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  1. #1
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    Locks and preventing bike theft.

    I had my bike stolen last year in Chicago (my wire chain was cut and bike was gone..Yes, yes I know, it was stupid.). I recently purchased a new bike and had special nuts/bolts put on the wheels and seat that I've read are about nearly impossible to break off. I also purchased a short U-lock (Kryptonite). I don't plan on being in the city biking too much (I live in the suburbs), but I wanted to make sure it was as safe as it could be and any other tips. Glad to be in the community!

    P.S. - I would of put this in an appropriate forum but I didn't see one on the main page.

  2. #2
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    It's a Kryptonite Evolution Mini 5.

  3. #3
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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-LWGJzglho

    key locks take a bit longer, and a bit more skill, but not much
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fvjp0...eature=related

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w_Gch...feature=fvwrel

    I can't find it now, but there was a video about freezing older u locks with compressed air cans and shattering them with a hammer.

    Moral of the story, locks only slow down criminals. Keep an eye on your bike.

  4. #4
    Uber Goober StephenH's Avatar
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    The main defense against bike theft is just not leaving a nice bike out where anyone can get it. If you're shopping and running errands, you use the old beater bike with a good lock; if you're out for the club ride, you use the nice bike but don't leave it anywhere and don't need a lock.
    "be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."

  5. #5
    Senior Member Seve's Avatar
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    If you can, take the bike inside with you.

    If not, then get at least 2 / 3 good quality different style / types of locks one for the front wheel/frame and one for the back wheel/frame. Something that would require at least a couple different tools or equipment to break. The goal being to make it difficult for any thief to do it quickly, require them to need more than a single tool and lessen the chance of being unnoticed while committing the act.

  6. #6
    Senior Member timmythology's Avatar
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    The only locking system I have used is a u-lock with a cable for the tires. When I only use the u-lock, it will go between a wheel and the frame to the staple rack.

    Also what Stephen says, my nice bike as been locked up twice. My mtb gets locked up all the time.
    .

  7. #7
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    All I can say is: it's a good thing thieves are stupid! Give me 4mm & 5mm hex wrenches, a #2 Philips screwdriver, wire cutters, and a small bolt cutter and I could strip virtually every component off a bike in a matter of seconds... Brifters, deraillers, brake calipers, stem, handlebar: they all come off very easily and disappear into a backpack without problem. Modern cranks and pedals aren't much more difficult to remove.

    This is why I generally don't let my bikes leave my sight... and reminds me that I need to call my insurance agent and make sure they're all covered!

  8. #8
    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    As sad as this is to type, there is really no way to 100% ensure your bicycle cannot be stolen. Every lock has a method in which is can be beaten, most of the time with common tools and not much time. Your goal is to make your bicycle less appealing to the crook than the bike sitting next to it on the rack. By using those lock nuts, a good U-lock, and a chain or cable lock with a disc, you've effectively forced the crock to beat three different lock types which take different methods to beat. This increases his or her time spent "on the job" and increases the likelihood that they will be caught.

    Park your bike in a well trafficked area and make sure it is locked in a manor that the bike sitting next to it is an easier target. If possible, park it next to a more expensive bike. Also keep in mind that no matter how good you lock it, if a professional thief wants it, they are going to take it.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Wogster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by buffscotty View Post
    I had my bike stolen last year in Chicago (my wire chain was cut and bike was gone..Yes, yes I know, it was stupid.). I recently purchased a new bike and had special nuts/bolts put on the wheels and seat that I've read are about nearly impossible to break off. I also purchased a short U-lock (Kryptonite). I don't plan on being in the city biking too much (I live in the suburbs), but I wanted to make sure it was as safe as it could be and any other tips. Glad to be in the community!

    P.S. - I would of put this in an appropriate forum but I didn't see one on the main page.
    No lock will prevent theft, professional thieves know how to defeat every lock that has ever been made. The key is to make your bike the least desirable on the rack, and that means good locking technique, the idea of two different independent locking mechanisms is time. A thief wants to be in and gone in as short a time as possible. You want the theft to take as long as possible, if you can extend the time investment to over a minute, and another bike in the rack can be stolen in under 10 seconds, which one do you think a thief will tackle.

