveled for weeks with just a backpack.

    airlines are not responsible for any lost items in checked baggage, because it states in the fine print "do not put electronics, laptops, valuebles etc etc"

    TSA is a bloaded beauracracy. they hire just about anyone, someone that checks out clean with a 10 year background test only means they havent been caught. and there are still offenses that are acceptable.

    all in all, the chances of someone stealing your stuff are higher the more set of hands handling it, meaning if your transfering flights or airlines. alot of the personel that transfers bags at airlines are contract companies, and they too dont have a strict hiring process, they also dont get paid much, most likely disgruntled and probably dont care if they lose their job.

    of course the precentage arent high considering the traffic of thousands to hundreds of thousands of passengers a day.

    not to mention the possibility of your bag missing your flight or getting lost.
    oh and if your bag did miss the flight, many airlines are obligated to deliver your bag to your home free of charge. of course they never mention this because it costs them alot of money to do this.

  18. #18

    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    This article was in todays Wall Street Journal RE: airline thefts

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...475913542.html

  19. #19
    *Flashaholic* Monocrom's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    Quote Originally Posted by divechief View Post
    This article was in todays Wall Street Journal RE: airline thefts

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...475913542.html
    The part about soldiers' bags being specifically singled out, made my blood boil.
    "The World is insane. With tiny spots of sanity, here and there... Not the other way around!" - John Cleese.

  20. #20
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    Sure, but DHS lists Veterans as a security thread.

    Here you go:
    http://www.wnd.com/images/dhs-rightwing-extremism.pdf

    (U//FOUO) The possible passage of new restrictions on firearms and the return of
    military veterans facing significant challenges reintegrating into their communities
    could lead to the potential emergence of terrorist groups or lone wolf extremists
    capable of carrying out violent attacks.
    Oh, and guess what: If you support your own rights (2nd amendment right "The right to keep and bear arms SHALL NOT BE infringed"), you are also listed as a threat.

    Got to love this passage:
    (U//FOUO) Rightwing extremist paranoia of foreign regimes could escalate or be
    magnified in the event of an economic crisis or military confrontation, harkening back to
    the “New World Order” conspiracy theories of the 1990s. The dissolution of Communist
    countries in Eastern Europe and the end of the Soviet Union in the 1990s led some
    rightwing extremists to believe that a “New World Order” would bring about a world
    government that would usurp the sovereignty of the United States and its Constitution,
    thus infringing upon their liberty. The dynamics in 2009 are somewhat similar, as other
    countries, including China, India, and Russia, as well as some smaller, oil-producing
    states, are experiencing a rise in economic power and influence.
    Sure, sure, that only happens in Europe, right? (nation states right's being abolished in favor of a bureaucratic, undemocratic, unlimited-power, international government).... right? (I am in The Netherlands btw)

    But heck, if the US would follow it's constitution, the bureaucrat that wrote this, would have had no job.
    Last edited by jcvjcvjcvjcv; 12-19-2009 at 12:32 AM.

  21. #21

    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    Like others have said here - "legal' carry on stuff can be taken any time - if it passes supervisor ok, you're good to go. Otherwise, you can mail it to youself for about 10 bucks from the screening area if not. Checked bags are subject to a lot of folks with little screening/ background. Be very wary of things in checked bags. Too bad we're at this point now. And yes, us military are tagged more as well as crew members- go figure.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    Ken Onion had a theft while flying - a bag of knives for display at a show! I would hate to think of the value, if you could put a value on them at all.

    I would advise only checking easily replaceable knives and leaving expensive or sentimental ones at home or mailing them ahead.
    So many lights, so little money (cause I spent it on lights). I'm not afraid of the dark, the dark is afraid of ME!

  23. #23
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    Put some GPS stuff in the bag.

  24. #24
    Flashaholic* RA40's Avatar
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    Default Re: TSA check-in baggage

    Among my circle of friends, theft is sporadic. Maybe 1 in 15 of us has had something lifted which fortunately is a smallish easily replaced item. Sunglasses, maybe some souvenirs. As knife makers, many of us are quite paranoid about check-in and what we place in a suitcase to begin with. (Ken's knife theft at the Plaza show was a big wake-up.)

    I carry back most goodies obtained in a rolling carry-on. If it doesn't fit it is shipped ahead. No guarantees with Customs or the shipping company so it still is at risk.

    For check-in luggage, I do carry a small low end knife that is zip tied to one of the inside retainers. If they cut the zip tie, fine but it's not like they can just pluck it out. Same is done for other small items that can be secured in this way.
    Mike

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