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Old 05-23-08, 08:04 PM   #1
forkyfork
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Worth locking my new bike up?

I am about to buy a bike very soon (most likely a Trek 7200, although not sold on that yet). I definitely want to ride it around the neighborhood and trails. I was also looking forward to riding it around to do some errands. However, as I starting talking with other people, they don't think that is such a good idea. They say it's not worth it to leave your bike unattended at any time, no matter how good the lock.

So, should I forgo the idea of taking my bike on errands that involve parking it? I was going to spend some money and get a decent lock, but I do know no lock is perfect. As I was reading through their "theft guarantees", it sounds like it's really hit or miss.

Another option is to get a crappier bike for errands that I could afford to have stolen. But I don't know how much I'll really be doing errands. I don't think it will be THAT much.

For better context, I don't live in an extremely urban are. It's more suburban. About 30 miles outside of Orlando, FL. I don't see too many people riding bikes around here, so if I parked my bike, it would most likely be the only one.
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Old 05-23-08, 08:20 PM   #2
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http://www.sheldonbrown.com/lock-strategy.html
^^^
St. Sheldon's essay on locking strategy. It's a good read.

No need to live in fear. Buy a good lock, and run some errands.
If it's an area where you would not park your car, then don't park a bike there either. Otherwise give it a chance.
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Old 05-23-08, 08:59 PM   #3
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Get a lock. Locks keep honest people honest, and thieves to continue the hunt.

Just remember, if your bike is worth it then there's nothing preventing your bike from being stolen.
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Old 05-24-08, 01:00 AM   #4
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I have had 3 very nice bike stolen in the bike section of my apartment building when I was younger and houseless. They were all chained and locked. But were stolen anyways. If you live in an apartment building don't leave your bike in the garage with the other bikes. Keep it in your apartment.

All the 3 stolen were nice Italian bikes, Masi, Guerometi and Bianchi all from the 1980's. I wish I still had them all.
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Old 05-24-08, 01:13 AM   #5
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it's worth locking up any bike. with multiple locks. both wheels. and the frame. to a solid object firmly rooted in the ground. do it.
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Old 05-24-08, 08:26 AM   #6
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I think some of you are misunderstanding. My question was not, "Should I lock my bike up when I leave it somewhere?". Of course I will lock it up if I leave it somewhere.

My question was, "Should I put myself in a position where I have to leave my bike somewhere?" If I take it to the grocery store and park it outside, I will lock it up - no question. But no bike lock is 100% safe. Should I even bother taking it to the grocery store in the first place, knowing that I will have to lock it up?
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Old 05-24-08, 09:14 AM   #7
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Just because I CAN take my bike everywhere, doesn't mean I necessarily should. The nicer bike I get, the more it's going to suck when it gets stolen.

It was a perfectly valid question. If I lived in an area where there was never any crime, I would do it without thinking. But, people steal bikes. It's just a fact of life. It doesn't care how nice of a bike you have. If it's get stolen, you're out of luck (and you'll have to figure out another way to get home). I was just asking if it was worth the trouble, and so far, I seem to be getting a mixed bag of responses.
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Old 05-24-08, 10:19 AM   #8
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There is no area devoid of crime. The trick is to either not give a thief the opportunity, either by deterrence with locks or not riding the bike at all to public places.

I think for most BF members, not taking a bike is not an option. Don't live in fear, ride the bike to the store...just take the proper precautions.

I look at bikes like I do cars: Investing heavily into a machine, whether financially or emotionally is a good way to set yourself up for disappointment. Cars get wrecked, bikes get stolen. If it keeps you awake at night, insure yourself to make sure it can be replaced.
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Old 05-24-08, 12:37 PM   #9
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A 7200 isn't that much of a theft target. Get a $30-50 U-lock (On-guard or Kryptonite; smaller is better), maybe a cable for the other wheel, lock it well, and stop worrying. Unless you live in San Francisco or New York, you'll be fine.
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Old 05-24-08, 12:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by forkyfork View Post
But no bike lock is 100% safe.
Take a calculated risk. You're not 100% safe riding to and from the grocery store either. Assess the risk and try to find a lock combination that matches it. If you're looking for 100% certainties in life you'll never be able to do anything.

