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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

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Old 09-28-07, 01:50 PM   #1
kchan99
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No bike rack-where to lock bike

There is a supermarket (Aldi store) in my area that doesn't have a bike rack. Any suggestions of where I can lock my bike?

There are handicap parking sign posts, lamp posts, and a shopping cart corral in the parking lot.

Please don't suggest a folding bike. There are other supermarkets with bike racks at which I shop, but sometimes, I like to go to Aldi because of the prices.
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Old 09-28-07, 01:53 PM   #2
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Ask the store to get a bike rack.
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Old 09-28-07, 02:08 PM   #3
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There is a supermarket (Aldi store) in my area that doesn't have a bike rack. Any suggestions of where I can lock my bike?

There are handicap parking sign posts, lamp posts, and a shopping cart corral in the parking lot.

Please don't suggest a folding bike. There are other supermarkets with bike racks at which I shop, but sometimes, I like to go to Aldi because of the prices.
How about to the lamp post or cart corral or whatever other secure post is nearby?
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Old 09-28-07, 02:25 PM   #4
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If the cart corral is away from motor vehicle traffic I will lock to them. The two grocery stores I use the most don't have bike racks but they have nice solid cart corrals under the front canopy that I lock to. I would not use the ones in the parking lot except as a last resort. Ours look like the guardrails at a demolition derby.

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Old 09-28-07, 02:35 PM   #5
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Bring it in the store,

If they raise a fit, ask them where you should lock it?
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Old 09-28-07, 03:16 PM   #6
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Bring a long cable. Kryptonite sells a 7 ft long one. Lock to the big lightpoles in the parking lot. Don't lock to the shopping cart return, your bike will get bashed.

But, often I bring mine in and lock it to the gumball machines. If anyone gives me grief, I plan on telling them that I've shopped there for 15 years (true), but I can stop shopping there whenever.
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Old 09-28-07, 03:41 PM   #7
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Bring a long cable. Kryptonite sells a 7 ft long one. Lock to the big lightpoles in the parking lot. Don't lock to the shopping cart return, your bike will get bashed.

But, often I bring mine in and lock it to the gumball machines. If anyone gives me grief, I plan on telling them that I've shopped there for 15 years (true), but I can stop shopping there whenever.
I'll try the lamp post with my 6 ft. cable lock. I don't know if 6 ft. is long enough. It should work if I get the wheels bolted on.
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Old 09-28-07, 04:13 PM   #8
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Look around the side or back of the store. You may find a chain link fence, guardrails, a bench or table in the employee break area, a vertical standpipe, or even more surprisingly sometimes a hidden bike rack. Whatever you lock to, tug on it first to see whether it's really secure.
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Old 09-28-07, 09:39 PM   #9
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There are always places to lock a bike. Some I've used have included
• fences
• traffic signs
• light standards
• parking meters
• cart racks (but avoid if possible)
• a semi-trailer left in a loading dock
• a tree in the parking lot
• a railing behind the store
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Old 09-28-07, 10:25 PM   #10
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At the King Soopers I go to, there's a railing about 6" off the ground to keep the carts from smashing into the building. I generally lock to this railing just outside the door.
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Old 09-28-07, 10:50 PM   #11
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Bring it in the store,

If they raise a fit, ask them where you should lock it?
It's not a stores responsibility to provide you with a dedicated place to lock up. It's nice when they do, but there are so many other options that the solution you offer only will provoke a confrontation.
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Old 09-28-07, 11:53 PM   #12
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If you have the Lions Club selling raffle tickets or the minor hockey people selling hot dogs as a fundraiser outside the store, you can ask them to watch your bike for you. You'll usually find these kinds of things happening on a Saturday, especially late morning.
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Old 09-29-07, 12:10 AM   #13
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I always take my bike in with me when I'm grocery shopping. I put the groceries directly in the bag on my rear rack...much easier than using a shopping cart then transferring everything to the bike outside, and I never buy too much to carry since I fill up the bag as I go along.

I don't know why a grocery store would have a problem with a bike being brought into their store if they allow shopping carts to be taken out then brought back in. All the "you can't do that because" statements applied to bringing a bike in could be applied to shopping carts (it takes up space/gets in the way, the tires may be dirty, it might bump into a display and knock things down)...any other reasons somebody would not want a bike in their store?
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Old 09-29-07, 12:17 AM   #14
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I always take my bike in with me when I'm grocery shopping. I put the groceries directly in the bag on my rear rack...much easier than using a shopping cart then transferring everything to the bike outside, and I never buy too much to carry since I fill up the bag as I go along.

I don't know why a grocery store would have a problem with a bike being brought into their store if they allow shopping carts to be taken out then brought back in. All the "you can't do that because" statements applied to bringing a bike in could be applied to shopping carts (it takes up space/gets in the way, the tires may be dirty, it might bump into a display and knock things down)...any other reasons somebody would not want a bike in their store?
Because they don't like it is good enough a reason for me. It's their store and they can allow what they like inside of it. If you don't like it go elsewhere.
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Old 09-29-07, 12:26 AM   #15
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I agree completely Ziemas. However, I don't think the people at the store the op goes to have told him he can't take his bike inside. I'd suggest just trying it. Usually they won't say anything. Sometimes they'll say "cool bike." I've never had an employee of any business tell me I couldn't bring my bike inside.

