Advice needed on odd problem - Need some kind of rustproof clips to grip about 3/8" steel rod tightly & neatly

What I have are six wrought iron candle stakes that I am going to use in the yard near the front or side sidewalk where they will be very visible for either tealights or little potted plants. I'm afraid somebody will steal them (neighbor got some of his garden stuff stolen a couple weeks ago).
I've been kicking around what to do for some time now while I worked to clean them up, prime them and paint with rustoleum. I thought at first to anchor them in concrete in a brick? Anchor them in concrete in a cutoff pepsi bottle as a form? Etc. Then bury or "plant" them.
Now I have decided the easiest thing would be to cut the top off a pepsi bottle part way, leaving about 6-8 inches (not sure about exact amount), and drill? a hole in the bottom, stick the stake end through the hole, clip it with something that can be removed but not while it's underground, under the bottle, and bury that. Those bottoms are tough and I can't cut into the bottom with my exacto knife.
What I need is some kind of clip that will grip underneath so if somebody tries to pull them up, they will meet with resistance from the weight of the dirt that will be filling the pepsi bottle. If I don't clip them, the stake will just pull out of the hole in the bottle and dirt.
With the latter method, I don't have to ruin my stakes by anchoring them in concrete or something permanent. It will be a nuisance if I want to move them or bring them in for the winter, but if it's not one thing, it's another.
Maybe somebody has a better idea with pvc pipe or something I wouldn't think of. Somebody suggested on another forum that I link them all together with chains and bury all that, but that would be really difficult for me, first the securing part of the chains and secondly burying all that mess.
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Bend a couple inches of the rod 90* - that will stop it from coming through.
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You mean on the bottom of the stakes? I can't do that without paying someone to do it that has the right tools or equipment, plus I would lose height. That will make it harder to push them in the ground like they are designed in the first place; they have pointed ends. Thanks though. As a last resort might try to do that.

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Maybe I misunderstood. I thought you said the stake would be thru the bottom of the pepsi bottle which you were going to bury (Not pushing the stake in the ground). Maybe it's a "U bolt" (cable clamp) that you need with or without a washer.
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wrote in message Maybe I

That was my idea. U bolt cable clamp maybe washer. Now I know something to ask for at the hardware store and not get a blank look from the young guys that help you. They do their best and you do get waited on there, usually quickly. Thank you
Sometimes you have to do the next best thing. I do have some concrete rubble I could fill the pepsi bottles with which would be heavier than dirt and the bottle would keep most of it contained (don't want that stuff back in the planting areas). I could fill them just before I cover with dirt so I won't scratch up the paint as bad. I'm anticipating touchup maintenance every so often so they don't rust and will last longer. As if that matters because I am getting up in years.

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Finding the keyboard operational I Love Lucy entered:

Cut top off Pepsi bottle, poke hole in bottom of bottle. (heat one stake and use it to poke the hole) Put stake in the open top down through the hole in the bottom. Lash, braze, epoxy a good sized nail to the bottom the stake so it won't pull back through. Bury the whole thing. Pack the dirt HARD on top of the bottle. Add the rubble in the bottle if you wish. This won' t stop a determined thief but it will slow him down. If you really want to stop a thief. Weld a chain from post to post with a concrete block threaded on the chain between each post. Set the posts in conrete too. Get an extension welded on the posts to retain the height. Bury the whole shooting match with the blocks as low as you can get them. Isn't sad that we have reached the point that we have to think like this. Bob
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wrote in message Maybe I

So far so good until you came to the heating. I'm not heating my freshly painted stakes even though being in the ground will yuck them up. I could heat something similar; iron conducts heat very far, so I would have to use a potholder, I think, doubled.
Put stake in the open top down through the hole

Had that much thought out.
Lash, braze, epoxy a good sized nail to the bottom the stake

I sure have the nails the cement guy left in the yard. But how well will epoxy hold up underground? I kind of liked those clips even if they cost a little.
Bury the whole thing. Pack the dirt HARD on

I wasn't going to pack it hard enough. I could pour cement in them and use a little wider plastic pipe to make the hole loose, then take it out or leave it in if the stake will go through it.
. Add the rubble in the bottle if you wish.
I'll have to sift through it, to find the smaller stuff.

