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  1. #1
    Senior Member DEW21's Avatar
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    Cable lock or U-lock

    In the market for a lock to fit in this bag. Since I started biking last year, I have only gone on 1 to 3 hour rides so I dont have to leave the bike unlocked. This coming year, I will start going on longer rides that will require bathroom breaks, lunch stops, ect. Looking for something to secure my bike so it will still be there after these type of stops. I dont consider the areas I ride in to be high crime areas but things can get jacked in the burbs too.

  2. #2
    Senior Member DEW21's Avatar
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    After just reading this thread, I guess it really dosent matter.

  3. #3
    S'Cruzer pierce's Avatar
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    personally, I prefer cable locks as you can lock both wheels and the frame to a stationary object, while with a U-lock, you need to take a wheel off if you want to secure it. I've seen SO many U-locked frames around town here with no front wheel, ooops!

    U locks ARE considered more secure as they are harder to cut.

    if your seat is on a quick release, I suggest replacing it with a allen or torx bolt, especially a pinned one, this makes it much harder to rip off your seat and post, although it also means you need a tool to adjust it. if I was regularly locking a commuter bike in areas where stuff might get jacked, I'd probably replace my quick releases with the security releases they sell in bike shops, these require a special tool to remove the wheels.

    locks are so annoying... we go to all this trouble to make a bike as light as possible, then we have to carry this 5 lb lock :-/


    I'm using a kryptonite cable lock that has a bracket to clip it to the frame when not in use.

  4. #4
    Senior Member DEW21's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pierce View Post
    personally, I prefer cable locks as you can lock both wheels and the frame to a stationary object, while with a U-lock, you need to take a wheel off if you want to secure it. I've seen SO many U-locked frames around town here with no front wheel, ooops!

    U locks ARE considered more secure as they are harder to cut.

    if your seat is on a quick release, I suggest replacing it with a allen or torx bolt, especially a pinned one, this makes it much harder to rip off your seat and post, although it also means you need a tool to adjust it. if I was regularly locking a commuter bike in areas where stuff might get jacked, I'd probably replace my quick releases with the security releases they sell in bike shops, these require a special tool to remove the wheels.

    locks are so annoying... we go to all this trouble to make a bike as light as possible, then we have to carry this 5 lb lock :-/


    I'm using a kryptonite cable lock that has a bracket to clip it to the frame when not in use.
    Thanks Pierce.

  5. #5
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    I use a Kryptonite cable lock. But, it's only for quick bathroom breaks. I never, ever, leave my bike unattended for more than a couple of minutes. Which, of course, is plenty of time for someone to clip the cable and take it. But, it at least prevents someone from just grabbing it, and riding off. If I stop to eat, it's either a place that allows me to bring it inside, or a place where I can lock it with a window, so I can keep an eye on it.

  6. #6
    S'Cruzer pierce's Avatar
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    those krypto cables are not that easy to cut, you need a big-a** bolt cutter and its STILL not just a quick snip.

    my son has the right idea at his college. he parks his vintage funky looking but really rather nice steel road bike right next to all the carbon fiber S-Works yuppiespawn bikes (who in his right mind buys his college kind a SWorks Roubaix to take to school and leave outside in the rain all day ?!?). If anything is going to get ripped off, it will be the carbon shiny stuff, not the funky old trek with a mixed bag of vintage parts on it.

  7. #7
    TortoiseNotHare BridgeNotTunnel's Avatar
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    Living in NYC when I plan lock it up I use a U-lock and 2 (yes 2!) cables.

    This is regardless of weight, and leaning heavily towards security.

    (U-lock locks frame and back wheel to pole/rack.
    One cables end loop starts at the U-lock, and then lasso's the front wheel through it's own end loop.
    The second cable end loop also starts at the u-lock but then goes through my seat before returning the second end loop to the U-lock....)

    As stated above, it sounds like a good long cable lock might suffice for you. Try to plan your stops somewhere you can keep an eye out for your ride while resting. You might even be able to find a bike friendly establishment who will stow your bike for you while you chow, etc.

  8. #8
    W A N T E D Juggler2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pierce View Post
    those krypto cables are not that easy to cut, you need a big-a** bolt cutter and its STILL not just a quick snip. *snip*
    And if the bolt cutter is dull, it can be difficult at the least!

  9. #9
    Member Here We Go's Avatar
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    Cable lock only = bye bye bicycle

    In one way, cable locks are really bad, because they give a false sense of security.

    A proven way of more secure locking starts with a high-quality (not cheapo brand) U-lock or a high-quality chain ($50+). A cable can be a useful accessory to make it more annoying to try to to pinch components like seats, wheels, etc.

    Depending on what type of main lock you use, an additional cable lock may add extra security insofar as it may take a 2nd type of tool to defeat, and not all potential thieves will be carrying both.

    If you're worried about insecure bike racks (which a lot of them are), good! A lot of them are cheap and easy to cut, or have bolts that can be undone, or the whole thing can be lifted by 2 guys into the bed of a truck. Find the secure racks, or find something else to lock to.

    I suggest you listen to what Hal Ruzal has to say about the subject. And some woman from a co-op in Toronto, if you keep watching the sequel videos.

  10. #10
    S'Cruzer pierce's Avatar
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    way I figure it, the bike lock is just to discourage some punk from hopping on the bike and riding off with it.

  11. #11
    PatronSaintOfDiscBrakes dynaryder's Avatar
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    I would advise getting a set of Pinhead/OnGuard or Picklock locking skewer/seatpost locks,then carry a small U for the frame. If you're set on a cable and don't have much room,I have one of these on my cargo bike for securing the front wheel and freelocking at my clinic.

