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Piercings and flying!


Postby xlaetizia » Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:24 am

I will be flying to Ireland next year and I am worried about my three 12g genital piercings.
I don't want to have any issues with them setting off a detector or even worse, having to spread it for some TSA *******. I am trying to find a non-metal jewelry, but I'm having a hard time finding something even on this site (I want circular barbels or CBRs in small diameters for two and a curved barbel for the other).
I've never actually flown before, and I don't know if I should be this concerned or what.
Thanks.
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Postby Cloud » Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:42 am

This topic comes up often, and I'm going to sticky it. (I also changed the title slightly, because it's not just genital piercings that create an issue.) My take on it is this:

--the experience among members of the body mod community with piercings and security--varies. Some people swear they sail through various airports with no problem; others have told horror stories up to and including having to remove all jewelry before boarding. The amount of scrutiny and power settings on the machines also varies from airport to airport.

--Most good body jewelry made of implant steel and titanium will not set off the metal detectors, even in large gauges

--If you go through the backscatter machines (the kind that x-rays you through your clothes) body jewelry will show up whether it's metal or not. At this point, you will automatically be patted down. Be ready for this--it's part of being a pierced person. You need to plan extra time at the airport to go through security.

--Be polite to the TSA drones! Don't argue, but if necessary you can request a supervisor if there's a problem. My feeling is you should never have to remove jewelry before boarding, but you must be ready to prove it's only jewelry.

--if you are traveling with family members or co-workers who do not know you are pierced, this could be a problem. You will have to either own up, or arrange to go through security separately from the rest of your party.

My personal experience, with several large gauge piercings, is I have never set off the metal detector. However, my airport has backscatter machines installed, and last time I flew, they pulled me for a pat down. I requested a private room, and the pat down was very professional and non-intrusive. A non-event for me.
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Postby xlaetizia » Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:33 am

Thanks so much for your thorough reply! Since they will apparently be able to see my jewelry regardless of what it's made of do you think I should just leave in what I have (SS)?
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Postby Cloud » Sun Feb 12, 2012 2:44 pm

you'll have to decide for yourself. If it's easy to change them by yourself to non-metallic (mine are not) you might consider that. Look around the site for some other threads and see what other people have to say. (e.g., search for "detector")
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Postby illustratedman » Sun Feb 12, 2012 5:21 pm

I agree with Cloud completely. When I was working I travelled by air on a regular basis and never once set off the metal detector, this is with 21 piercings and a 00 gauge PA. If you go through the x ray they will see your piercings be they metal or other materials. I spoke with a TSA agent and his take was leave them in, so long as they know what they are your OK.
My two cents worth. u:0)
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Postby blackberrys49 » Sun Feb 12, 2012 9:22 pm

u:Aaahhh I wouldnt give it much thought particularly if your wearing 12ga surgical steel simply because that's not very much metal. But I do understand how apprehensive this may be. When I started, I'd slip into the men's room to remove my PA ring and replace once going through security. However now that I wear a guiche as well, it's alittle more difficult to remove so I've decided it's a part of my package and should it become detected, well they'd have to deal with it!
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Postby xlaetizia » Mon Feb 13, 2012 6:16 pm

Thanks everyone for your help! I do have about a year to figure out exactly what I want to do. I'm cool with the TSA people knowing what's down there, but I don't want them to make me take them out. I will initially be flying out of a Podunk little regional airport, and I've heard TSA in the smaller airports can be more draconian. I hope that's not the case!
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Postby csquid » Mon Feb 13, 2012 6:40 pm

How podunk are we talking? I work at what I consider a podunk airport, and the only TSA presence is to make sure that back-ground check are being performed on anyone who wants to take flight lessons.
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Postby 3timeslucky » Tue Feb 14, 2012 1:41 am

All the Aussie airports now have the body scanners (or will soon) I will be removing my jewellery before hand as I will be travelling with 3 small kids and the hassle of any delay is torture!!! I have no problem re-inserting my 6ga after a few hours anyway - so it's no biggie....
3timeslucky is waiting for her 2ga VCH jewellery. VERY excited!
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Postby Scotty55 » Tue Feb 14, 2012 10:21 am

Flying anywhere in the U.S. anymore is a pain in the neck. I had to fly from Spokane to San Diego this week on business. My piercings are healing, relatively new so I did not remove the stainless jewelry. I've also got a couple titanium pins in one knee that in the past set-off the scanners.

I was surprised when I walked through the scanner at Spokane on my outbound leg and did not set it off! On my way home I was not so fortunate in San Diego u:( . My knee they breezed past, but got excited when they passed the hand held scanner over my crotch. I explained to the female TSA agent, they escorted me to a interview room, and like most "brass badge packing ********" got pushy!!! There were two agents in the room, the female agent got cute and asked me what would set off their scanner...I unbuttoned...unzipped and pulled my penis out...she turned beat-red and backed away. They relented and let me proceed to the boarding gate.

Before I walked away I fired a broad side into the woman. Now that you've violated my rights, I need a badge number and identification! I sat down in the terminal and called her superior then filled a written complaint on my laptop.

You are a citizen of the U.S. I assume. It is the obligation of every citizen to call these people when they screw the pooch! If more of us do this we might start putting the TSA in check! However, it seems most people in this country live in fear of law enforcement.

I served this nation for ten years in the Air Force, I'm the real thing "PATRIOT" (most Americans have no idea what that means anymore), and I refuse to allow the abuses of our government! Our constitution and bill of rights was written to protect our individual liberties!

Stand-up and start doing the same, stop altering how you do things to appease the governmental agencies! The Patriot Act is unconstitutional, as is the dept. of homeland security and their employees.

We called down the thunder on ourselves at "911"! Our government and its foreign policy ensured we would be attacked at some juncture. If the U.S.had been minding its business, instead of sticking its nose into every other nation's in the world we would be much better off!

Scotty
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