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Old 12-15-08, 10:45 AM   #1
quittaboy
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Bike "reclamation" - Chicago

So, I have a question to which I'm sure I'll receive lots of witty responses and people telling me about the law.

Chicago: On my walk from the bus to my office there is a beautiful older (1989, I believe) periwinkle alum frame Trek 1000 with pink lettering. It's been locked up to a street sign for at least 4 months. It's been completely stripped down to the frame. The only things remaining are the chain, frame and handlebars (with the STI shifters still attached). This bike has obviously been abandoned. It's such a beautiful old frame it pains me to walk by it every day. I'd love to see it restored (maybe even as a single speed, though it has the shifters). Is there any recourse for someone wanting to lay claim to an abandoned bike? Is there a service that can remove the lock? Before you chime in, yes, I know it's not mine. I know that taking it essentially amounts to stealing. I'd prefer to think of it as "reclamation" Its original owner obviously has no interest in it and it's such a shame to see it sitting there unused. I'm just asking innocently if there is a way to "get it". Should I contact the city?

Thanks for any advice.
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Old 12-15-08, 12:25 PM   #2
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i've wondered this myself. am interested in the responses.
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Old 12-15-08, 12:45 PM   #3
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This has been talked about many many times.
Basically, since this one is clearly abandoned, completely non-ridable, etc. a lot of people will say go for it, ask the business that it's locked up in front of if they would like to to take it away fro them, then take it, take it but donate it.
Some people will still say don't take it, it's someones, it's theft, maybe they still want it.
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Old 12-18-08, 12:40 AM   #4
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ok well i would say if it has been abandoned then it's free game esp if it outs in the open and been parted out, as for legal ways you can contact your city and see what the law is surrounding such issues, also contact whomever it is locked up in front of and see what they have to say, and if your worried leave a note on it with your contact info, what kind of lock is it anyways?
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Old 12-18-08, 01:23 AM   #5
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Law abiding? Call 311.

http://www.chicagobikes.org/forms/abandonedbike.php

In this case, you'll never see it again, not even at a police auction. But chances are it won't even be picked up. Personally I don't know my stand on this issue and I see these situations every day... but I kinda like bikes rusting over under train tracks.
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Old 12-18-08, 04:18 PM   #6
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If you really want it, take it. Just don't ask for advice around here; that will just lead to a six page long dissertation on the ethics of what to do with an abandonded bike.

Take it. No one is looking.
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Old 12-19-08, 01:50 PM   #7
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3 in the morning, lock cutter, be quick. But only because it has been abandoned
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Old 12-19-08, 02:55 PM   #8
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It's not yours. Nuff said. Take the frame and you are on the same level as the folks who stripped all the other parts, except that you took the biggest part.

Ablaut has the right answer.
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Old 12-21-08, 07:53 AM   #9
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It's not yours. Nuff said. Take the frame and you are on the same level as the folks who stripped all the other parts, except that you took the biggest part.

Ablaut has the right answer.
Do the right thing by calling, and the bike will indeed be 'reclaimed' and put back on the street to be used by someone who could use the bike.

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