Incidentally, the poster who reported a couple of nice bikes being stolen from an apartment bike parking area, that's probably one of the most risky places that you can park your bike. Think of it from the thief's point of view. He gets to case out the bike. He knows that you park it there frequently. He gets to see what kind of lock you are using so he knows what kind of tools he needs to bring with him. It's reasonably out of sight so he knows about how much time he'll have to work. There is no lock that will survive that kind of attack. I wouldn't park anything there but a beater.
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Old 05-24-08, 12:58 PM   #11
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I can understand your question fully. If you need to run some errands by bike get a walmart special roadmaster or whatever for 50-75 bucks. New locks cost more than that (the good ones). Save your nice bike for your pleasure rides, trail rides, XC, whatever. I don't even own a bike lock because I don't leave it anywhere except inside my garage at night.
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Old 05-24-08, 05:09 PM   #12
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Lock your bike up with any reputable lock - even a cable lock - and you will be fine. There are a handful of urban areas where thieves routinely use tools to cut locks, and a couple of other situations where that might happen (i.e., leaving your bike locked outside for a week in the same place). For most of the rest of the country, any lock will be fine, since the bikes being stolen are the ones that are not locked in the first place.

In terms of general usefulness, it's hard to beat a 6' cable and u-lock combination - it is unfortunately often the case that many places don't have good places to lock bikes with a u-lock alone. At my favorite cafe, for example, I can choose between using the u-lock on a chain-link fence or the cable around a light pole. Obviously, I use the light pole with the cable - but I wouldn't have a good locking option in line of sight with a u-lock alone.
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Old 05-24-08, 06:40 PM   #13
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I can understand your question fully. If you need to run some errands by bike get a walmart special roadmaster or whatever for 50-75 bucks. New locks cost more than that (the good ones). Save your nice bike for your pleasure rides, trail rides, XC, whatever. I don't even own a bike lock because I don't leave it anywhere except inside my garage at night.
Or spend $50 on a Kryptonite Evolution mini U-lock and ride a bike that's faster and more fun to ride.
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Old 05-24-08, 07:04 PM   #14
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MOST bike theft I have been exposed to is simply some teenager walking up to an unlocked bike and riding off with it.

Make it inconvenient and you are 99.9% safe.

I was in a coffee shop with my friend. There is BIG front window for us to watch the street. I parked a bike across the street with no lock. I just took the chain off of the front chainring. Sure enough, some dirtbag tried to ride it. After his feet spun around and he just about fell over because the chain was not connected, he just looked at it, dropped the bike on it's side and walked away.

I suggest that you take it a step farther and use a lock, but any reasonable lock like a sturdy cable lock will do the trick in most cases.
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Old 05-24-08, 09:53 PM   #15
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To encourage lock use and to have it with you all of the time a full-sized U-bolt lock can fit neatly through the rails of a saddle. When I go to a high risk area like the local junior college I also carry a cable lock. When commuting regularly I leave a massive chain with a commercial grade lock at the job site.
even then I still carry the U-bolt in case I stop to shop on the way.
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Old 05-26-08, 03:48 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ken cummings View Post
To encourage lock use and to have it with you all of the time a full-sized U-bolt lock can fit neatly through the rails of a saddle. When I go to a high risk area like the local junior college I also carry a cable lock. When commuting regularly I leave a massive chain with a commercial grade lock at the job site.
even then I still carry the U-bolt in case I stop to shop on the way.
I think that is the best advice I've seen on this topic.
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Old 05-26-08, 05:47 AM   #17
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How about this? http://www.alibaba.com/product-free/...cle_Alarm.html
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Old 05-26-08, 06:03 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AllenG View Post
http://www.sheldonbrown.com/lock-strategy.html
^^^
St. Sheldon's essay on locking strategy. It's a good read.
.
SOmebody always posts this^^^^^ an I'll always write it; it's a good way to get your bike mangled. You and I may know that the rear wheel won't come out of the frame when it is locked, but will the thief? It may take some aggressive pulling, jerking, and bending to convince him of that. Just go ahead and lock the frame, there is no reason not to, and it may save you some trouble.
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Old 05-26-08, 07:54 AM   #19
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Great website, I'd heard of it before but never checked it out - thanks a lot for reminding me.

