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it happened - my commuter stolen in large metro area, NYC

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it happened - my commuter stolen in large metro area, NYC

Old 05-11-15, 10:44 AM
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snow_echo_NY
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it happened - my commuter stolen in large metro area, NYC

so just want to preface the story that i locked up with a cable and kryptonite evolution lock. mistake 1. i knew bike thieves cut thru cables regularly and i had planned to bring the chain with me. but in my rush in the AM to get out the door i forgot it. debated on going back for it, but decided against it b/c i was running late to work. in any case. fast forward to 6:50 that evening (Friday 5/8/15) when i locked up to see a movie with other moms. it was the last time i saw it. i took a look back. i should have went back to check or park it somewhere else. i didn't. i had a feeling it wasn't a good idea, but there was a new Trek and new Specialized right next to mine. i thought it was a good case to keep it there. well that was wrong. for all i know it could have been bait. they were both still there when i returned. and it's likely i was watched. before ultimately locking it up outside, i went to three car garages to see if i could park my bike in the garage, and let them charge me. i was turned away from all three.

lots of bikes being stolen these days in NYC. i've been lucky in the past and haven't had a bike stolen.

so over the weekend i got a surly crosscheck for a commuter (upgrade yay!) and my it is a beast! lol. i'm glad for the replacement but sad about my trusty commuter of 4-5 years. i'll miss it.

i've filed a police report and will be hopefully obtaining footage. in any case. recommendations for locking up bikes in big metro areas welcome. i'm reading up on it. i think i will continue to use the evolution kryptonite chain and add a mini-u-lock or two. i'm paranoid now.

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Old 05-11-15, 11:31 AM
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Sad news. I don't lock mine outside. I bring it in to work with me. 2 u locks?
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Old 05-11-15, 11:34 AM
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Sorry to hear. A friend of mine recently had an attempted theft on his bike outside a movie theater as well. It seemed like a crowbar or some other leverage tool was inserted into the shackle of his u lock but it seemed like the thief got scared off or discouraged and left before finishing the job. The frame and lock were permanently damaged, but he was able to claim it under his renters insurance and got a check for the full value of the bike.

I've never had any attempted theft on my bike, but then again people steal bikes, not military tanks that happened to be shaped like a bike lol.
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Old 05-11-15, 11:36 AM
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What a bummer. I recall reading that the mini-u is a good idea as you're supposed to leave as little room as possible between bike, lock, and rack you are locked to. I guess it's harder to get leverage with a crowbar (or whatever) that way. Like the previous poster, I don't lock-up outside either. There is certainly a business opportunity for a thief-proof system!
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Old 05-11-15, 11:40 AM
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Boston might not be as bad as NYC but bike theft is a thing.

I have a trek 520 that isn't very flashy but worth stealing regardless; generally lock it with only one u-lock through frame and front wheel, in a very busy area. In front of a restaurant with a patio if I'm downtown so would-be-thieves assume the owner has eyes on it- unless they watched me roll up I guess. Never lock it up on side streets or dark places at night, and haven't had an issue.

That is, if I can't take it inside, the obvious desirable option.

You can make it comically hard with 5 locks- something I have seen- but 2 u-locks ( + cable?) should be a solid deterrent if one and a cable don't suffice.

Sorry to hear about your loss, but glad it didn't put you out (and gave you an excuse to upgrade).
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Old 05-11-15, 12:13 PM
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yes i normally just bring it inside at home and at work as there is storage for both. i almost never lock it up outside (maybe the grocery store and the gym?) but not otherwise.

yeah i will probably get two mini u-locks to use in addition to the kryptonite evolution chain. and yes i've heard of leverage attacks on larger u-locks.

well i talked to the bldg manager of the area where it was stolen and he has video footage of the thieves. i expect him to deliver it to the police. but it's up to the police to do something. i'm not holding my breath :/

it's a sad thing to have a bike that served you well disappear like that. every time i have locked it up outside i've realized it might be the last time i'm seeing it. and i was always happily surprised when i saw it on my return. this is a first time for me. maybe i'll get a citibike membership and use that if i can't find indoor storage. i'm filing it with a bunch of stolen bike registries.

i've heard often times these bikes get shipped to south america, to never be seen again. esp. from nyc. oh well.

thanks for the condolences! and yes i'm glad for the upgrade. enjoyed it this AM on the commute
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Old 05-11-15, 10:02 PM
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I ride an expensive bike in NYC and thus felt obliged to get a very good u-lock that thieves are less familiar with: ABUS U-Lock 540/160HB230 (11161)
80% of the times I park indoors or in a garage, but when I need to park outside I always do it in a busy street and place the lock between the frame and rear wheel to the post. So far so good.... and if something happens its completely insured.
Ah, and for the front wheel and components I use this: Atomic22 - The ultimate bicycle security solution
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Old 05-12-15, 02:23 AM
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I really need some fundage to get a heavy chain + padlock plus two mini-u. Been my plan for a year now. My other line of defense is to only lock it where i can't see it if i'm only going to be a few minutes. Otherwise it's parked in view of security cameras at grocery stores and in view of me at cafes etc. I think i'd probably look for, or make a mount to hang them off the top tube, as i don't want to have to need a bag to carry them, especially if i'm on a grocery run.

