K.I.S.S. One approach is to ride a 64cm/25.3" Panasonic Sport Deluxe tank. Put two gray trash cans on the back and carry 50# of groceries. Simple, indeed, and I haven't had a bike stolen once in the last 33 years.
I could not leave well enough alone. Surely no one in his right mind is going to snatch a scratched maroon 64cm. Then physically the thief needs to be 6'5" to make off on the Panasonic without slipping off the pedals and taking a nut-buster header.
These wonderful people, bloggers here at BF tempted me to BUY A NEW BIKE. The world has changed and NEW is better. Read and learn, then apply.
Dearest Craig's List cooperated by providing a NIB 2009 Cannondale Quick 6, size Large, color Silver, usage none for $200. Assembly was interesting. Nothing I'd call challenging. (OMG... the shifters... they show me what gear I'm in. Next generation, it'll be computers with sultry female voices.) This bike doesn't look like $200. It looks more like $800 or $1,500 once I add some goodies.
And of the 20,000,000 people in the NYC Metro area I am assured that 19,999,000 of them are plotting to jack my ride !! There's preemies lying in incubators at NYH dreaming my spiffy Q6 in technicolor. Nobody dreams the Panasonic. Not even me.
So guys, HELP !!: locks, disguising the logos, preferred locations while shopping, bad spots in NYC (such as Midtown?), registering the ID numbers with someone other than Cdale, a cover, etc. -- what works ?????
The Q6 came with a cool looking Avenir lock that sells new for $20. I've used the same $5 wire lock on the tank for 20 years, mainly to keep it from falling over. If somebody steals the 64cm Panasonic, I fear only that they'll come back in a couple weeks when their battered privates heal and beat me up.
The Q6... bye-bye. How do we discourage that?
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URLs below for sites that recommend specific locks and provide instruction for strong lock-down procedures.
Kryptonite's NY Fergitaboutit u-lock and The Club's motorcycle lock and Blackburn San Quentin get good marks. OnGuard Brute 8000, too. Several have insurance for your bike -- dependent on having a new bike with a receipt. Kryponite New York Legend scores a #1 but it weighs 10 pounds.