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  12. #12
    Senior Member DEW21's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pierce View Post
    way I figure it, the bike lock is just to discourage some punk from hopping on the bike and riding off with it.
    My thoughts exactly! I think I,am going to order THIS lock, just hoping it will fit in the bag I linked in my first post.

  13. #13
    Senior Member GVLaker09's Avatar
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    Do bike thieves use the same tools for cable locks and chains? I was looking at the Kryptonite 785 or Kryptonite 955. I have a Masterlock cable lock from my cheapo bike that I'll still use to secure the front wheel, but if they use the same tools for each maybe that's not enough of a deterrent and I should go for a U-lock.

    My bike would be locked for no more than an hour at a time, mostly in Royal Oak/Madison Heights if anyone is familiar with the area.

  14. #14
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    i also use a kryptonite cable lock on the hybrid for running errands (grocery store) etc. easy to lock and not so worried about the extra weight as i'm usually carrying a couple bags home anyway. don't bother with a u-lock...if someone wants to steal my bike that bad, they'll find a way no matter what.

  15. #15
    S'Cruzer pierce's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DEW21 View Post
    My thoughts exactly! I think I,am going to order THIS lock, just hoping it will fit in the bag I linked in my first post.
    that one is awfully short. I use one of these
    http://www.amazon.com/Kryptonite-Kry...d_sim_sbs_sg_4

    which you can see in its holder on my bike here...


    although I've since transferred it to the tail bag and taken the holder off as due to the low top tube on my fame, was kind of in the way of the water bottle.

  16. #16
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    I use one of these u-locks. It's just the right size to fit around most objects without leaving room for thieves to easily get at it. I lock through the rear wheel inside the rear triangle like Sheldon Brown recommended. It also comes with a cable lock for the front wheel if ill be locking it up for 20+ minutes. To be honest many of the cable locks linked in this thread look just as bulky as a small u-lock which offer significantly more protection..



    http://sheldonbrown.com/lock-strategy.html

  17. #17
    S'Cruzer pierce's Avatar
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    whoa, an inch-pinch ! cool. haven't seen one of those since the early 70s in Marin when we abused old cruisers riding down the fire roads of Mt Tamalpais, muahahaahahaha. baked many a New Dimensions coaster brake.

  18. #18
    Chainstay Brake Mafia
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    cable locks can be silently cut in seconds using a tool that bike thieves can easily carry on them. If it's a combination lock it can be opened in relatively short amount of time by a skilled lock picker.

    ulocks at least take a bit of extra work and it's more conspicuous.

    For anything longer than quick stops, I strongly recommend using at least a ulock. or both. But a cable lock by itself is only going to stop joy riders.


    One time I locked my pedicab to a light post with a cable lock, and put a ulock thru the wheel and the frame. a potential thief cut the cable lock but abandoned the cab after realizing they couldn't ride it with the ulock in place. If i had only used a cable lock, I would owe the pedicab thousands of dollars. So yeah, use a U lock.
    Last edited by frantik; 12-29-12 at 08:38 AM.
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  19. #19
    S'Cruzer pierce's Avatar
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    what is this tool you refer to? I've tried to cut that 1/4" steel cable with smallish bolt cutters (2 foot long) and it just spread and didn't go anywhere without a whole lot of beating on it. the BIG bolt cutters went through it pretty easily, but it still required quite a bit of effort and several angles.

  20. #20
    we be rollin' hybridbkrdr's Avatar
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    I cringe at the idea of giving advice on a security matter. But, I haven't had a bicycle stolen in I think 7 years with a cable lock. I agree with the idea of a U-lock, but not the weight and how challenging it is to find places to lock a U-lock. What if there's only a tree around? Can you lock a U-lock to a tree?
    Feeling Good by David Burns

  21. #21
    Chainstay Brake Mafia
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    Quote Originally Posted by pierce View Post
    what is this tool you refer to? I've tried to cut that 1/4" steel cable with smallish bolt cutters (2 foot long) and it just spread and didn't go anywhere without a whole lot of beating on it. the BIG bolt cutters went through it pretty easily, but it still required quite a bit of effort and several angles.


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  22. #22
    Chainstay Brake Mafia
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    Last edited by frantik; 01-03-13 at 08:32 PM.
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by pierce View Post

    which you can see in its holder on my bike here...
    although I've since transferred it to the tail bag and taken the holder off as due to the low top tube on my fame, was kind of in the way of the water bottle.
    That is a sweet looking bike. I'd be proud to own that bike.

  24. #24
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    My bike just got stolen. Here's the thing. I had a U-lock that kept it safe for over 5 years. The night it got stolen, I got distracted and forgot to lock it!

    Now that I have a nicer bike, I got an ABUS u-lock: a) it's a rare lock here in the US, so it's less appealing to the accomplished bike thief, and b) it's considered to be the most difficult of the u-locks to compromise. On top of that I have the wheels and seat locked down with locking skewers and plan to take a crappy lightweight cable lock with me as an extra deterrent.

    I mostly kept to a few important steps in all the years I had my last bike: I locked it in smart places, like in front of a brightly lit open business at night, instead of a dark side street. I never left it in a sketchy place for too terribly long. I always locked it well. See, that's another thing. You need to get the right size u-lock, and watch videos on how to properly lock it and what to lock it to. And don't make the mistake of thinking your bike is safe unlocked in a backyard, shared garage, apartment building hallway, etc.

    Also, renter's insurance.

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