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  1. #1
    Senior Member spindrifter's Avatar
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    Asking strangers to watch your bike

    I know this is So. California, but where I'm from, I could be riding, stop by a Starbucks and ask someone to watch my bike for a couple of minutes. But here, I'm reluctant to do that?

    My question is, how are people here generally? Can you trust them, just by looking at them? Any thoughts on this would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Me and the cat... Pamestique's Avatar
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    Spin difficult question. I generally trust my bike left outside but then I don't have a $5000 Ti jewel; mine's alittle old and made of steel. If its a shop where other cyclist may be, then I wouldn't worried but keep an eye out. If there's any question, start carrying a lock or take your seat post or wheel with you. At least people won't be able to ride off with your bike.

  3. #3
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    never stopped at starbucks during a ride where I got something, but when I run into 711 or whatever I'll just keep the bike at the window and keep a close eye on it while I'm shopping for fuel.
    ...mad as a box of frogs

  4. #4
    oo..O.O.o..OO...o magicant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsigone
    never stopped at starbucks during a ride where I got something, but when I run into 711 or whatever I'll just keep the bike at the window and keep a close eye on it while I'm shopping for fuel.
    +1

    Even at the Starbucks I usually stop at, there's pretty good visibility of the bike through windows.
    If ignorance is bliss, shouldn't you be happy?

  5. #5
    Senior Member GaryA's Avatar
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    I will usually bring mine just inside if they will let me. If not I have been known to ask someone to add my coffee to their order and give them a little extra for the trouble.
    2007 Motobecane Sprint
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  6. #6
    Queen of France Indolent58's Avatar
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    If you have a 56cm Colnago C50 with full Record I will watch your bike for you

  7. #7
    . Luwin1026's Avatar
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    I usually try to bring mine in through the back door (if they have one) and just lean it against the wall of the hallway out of people's way. Especially if it's a long line, I'd hesitate to leave it outside, even in plain view. All it would take is a person to hop on, pedal away, and I'd be SOL trying to chase them on foot, or biking shoes with cleats for that matter. I'd love to give society (or more specifically, us folks in LA) the benefit of the doubt, but being burned/stolen from/etc. in the past has me jaded somewhat.

    I try to be cautious of other riders (whether I know them or not) and their bikes when they leave them to go inside to order, etc., and would not hesitate to help out by jumping on a thief's back if they try to take off on a fellow rider's bike. But I cannot and would not expect the same conscientiousness and attention from others for my own bike.

    Long story short - it all depends. Try to bring the bike in if you can. If not, try to find someone who appears to be more trustworthy (i.e. the businessman with his Macbook working, newspapers and documents spread out on the table - he's probably not going to hop on and bolt - just make sure he's not so attached to his Blackberry that he would/could not keep an eye your bike if you ask). I'm sure things are different in smaller towns, etc., but as LA is a pretty metropolitan area, I'd tend to go on the conservative side of trusting strangers.

    But if you ever see a fellow Bikeforum jersey-wearing dude/dudette, don't hesitate to ask!

  8. #8
    oo..O.O.o..OO...o magicant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luwin1026
    I'd love to give society (or more specifically, us folks in LA) the benefit of the doubt, but being burned/stolen from/etc. in the past has me jaded somewhat.
    hmmm... I'm sure I'm too trusting because I've never been burned. Just lucky, I suppose.

    I do try to take it indoors if it's a heavily trafficked area (3rd Street Promenade, etc).
    If ignorance is bliss, shouldn't you be happy?

  9. #9
    fart knocker Oleanshoebox's Avatar
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    not in my neighborhood. I have had 2 bikes stolen. One out of my garage.

  10. #10
    Senior Member socalcyclist's Avatar
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    I bring my bike in the store. I've never had a complaint. I would never leave me bike out of sight in any city USA. Even Newberry has an occasional criminal.

