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How do thieves defeat U-locks, anyway?

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How do thieves defeat U-locks, anyway?

Old 09-18-13, 04:38 AM
  #26  
MEversbergII
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Man, you'd have to have some confidence to use a portable grinder. Loud as all hell, highly visible and you'd probably need to sling at least one extra battery.

M.
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Old 09-18-13, 05:20 AM
  #27  
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Thieves are pretty bold
heck they kick in the door-2 minutes of grinding noise
no big deal
Those Santa Fe Criminals-obviously bold-
Thieves-experienced thieves-already KNOW how to defeat locks- we aren't going to teach them much.

Right-if you aren't a dog person-dog is out
same story on the gun(which you would have to hide well,and have in a safe bolted to floor-making it easier to find)
But if you like dogs-all you need is a NOISY dog-a beagle-sweet good natured-but barkers
but big responsibility-getting a dog JUST as a burglar alarm-no-
maybe rich folks on TV do that,but....

We have a greyhound-normally completely useless guard dogs-but Arty(3rd recycled greyhound) is a barker-very rare for greyhounds
and they are large dogs(she is a small-65 lbs) female-but she raises hell whenever someone comes to dog
Very outgoing-loves people-most greyhounds are shy-GREAT PETS and don't need much exercise-they are perfect apt dogs -very low energy levels despite athletic looks-really GREAT PETS- never(almost) bite humans really sweet low maintenance dogs- literally couch potatoes
Beagle best bet if you like dogs-but they are pretty doggy odored-and they dig-escape etc

Yeah shame about Santa Fe
Drug problem-meth or crack-there?? Or just pro thieves-easy pickings not too many cops etc??
Luck
Charlie

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Old 09-18-13, 07:40 AM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by 2_i View Post
Lock manufacturers publicize how their locks withstand different methods of defeating them. If you want to fend off a threat, you better understand it. The OP is past his loss and naturally tries to understand it, presumably hoping to fare better in the future.
Your comments are ironic. The next time the OP locks his bike the thief will be armed with this same knowledge and likely have an easier time defeating the OP's next lock. If only "good" people could read and/or view on line information I might agree with your position.

When I was young and more idealistic I felt more like you do. But age and learning the hard way how some people will take whatever they can to gain worth/wealth has damped my rosy view of the world. To think that "bad" people won't learn how to get away with their sad actions by this information is unrealistic. There are times when one should keep their thoughts to themselves.

I'm not going to continue this now that I've expressed my thoughts. Andy.
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Old 09-18-13, 08:11 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
Your comments are ironic. The next time the OP locks his bike the thief will be armed with this same knowledge and likely have an easier time defeating the OP's next lock. If only "good" people could read and/or view on line information I might agree with your position.
Andy, I understand your thoughts, and do feel the same. The real problem is that any information in this thread will be available, from several different video instructions on you tube. There are dozens and dozens of postings there about defeating bike locks. I don't see anyone adding significant "knowledge" to the circle of thieves with a post here.

Thieves are usually one step ahead of honest folks and are probably already using methods that none of us have ever heard of.

Living in the isolated area that I do, I ordered a Knog Bouncer. Not that I think it's better, it's just different. I'm betting the local crack heads might be set back a bit by it.

Sadly, my biggest threat lives next door. Latest grab---truck battery two weeks ago.
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Old 09-18-13, 08:32 AM
  #30  
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Sprayman, at least after this discussion you could do a little bit of detective work on your case. After the use of a grinder, there would be plenty of metal particles around the original location of your bike. If the metal was made brittle and got whacked, there might be bigger shreds left, like from breaking glass. Traces of a car jack might be harder to detect, but if your U-lock was painted there could be some pieces of peeled off paint.
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Old 09-18-13, 09:10 AM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
The next time the OP locks his bike the thief will be armed with this same knowledge and likely have an easier time defeating the OP's next lock.
Well, Andy, 'security through obscurity' is generally held to be a fatally flawed concept. Modern security engineering predominately relies on 'security by design' which depends on knowledge and information.
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Old 09-18-13, 09:26 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by gregjones View Post
Andy, I understand your thoughts, and do feel the same. The real problem is that any information in this thread will be available, from several different video instructions on you tube. There are dozens and dozens of postings there about defeating bike locks...
...countless magazine and newspaper articles and tests, websites, brochures and even television programs. All this is in addition to the extensive bike thief apprentice program available in cities world-wide. The only thing not having a conversation with the OP does is condemn him to repeat the same vulnerabilities that got his bike stolen.
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Old 09-18-13, 10:18 AM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by tcs View Post
Well, Andy, 'security through obscurity' is generally held to be a fatally flawed concept. Modern security engineering predominately relies on 'security by design' which depends on knowledge and information.
This. If you recall the ballpoint pen trick. Within days of it being posted online the manufacturer was redesigning the lock and making changes. Who knows how long the bike theft community knew about that little trick.

