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"Hacking" Tomra Bottle Return Machines


jht129
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Alright, so lately I was at a can drive event for one of my school clubs, and we collected around 3000 cans, then we took them to a Kroger which had 3, yes only 3 bottle return machines, tomra brand. They all kept breaking and taking money off. For example, when I put in 4 cans, it broke and printed a reciept for only 2 cans (20 cents) but really was supposed to be 40 cents.

My question: Is there any way of ahem "exploiting" these machines as to gain money?

Yes, I have searched Google, but only to find no relevant results.

Also, my friend opened up one of the machines and there is a numeric keypad inside. To reset the machine, I believe he pressed "[OK] [1][0][0] [OK]". Are there any more combinations that do anything else? Thanks!

8-)

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I used to cheat return machines inside Stop and Shop.  I'd cut out the UPC on a redeemable and photocopy it.  I printed the bar code out, scraped the existing bar code off of a non-redeemable (just so it didn't interfere) and painted the area white.  I then pasted on the printed UPC and got 5 cents for it.  It's such at time consuming process that it's not worth it though.

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Wouldn't it just be easier to get a a lock pick, a fake Stop and Shop shirt and go in and steal it?

Nah, the newer machines don't give out change, they print out a slip and you have to take it to customer service to get your money.  The only thing you'll be stealing out of the machine is shredded plastic bottles or shattered glass.

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Wouldn't it just be easier to get a a lock pick, a fake Stop and Shop shirt and go in and steal it?

First of all, there would be security cameras because their warehouse is right behind the machines (both stores).

Well you could, but most of them are left unlocked, the store is Kroger/Meijer, and what would there be to steal? Empty bottles and cans?

I wonder if there is a way to exploit the machines into thinking you've scanned many many cans, and then have the machine print the slip. Or even bettter, Well I like Cosmo's idea, but it is time consuming. Just make the machine print out a slip for you.

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When I used to work in the supermarket, I manned one of those things (though not sure about the brand).

The best way to cheat is with the crate intake. It' s on a belt, that goes on to a lane of round bars (you know what I mean. The belt is so the machine can move it into position within the device, and the bars after it are to make it roll down a slide where they can be collected by the guy operating the machine).

If you attach a piece of rope to the crate you can probably pull the crate back into the machine after the belt has slit it onto those round bars. Just make sure you don't call too much attention to yourself as you're doing this. Those fucking things make a LOT of noise when they jam up, but since that happens a lot aswell that alone won't call _that_ much attention to you.

It wasn't uncommon for us to find some kid trying to dive into the machine via the crate intake in order to pull out a crate. Using a rope is probably less conspicuous and won't get you as dirty either.

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When I used to work in the supermarket, I manned one of those things (though not sure about the brand).

The best way to cheat is with the crate intake. It' s on a belt, that goes on to a lane of round bars (you know what I mean. The belt is so the machine can move it into position within the device, and the bars after it are to make it roll down a slide where they can be collected by the guy operating the machine).

If you attach a piece of rope to the crate you can probably pull the crate back into the machine after the belt has slit it onto those round bars. Just make sure you don't call too much attention to yourself as you're doing this. Those fucking things make a LOT of noise when they jam up, but since that happens a lot aswell that alone won't call _that_ much attention to you.

It wasn't uncommon for us to find some kid trying to dive into the machine via the crate intake in order to pull out a crate. Using a rope is probably less conspicuous and won't get you as dirty either.

Thanks for the explanation, but over here, you first feed the can/bottle into the machine. Second, it scans the barcode and registers that it is worth 10 cents. The object then moves on to a second belt where it is either pushed to the right/left depending on where cans and bottles go. (Separate containers). I see no crate intake or anything similar.

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Thanks for the explanation, but over here, you first feed the can/bottle into the machine. Second, it scans the barcode and registers that it is worth 10 cents. The object then moves on to a second belt where it is either pushed to the right/left depending on where cans and bottles go. (Separate containers). I see no crate intake or anything similar.

Are you sure it scans the _barcode_?

Far more likely is that it checks the shape and weight of the bottle. That's how all the machines here work, and have worked for as long as I can remember. Try testing this by

1) letting one bottle stand too close to a fire so its shape becomes distorted

2) taking a bottle that doesn't have a return value, slap on a label from a bottle that does, and feed it into the machine

3) removing the label from a bottle that does have a return value and feed it in to see if you get paid.

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Thanks for the explanation, but over here, you first feed the can/bottle into the machine. Second, it scans the barcode and registers that it is worth 10 cents. The object then moves on to a second belt where it is either pushed to the right/left depending on where cans and bottles go. (Separate containers). I see no crate intake or anything similar.

Are you sure it scans the _barcode_?

Far more likely is that it checks the shape and weight of the bottle. That's how all the machines here work, and have worked for as long as I can remember. Try testing this by

1) letting one bottle stand too close to a fire so its shape becomes distorted

2) taking a bottle that doesn't have a return value, slap on a label from a bottle that does, and feed it into the machine

3) removing the label from a bottle that does have a return value and feed it in to see if you get paid.

Yes i am positive it scans the barcode, because if you insert a bottle without a label, then it will NOT take it. if I crumble a can or dent a bottle by the barcode, it still does NOT take it. So I'm pretty sure that it scans the barcode. For more information, go to Tomra.com and look for T-83 HCp.

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Great!

1. Get some non-refund bottles

2. Scan and then print out some bar codes for refund bottles

3. Replace the barcode that's already on the bottle with your printed one

4. Profit!

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I'm sure it is, but that's not what this guy was asking for.

Back when I operated such a machine, every so often (like 5 times a day) the machine would choke on the bottles given to it, at which point the customer went to a side window where we would take in the old, flawed ticket, manually take in the remaining bottles and stuff, and print him a silly receipt for the total amount to be refunded, sign that and send him into the store.

We could've EASILY printed and signed receipts for insane amounts, exchange that for money and then be on our merry way, but that does of course make us look rather suspicious rather quickly. On the other hand, we did end up with a lot of valid, machine-printed tickets... What can I say? Machines don't make mistakes. :P

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Great!

1. Get some non-refund bottles

2. Scan and then print out some bar codes for refund bottles

3. Replace the barcode that's already on the bottle with your printed one

4. Profit!

I already suggested that.  I used to do it, but the return is not worth the investment ;)

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That's why the beer crates were interesting. They have a refund of about 7 euros (they changed after the euro came around, and I never bought one myself so not sure) and it's not uncommon, particularly in summer with a camping nearby, to see a bunch of kids come into the store with about 2 empty crates a piece, trying to act tough by loudly proclaiming from start to finish how they drank that shit in one evening, and needing even more for this evening.

Hell, we had one customer (a friendly guy but 2 inches away from being an alcoholic bum) who would come in _every_ _single_ _weekend_ with about 5 crates. When I asked him about it, he told me he always had friends come over, and his wife would be standing behind him with a look on her face that told a rather different story. :)

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