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Had to steal my own bike today.

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Had to steal my own bike today.

Old 10-22-15, 05:49 PM
  #1  
Sharpshin
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Had to steal my own bike today.

I am fortunate enough to get to bring my bike inside where I work (high school) so don't need a premium lock, just something that the bike will still be there when I get out of the store in this area where stolen bikes aren't really a valuable commodity.

For the last two years an inexpensive Bell combination lock has served me well, the larger/thicker one, with four plastic tumblers to set the combination. Even rode with me all the way to NY on a big bike trip in 2014.

I came out of a big chain grocery store on my way to work and the lock wouldn't unlock, tumblers rotated freely but whatever happened internally it was as if the combination had changed.

Only 20 minutes spare time to figure this out if I was going to get to work on time.

Didn't take that long; fortunately the grocery store also sold $5 hacksaws, about sixty seconds fast sawing is all it took to cut the cable.

None of the numerous passer-byes said anything about the guy (me) stealing a bike.

Sobering.

Mike
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Old 10-22-15, 06:14 PM
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Do the right thing and turn yourself in. If you don't, nobody will.
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Old 10-22-15, 06:51 PM
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We a title like that, had to read!!
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Old 10-23-15, 10:48 AM
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I always take my bike into stores...
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Today, I believe my jurisdiction ends here...
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Old 10-23-15, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by IrishBrewer View Post
Do the right thing and turn yourself in. If you don't, nobody will.
IrishBrewer's right.
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Old 10-23-15, 11:14 AM
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Originally Posted by rmfnla View Post
I always take my bike into stores...
any issues with this in the past?
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Old 10-23-15, 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by chefisaac View Post
any issues with this in the past?
Obviously I'm not talking about jewelry stores, but super markets, CVS, places like that have never been a problem. Even Bev-Mo.

I think any place that has shopping carts is OK with it since my bike is no more intrusive than those...
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Old 10-23-15, 12:14 PM
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I stole my own bike when I was in college in the '80s. Campus security decided that all bikes needed to be locked to bike racks, no poles, fences, etc. They'd put a heavy chain on your bike and make you pay a $5 fine to release it.

I wasn't going to play that game so I spent $8 to rent a huge chain cutter and stole my own bike. I was a music major and the janitor of the music building was "the eyes & ears" of the building. He knew I had more than 1 bike and told me campus security was keeping an eye out for my Stumpjumper and I should ride something else for awhile.
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Old 10-23-15, 12:20 PM
  #9  
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Originally Posted by rmfnla View Post
Obviously I'm not talking about jewelry stores, but super markets, CVS, places like that have never been a problem. Even Bev-Mo.

I think any place that has shopping carts is OK with it since my bike is no more intrusive than those...
I've done it before, even at places like Subway stores if there is no place to lock up outside (set bike near unused table). Have taken my bike into Lowe's and Walmart when I forgot my lock, but usually I don't like to. My road bike especially, has a pretty loud freehub and tends to draw attention if I'm wheeling it around in the store.

One time I rolled my bike with me into Walmart and the greeter person told me I couldn't bring it in there. I thought to myself "well what about people who get a bike to buy and wheel it through the store?" So I turned around and walked down to garden center entrance, went on in, got what I needed then to self-checkout, and left out the entrance on the other end of the store.
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Old 10-23-15, 02:50 PM
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I took mine into a 7-11 today to grab some munchies. Just leaned it up against the newspaper racks near the front door, nobody said a word.

A WallyMart greeter is probably the last person I would take seriously, but I never go to WallyMart so that's a moot point...
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Old 10-23-15, 03:09 PM
  #11  
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You must be a white guy


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Old 10-23-15, 03:22 PM
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I have a ring lock on my Koga , Key in to open and ride, I remove the key when I lock it , once I dropped it in the grocery store

the Customer Service desk had it, turned in by a good samaritan who found where I dropped It ..



I have a Spring toggle and a loop of bungee cord to secure it to my wrist.

Along with the front door, My other bike lock keys are over my head on a neck Loop.
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Old 10-23-15, 03:37 PM
  #13  
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But his lock actually failed...
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Old 10-23-15, 04:56 PM
  #14  
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Originally Posted by PatrickGSR94 View Post
One time I rolled my bike with me into Walmart and the greeter person told me I couldn't bring it in there. I thought to myself "well what about people who get a bike to buy and wheel it through the store?" So I turned around and walked down to garden center entrance, went on in, got what I needed then to self-checkout, and left out the entrance on the other end of the store.
You should have walked out past the greeter with your shopping bag.
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Old 10-23-15, 06:07 PM
  #15  
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Originally Posted by rmfnla View Post
But his lock actually failed...