- Andy
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Old 05-12-15, 07:51 PM
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Well, that sucks.

I bought a cheap cruiser last winter, figuring I'd be able to occasionally ride it to the bus stop and leave it locked all day with minimal worry. The truth is, I'd be upset even if this $40 bike got stolen. Its not about the money - it is about the absolutely lousy behavior of some of our fellow human beings.
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Old 05-12-15, 10:10 PM
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Sorry to hear about your bike! I mostly just ride my bike to work and to places where I know I can safely leave it or keep it with me. I would probably use my bike more often for errands if there was more secure bike parking available. Still, I also have renters insurance which covers stolen bikes and property up to 10k I believe, for about $15/month. The $15/month is worth it to me for making me feel less anxious/paranoid.

I once rode past a car that had some kind of motion detected alarm and as I rode by the alarm "talked" and said: "warning! you are too close to this vehicle" Not sure if something like that exists for bikes...
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Old 05-13-15, 06:36 AM
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so i visited 3 parking garages to park my bike before i resorted to parking outside. i was turned away from all 3. i thought it was law that all garages provide bike parking and i was surprised to be turned away. afterward i was upset at myself that i didn't look into it further, but i had called them ahead of time and no one answered, so i'm not sure what else i could have done.

after i was turned away, i thought perhaps it wasn't law anymore or i didn't know the law. my husband later said he thought it was only law for commuters. i should have brushed up on it, and asked around. basically the garage needs to have 100 spaces for cars to be required by law to provide bike parking. had i known, i would have parked indoors somewhere else with capacity of more than 100 cars. it's hard to tell what garages have what capacity except for riding around and checking. there's no comprehensive list anywhere.

i found out later that two of the garages i visited that day had less than 100 car capacity so that is why they turned me away i presume. not one offered me info about where to go, but i guess if the workers aren't exposed to it, they wouldn't know. the last garage hasn't gotten back to me.

i found if you do find a garage with more than 100 spaces for cars (they're required to print the info on the door, along with the parking rates and such), and they turn you away for bike parking, you can file a complaint with the dept of consumer affairs and they will charge them with not following the law.

i've locked it up outside before with no issue, and i knew it wasn't a great way of locking. i got too comfortable and careless and didn't force myself to carry my chain everyday so it would be habit. i remembered it and i had meant to carry it that day, but i possibly wouldn't have been forced in that moment had i made it habit. it's a painful lesson to learn. and i learned more about garage parking i guess. not really useful unless you're in manhattan a lot, and i'm not (I'm usually in Brooklyn). so the law on indoor parking (has to have more than 100 spaces) is news to me.

kicking myself for not talking it over with people more.

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Old 05-13-15, 07:02 AM
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First I'd like to say it is horrible to hear that your bike was stolen. I re-read your first post and I'm not clear on how exactly your bike was locked up. Did you have a cable lock and a evo min U lock, or was it just a cable being secured by an evo lock? Just trying to figure out if all they needed to do was cut the cable and ride off, or if they had to cut a cable as well as break the evo U lock.
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Old 05-13-15, 07:36 AM
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Professional bike thieves are almost impossible to thwart. I doubt I would ever park my bike outside for extended period of time in a place like NYC, LA or Chicago because stealing bikes is big business in those places.
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Old 05-13-15, 08:01 AM
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Anti-theft spray works well High-Tech Antitheft Bicycle Spray :-)

The bike I had in Amsterdam (new Batavus) had a paint job that looked sun faded and fake rust at all of the joints and a couple of other spots. It wasn't a showpiece but still rode like a dream and less likely to be stolen.
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Old 05-13-15, 09:02 AM
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I bring my bike inside with me at work and I either bring the bike inside the store with me or use a NYC Kryptonite lock at all times when I am just doing errands and such. There are so many creatures out there just lurking and waiting for the next opportunity to steal something, anything at all. Luckily the only bikes I had stolen were a couple of Huffy's during the '90s. Sorry to hear about your misfortune. Be vigilant the summer is coming and crime will only go up. As for the police doing something take it upon yourself to pick up the video footage and deliver it to the officers who wrote the report. In all honestly this is small potatoes in the grand scheme of things for the PD in this city and they just are overwhelmed by the volume of calls and incidents. By you doing that legwork you might actually give them something that they can work with. Good luck and enjoy the new bike!

