I will be moving to New York City either this December or August (probably December, if all goes well with planning stuff, switching colleges, etc.). Anyway... How do you prevent bike theft? When I went to the CMWC this summer, my huge On Guard u-lock worked fine (locking the front wheel and frame). But then again, the road bike I was using for that trip wasn't too attractive. Moving on... I just finished building this amazing fixie. A couple days ago I got the front light and a couple chainring bolts stolen off of it in Santa Cruz, CA, and I was almost crying. Dunno what I'd do if the bike itself got jacked. So I thought either: take a working beater over there, or just jack up (i.e. strip some paint, scratch, add some random spray paint, etc.) an entry level track bike like the Raleigh Rush Hour or the Bianchi Pista. Problem with taking a "working beater" is that I don't have even a frame now, and to build one up would be pricey because I'll be paranoid about using the recycled parts available at my local bike co-op. So... would it deter thieves to jack up a formerly "pretty nice" bike? Or should I just invest in an amazing locking system and not worry so much, and just ride my custom-built baby? Or should I make a concerted effort to find an already-assembled "beater" that works? Or should I find a crappy-looking frame and put nice yet undercover parts on it?
Also... what about rain and snow? Fenders and big yellow rainsuit? I think this little California girl is gonna be in for some big surprises. Although I do love riding in the rain! Tee hee hee.
Thanks for your input!