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Old 01-13-05, 06:02 AM   #1
JJakucyk
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Live in an Apartment, Where do You Store Your Bike?

For everyone who lives in an apartment, and has a reasonably expensive bike (or at least one that looks expensive), where do you store it? Can you keep it safe in your apartment, or do you put it in a common bike room?

I live in a 4th floor walk up, and the stairs are somewhat narrow for lugging a bike up and down. It's even technically not allowed to keep a bike in your apartment. There is a bike rack in the basement next to the laundry room, and there's one rather expensive mountain bike that's been gathering dust down there ever since I moved in, among others.

Anyway, after someone tried to break into my car in what I thought was a safe area, I'm wary of storing my new bike down there. The doors lock automatically, but only if you pull the door closed, which not everyone does. I'll ask the landlord to fix the door, but even then I'm still a bit worried. I use a kryptonite cable lock to lock my current bike to the rack (it's only got small loops sticking up from the floor, so a U-Lock won't reach from the bike frame to the rack). Many of the bikes just have a U-Lock securing the back wheel to the frame, and could easily be carrief off, but most of those are old cheap bikes. If push comes to shove, I may just bite the bullet and keep my new bike in my apartment with me, but do you have any suggestions?
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Old 01-13-05, 07:02 AM   #2
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you could get a long chain type lock that would reach from the floor to the bike frame- if you can't find a chain lock then just get the biggest chain you can find in a hardware store and wrap it with inner tube and use that. More locks such as a U lock round the frame would also help even if they are not connected to the rack. Then take the front wheel and seat with you and keep them in your apartment to make the bike less attractive.

Ultimately though if someone want to take it, strip it or damage it then they will.
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Old 01-13-05, 07:06 AM   #3
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I would ask the landlord to (a) fix the door and (b) install a better rack. Maybe ask for one of those alarms that goes off if a door is left open? Point out that this will keep cars safer as well.
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Old 01-13-05, 07:08 AM   #4
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I would say have a chat with your landloard or apartment management company. Tell them your situation (expensive bike) and your aprehension (sp) about using the required facilities but that you want to honor your lease. If you do this and they still tell you no bike in your apartment (this would be my choice BTW) I would make sure they understand that they are liable if your bike is stolen from their rack area, assuming you have it properly locked. If you are forced to lock it there I would get an addition lock just for redundancy. Do they have a cammera in the bike storage area? Maybe suggest that if they don't.
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Old 01-13-05, 08:42 AM   #5
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Keep it in your apartment. It may be more work but how much more is it really compared to lugging and setting 6 locks? Plus it adds a little peace of mind.

When you tire of that, look for an apartment on the first floor.

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Old 01-13-05, 09:00 AM   #6
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We got this rack from REI. We found that this was our best option, given that we have multiple options. We store it in the apartment since the neighbourhood can be dicey at best.
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Old 01-13-05, 09:06 AM   #7
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I park both my bikes in my bedroom. I can sacrifice the space to know they're safe.
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Old 01-13-05, 09:20 AM   #8
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apartment all the way. i would never consider leaving my bikes in a common area. out of the question. i can't believe you're forbidden to bring a bike into your apartment, that's going too far if you ask me.
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Old 01-13-05, 10:14 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JJakucyk
It's even technically not allowed to keep a bike in your apartment.
seriously? How is that? In all my years of leasing and knowing other cyclists who lease, I've never heard that being written into a contract.

No way would I leave my bike outside my house or garage. If you're tight for space, hang the bike from the ceiling.
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Old 01-13-05, 10:23 AM   #10
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Carrying a bike up four flights of stairs might cause me to ride a LOT less. A big, beefy chain lock could secure both of your wheels and frame to the laundry room rack. Then, connect the rear wheel to the frame with a good U-lock. A thief would realize that even if he cuts the chain, he is not going to be able to ride away.

If I was in your situation, and had a mega-expensive bike, I would probably keep that bike in my apartment and ride it on Sundays, when "management" is not around. Keep a "beater" bike in the laundry room.

Of course, MOVING is an option. I think second floor apartments work okay for bikes. I could carry even my heaviest bike that far.
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Old 01-13-05, 11:05 AM   #11
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We have a storage closet on the balcony that is large enough for a few bikes and has been finished enough to keep the weather out. If I didn't have that, my bike would go in my room, landlord and silly lease clause be damned
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Old 01-13-05, 11:09 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LordOpie
seriously? How is that? In all my years of leasing and knowing other cyclists who lease, I've never heard that being written into a contract.

