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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 07-05-11, 07:04 AM   #1
tygger
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Mini U Lock - Big enough to fit tire and frame?

I'm looking at mini u locks, about 3.25"x7" in size. Would these locks be big enough to fit around the rear mountain bike tire, inside frame, and around a standard city bike post? Thanks
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Old 07-05-11, 08:04 AM   #2
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Usually not. You'll probably be able to get the tire and frame, but then add a cable to get around a post and through the front wheel.
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Old 07-05-11, 08:04 AM   #3
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I find that a bit tight. The Kyptonite mini has a version that has a 5" shackle and one that has a 7" shackle. The 5" is more portable, but the 7" has a bit more reach and will fit a pole better. Measure where you intend to lock it.

I was just thinking about this. I was going to give Kryptonite a call today anyhow. I have 4 locks for my family that are keyed alike and I was wondering if I could buy longer shackles so I could use either. That would be helpful.

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Old 07-05-11, 08:19 AM   #4
tygger
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I was looking at the 7" version, but if that's not big enough, I may opt for the 4x9" version. I wanted to use the u lock to go around the rear tire, frame, and pole... and use a cable to go around the front wheel.

I doubt they would sell just the shackles... but let us know what you find out.
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Old 07-05-11, 09:12 AM   #5
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I just called them. They don't sell just the shackles - which I thought was silly. Why not sell replacement parts?

Anyhow, the 5" and the 9" shackles are interchangeable and can be keyed alike. I ordered a 9" key alike to my others as well.

In general, the 5" works pretty well with bike racks and I think the 9" would work better for signs, sign posts, and parking meters for road bikes. I'd get the 9" for mountain bikes. Yesterday, I took my mountain bike out for a bit and it was pretty tight with the 5" shackle, the 9" would have been much better.

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Old 07-05-11, 11:07 AM   #6
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Sheldon's lock up scheme, mentioned else where, you lock the rear wheel,
thru the rear triangle to the post.
you cannot remove the rear wheel that way.. ..

Or you treat the mini-lock as a padlock, and get a stout double loop Cable.

Mini U locks work great on heavy motor cycles , to put in a wheel disc.
then they wont roll.

Last edited by fietsbob; 02-27-12 at 07:42 PM.
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Old 07-05-11, 12:18 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Sheldon's lock up scheme, mentioned else where, you lock the rear wheel,
thru the rear triangle to the post.
you cannot remove the rear wheel that way.. ..

Or you treat the mini-lock as a padlock, and get a stout double loop Cable.
I don't think a Mini U can grab a fat tire + fender + post (never mind fat tire + frame + post)
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Old 07-05-11, 12:22 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by JAG410 View Post
Usually not. You'll probably be able to get the tire and frame, but then add a cable to get around a post and through the front wheel.
that's a bad way to lock your bike, basically all the thief has to do is cut the cable which we all know takes no time at all and he walks away with your bike. He can deal with your u-lock elsewhere away from the public. You should always use your strongest lock to secure your bike to the post, the cable you can use to secure your wheels to the frame.

Last edited by nismo604; 07-05-11 at 04:02 PM. Reason: Strongest lock to be used to secure bike to rack/post
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Old 07-05-11, 12:25 PM   #9
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I use a New York Fahgettaboutit mini u-lock 3.25 X 6 and can get locked it up fitting my rear wheel plus the upper part of the rear triangle on most bike racks with my commuter bike (700c x 32 wheel). If it don't fit I usually lock just the seat post stay. I have locking skewers for my wheels and seat so I'm covered there.

Last edited by nismo604; 07-05-11 at 03:56 PM.
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Old 07-05-11, 12:56 PM   #10
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Depending on the diameter of the pole, sometimes I can fit the Kryptonite mini around frame+wheel+pole. Most of the time however I cannot fit the wheel and resort to using a secondary lock to lock the wheel to the frame.