    Best way to extend the time investment, get another lock, you want either cut proof chain, or a cable lock that is at least 12mm thick, here is how you lock your bicycle. Park it only in a place where there is a large object like a utility pole or a fence post, with a bar welded on the top, avoid chain link that is less then 6' high. Your U lock goes around your seat stays, with the rim in between, so one leg of the U goes on either side or the stays. The only way to remove it is to break the lock or the stays. Your cable/chain lock goes through the main triangle, through the wheel and around the object, now for a thief, they need to break both locks to steal the bicycle.

    If you have a nice bike, go find a beater bike, you use the nice bike only when you know you will not be leaving it unattended. The bike I take for shopping and errands is the mountain bike, it's an older one, it's heavy, looks like crap and is way to heavy, it also gets locked up well.

  10. #10
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    Don't forget to lock your door(s) at home. In nearly 30 years of locking bikes outside, the only thing i have had stolen is a seatpost QR. A week before this past Christmas we inadevertantly left our front door unlokced when we got home from dinner. Later that night, while we were upstairs in bed watching the news, some crackhead who was aparently trying doors discovered our oversight and I lost my Surly LHT with a custom Bekcman rack attached to it. Thank God he left the two IF's including mine, which was actually the closest bike to the front door. I know far more people who have had bikes lifted from yards and garages than from the street.

    Now we lock our two Surlys to each other and do the same with the IFs.

  11. #11
    Come here often? <wink> exile's Avatar
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    Like others have mentioned no bike is safe if a thief wants it. Locks are a deterrent. Fortunately, most thefts are crimes of opportunity.

    1. Always lock your bike. I use Sheldon Brown's method myself
    2. Lock your bike in a well lit, traveled, and public area
    3. Try to vary your times and places where you lock your bike
    4. You can try to camouflage your bike with stickers, or taking off markings, or try making it less desirable.
    lil brown bat wrote:
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  12. #12
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    I am new to the biking world and waiting to get my first bike. I have been researching locks myself. Maybe others can help me with this too. What about the Kryptonite New York Fahgettaboudit U-Lock? States it's the best lock and says it has an anti theft guarantee up to, i think $3,000. So, does this really mean if my lock is tampered with and my bike stolen, that they will replace my bike? If it's true, i like that guarantee.

  13. #13
    Lanterne Rouge
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    I have the Fahgettaboudit chain, and it is pretty heavy-duty. It is also astonishingly plain-old HEAVY.

    I remember someone once saying that all bikes weigh forty pounds.

    A ten pound bike needs a 30 pound lock, a 20 pound bike needs a 20 pound lock, a 30 pound bike needs a ten pound lock, and a forty pound bike doesn't need to be locked up at all.
    "Having modest aspirations RULES." --patentcad
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  14. #14
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    Thanks for the advice. I think with my U-lock (it's a new model) and the different screws on my seat and wheels my bike should look like too much work. Here is the new Kryptonite Evolution 5 Mini.

    https://www.kryptonitelock.com/produ...=1000&pid=1100

  15. #15
    2 Fat 2 Furious contango's Avatar
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    I only have the one bike (with the best will in the world, I just don't have space to keep one nice bike and one beat-up bike). As far as possible the way I keep it secured is by having some part of my anatomy in contact with it at all times. If it absolutely, positively, is not possible to do that then I put a D-lock through the frame and rear wheel and then through something solid that it can't be lifted over. Make sure you've positioned the D-lock so it can't be wiggled to get it onto the ground (once it's resting on the ground it can be easily broken with a sledgehammer). Then I use a heavy steel cable looped through the front wheel, fed through the front fork and locked to the D-lock. I use a padlock to lock the cable to the saddle rail and then remove everything like lights, computer, pump etc and take them with me.

    It's a royal PITA to do all that, hence the reason I never leave it out of my sight unless it's absolutely unavoidable.

