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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 10-05-10, 02:31 PM   #1
ilynne
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Lock advice

I'm riding my bicycle as much as possible. I've got a Magicshine on the way after wasting more money than the Magicshine costs on cheaper lights.

So how about some lock advice? I have a cheapo cable and ridiculous padlock at the moment. I don't live in a particularly high crime area, but have had bicycles stolen from an outside shed. The cops found them and all bicycles live in the house now.

I ride to the grocery store, work, restaurants, the laundromat, etc. At work my bike comes inside, although it is out of my sight. Whenever possible, I make sure that I can see the bike. But that's not always possible.

I have three bikes at the moment, a Trek Belleville mixte, a 70s Raleigh Sport step-through, and a Trek 4300. I'd rather buy one lock that I can use for any of the above.

Should I go U-lock? Big-ass chain? Both?

I'm not going to be pleased with myself if a bike disappears because I did not lock it adequately. Help a sister out.
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Old 10-05-10, 02:46 PM   #2
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I roll with a U lock, cable lock and a BA chain, depending on how sketchy the area is; determines which lock or combination of locks I use.
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Old 10-05-10, 04:37 PM   #3
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for most places a Ulock and cable are all you need as long as you are diligent about locking. If possible lock you bike near other bikes as chances are one will be unlocked or only have a cable through the front wheel, making your locked bile look relatively un appealing to would be thieves.
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Old 10-05-10, 05:01 PM   #4
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Go with a heavy duty kryptonite chain, lock through both wheels and frame to something solid and never worry.
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Old 10-05-10, 05:12 PM   #5
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Since you're talking about places like grocery stores and laundry mats, I'm assuming you have panniers, and it won't be terribly inconvenient to carry your lock(s) around.

The main thing I'd worry about with a U-lock is only being able to get one wheel, if you're really worried about theft. A chain can get around the frame and through both wheels, but it's more cumbersome - and heavier. I think the question really comes down to just how much crime there is, and also how much of a market there is for stolen bike goods. I would think a whole bike is going to be easier to fence than a wheel, personally.
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Old 10-05-10, 05:26 PM   #6
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How you use the lock is important too. Here's some info that may help: http://www.mechbgon.com/lock For your shorter, random trips, with those bikes, I'd go with at least a Kryptonite Evolution Series 4 U-lock for the rear wheel & frame, and a cable to lock the front wheel to the frame or to the U-lock. That's what I use when I'm out shopping and running errands.

For your commute to work, where the bike will be parked for a long time on a predictable schedule, you could add a second heavy-duty lock, and just leave that second lock at the workplace so you don't have to lug it around all the time. A Kryptonite New York-level chain plus your U-lock would be plenty of theft deterrent for a Belleville or a 4300. edit: ooops, I see you bring your bike inside at work. In that case, one respectable lock ought to be plenty.

You could also add a small "seat leash" cable to tether the seat & post to the bike frame. They're easily cut with diagonal cutters, but they'll prevent simple walk-away theft.
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Old 10-05-10, 06:12 PM   #7
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This is how I lock my bicycle.
http://missinglink.org/Pages/bike_locking.html
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Old 10-05-10, 07:17 PM   #8
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http://www.universalcycles.com/shopp...6&category=111
For commuting I U-lock the bike to a rack through the seatstays (protects the rear wheel and frame), put the cable through the front wheel, pass one end of the cable through the loop on the other end and pass the free end through the U-lock.
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Old 10-05-10, 07:20 PM   #9
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I use this u-lock, this BA chain, and this mini u-lock on the chain. I leave the chain at work on the bike rack since its so heavy, but I am considering a cable for short trips to the store, etc. Either that or I'll continue riding one of my other bikes that I feel okay locking up with just the u-lock. In retrospect I wish I'd bought this chain/mini lock combo just because it's half the weight of the one I did buy. It's shorter, but 3 feet is long enough to go through the frame and front wheel while the u-lock secures the rear wheel (and frame, too, if there's enough room).
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Old 10-05-10, 08:12 PM   #10
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Think about what you'll be locking to, then use that to determine whether a chain or U-lock will be enough.

I can't always find a spot on the racks, so I have to lock to a tree or lamp post sometimes. So, I carry a chain most of the time.
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Old 10-05-10, 10:55 PM   #11
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I use a kryptonite new york standard, and i love it.
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Old 10-06-10, 11:13 AM   #12
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I use an Onguard Mini 7. I like it because it is in between the standard size and mini size. It will fit around most racks I lock my bike to. I had the Brute series, but they were so heavy I hated carrying it. I also enjoy the mini 7 because it is lighter weight and easier to lug around.
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