  11. #11
    In beaurocratic limbo urbanknight's Avatar
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    Around here, asking someone to watch your bike INCREASES its chances of getting stolen. It draws attention to the fact that it's being left unattended, and most of the people around here commit crimes of opportunity. I never go where I can't see my bike.

  12. #12
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    Californian's are a busy people. You can find one who will wait around for 3 minutes? Amazing. I trust no one with my bikes. I do trust my locks. Somewhat.

  13. #13
    Senior Member iamtim's Avatar
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    I do not trust generic "people", nor do I really trust locks. If I can't be within 5-10' of my bike, I don't go in.

  14. #14
    riding once again jschen's Avatar
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    On long solo rides, stops at convenience stores leave my bike temporarily not only unattended, but left out of sight. I always carry my keys/ID/credit card/cash with me when going in the store just in case my bike gets stolen. But then I simply leave it where there's plenty of people around (but not staring right at it) and make the amount of time it's not in sight as short as possible.

    [e] Yes, I do also plan out my stops with care. There are places where I wouldn't simply leave my bike outside as I go in to buy some water and use the restroom. There are places where I feel comfortable leaving it out of sight for 5 minutes if need be.
    If you notice this notice then you will notice that this notice is not worth noticing.

  15. #15
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    You leave your bike when you go to the restroom?Jschen. My bike goes to the rest room with me or I don't go.

  16. #16
    . Luwin1026's Avatar
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    If it's a restroom stop, I'd rather find a hidden bush on the side of the road where my bike can be next to me . . .

  17. #17
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    I'd take my bike in the stall with me, if I felt it necessary.

  18. #18
    riding once again jschen's Avatar
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    Yes, I leave my bike outside a store while shopping for snacks or going to the restroom.
    If you notice this notice then you will notice that this notice is not worth noticing.

  19. #19
    They Exist Drew12's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jschen
    Yes, I leave my bike outside a store while shopping for snacks or going to the restroom.

    Try taking it just inside the store, and asking the clerk to keep an eye on it.
    And I've heard tell some people just "GO" on the go..
    eewwwww

  20. #20
    Senior Member summoner12's Avatar
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    When I was little I was standing outside of a 7-11 watching my dad's bike and my bike. after a minute or two alone a lady asked me to watch her bike while she ran inside the 7-11.. when she came back she gave me a quarter and i thought i was RICH!!!!! hahaha

  21. #21
    Senior Member devilinblack's Avatar
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    The roadie I had in highschool was stolen while I ran into a store for "just a sec". Walked outside just in time to see someone hop on and take off. Even if you can see your bike through the window, you'll be far too long getting out the door and giving chase. Forget it if you're wearing cleats.

    When I stop at Subway or someplace for drinks the bike goes inside with me. So far no one has had a problem with this and if they did then I'd take my money elsewhere.
    -stephen



    "And miles to go before I sleep." -Robert Frost

  22. #22
    Queen of France Indolent58's Avatar
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    I leave my bike outside to buy food/water. No problems so far. OTOH it would be a tragedy if someone took my 12 year old Trek and forced me to buy a brand new bike.

  23. #23
    yme
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    When I have to leave my bike outside I choose an inaccessible area, like between the window and a table and chairs, then I strap my helmet through the spokes and clip it around my downtube. Since the rear tire won't roll at least this way it some takes a little more effort. Sometimes I even put it in a 53-11 just in case someone tries to jump on and pedal away but I'm not going to catch anyone chasing in my cleats.

    -pd
    Last edited by yme; 01-15-07 at 12:39 PM.
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  24. #24
    hello roadfix's Avatar
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    My helmet strap is my lock if I have to leave my bike unattended for a few seconds.
    .cinelli.olympic.surly.long.haul.trucker.kona.ku.surly.steamroller.
    .litespeed.classic.litespeed.firenze.bianchi.pista.dean.colonel.plus.more.

  25. #25
    Senior Member summoner12's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Fixer
    My helmet strap is my lock if I have to leave my bike unattended for a few seconds.
    thats a good idea!

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