No. I could slow him down, but it ain't legal.
If you really

You want me to weld? I don't think so. But that is a darn good idea if I knew they were going to be there permanently. Be very hard to move.
Set the posts in conrete too.
That's what I wanted to avoid.
Get

Now my iron guy will charge a lot for that.
Bury the whole

That is almost foolproof. Instead of the pepsi bottle, I could pour concrete (I think I can mix that, not sure) into a concrete block with a tube a little larger than the stake so it would slip through. And use one of those clips. Or the nail.

Yes. It's crazy. They only cost $10 at a garage sale but they are beautiful. I might be able to get $60 for them on ebay. No, I'm not good on ebay. But I don't want to sell them anyway. I could use something a little larger than a pepsi bottle. But then the extension would probably be necessary because so much would be going into the ground. I could go with a chain above the clip and under the washer though maybe? I may not be able to dig that dirt on the hill. It's packed tight. I have an augur for my drill, but that won't get me deep enough. I could get a bigger one :-).
I also kicked around using my son's weights that are in my garage. I can barely lift them, without looking, I think they have a big hole in them, not sure. That would negate using an extension, would need to modify the clip.
On the hillside they will have to go deep or the bottle or whatever will show. Maybe I can rig up something with the weights. Maybe I can get my son to do it for me now that we have a "plan" with some options.. I wanted to hang my bicycle upside down in the basement, got the holes drilled in the rafters, heavy eye hooks screwed in, plastic cut just the right size, bungee cords ready, couldn't lift the bike upsidedown. Waited for help. Son stops over. He's in a hurry as usual. Balked. I said I've got everything ready, all I need is for you to help me lift the bike up. Done in less than 3 minutes.
Maybe I'll just pay somebody to do it like I do most everything else if I get everything ready to go.
Oh, and thanks.

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I Love Lucy wrote:

A Pepsi bottle seems a little small to me. I would use a post hole digger and just pour the concrete in the hole. A good thing to anchor the post in the concrete is to get some grounding wire clamps at the local hardware store and just attach them to the post end where it will be buried in the concrete. No one will be able to pull the post from the concrete. See type of clamps here: http://www.fciconnect.com/electrical-connector/ground-clamp.htm
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Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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Yes, it is, but I'm trying to do some things without hiring them done, and I can't handle a post hole digger. I will be doing well to get a deep enough hole dug as it is, and it is on a hillside near steps (partly excavated to pour new steps and not filled back in waiting for completion of railing) and cement guy got a full-time job and I am tired of waiting for him to finish the rest of that, patches need grinding, he doesn't have a grinder; if I put them lining the front sidewalk (up to the house), it is level and rototilled ready for the arbor and fall planting. Also I want them surrounded with plants, possibly lilies, and I don't want something so large it will mess up that plan although they would adapt to concrete spaced out no doubt. I thought I would like them better by the back steps opposite the new railing.
They are made to just poke in the ground. I don't have much invested in them but time and work, but they are so pretty I don't want to lose them if I can avoid it.
I would use a post hole

That's what I didn't want to do. If I want to move them, that requires mega digging which I can't do. Otherwise that is the obvious and best thing to do.

Please could you check your link? I got a power/utility station schematic. I have two arbors sitting in my sunroom that need post hole digging, been here two months, waiting for help for which I'm prepared to pay and one a tree has to be dealt with, and they will need a post hole digger. Too much for me.
It takes me a lot longer to get things done than other people partly waiting for help and partly pacing myself, doing things a little at a time.