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Old 05-13-15, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by sjt78 View Post
First I'd like to say it is horrible to hear that your bike was stolen. I re-read your first post and I'm not clear on how exactly your bike was locked up. Did you have a cable lock and a evo min U lock, or was it just a cable being secured by an evo lock? Just trying to figure out if all they needed to do was cut the cable and ride off, or if they had to cut a cable as well as break the evo U lock.
thank you -

it was locked with a cable by kryptonite and the kryptonite evolution lock. no ulock.
yes they simply just cut the cable and left. there was more than 1 i was told by the guy who has the video. there are other thefts using that same method - some cable and lock combination.

i've heard of u-locks being susceptible to leverage attacks. which is why i bought the chain. but then (as i lamented before) i let laziness in not taking the chain everyday creep in which possibly could have been the difference between remembering it that day vs. not. who's to know.

lol i should just move on. okay no more dwelling!

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Old 05-13-15, 09:30 AM
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Originally Posted by greg3rd48 View Post
I bring my bike inside with me at work and I either bring the bike inside the store with me or use a NYC Kryptonite lock at all times when I am just doing errands and such. There are so many creatures out there just lurking and waiting for the next opportunity to steal something, anything at all. Luckily the only bikes I had stolen were a couple of Huffy's during the '90s. Sorry to hear about your misfortune. Be vigilant the summer is coming and crime will only go up. As for the police doing something take it upon yourself to pick up the video footage and deliver it to the officers who wrote the report. In all honestly this is small potatoes in the grand scheme of things for the PD in this city and they just are overwhelmed by the volume of calls and incidents. By you doing that legwork you might actually give them something that they can work with. Good luck and enjoy the new bike!
i would but the building manager will only release the video footage to the police (i guess that's their policy?) in any case. i will follow up.
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Old 05-13-15, 09:35 AM
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for the new bike, i am writing my name and number into the SURLY decal and covering the bike in stickers. in an effort to make it too unique to be targeted by thieves...

i would totally put a chip in it to track it using GPS or set an alarm off.

and yet i know if a thief is going to steal a bike, they're probably going to steal it anyway, regardless of lock.
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Old 05-13-15, 10:31 AM
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i'm sorry to hear about the theft of your bike.

it's unfortunate, but the sad reality of life in the big city is: "never street lock a bike that you aren't willing to lose".

you can employ all manner of locking schemes and/or stealthification techniques to dissuade a would be thief, but ultimately, if he wants your bike, it's gone.

i'm lucky that i have indoor secure bike storage at my office. when i do street lock a bike, i try to limit it to 5 minutes or less when i need to pop into a store.

if i'm heading someplace where i know i will be there awhile and can't get my bike off of the street, i'll ride my folding bike and bring it inside with me at my destination.
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Old 05-13-15, 10:51 AM
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Such a bummer! Makes me more grateful that I can park my bike every day in a bike area of my work's parking deck, and the whole compound is gated and monitored by 24/7 security.

When my son goes off to college in a few years, one of the criteria I'll be looking at (don't know that he'll care as much) is what is the bike culture and in particular the bike theft culture!

Hope you enjoy your CrossCheck!
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Old 05-13-15, 10:52 AM
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Originally Posted by baron von trail View Post
Professional bike thieves are almost impossible to thwart. I doubt I would ever park my bike outside for extended period of time in a place like NYC, LA or Chicago because stealing bikes is big business in those places.
Two bikes stolen in Boston and environs. I would love to take a day off, lock up a bike, hang around in the van with video recording rolling, a baseball bat, and some bear spray...
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Old 05-13-15, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by snow_echo_NY View Post
for the new bike, i am writing my name and number into the SURLY decal and covering the bike in stickers. in an effort to make it too unique to be targeted by thieves...

i would totally put a chip in it to track it using GPS or set an alarm off.

and yet i know if a thief is going to steal a bike, they're probably going to steal it anyway, regardless of lock.
Record your serial number also and save the paperwork. In this way if it is ever stolen (hopefully not) the police can activate an alarm number just in case it is ever found on someone or just abandoned. Also you would be able to prove that it is your property.
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Old 05-13-15, 11:23 AM
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With my Brompton It comes inside with me..
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Old 05-13-15, 11:47 AM
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I have a commuter bike that looks like hell, but is actually built up with new dynamo wheels and XT components. It is a 1990 Trek mtb frame that I bought on eBay and it doesn't attract attention. That bike I will leave locked up outside for short amounts of time. At work I can bring it inside. I have a whole stable of bikes though that are NEVER locked up.

I live in Brooklyn too, and there are a lot of places I wouldn't leave a bike at all.
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Old 05-13-15, 11:56 AM
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Sorry about your bike being stolen. I was wondering in what part of NYC is was taken.
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