The analogy here is computer security. No usable computer system is 100% secure, there are only levels of difficulty. All bike locks can be defeated with enough time and effort. The key is that the time and effort is commensurate with people's expectations of security. I don't expect a $10 cable lock to do anything other than stop someone walking off with a bike. If I spend $100+ on a lock, it should stop everything short of large power tools, and those should take a few minutes of dedicated effort.

As for the OP. I would recommend two things:
1) Steel frame door with steel outer door.
My parents had one installed after someone kicked in their door. A few weeks later they came home one day to fine a large boot print near the deadbolt, but the house was still secure. I'm guessing the thief had a pretty sore leg. This is more for your family's personal security than bikes. Kicking in an empty house is bad, if you're home its potentially much worse.

2) Security system.
Get something with lights and a few cameras. Even if you don't subscribe to a service, just the camera's may be enough to deter thieves.
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Old 09-18-13, 10:52 AM
  #34  
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The camera -lights-great idea.
Same story on the sturdy steel steel framed door great idea
Those services-kinda expensive- motion sensitive lights camera-night vision camera-pretty cheap-
those game cameras-motion sensitive I guess-pretty cheap.
Guessing you send the data to an inside computer of phone??
If they see that-they will find an easier target-usually.

Laughable to think we are revealing anything to thieves about stealing.
It is WHAT THEY DO !!
Luck
Charlie
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Old 09-18-13, 11:14 AM
  #35  
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Youtube has many videos explaining how to break bike locks. For example http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-LWGJzglho and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QYUf4h0Lv_8 and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kXXB8MqTNsU
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Old 09-18-13, 02:24 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by vanttila View Post
If the lock was way old, they could've used the old ballpoint pen trick. Kryptonite had recalls for all those U-locks with the round key holes five or so years ago.
Bicycling magazine had a small sidebar about this in the early 90's possible earlier. They said a Kryptonite lock could be opened with a 50 cent item available at any corner drug store. But they refused to mention the item because they didn't want cause an increase in bike theft by telling everyone how to do it yet all they did was allow it to happen for another decade. I've despised that magazine ever since.
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Old 09-18-13, 02:42 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by miamijim View Post
Bicycling magazine ... said a Kryptonite lock could be opened with a 50 cent item available at any corner drug store...
i remember that
i wondered what it was
until the bic pen fiasco came to light

as for not discussing bike theft
to keep the information out of the hands of the theives
pretty silly

we are talking about how people already steal bikes
not suggesting new ways for them to do it

i would expect most bike theives can get trade secrets
by sharing a rock of crack
or whatever
with a fellow theif
or are handed the tools and given instructions
by the ringleader

no need to lurk on interweb forums hoping for threads like this one
again
just silly
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Old 09-18-13, 03:06 PM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by phoebeisis View Post
Guessing you send the data to an inside computer of phone??
If they see that-they will find an easier target-usually.

Laughable to think we are revealing anything to thieves about stealing.
It is WHAT THEY DO !!
Luck
Charlie
Most camera systems have a dedicated DVR box which can be hidden in a closet/garage/attic and accessed remotely via ethernet/wifi or video link. The DVR box is mostly to spot when someone was casing your house, or got interrupted. Video footage helps with prosecution but won't help you recover your stuff, and probably won't even help the police catch the guy. Most likely they catch him somewhere else and then match him to the footage.
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Old 09-18-13, 03:30 PM
  #39  
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Not trying to kick the OP while he's down, but I wouldn't leave my Allez on my porch, period. Circumstances may be different for the OP, but I leave my bike indoors unless I'm on it. I don't even like to leave it outside my door for more than a few minutes to run in and get something.
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Old 09-18-13, 04:22 PM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by miamijim View Post
Bicycling magazine had a small sidebar about this in the early 90's possible earlier. They said a Kryptonite lock could be opened with a 50 cent item available at any corner drug store. But they refused to mention the item because they didn't want cause an increase in bike theft by telling everyone how to do it yet all they did was allow it to happen for another decade.
Ditto on Consumer Reports magazine, same thing. You'd think they would have rated that generation Kryptonite 'unacceptable' and held Kryptonite's feet to the fire to make changes, but no.

