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Thread: Bike Security

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    Bike Security

    I have a onguard beast chain and I've ordered a onguard brute with a cable from amazon. I take it that this should be an ok setup for decent bike security? Or is there anyother makes or models that are of the same price and have the same or better security?

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    Senior Member Seattle Forrest's Avatar
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    So, chain locks aren't the most secure in the world, but no bike lock really is. I think any of them can be broken without spending too much time on it. And, as a result, locks aren't the alpha and omega of security.

    Many commuters use two locks; I do this, because I can't see my bike from the office. One is a U lock that goes around the frame and front wheel, while the cable lock, more like yours, wraps the frame and both wheels. It's more for show, I think. On the other hand, lots of commuters try to just park their bike in front of a window and make friends with whoever works on the other side of it, or to do something along those lines. Very lucky bike commuters get to bring their bikes inside with them, but I'm not one of those people.

    I suddenly have two bikes; the new one it's the most secure of all, and it doesn't have a lock. It doesn't need one, because I never leave it outdoors unattended. That's not an option for commuting, which is why I still have the other bike ... but creative solutions can help keep your bike safe.
    Don't believe everything you think.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
    So, chain locks aren't the most secure in the world, but no bike lock really is. I think any of them can be broken without spending too much time on it. And, as a result, locks aren't the alpha and omega of security.

    Many commuters use two locks; I do this, because I can't see my bike from the office. One is a U lock that goes around the frame and front wheel, while the cable lock, more like yours, wraps the frame and both wheels. It's more for show, I think. On the other hand, lots of commuters try to just park their bike in front of a window and make friends with whoever works on the other side of it, or to do something along those lines. Very lucky bike commuters get to bring their bikes inside with them, but I'm not one of those people.

    I suddenly have two bikes; the new one it's the most secure of all, and it doesn't have a lock. It doesn't need one, because I never leave it outdoors unattended. That's not an option for commuting, which is why I still have the other bike ... but creative solutions can help keep your bike safe.
    I have a chain for the frame and the back wheel. The U locks is for the front wheel and the cable is for the saddle. Hope it's enough.

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    Senior Member Seattle Forrest's Avatar
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    That sounds like a lot of work somebody would have to do to steal your bike. It's not impossible ... but thieves don't want to end up in jail or getting beat, so they generally go for easier targets. You'll probably be fine.
    Don't believe everything you think.

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    Sounds like you're fine. If you've got a very expensive bikes, maybe from the $5000+ category, then no amount of locking will protect it. However, someone once pointed out to me that bikes from that price range rarely get stolen, as they are surgically attached to their owners.

    For a normal bike, all you have to do is be harder to steal than the bike you're parked next to.

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    vol
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuackPot View Post
    I have a chain for the frame and the back wheel. The U locks is for the front wheel and the cable is for the saddle.
    How much weight in total?

    Quote Originally Posted by neil View Post
    bikes from that price range rarely get stolen, as they are surgically attached to their owners.
    What does that mean?

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    Senior Member Kojak's Avatar
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    Sheldon Brown comments that using the two concurrent methods works best as a thief needs two different tools to steal your bike.

    A thief with bolt cutters will look for bikes locked with a chain/padlock. A thief with a grinder or hydraulic jack will look for a bike locked with a u-lock. If you use both, most thieves with only one tool will move on to an easier target. He also comments that the smaller the u-lock, the more difficult it is to actually utilize the tools necessary to defeat the lock.
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    Senior Member Kojak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vol View Post


    What does that mean?
    Owners of this caliber of bike don't leave them, ever (except at home).... locked or not.
    Guy K. Browne

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    Ideally I'd like to have two u locks, a heavy chain and a smaller cable for the saddle. That to me would be an ok setup, just.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kojak View Post
    A thief with bolt cutters will look for bikes locked with a chain/padlock. A thief with a grinder or hydraulic jack will look for a bike locked with a u-lock. If you use both, most thieves with only one tool will move on to an easier target. He also comments that the smaller the u-lock, the more difficult it is to actually utilize the tools necessary to defeat the lock.
    The other thing to note with this is that, with a non-locking chain or cable looped onto a U-lock, the thief still only needs to defeat one lock. Much better to have both devices separately locked, and both looped around whatever fixed object you're using. If the thief comes prepared to cut cable or chain, he can only get one wheel. If he comes prepared to cut a U-lock, he can't even get that. Using a cable with an alarm, preferably with the lock/alarm part permanently affixed to the bike (use phillips or hex head screws and drill the heads out smooth after you mount it) also provides a bit more chance of catching him in the act.