No way would I leave my bike outside my house or garage. If you're tight for space, hang the bike from the ceiling.
They probably had a problem in the past with some guy working on his bike in his apartment who got grease everywhere, and did not clean up after himself. So, they just put a new clause in the lease that says no bikes in the apartment so they don't have to deal with cleaning carpet with a year's worth of bike grease smeared all over it.
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Old 01-13-05, 11:13 AM   #13
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Having been in that situation, I just do not want my bike in an openly public area...On my Klein my wheels are worth more than many a bike costs...
I have kept mine on the patio...Even there I wrap one thick chain through the bikes and attack it to the metal wall of the patio itself..I think apartments have higher theft rates than homes...ANy well populated area does.
Another concern..I do not like my bikes out in the rain....I would put a tarp over it...but rain still saturates the bikes parts...
Can rain get into bottom brackets etc as it falls from the sky...The patio I had , had no covering...
See why I rarely ride in the rain...! When out in the rain , I see signs of rust about the bikes nuts, etc...Thought all that stuff was stainless steel..
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Old 01-13-05, 11:24 AM   #14
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Get a large thick kryptonite fahgaddaboudit or onguard beast chain with a huge lock. Then get a huge U-lock plus a couple of cables to keep your seat, etc, in place. Cross lock everything and cover it with a tarp.
I wonder how you're gonna pump it. Bring the pump down, pump it, leave it there, go ride. Or pump it, lock it back again, run up to put the pump back, run back down.. ugh, hassle. Just keep it in ur apartment.
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Old 01-13-05, 11:31 AM   #15
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You wouldn't leave your signifigant other locked downstairs in a room would you? You have to put that machine in your bedroom.
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Old 01-13-05, 11:33 AM   #16
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Slvoid...I see ads in Bicycling Mag...They have competitive mountain bike rides up flights of stairs..That must be a good work out...
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Old 01-13-05, 11:35 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manual_overide
They probably had a problem in the past with some guy working on his bike in his apartment who got grease everywhere, and did not clean up after himself. So, they just put a new clause in the lease that says no bikes in the apartment so they don't have to deal with cleaning carpet with a year's worth of bike grease smeared all over it.

Back in my rental days, I negotiated with the landlord. If I wanted to put up shelves or a rack, we came to agreement on an addition to the original security deposit. When I had my bikes inside, I invited him over to see the care and attention I had given to maintain his property, such as a Wally-World area rug underneath bikes. When I moved out, I made damn sure to restore the walls and ceiling to like new condition. Landlord wound up giving me $$ cause I saved him the work of cleaning and painting.
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Old 01-13-05, 12:47 PM   #18
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I'm lucky now and have a large balcony and a storage closet. But when I lived in Boston I leased a third floor walkup, and I shouldered my bike up and down the stairs every day. Think of it as a pre-ride workout.
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Old 01-13-05, 12:57 PM   #19
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Quote:
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Think of it as a pre-ride workout.
Yeah, but my new bike will be so much lighter than my old one. Does anyone know exactly how much a Klein rve V weighs?
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Old 01-13-05, 01:16 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cyclezealot
Slvoid...I see ads in Bicycling Mag...They have competitive mountain bike rides up flights of stairs..That must be a good work out...
I can't even ride DOWN that well, let alone go up.
I think maybe this guy has a road bike? I wonder if you can ride those down stairs hehe.
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Old 01-13-05, 01:49 PM   #21
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I lock them up under the stairs in the basement, where hardly anyone goes. I live on the third floor, and there's really no room in the apartment for them. Plus if I had to drag them up and down the stairs all the time, I'd never ride.
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Old 01-13-05, 02:05 PM   #22
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I have a pretty small studio apartment, about 25' long x 15' wide.

I have about a 4'x8' space that is just boxes of stuff I never unpacked from the last time I moved. I lean my 2 road bikes against that.
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Old 01-14-05, 02:46 AM   #23
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One of my housemates (apartment style college housing) uses two quick clamps to secure a 2x4 upright to the foot of his bed. He put a screw-in hook in the 2x4 and hangs it by the front wheel. Takes up minimal space. I'll try to remember to take a picture of it to post tomorrow.

There's a parking garage under our residence halls with bike racks inside. It's similar to what you describe where the door locks behind you. Apparently, though, thieves still manage to get in, because half of the bikes that are on the racks have no wheels. I think your concerns about the common area are legitimite.
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