If I were in that situation and they said I couldn't take my bike inside I'd just go to one of the stores down the street and pay 10 cents more for my mac and cheese. No use making a big scene over it. If they ask me to leave I'll leave and never come back, no big deal.
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Old 09-29-07, 12:38 AM   #16
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I agree completely Ziemas. However, I don't think the people at the store the op goes to have told him he can't take his bike inside. I'd suggest just trying it. Usually they won't say anything. Sometimes they'll say "cool bike." I've never had an employee of any business tell me I couldn't bring my bike inside.

If I were in that situation and they said I couldn't take my bike inside I'd just go to one of the stores down the street and pay 10 cents more for my mac and cheese. No use making a big scene over it. If they ask me to leave I'll leave and never come back, no big deal.
Every time I've ever taken my bike into a store (it's very rare) I've always asked, and I've never been refused.
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Old 09-29-07, 12:52 AM   #17
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Good policy, Ziemas. I've sometimes asked if there's a safe place I can put my bike, especially if I'm touring someplace. People have often gone out of their way to accommodate my request.
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Old 09-29-07, 12:25 PM   #18
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At the King Soopers I go to, there's a railing about 6" off the ground to keep the carts from smashing into the building. I generally lock to this railing just outside the door.
So that carts can now smash into your bike??
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Old 09-29-07, 01:52 PM   #19
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So that carts can now smash into your bike??
The railing runs across the entire front of the building... 80% of it there are never any carts. And no, nobody has ever hit my bike with a cart.

Though there was one time they parked a row of carts outside of my bike... I had to walk between the carts and the building to get to my bike, but even then they weren't that close to my bike. (I was parked down by the area that they normally park carts... I don't usually park there, but they had a bunch of displays set up where I usually park)
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Old 09-30-07, 11:28 AM   #20
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You can always find someplace to lock it. A long cable lock is the most versatile. Put it through one of the wheels and the frame. Use a mini U-lock to lock the other wheel to the frame. Take the saddle in with you if you have a nice one.

If you lock to a fence, as some suggested, put the lock around one of the fence posts. The links can be cut with an ordinary pair of pliers.

The only time I have trouble finding a place to lock is a shopping district that has a lot of ethnic restaurants, coffee shops and an independent book store. So many cyclists are attracted to this area that I have to park a block away sometimes. But this is a good thing!
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Old 09-30-07, 04:00 PM   #21
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I lock to cart corals or poles. Even places that have those dreadful wheel bike racks that dont let you use a u-lock, god I hate those.
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Old 09-30-07, 10:25 PM   #22
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I actually went to a LBS the other day when i was out of town on business and they had 3 bike racks in front of the store and all of them were so rusted and in shambles and in no way secured to either the concrete or the building that there was no way i was going to lock my bike to them. At a grocery store i can see it... but a bike shop?
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Old 10-01-07, 10:46 AM   #23
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I actually went to a LBS the other day when i was out of town on business and they had 3 bike racks in front of the store and all of them were so rusted and in shambles and in no way secured to either the concrete or the building that there was no way i was going to lock my bike to them. At a grocery store i can see it... but a bike shop?
Same thing at my LBS! The only bike rack thay have is used to display the few usd bikes they have for sale. I complained to the owner. He said you could just bring your bike in. I told him he didn't even have a place to lean a bike inside the shop, and besides it was the whole idea of a bike shop not even having a rack that seemed screwy to me. Part of that whole LBS thing of looking down on transit cyclists. Most customers drive in to get stuff for their dedicated road bikes and mountain bikes, I guess.
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Old 10-01-07, 03:36 PM   #24
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Same thing at my LBS! The only bike rack thay have is used to display the few usd bikes they have for sale. I complained to the owner. He said you could just bring your bike in. I told him he didn't even have a place to lean a bike inside the shop, and besides it was the whole idea of a bike shop not even having a rack that seemed screwy to me. Part of that whole LBS thing of looking down on transit cyclists. Most customers drive in to get stuff for their dedicated road bikes and mountain bikes, I guess.
Yeah... I just bring my bike inside. One bike shop I've been to actually had the rack INSIDE next to the cash registers. Only problem was I came back from their (unhelpful) service section, and someone is letting their kid mess around with my bike... turn the lights on and off, etc.

The kid apologized to me... told me he thought it was a store model bike... no way the employee or the mom standing there watching him thought that, though. I smiled and thanked the boy for his apology and gave the woman and the cashier the dirtiest look I could muster. Their service section was as spectacularly uncaring about customer service as was their cashier... I've never been back to that store.

Even the most commuter/transportation/utility oriented bike store I've been to falls into the same 'they'll DRIVE their bikes over for maintenance' mode of thinking.... sure, they've got bike racks out front... but they're full of used bikes for sale... hardly ever is there room to lock another bike to the rack. (I generally just lock to their bikes at the end of the rack)
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Old 10-03-07, 07:43 PM   #25
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There is a supermarket (Aldi store) in my area that doesn't have a bike rack. Any suggestions of where I can lock my bike?

There are handicap parking sign posts, lamp posts, and a shopping cart corral in the parking lot.

Please don't suggest a folding bike. There are other supermarkets with bike racks at which I shop, but sometimes, I like to go to Aldi because of the prices.
Sounds like a couple of possibilities. If you have a cable lock you could do the lamp post. Also the parking post should be fine as long as the post is tall enough someone could not lift your bike up and over the sign post to steal it.

There's a couple supermarkets near where I live. One has good bike racks near the door but its the most expensive. Another has the bike rack just about as far from the door as humanly possible, I often see people leave bikes in the entryway inside either locked to a handrail or just to itself. The third has no good possibilities of things to lock to except the handrail of the handicap access ramp, not good for people trying to use the ramp, but there's a lot of people that bike there and that's where all the bikes seem to be locked.
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