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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 08-20-07, 08:28 PM   #1
saja
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Question for NYC commuters

I am planning to commute with my bike to my mid-town office. Problem is it is unlikely that I can bring my bike to my office building. And I am wondering where do you guys keep your bike? Outside?
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Old 08-20-07, 08:32 PM   #2
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Get a crappy looking beater and lock it up with as many locks as you can and vary the locations that you park it at.
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Old 08-20-07, 09:17 PM   #3
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i've been locking up on 5th ave and 37th for 5 years. i use just one lock , a crappy specialized wedlock. no problems. although, they'll steal any lights or accessaries you might leave on it.
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Old 08-20-07, 09:30 PM   #4
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who are the people that steal? Crack heads? kids? Would they actually use the light they steal?
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Old 08-20-07, 09:36 PM   #5
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THEY steal. Perhaps you've heard of them. They'll literally steal anything that's not nailed down. They sell it on craigslist. Seriously though, in my experience, as long as it's daylight and both your wheels are locked down with decent locks, you're probably ok unless your bike is especially desirable. Just take lights, seat etc. with you.
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Old 08-20-07, 09:44 PM   #6
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I commute in to 18th and 5th 2 - 3 days a week from Queens and park my bike outside at a bike rack on the sidewalk, but also use meter or parking sign. I have a 'crack proof' square link chain (that's what they called it in '96 when I bought it) with a Viro lock. It's pretty damn heavy, but I've never had any problems. I used to have a Cannondale Road bike (sold) and now have a Specialized Sirrus, so neither was an incredibly expensive bike but again, never had any problems/issues. I bought a rack and Arkel pannier(sp?) to carry lock and change of clothes - something I strongly recommend, makes the ride much more enjoyable than carrying a messenger bag/back-pack. Regarding the lock, a similar product that's out now seems to be the Kryptonite square link chain and similar heavy duty lock. Good luck.
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Old 08-21-07, 06:59 AM   #7
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I commute from Queens to the Chrysler Building, on 42nd and Lexington. The Chrysler Building does not provide any kind of bicycle parking.

I lock up my inexpensive Fuji hybrid with an Onguard mini-u-lock. I've replaced the quick-release skewers for both wheels and the seatpost with locking skewers. So far, so good, and I've had this bike for about two years now.

FraAngelico is definitely right about the theives stealing bits and pieces. Don't leave lights or bags or anything detachable on your bike. Once I had a rack and baskets stolen off this bike, right on 42nd Street. The theif must have calmly unbolted the rack from the bike and walked away. Naturally, in New York City, nobody is going to stop him. Another time (different bike, years back), someone stole my front brake pads. I didn't discover this theft until I was a few blocks away and had to stop for a light. The theif was probably a messenger -- at that time I used to lock up right outside the Chrysler Building's messenger center.
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Old 08-21-07, 07:04 AM   #8
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I fold my bike up and take it into the office with me.
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Old 08-21-07, 08:34 AM   #9
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I did park my bike in the bike rack in the courtyard between my office and the building next door on 34th and 10th Ave...it was stolen a few weeks ago in broad daylight, sometime between 9am-2pm. It was locked, although it was one of those cable locks, maybe 1/2" thick. It was not a great bike (7 year old Trek 4300), but apparently it was good enough to take...even without a seat on it.

I really thought it was the last place someone would have the courage to take a bike from, but it turns out, location or amount of people walking by doesn't seem to matter.

I will be parking my new bike inside the office from now on.
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Old 08-21-07, 08:40 AM   #10
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I park outside. Use a heavy krypto chain lock and a u-lock. The u-lock locks the rear wheel to the frame and the chain locks the frame and front wheel to the signpost or bike rack or whatever.
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Old 08-21-07, 09:03 AM   #11
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I lock up outside with about 10 other bikes. Mine's the newest-looking one, but have had no problems. I wonder if you could bother the guys in one of the many parking garages to let you store a bike in the front. It'd be pretty secure and relatively out of the public eye.
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Old 08-21-07, 12:38 PM   #12
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I lock it to a lamppost, as do most other people on the block. No very flashy bikes, though.
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Old 08-21-07, 12:42 PM   #13
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i found a building downtown with private bike racks off the street. i'm not supposed to park there, as i'm not a tenant, but i do anyway. i use a folding bike, and fold it up before i lock it.
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Old 08-21-07, 07:00 PM   #14
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I've been commuting in the city for almost two decades, and always lock up outside. I think the best lock is the square-link chain, second best is the Kryptonite NY U-Lock + locking skewers. I like the chain around the waist for a number of reasons: 1)It seems like the ideal place to carry weight, almost feels natural; 2)You rarely will forget to bring it with you. I've seen brands other than Kryptonite that make a good angle-link chain or U-Lock, but any braided cable lock is next to useless.

If you have nice components, you can fairly easily theft-deter (but not -proof!) them with by soldering/epoxying allen keyholes, and making creative use of baling wire and layers of duct tape. As long as it's on a busy street, it won't take much to make a thief look elsewhere.
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Old 08-23-07, 06:03 PM   #15
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Guys, thanks for all your replies!

I just talked to the security guys in my office building and they allow me to lock the bike in the truck load/unload area. Cool! Hope commuter can find an ideal parking spot!

And since Mr. Bloomberg is going to charge $8 for every car going in to mid-town. I think we should write him a letter and ask him to provide more safe bike parking place for bikers!
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Old 08-24-07, 07:45 AM   #16
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Great news, Saja! Don't forget to throw them some beers at Xmas for that...

NYC used to have a program called Cityracks where you could request the city to install racks on the street if you needed one, but the relevant page on NYC.gov has disappeared. :confused:
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Old 08-24-07, 09:26 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whatsmyname View Post
Great news, Saja! Don't forget to throw them some beers at Xmas for that...

NYC used to have a program called Cityracks where you could request the city to install racks on the street if you needed one, but the relevant page on NYC.gov has disappeared. :confused:
According to Transalt, you can call 311 to request a rack, or print out this form:

http://home2.nyc.gov/html/dcp/pdf/bike/apendf.pdf

post if you get one?
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Old 08-24-07, 12:40 PM   #18
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I requested one on my manhattan cross-street last year, but didn't get one - but they
did just install one on the nearest avenue block. i have no idea whether my request and the installation are related - probably not.
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Old 08-24-07, 05:58 PM   #19
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Hal Grades Your Bike Locking... Watch and Learn:
http://www.streetfilms.org/archives/...-bike-locking/
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Old 08-24-07, 07:50 PM   #20
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Great news, Saja! Don't forget to throw them some beers at Xmas for that...
Thanks for reminding! Yes, I'll do it!
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Old 08-24-07, 07:51 PM   #21
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According to Transalt, you can call 311 to request a rack, or print out this form:

http://home2.nyc.gov/html/dcp/pdf/bike/apendf.pdf

post if you get one?
Great info! Thanks!
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Old 11-24-07, 09:13 AM   #22
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got my crappy schwinn commutter stolen on a rack in front of my work-- it had a chain lock and a cable lock on it. now i park my cheap cannondale inside, and when i have to park outside, I use the kryptonite nyc massive lock with a cable lock on the front tire. ugh, thieves!
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