I've observed that a lot of people in the city use locking skewers on their wheels and simply carry the mini-ulock in their pocket b/c it is so convenient and does not require an extra bag or frame mount. That seems to be the ideal way. You can still carry a second lock for peace of mind, but you don't have to worry about fitting the mini around your wheels this way.
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Old 07-05-11, 01:22 PM   #11
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I've found with the large posts that I am forced to lock up to in my area, the mini-u doesn't give enough clearance to go through both rear wheel and triangle even on a slimmer road bike with 700c rims. However, I do appreciate that it takes up less space in my pack and that it makes it more difficult for thieves due to a compact profile, so I use it by locking seat tube to the post. Then I use a cable to lock the rear wheel and triangle through both the mini and post as well - seems a pretty secure setup. I don't really worry about the front wheel being stolen where I'm at (knock on wood), but if you think this would be a problem in your area I would forget the mini and do a standard size u-lock through rear wheel + triangle, a la Sheldon. Then cable the front wheel to everything else or something. Unless you have locking skewers, as mentioned by others... I might have to look into those myself - seems like an elegant alternative to carrying two locks!
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Old 07-05-11, 01:40 PM   #12
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I have the Onguard Bulldog mini 7. I am able to fit my lock through both chain stays, rear wheel, and most racks or sign posts that I come across. It'll be a tight fit so wrap something around the chain stays so you don't scratch the paint.
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Old 07-05-11, 02:48 PM   #13
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I use a 7" mini, use the Sheldon method, and go through rear wheel, fender and post. I do not have quick releases on my front wheel, and usually don't bother locking it, but if I am leaving the bike for longer than usual, or in a sketchy part of town, then I have a cable which goes through the front wheel as well as the U lock. I have a knit sleeve that goes around the U to keep it from scratching up the frame.
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Old 07-05-11, 02:58 PM   #14
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I use a mini U-lock, Sheldon Brown method, on a cross bike with 700x32 tires, no fenders. I remove the front wheel and I can lock both wheels to a standard pole (bike rack, parking meter, etc). It's a tight fit, and I have to be strategic in the placement of the front wheel.
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Old 07-05-11, 08:05 PM   #15
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Quote:
I don't think a Mini U can grab a fat tire + fender + post (never mind fat tire + frame + post)
So? OP's issue not mine..

OTOH
I really like my AXA Ring lock , its on the frame of my Koga Miyata,
locks around the rear wheel,
and a 1.4M lock up chain that's part of the integrated combination..

wouldn't buy a mini D lock, Myself . gave away my Kryptonite,
regular sized D lock.

have a Abus Link lock, too It folds up and packs
in a pouch strapped on the frame, not stuffed down my trousers.

Last edited by fietsbob; 07-05-11 at 08:10 PM.
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Old 07-06-11, 08:42 PM   #16
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I don't think you'll fit a mini in the way you want with a mountain bike. It would be tricky with a thin road bike. There is always the Sheldon method, as others have said. Onguard Bulldog Mini is slightly longer and wider than Kryptonite Evo Mini, so that may be a better bet for Sheldon. I think the mini 7" would be too small for the seat post, but, as another said, you could go through seat or chain stays + wheel instead of seat post. I would go for a 8-9" shackle, if you want to use seat post. Kryptonite NY STD is a good bet, but 2x heavy as mini. Good luck!
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Old 07-06-11, 08:59 PM   #17
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Mini 7 is tight, but obviously better than the smaller mini that they often make. I have an Onguard Bulldog Mini (smaller) on my beater mtb. It works ok, but tight. I got a Kryptonite Series 2 mini (which happens to be 7" shackle) for my new bike. I think it's the sweet spot for sizing, personally. Sometimes it gets tough to find things to lock to, but tighter is better, so I do it. For me, it seems to be the best compromise of size, weight, utility. I must qualify this by saying that I really don't often have to lock up my bike, though. So more frequent users may be better qualified.
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Old 07-06-11, 09:19 PM   #18
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Chalk up another for using the NY Fahgettaboutit Mini and using the Sheldon Brown locking method. I have 28 tires but the larger 45mm Cascadia fenders. The mini works like a charm. What I like most about the tight fit aside from security, is that it keeps my bike upright and completely supports the loading of heavy panniers on my rear rack. Then lock comes off and I'm rollin.
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Old 02-16-12, 02:59 PM   #19
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Okay, I got ahold of 2 kryptonite minis, the smallest 3.25x5 and the next up, the 3.25 x 7. 1.95 mt. bike tire. sheldon method. Went around town trying different odd places to latch to. Different diameter poles and sometimes odd accessability. Basically I'd say the 5 incher only worked 60-70% of time at best and was sometimes more hassle when it did fit. weighed each on grocery scale. 2 lb. 1 oz vs 2 lb 4 oz.
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Old 02-16-12, 03:39 PM   #20
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I know it's heretical to argue with Sheldon Brown, but the issue that I have with his locking technique isn't that it wouldn't work, but I think part of a locking strategy is deterrence to anyone who would think about stealing a bike. I'm not certain that just locking through the rear triangle would signal to someone that the bike is securely locked, so I'm thinking that someone may see that and try to break the lock.

