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  1. #1
    Member quittaboy's Avatar
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    Bike removal - Chicago

    So, I have a question to which I'm sure I'll receive lots of witty responses and people telling me about the law.

    Chicago: On my walk from the bus to my office there is a beautiful older (mid 90s maybe?) periwinkle alum frame Trek 1000 with pink lettering. It's been locked up to a street sign for at least 4 months. It's been completely stripped down to the frame. The only things remaining are the chain, frame and handlebars (with the STI shifters still attached). This bike has obviously been abandoned. It's such a beautiful old frame it pains me to walk by it every day. I'd love to see it restored (maybe even as a single speed, though it has the shifters). Is there any recourse for someone wanting to lay claim to an abandoned bike? Is there a service that can remove the lock? Before you chime in, yes, I know it's not mine. I know that taking it essentially amounts to stealing. I'd prefer to think of it as "reclamation" Its original owner obviously has no interest in it and it's such a shame to see it sitting there unused. I'm just asking innocently if there is a way to "get it". Should I contact the city?

    Thanks for any advice.
    "I just want to ride my bike. Save your condescension for someone who is gullible enough to kick your ass for it."

    '02 Jamis Quest
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  2. #2
    Member quittaboy's Avatar
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    I did some Googling and based on the images I found, the year of the bike appears to be 1989-1990.
    "I just want to ride my bike. Save your condescension for someone who is gullible enough to kick your ass for it."

    '02 Jamis Quest
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  3. #3
    cyclopath
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    My old bike is still there? I was in Chicago a few months ago and forgot I had left it there. Just send me $20 and it's yours!

  4. #4
    eay
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    Senior Member eay's Avatar
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    I'd contact the chicago department of transportation or whoever is in charge of street signs. I'll bet they are also in charge of abandoned vehicles. Which I suppose a stripped frame might be.
    If they won't/can't let you have the frame, at least you'll know and can decide if you need to borrow a big ol' bolt cutter.

  5. #5
    Humvee of bikes =Worksman Nightshade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eay View Post
    I'd contact the chicago department of transportation or whoever is in charge of street signs. I'll bet they are also in charge of abandoned vehicles. Which I suppose a stripped frame might be.
    If they won't/can't let you have the frame, at least you'll know and can decide if you need to borrow a big ol' bolt cutter.
    Yes, contact the city. At the present time the bike has been reduced to junk/trash and you are only
    asking for salvage rights if the city will either allow you to cut the chain or they cut the chain.

    You're only "dumpster diving" with a twist.
    My preferred bicycle brand is.......WORKSMAN CYCLES
    I dislike clipless pedals on any city bike since I feel they are unsafe.

    Originally Posted by krazygluon
    Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
    Aluminum: barely a hundred, which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?

  6. #6
    Fred-ish rogerstg's Avatar
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    Given your description, I think it's reasonable to assume that it's been abandoned. Just get some bolt cutters and take it.

  7. #7
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    My son lives in Chicago and had a Trek 1000 stolen. Actually, he left it on the bus, and then it disappeared. what part of Chicago did you see this? Periwinkle? What color is this?

  8. #8
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    Leave the bike alone. It's part of a four-month stink operation by the Chicago Police Department. See, they know that if they bolt up a brand new expensive bike that the bike thieves will know it's a setup. So, the theives look for bikes that are pieces of junk and then stake them out for months, even years.

    It's a waiting game of cat and mouse.
    I'm two-tired to ride today.

  9. #9
    Humvee of bikes =Worksman Nightshade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fairmont View Post
    Leave the bike alone. It's part of a four-month stink operation by the Chicago Police Department. See, they know that if they bolt up a brand new expensive bike that the bike thieves will know it's a setup. So, the theives look for bikes that are pieces of junk and then stake them out for months, even years.

    It's a waiting game of cat and mouse.
    Stake out a bike for months or years.....in Chicago? You gotta be kidding!!
    My preferred bicycle brand is.......WORKSMAN CYCLES
    I dislike clipless pedals on any city bike since I feel they are unsafe.

    Originally Posted by krazygluon
    Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
    Aluminum: barely a hundred, which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?

  10. #10
    Member quittaboy's Avatar
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    I'd love to know of a set of bolt cutters that can get through a kryptonite U-Lock.

    As for the "sting operation"...um, this is Chicago. CPD doesn't give a $#!t about bike theft.

    I want to go about this as legally as possible. I think I'll try the city.
    "I just want to ride my bike. Save your condescension for someone who is gullible enough to kick your ass for it."

    '02 Jamis Quest
    '06 Madwagon Fulsom

  11. #11
    Senior Member ilmooz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quittaboy View Post
    I want to go about this as legally as possible. I think I'll try the city.
    This should be good. The bureaucratic sludge you're about to dive into should have you angrily chewing that Kryptonite lock off with your bare teeth within short order.

  12. #12
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    Just take the street sign, leave the bike alone.
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  13. #13
    Pokes On Spokes JPradun's Avatar
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    Put on a hi-vis type construction vest with some steel toed boots, with maybe a hard hat, and start grinding away at the lock. No one is going to ask you wtf you are doing. And, if by some chance they do (highly unlikely), tell them you're city maintenance.

    Or, just go cut the F-ing lock. No one cares.
    The quest for success: Collegiate Nationals:
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  14. #14
    Pokes On Spokes JPradun's Avatar
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    PS, the city could give a rats ass about our problems. You'd be lucky to reach them in under a 3hr phone wait...
    The quest for success: Collegiate Nationals:
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    (Updated daily 3/26-4/4-: North Carolina training camp)

  15. #15
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    Hey contact your Govener or one of the politicians... Sounds like he will sell you anything...
    2009 Giant Sedona ST... Steel rides better.. Now an Xtracycle
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  16. #16
    Toeclips are real delver's Avatar
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    JPradun has it right.
    If you are wearing a toolbelt, safety vest and a hardhat you can do almost anything. a clipboard helps, as well as a surly attitude. Get a bolt cutter, bottle jack, container of liquid nitrogen, whatever it will take. Paint it orange. be as bright and conspicous as possible. No one will mess with you. if a cop comes by, he will be curious, but tell him(or her)that you are a plant maintanance worker at the nearest university and you lost your bike lock keys a couple weeks ago, you already took most of the important stuff home off the bike and you just stopped by for the rest of it borrowing some tools from work. berate the cop a bit, not to much, just a tiny bit about how a couple of things have been stolen off it and how thats a pain in the a--. Act dignified yet slightly lowbrow. Never show fear or uncertainty. Cops can sense that stuff.

    I don't advocate stealing, I call it promoting something that has been overlooked for a while.

  17. #17
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    Huh...

    In Santa Cruz such bikes get tagged by the city, and removed in a week or two.
    Then they are donated to the local Bike Church co-op, where you can get a legitimate shot at the parts.

  18. #18
    Star of the Nursing Home seagullplayer's Avatar
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    Just keep in mind that if you call the city, the person answering the phone can't tell you anything other than what time the doors open. You might be better off asking a bike cop when you see one.
    Working to dispel the common myth that all grown men that ride a bicycle are just drunks that can’t afford a moped…

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