  16. #16
    Senior Member irwin7638's Avatar
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    I really like the Abus Bordo I recently bought. It is tougher than any steel I've seen,more versitile than a U-lock, and has the only combination mechanism I will trust.

    http://simplecycle-marc.blogspot.com...ore-locks.html

    Marc
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  17. #17
    hamcycles.com hamfoh's Avatar
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    I have the Fahgettaboudit u lock and it's such a pain in the butt. Sometimes I just want to bike down the road a bit to pick up some food or something and feel I need to bring my backpack just so I can carry my 6lb lock with me, since there's no hope it fitting it in a bike bag

  18. #18
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    locks keep honest people honest. one thing that is more important than any lock is to make sure your insurance will cover the bike if it's stolen. Also make sure with the agent that it is covered if it's off premesis.
    It is not about the destination. It is about the journey getting there.
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  19. #19
    Senior Member Nycycle's Avatar
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    Thank you guys for all the posts on this subject, I have seen so much BS about different types of locks on the INTERNET, sick of it.
    I was thinking about strapping my 2500LB *** safe on the back of the bike and lock the bike in that when I get to the store,,,,

    I just wish it were legal for me to shoot bike thieves, or hang em. 3 times I come out of a place and see some guy trying to steel my bike,,,I hate bike thieves.
    Last edited by Nycycle; 03-12-11 at 10:46 PM.
    I hate cars,

  20. #20
    Senior Member Wogster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nycycle View Post
    Thank you guys for all the posts on this subject, I have seen so much BS about different types of locks on the INTERNET, sick of it.
    I was thinking about strapping my 2500LB *** safe on the back of the bike and lock the bike in that when I get to the store,,,,

    I just wish it were legal for me to shoot bike thieves, or hang em. 3 times I come out of a place and see some guy trying to steel my bike,,,I hate bike thieves.
    The problem is that penalties for bicycle theft are little or nothing and it's a cost of doing business. Igor Kenk who is considered Canada's most notorious bike thief (actually he fenced stolen bicycles), where raids found thousands and thousands of bicycles in his possession was charged with the theft of 58 bicycles, convicted on 16 of those charges, given 30 months in jail in December of 2009 and release in March of 2010. So if a guy who has warehouses worth of stolen bicycles only ends up serving 3 months in jail, then what do they sentence a single bike thief, 10 minutes?

    Part of this is due to the thinking that a bicycle is a piece of sports equipment or a toy, so it's theft is related to it's market value, and since the courts couldn't tell the difference between a $5,000 Pinarello and a $50 Huffy, it's considered petty theft. If stealing a bicycle got you 25 years in jail, it might be different.

  21. #21
    Come here often? <wink> exile's Avatar
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    The best lock you have is the lock you use.

    While I understand the benefits of having the biggest, baddest, and best lock in the world. It unfortunately is the heaviest or bulkiest as well. And yet, there is still no guarantee your bike won't be stolen. Perhaps it will take 15 minutes to cut instead of 10.

    I once had the Onguard Brute but rarely used it. It was to heavy and bulky to carry around and made riding around with it unpleasant. Eventually I got a mini U-Lock that was about 1/4 the weight and ride my bike more places now because of it.

    Remember, a lock is a deterrent and not a guarantee. So get one that you don't mind taking with you and enjoy all the new places you start exploring.
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  22. #22
    Senior Member irwin7638's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hamfoh View Post
    I have the Fahgettaboudit u lock and it's such a pain in the butt. Sometimes I just want to bike down the road a bit to pick up some food or something and feel I need to bring my backpack just so I can carry my 6lb lock with me, since there's no hope it fitting it in a bike bag
    What I appreciate about the Abus Bordo is thae way it folds up to fit in a holster which attaches right to the frame. It's no lighter, but it's a world more convenient.

    Marc
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  23. #23
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    I wish I had snapped a picture today. I was in a not particularly great neighborhood (work sometimes takes me into some interesting spots...) and saw a local bike cop going into a convenience store. He pulled out his handcuffs and locked his bike to a handy sign post. That's sad when someone would steal a police bike...

  24. #24
    Senior Member irwin7638's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LACamper View Post
    I wish I had snapped a picture today. I was in a not particularly great neighborhood (work sometimes takes me into some interesting spots...) and saw a local bike cop going into a convenience store. He pulled out his handcuffs and locked his bike to a handy sign post. That's sad when someone would steal a police bike...
    I've seen the same thing. I talked to the cop and he said they expect to lose as many as 3 per year!

    Marc
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    "You don't deteriorate from age,you age from deterioration" --Joe Weider

  25. #25
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    You may also consider getting a rider on your homeowners or renters insurance. I get coverage for 3 bikes with full replacement value (no deductible or depreciation) with a total value of about $2500 for $44/year. I also always carry a good mini ubolt, and leave another in the bike cage at the subway stop where I most commonly park. The insurance definitely buys some peace of mind, though.

    Jim

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