It's considered good practice, when a security fault is detected, to inform the originator of the lock/system/code/etc. and give them a chance to correct the problem. If they do not take action, it's entirely appropriate to go public with the information and tell the end users/consumers the details.

Last edited by tcs; 09-18-13 at 04:42 PM.
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Old 09-18-13, 04:32 PM
  #41  
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This guy made a movie of him stealing his own bike in various places in NYC (including in front of a police station). It's easy to cut a u lock with a angle grinder because nobody other then the bike's owner is going to care

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/0...n_1341948.html
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Old 09-18-13, 04:55 PM
  #42  
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BTW, in addition to the U-lock you carry with you riding, you can use a leave-at-home mother-of-a chain and padlock. A supplemental lock-system that stays at home doesn't have to meet any portability requirements, and you'll be elevating a thief's time/techniques requirements.

Ah, but as other's have said, no lock is better than what it's locked to or the locking technique used.
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Old 09-18-13, 04:58 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by rms13 View Post
This guy made a movie of him stealing his own bike in various places in NYC...
The joke has been that if you want to steal a bike, have your 'lookout' stand there with a video camera and tell passers-by that you're making a documentary.
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Old 09-18-13, 06:20 PM
  #44  
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Unless OP lives in a telephone booth, there is room to bring his bike inside, and after losing four to theft, he'd be well advised to do so. Leaving bikes outside at night is basically giving them away, in many cities.
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Old 09-18-13, 06:47 PM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by jyl View Post
Unless OP lives in a telephone booth, there is room to bring his bike inside, and after losing four to theft, he'd be well advised to do so. Leaving bikes outside at night is basically giving them away, in many cities.
Exactly. Leave it outside? Don't expect it to be there tomorrow morning. Or at the very least tarnished by mother nature. I realize there isn't as much of that in NM as WI, but sun fading could be an issue.

Unless you're like the people on that hoarding show, there is ALWAYS room in the house for a bike, or a few.
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Old 09-18-13, 08:41 PM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by copswithguns View Post
Not trying to kick the OP while he's down, but I wouldn't leave my Allez on my porch, period. Circumstances may be different for the OP, but I leave my bike indoors unless I'm on it. I don't even like to leave it outside my door for more than a few minutes to run in and get something.
No sweat....I don't feel kicked at all. I know the safest place for it is indoors, and I guess I'll have to do that from now on (although my wife may have something to say about that). I guess I was simply fooling myself in thinking that someone wouldn't go onto my front porch AND cut through a U-lock. Silly me. I'm certainly not a victim, just on the bad end of an unfortunate situation. Better than a swift kick in the nuts, I reckon.
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Old 09-18-13, 08:43 PM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by tcs View Post
BTW, in addition to the U-lock you carry with you riding, you can use a leave-at-home mother-of-a chain and padlock. A supplemental lock-system that stays at home doesn't have to meet any portability requirements, and you'll be elevating a thief's time/techniques requirements.

Ah, but as other's have said, no lock is better than what it's locked to or the locking technique used.
"Mother of a chain?" Never heard of it. Care to enlighten? Is that like "Son of a ......?"

Last edited by Sprayman; 09-18-13 at 08:49 PM.
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Old 09-18-13, 08:49 PM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by 2_i View Post
Sprayman, at least after this discussion you could do a little bit of detective work on your case. After the use of a grinder, there would be plenty of metal particles around the original location of your bike. If the metal was made brittle and got whacked, there might be bigger shreds left, like from breaking glass. Traces of a car jack might be harder to detect, but if your U-lock was painted there could be some pieces of peeled off paint.
I took a pretty close look and didn't find anything, which is why I think the lock may have somehow been picked. I don't know if it's true of bike locks, but it's my understanding that some other lock systems use a set number of standardized keys, so a thief can carry one of each and keep trying until he finds the one that fits into said lock.

It just occurred to me that I should run a magnet along the ground outside and see if it picks up any metal shavings. "Elementary, my dear Watson."
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Old 09-18-13, 11:47 PM
  #49  
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This is how it's done:
http://www.metacafe.com/watch/839625/freeze_a_lock_off/
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Old 09-19-13, 06:58 AM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by Sprayman View Post
"Mother of a chain?" Never heard of it. Care to enlighten? Is that like "Son of a ......?"
yes

purchased by the foot
at hardware stores
with a nice padlock

i reccomend the opposite actually
get some heavy
non portable lock
and leave it at work
or wherevery you normall lock your bike
and use it in tandem with your portable lock

locking the bike at home is also a good idea
depending on location
and value of bike
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