Not sure if this actually happens, though.
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Old 02-20-12, 11:34 AM   #21
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Erg79--Very unlikely imo and here's why. There are only 3 methods quick enough for thievery that will defeat the ulock. 4 foot bolt cutters (maybe), bottle jack, battery grinder. The first is somewhat expensive and (more importantly) very risky to carry/use. And how stupid is pulling a car with plates up to the bike in a peopled area? (In order to hide the cutters) The last 2 are really expensive. A standard size bottle jack is too long to use in any alignment other then one that will ruin the frame and the little 3.5 " one is $200.00 and only available mail order. (Also the mini ulock doesn't give enough room even for the stubby jack, a big plus for the mini size). So the point is..., anyone who has set themselves up to do one of the above is serious and will have aquired the very minimal mechanical knowledge required to recognize the sheldon method as only realistically defeatable if one is willing to lose value of rear wheel and even then very noisy and a hassle, plus one is back to using an identifiable get away car. YOMV but for me any extra weight/bulk is just not worth this very small risk. Course, if you are riding a "1%er" bike.......

Last edited by larcal; 02-20-12 at 03:05 PM.
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Old 02-20-12, 06:40 PM   #22
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Thanks, those are good points. I suppose that the best thieves are not stupid. Just as long as some crackhead doesn't decide that they can break a u-lock!
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Old 02-23-12, 06:50 AM   #23
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A thief didn't manage to steal my bike, but they did ruin the rear wheel while I had it locked up Sheldon style. Dunno if they didn't see the lock or if they thought they could pull it loose somehow, but the rear wheel was badly bent by them yanking/twisting the frame. Might have been a crackhead; I live by the ghetto.
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Old 02-23-12, 01:23 PM   #24
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I use the Onguard Bulldog Mini and Sheldon method, rarely have had problem. I loop a cable through front wheel and frame. I had a friend who had a thief actually try sawing THROUGH his frame to steal the bike. Not sure what the heck they were doing. Luckily renter's insurance bought him a new frame.
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Old 02-23-12, 02:13 PM   #25
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Lock

I went a little crazy on locks. I bought several Kryptonite setups. The New York

http://www.kryptonitelock.com/Produc...=1002&pid=1193

This setup is just to heavy to be used if you need to carry the lock to your destination IMO. Its fine if it stays outside your house or at a dorm ect and you don't need to carry it with you.

I also bought the Mini 9. This is what I carry with me on the back of my rack. I had a shorter lock at one time but returned it. It just didn't have the length to reach many bike racks, especially if there are other bikes taking up the good spots in a rack. You really need a longer lock to deal with thick bars on bike racks and longer distances to an attachment point.

http://www.kryptonitelock.com/Produc...=1000&pid=1101


And I bought the cable to go with either or both. I don't usually carry this with me anymore since I bought the Pitlock system and had some bolts machined to protect my seat post and seat clamp to the seat. Here is a link to both the cable (extinct) and the Pitlock system.

http://www.pitlock.com/

http://www.kryptonitelock.com/Produc...=1001&pid=1123


I really like the Tubus Locc rear rack setup. It gives you a mount on the rear rack that looks solid to me. If they had this in stainless steel I would buy it and replace my Cosmos. It uses an Abus lock that is square in design. I don't know all that much about Abus locks but I have heard that the square Abus lock is much harder to get a bolt cutter on due to the shape. Makes sense to me.
http://www.bikebagshop.com/tubus-loc...a_7c2172167896

Last edited by IndianaShawn; 02-23-12 at 04:09 PM.
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