This thread is a great topic too. I just bought a new 05 LeMond Buenos Aires, and already thinking of buying another bike to run errands etc (since I dont plan to leave my LeMond anywhere out of my sight!). I have an old Raleigh mtn bike to get around, run errands etc. but after 12 years I suddenly have an urge to replace it!

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http://www.sheldonbrown.com/lock-strategy.html
^^^
St. Sheldon's essay on locking strategy. It's a good read.

No need to live in fear. Buy a good lock, and run some errands.
If it's an area where you would not park your car, then don't park a bike there either. Otherwise give it a chance.
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Old 05-26-08, 05:44 PM   #20
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By all means run errands on a bike. Most of my favorite stores are really out of bicycling range but I will certainly ride to the grocers or bakery. If you get lucky like me, you might find an old junker at a garage sale, fix it up and use that for riding around town. My .02 cents.
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Old 05-26-08, 05:52 PM   #21
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Personally, I wouldn't lock up my $500 Giant w/ a chain or a U-lock. There are still other removable parts that can get stolen off of a bike.

Now a bicycle locker, I might consider putting mine in w/ a lock protected from cutting, but I think the door can still be pried open w/ a crowbar.
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Old 05-26-08, 07:55 PM   #22
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Personally, I wouldn't lock up my $500 Giant w/ a chain or a U-lock. There are still other removable parts that can get stolen off of a bike.

Now a bicycle locker, I might consider putting mine in w/ a lock protected from cutting, but I think the door can still be pried open w/ a crowbar.
The same could be said about your home.

How much do y'all fret about your cars?

Unless one's bike is made of solid gold and diamonds don't fret so much.
There are not legions of thieves wondering the streets looking for bikes to steal. Yes bikes do get stolen, usually when one leaves it outside overnight and for days on end.
I have several bikes north of $1.5K, some north of $3K. I've had them all over the South and still have them all. No lock is going to stop a determined thief, but it will deter the hell out of one.
Just show a little prudence, like not parking in front of a crack house, and you'll be OK.
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Old 05-26-08, 08:51 PM   #23
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Stealing a bicycle isn't Grand Theft Auto like stealing a car. Its also a lot easier to steal a bicycle than a car (although some cars are very easy to break into). Different areas have different crime statistics. In my town when I was shopping for a bicycle twice in the same day I went into a bike shop and someone was there looking for their stolen bicycle to see if someone brought it in. Coincidence? Bikes get stolen all the time here. I wouldn't leave mine locked up out of site for even an hour. If I needed to run errands by bicycle I would sure as hell buy a walmart bicycle for that, and lock it up.
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Old 05-26-08, 09:36 PM   #24
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I guess it depends on where you live. In some of the heavier, more ubranized (and thus often more crime ridden) areas, you might take some consideration into whether or not you will take your bike for fear of theft. Beyond a heavy urban zone, I doubt you would have to worry too much about a locked bike being stolen. I just can't imagine there being enough bikes to steal for a theif to carry the tools to steal them in most places.

If you're really worried, use a mini u-lock on the rear wheel/frame like in the Sheldon Brown article and a chain to lock up the front wheel/frame to a rack or post. However, it seems silly to not take a bike out of fear of theft. No lock is 100% effective, and that includes the one on your door at home.

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Cars get wrecked, bikes get stolen.
Conversely, cars get stolen, and bikes get wrecked. Either way there is a risk.
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Old 05-26-08, 10:05 PM   #25
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SIn my town when I was shopping for a bicycle twice in the same day I went into a bike shop and someone was there looking for their stolen bicycle to see if someone brought it in. Coincidence? Bikes get stolen all the time here. I wouldn't leave mine locked up out of site for even an hour. If I needed to run errands by bicycle I would sure as hell buy a walmart bicycle for that, and lock it up.
But were the stolen bikes even locked?
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