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    Fat Guy on a Little Bike KonAaron Snake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by neil View Post
    Sounds like you're fine. If you've got a very expensive bikes, maybe from the $5000+ category, then no amount of locking will protect it. However, someone once pointed out to me that bikes from that price range rarely get stolen, as they are surgically attached to their owners.

    For a normal bike, all you have to do is be harder to steal than the bike you're parked next to.
    Plus higher end bikes stick out like a sore thumb...telling the local shops to be on the look out...and a note on craigslist saying look for XXX stands a reasonable chance of getting you your bike back.

    Example...a guy lost his Vanilla Track bike. OUCH. He posted a CL add about it...he got it back when someone noticed it in front of a bar a day later. There just aren't many Vanillas out there...they get noticed.

    I really don't think most of the bike thieves I've seen know much about bikes. They know some are flashy, and that certain brands are valuable, but I don't think they'd know a De Rosa is worth stealing. The majority of bike thieves are opportunists and crack heads selling them for $40 no matter what they are.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KonAaron Snake View Post
    Plus higher end bikes stick out like a sore thumb...
    Especially modified high-end bikes. FWIW, some of the textured "hammered bronze" spray paint looks a lot like rust from a few feet away. Adding a few details with it can be both a good deterrent if parked among shiny, flashy WalMart bikes, and a unique identifier.

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    Whatever lock you use will be the best at that time. I had the Onguard Brute and didn't like it. The only reason I didn't like it was because it was to heavy. I dreaded carrying it with me so most of the times I didn't. I have the Onguard Bulldog mini 7 now. I'll put it in my backpack or strap it to my rack. The point is, I use it.

    If the thief is that determined to get your bike, they will.
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    Quote Originally Posted by exile View Post
    If the thief is that determined to get your bike, they will.
    This, unfortunately is probably true. My bikes almost never leave my sight unless they are at home in the basement..... or unless a close friend is nearby while I get the coffee.
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    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...=ATVPDKIKX0DER

    I'm thinking about getting this for my IRO. Sure, it may not be a high end bike, but it's the first bike I've spent over 500 on...

    Would that lock combo be good enough to give me a sense of security?

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    Are there any good padlocks worth getting. I have the standard onguard beast padlock but are there any other ones of better quality?

    This is supposed to be a good lock but it looks easily pickable.

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Master-Lock-...2698688&sr=8-2

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    Fat Guy on a Little Bike KonAaron Snake's Avatar
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    I'm by no means an expert on bike locks or security, but I had a Kryptonite Evolution...I think the series 4...and the key broke off in the lock. I read up on how to beat locks and I tried EVERYTHING on that sucker...I used freon, I tried picking it...EVERYTHING. Nothing made a dent. Eventually my father came up with a generator and a circular saw. The lock broke the blade after about 10 minutes. FINALLY...we got through it. It took a solid 20 minutes of cutting, and this was with a loud power tool shooting off sparks.

    I think that's a pretty good deterent of a lock. I'm sure thieves know tricks that I don't, but I'm also sure that if a reasonably intelligent guy wasn't able to get through it and needed a generator with a circular saw...it's certainly a good level of protection.

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    Quote Originally Posted by QuackPot View Post
    Are there any good padlocks worth getting. I have the standard onguard beast padlock but are there any other ones of better quality?

    This is supposed to be a good lock but it looks easily pickable.

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Master-Lock-...2698688&sr=8-2
    Yes there are, but the really good ones are heavy and expensive. So whether they're "worth getting" depends on your situation. Here's one for example.

