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  1. #1
    Senior Member mihlbach's Avatar
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    help me choose a lock

    I don't need a lock for commuting...I just wheel my bike into my lab.
    But, I'd like one for running occasional errands to the postoffice, grocery story, book store etc. I wouldn't plan on locking it up for more than a few hours at a time, and I don't live in a very sketchy neighborhood. I have three bikes (Redline Monocog, a Specialized Sirrus with drop bar conversion, and an old Bianchi fixed gear beater). None of these are highly valuable, though I would just die if any of them was stolen. I'm not in love with the idea of bolting a lockholder to my frame, nor am I in love with the idea of lugging a huge chain around my waist.
    Any suggestions, given my needs. I suppose I want something with reasonable security but something lighter than a giant chunck of lead that I could just toss into my backpack. Whats a good compromise?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mihlbach
    I don't need a lock for commuting...I just wheel my bike into my lab.
    But, I'd like one for running occasional errands to the postoffice, grocery story, book store etc. I wouldn't plan on locking it up for more than a few hours at a time, and I don't live in a very sketchy neighborhood. I have three bikes (Redline Monocog, a Specialized Sirrus with drop bar conversion, and an old Bianchi fixed gear beater). None of these are highly valuable, though I would just die if any of them was stolen. I'm not in love with the idea of bolting a lockholder to my frame, nor am I in love with the idea of lugging a huge chain around my waist.
    Any suggestions, given my needs. I suppose I want something with reasonable security but something lighter than a giant chunck of lead that I could just toss into my backpack. Whats a good compromise?
    A top rated U-lock from either OnGuard or Kryptonite should do the trick. This has been covered many times, do a search of the forums for more info.

  3. #3
    No-Pants Island bbonnn's Avatar
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    I'm in your exact same situation. Bike sits in cube at work, so I don't NEED to carry a lock with me, but I still do because I like being able to spontaneously go to the grocery store or other errands after work. Having a lock with me lets me do that.

    Right now, I use the $15 MasterLock Target Special (very light). It's basically useless, but it "keeps honest people honest." I'm in suburbia, so I park my bike in the middle of a parking lot to a tree or shopping cart corral between cars. I doubt many people even know it's there. There's not much foot traffic.

    How many places are you planning to go? Some people lock heavy U-locks to bike racks or signs or cart corrals at their most common destinations (like a grocery store) and keep them there when they're not locking their bikes.

  4. #4
    tired donnamb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mihlbach
    I don't need a lock for commuting...I just wheel my bike into my lab.
    But, I'd like one for running occasional errands to the postoffice, grocery story, book store etc. I wouldn't plan on locking it up for more than a few hours at a time, and I don't live in a very sketchy neighborhood. I have three bikes (Redline Monocog, a Specialized Sirrus with drop bar conversion, and an old Bianchi fixed gear beater). None of these are highly valuable, though I would just die if any of them was stolen. I'm not in love with the idea of bolting a lockholder to my frame, nor am I in love with the idea of lugging a huge chain around my waist.
    Any suggestions, given my needs. I suppose I want something with reasonable security but something lighter than a giant chunck of lead that I could just toss into my backpack. Whats a good compromise?
    You could call your local police and ask them about the types of locks that are getting cut/pried where you are. Then you'd have an idea of they level of security you might need.

  5. #5
    Member
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    Call me paranoid, but that's the sort of thing that gets you a phone call the next time there is a rash of bike thefts.

  6. #6
    A poor cyclist
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    U-locks are great until you go somewhere without a bike rack. There is no perfect solution (except for Tony). I would say U-locks are the hardest to bust followed by large cables, chains,and small cables, resp. If you're comfortable with it, a small cable will keep kids from riding off with your bike. Anyone who wanted to steal it would have to be looking for a bike to steal, or just happen to have a pair of bolt cutters or a torch in their jeans.
    Call me Joe. That's my name

  7. #7
    Seņor Wences jwbnyc's Avatar
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    Kryptonite Mini Evolution 2000.

    Small, light, fits in a back pocket, and pretty secure if used around a parking meter, and the rear wheel, passing the lock through the rear triangle.

    It all depends on where you are locking up and how much security you think is enough.

    Here's a pic:

    http://tinyurl.com/34vy6

    Here's a link to Sheldon Brown's Lock Strategy page - with a picture of the technique used - Thank You Mr. Brown:

    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/lock-strategy.html
    Last edited by jwbnyc; 07-10-06 at 01:55 PM.

  8. #8
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    Buy a lock that earned a "gold" rating in tests at Soldsecure.com. Learn and use the Sheldon Brown locking method.

    www.soldsecure.com/Leisure.htm

    If you live in "Friendly Village", and your bike is never out of your sight for more than an hour or so, you could get by with a light weight lock, such as the Kryptonite Evolution Mini, or the OnGuard Pitbull Mini TC. Both of those locks weigh under two pounds, compared with four or five pounds for the typical "gold" rated u-lock.

  9. #9
    Senior Member mechBgon's Avatar
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    If you pick up an Evolution Mini LS (3" x 9.5" long+narrow shackle) then you can get a parking meter, both chainstays, the rear tire/rim and the (removed) front wheel. If there's any slack left over, add your driveside crankarm to the shackle too. No room for tools and no temptation to simply chop the rear wheel and chuck the bike into the bed of the pickup truck. The lock will weigh more than the short-shackle Evolution Mini, however. Mine fits nicely in the bottom of my trunk bag.

    I'll add that if I were locking up a bike that mattered to me, with just one lock, for hours at a time, then I'd be pretty darn selective about the lock and also what I locked the bike to. I combine my Evolution LS Mini with a Kryptonite chain & disc padlock if I have to lock & leave.
    Last edited by mechBgon; 07-10-06 at 09:03 PM.

  10. #10
    Commuter First newbojeff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dietrologia
    Another vote for the Kryptonite Evolution Mini here.

    I bought the large Kryptonite New York u-lock and found it WAY too heavy for my tastes. I recently bought the Kryptonite Evolution Mini u-lock. MUCH lighter, smaller and it seems like a pretty sturdy lock.
    I bought the large Kryptonite New York U-lock (not the NY fuggedaboudit U-lock: NYFU [love that]). I have one of the nicer bikes at our racks, but it is also nice to have clearly the best lock as a deterrant. I use a cable-lock, a la Sheldon Brown, around the front wheel.

    Agreed that the NY locks are very heavy (4lbs, I believe). The cable lock travels with me for quick lock-ups. The U-Lock stays at the rack at work.

  11. #11
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    Good neighborhood, lots of foot traffic, not leaving it for too long: I would go with a chain, like the MasterLock I have.

    Bad neighborhood, no foot traffic, or leaving it for a long time: Long narrow U-Lock that can get the front wheel, the frame, and whatever you're connecting it to.

    Total paranoia: U-Lock, AND the chain, AND a small steel wire with a small padlock locking down the seat and seatpost.

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