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I Love Lucy wrote:

http://www.doityourself.com/icat/groundrodsclamps
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Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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Bingo and bookmarked. Now I hope I can buy those at the hardware or electrical supply store. There are several there that would work nicely and not too expensive. The iron rods are about 5/16", looks like the 1/2" one might work. Probably don't have the right size hex bolt thingie. And the paper jammed in the printer, but I got it out.
If not, I will order from that place, maybe I will anyway unless they are wholesale or minimum order people, what size do you think? I like the gold roundish ones but will settle for anything rustproof that will work at this point..
Thanks so much. I googled as best I could on this one and without the proper nomenclature, you know what that means.
Now how do I cut the hole in the bottom of the pepsi bottle? Drill? Guess I'll just try and see what happens there. Betcha I don't have a wide enough bit. Nope. Will get one. Can't cut slits or they might tear. I think the washer is a good idea. A large one with the proper size of hole.
One stupid little project and look what you get yourself into.

Yeah, it sounded so ominous I didn't want to mess with that.

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Shoot one f the SOB that are stealing your stuff.
From Mel & Donnie in Bluebird Valley
http://community.webtv.net/MelKelly/TheKids
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It was my neighbor across the alley, and he was almost mad enough to do exactly that. I've kept most of my things locked up for years but wanted to make the yard look prettier. I'm still remember my nice lawn chairs with pretty webbing and wooden arms that were stolen years ago. My kids had two bikes stolen but we finally got them both back, one took a year. We saw the kid with it at the store and went and confronted him. And more over the years.
The scariest was when a man cut a screen and got in my daughter's apartment one hot summer, woke her up, and stole the gold wedding ring off her finger. We got it back because we could identify it by the initials engraved in it. They found it in a crack house. Guy went to prison for 25 years. Bet he's out by now though. I'm thankful he didn't rape or kill my daughter.

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Read through all this stuff and I have this thought which might help or not. While I know that you painted the poles and all, perhaps you could drill a hole through the bottom of it, maybe up an inch or two from the bottom. Then just put a large nail or a spike through that hole. Then you could slide anything big and round (like those weights) down the pole and it will be caught by that spike.
I am thinking that repainting the hole would be in order, but either way, with either the hole or a clamp, the metal will become exposed from the rubbing of metal to metal (or metal to paint). Maybe if you can get a spike to fit in the hole snugly, you can paint the whole thing after it is assembled, perhaps by dipping a few times. I suspect the weights are rubber or plastic coated, which will mitigate paint wear from those.
Also, and I bet you thought this, having something heavy on the bottom securely connected makes it much more stable when hanging heavy things from the top of the poles.
Hoping this might help, Tomes
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doable. After kicking around some of the ideas proposed here, I was thinking of finding something shallower for a cement mold, like a large shallow bowl, plastic storage stuff (have a container about right, square w/rounded corners to lessen breakoff, something, stick a little piece of hollow plastic pipe in that just a little larger in diameter than the stake, if I can find it, and go with the clips and/or nails under it all..
The weights are not uniform in size which probably doesn't matter all that much, plus I saw some at Goodwill if my son doesn't want me using his.
I'd need a vice to drill (maybe not. could rig something up I suppose, I usually manage something) and probably a heavy duty drill bit, more stuff to buy.
Now I've gotten so many good ideas I'm confused which way to go. I'm glad I ran it by the group because I don't want them sitting in the ground too deep as that would make them look odd and the pepsi bottle and burying them deep enough would make them too short, then would need the extensions suggested which I'm balking at. Already paying that place enough for custom rails as it is. Have to keep costs down.
As if all that isn't enough, I got 6 insulators that sit down in the holder end pretty snugly (don't care so much if those get stolen, they are cheap) and wish I could find some solar lights that would fit in them that don't cost an arm and a leg. That is probably asking too much. I looked all through ebay to get an idea what might be out there. People are putting out their solar lights and don't seem to worry about getting them stolen.
Then I will have to be careful that they are set straight because after all that, I don't want them leaning, but they can always be straightened I suppose.

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