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    Senior Member nutcase's Avatar
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    my problem is weight. I hate the fact that I either have to carry my krypto, and cable if I want to stop at a store or something. The lock and cable are a pita to carry all the time. I'm looking at a Kryptonite cable lock that has a holder that mounts to the seat tube. It's not very long though. I might get the front wheel and frame locked to a bike rack but thats it. My rear wheel doesn't have quick release, so maybe I could get by. On Kryptonte's scale of 1-5 for security it's rated at 4.
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    I got the onguard u lock today but it seems too short to secure the front wheel (it does secure the front wheen on it's own, just) and be secured to a post as well. I will only be using it when it's accompanied with the chain on the frame and rear wheel but I doubt amazon will take it back now all the packaging is ripped.

    Is it worth getting a larger u lock to secure around a post while using the chain as well?

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    I only use a OnGuard Pitbull and the Sheldon Brown method to protect the bike. Where I need to lock I risk an unprotected front wheel.

    I see a lot of people lock the bike with some combo of u-lock through the frame/front wheel to the rack with nothing or second cable securing the rear. A rear wheels is far more expensive to replace than the front and basically just as easy to remove from the bike.
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    Senior Member mechBgon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuackPot View Post
    I got the onguard u lock today but it seems too short to secure the front wheel (it does secure the front wheen on it's own, just) and be secured to a post as well. I will only be using it when it's accompanied with the chain on the frame and rear wheel but I doubt amazon will take it back now all the packaging is ripped.

    Is it worth getting a larger u lock to secure around a post while using the chain as well?
    You could get a long-shackle-mini U-lock and secure the frame and rear wheel, then use the chain to lock the front wheel to the frame (and then to another stationary object if one's available). And your cable can lock your seat & post to the U-lock. Like this (see the last two photos): http://www.mechbgon.com/lock

    If it were me, I'd get the Kryptonite Evolution LS Mini or the Evolution Series4 LS, the latter of which is a SoldSecure Gold-rated lock.

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    vol
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    Just wonder, have there been cases where a bike was stolen with the lock on just because it's not locked to a fixed object? The thief would have to have a car to carry it away isn't it?

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    Here's what I do: I bought the long version (5.5 ft) of the Kryptonite "new york" chain lock (the one with the longer lock pin that looks like a small u-lock), after finding the short version (3.25 feet) somewhat too short to get through both wheels in most situations. The problem with the five foot chain is that (unless you have a sizeable midsection) it leaves a lot of chain dangling while you ride, so I had it shortened to about 4.25 feet at my LBS. Now there is just a bit of chain dangling and I can lock the ever-loving **** out of my bike.

    I lock the bike in a figure eight through both wheels (and the frame, of course), making sure that each end of the figure 8 also goes through a stationary object. The lock pin goes through both ends of the chain and one of the center links. The downside of this is that it is hard to find a place where I can find two fixed objects close enough to one another to do this. That said, the upside is worth it: thieves would have to cut through the chain in two different places to free the bike, doubling the amount of time they have to spend out there on the street with an angle grinder. Once, I left my bike out in a questionable section of Brooklyn, as did my friends. We were at a party, and when returned mine was the only one left (and it isn't a beater).

    A lot of bike thieves are perfectly happy to steal parts off your bike if they can't get the bike itself. You can discourage them from doing this by filling all of your hex bolts with superglue and compressed tin foil. You can also do it with lead solder, but that is a hell of a lot harder to get out of there when you need to service your bike. I can pick out the aluminum foil in about five minutes with a sharp barbeque skwer.
    Last edited by cab chaser; 08-28-10 at 04:47 PM.

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    A couple of quick thoughts:
    - As mentioned, if someone wants to steal your bike they will figure out a way to steal it. The key in my experience is to just not make it worth their while. I just use a u-lock (onguard bulldog) and a cable lock. Both attached separately to a bike rack. I make them both obviously visible and either park under the window in my office so I can see and hear it or I lock it amongst other bikes, most of which are locked poorly with cable locks or cheap chains. If anyone is looking to steal a bike they're nab the bright red department store mountain bike locked up with a cable lock through the front wheel but not the frame, not my brown 1977 Raleigh sport.
    - If weight is a concern and you are regularly making a commute from your home to one single spot (i.e. a single place of work) then just leave the u-lock on the rack at your destination point. I used to do this when I was living in a place where my bike was stored inside. It makes it super easy to use a somewhat heavy lock and not carry extra weight or luggage.

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