Ya, and I was thanking my lucky stars it was a cheap one.

Hey, a decent lock and I would have been in a pickle, AND late for work.

I'd buy another just like it, if ya ain't a habitual bike thief the cable LOOKS stout....


'course, this ain't a college neighborhood or the trendy downtown area. There just ain't that many people around here seriously into bikes. Most people around here couldn't tell my urban commuter from a Wally-World Huffy....






A late 90's Kona Blast with the then contemporary Marzocchi Bomber fork (near perfect for urban commuting). Bought it in Austin for my 13 year-old son when he did the 50 mile loop of the Lance Armstrong Love Ride. He's thirty now and outgrew it long ago. Mine now


I need a new photo, it currently wears a better Nashbar 44-32-22 crankset, Old Man Mountain front rack and custom-built wheels from Northwest Cycles. I do believe those are the same 26"x2.0 Marathon Tour Plusses it still wears. THE most indestructible, flat-proof, longest-wearing tire I've found. And you can run 'em at 70psi.

Mike

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Old 10-23-15, 10:33 PM
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if you just act confident no one will stop you. when i was at uni a guy I knew left school.. and left his bike locked to the rack - right near the security box at the entrance to the school. it sat there for a month until i thought: damn its just gonna rot away there. so I borrowed some giant bolt cutters from the scene shop - about 3 foot long and red. walked down there past security.. popped the lock, and then walked back with bolt cutters and bike on shoulder (someone had already stolen the wheels).

they didn't say a word.

fixed up the bike and then left it there unlocked with a sign saying "free bike" when i left school.
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Old 10-25-15, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by PatrickGSR94 View Post

One time I rolled my bike with me into Walmart and the greeter person told me I couldn't bring it in there. I thought to myself "well what about people who get a bike to buy and wheel it through the store?" So I turned around and walked down to garden center entrance, went on in, got what I needed then to self-checkout, and left out the entrance on the other end of the store.
Awesome!
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Old 10-25-15, 08:21 AM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
I have a ring lock on my Koga , Key in to open and ride, I remove the key when I lock it , once I dropped it in the grocery store

the Customer Service desk had it, turned in by a good samaritan who found where I dropped It ..



I have a Spring toggle and a loop of bungee cord to secure it to my wrist.

Along with the front door, My other bike lock keys are over my head on a neck Loop.
What is a ring key lock?
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Old 10-25-15, 08:31 AM
  #19  
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Picture: link ... https://www.dutchbikebits.com/image/c...16-500x500.jpg

And buy the Chain that goes with it .. 1.4M long .. https://media1.rosebikes.de/product/370/8/1/811262_2.jpg
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Old 10-26-15, 07:06 AM
  #20  
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had to read due to the title.

Glad you were able to get your bike and get to work.. sorry that no one asked you about it.


Originally Posted by Sharpshin View Post
I am fortunate enough to get to bring my bike inside where I work (high school) so don't need a premium lock, just something that the bike will still be there when I get out of the store in this area where stolen bikes aren't really a valuable commodity.

For the last two years an inexpensive Bell combination lock has served me well, the larger/thicker one, with four plastic tumblers to set the combination. Even rode with me all the way to NY on a big bike trip in 2014.

I came out of a big chain grocery store on my way to work and the lock wouldn't unlock, tumblers rotated freely but whatever happened internally it was as if the combination had changed.
Only 20 minutes spare time to figure this out if I was going to get to work on time. Didn't take that long; fortunately the grocery store also sold $5 hacksaws, about sixty seconds fast sawing is all it took to cut the cable.

None of the numerous passer-byes said anything about the guy (me) stealing a bike.

Sobering.

Mike
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Old 10-27-15, 07:20 AM
  #21  
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I had to steal my own bike, too. My sister and I met in our cars at the appointed location then rode together on a local "Rails to Trails" route. We stopped for lunch and I locked our bikes together and also to a timber column to the deck of the restaurant. Upon finishing lunch, I found that I didn't have the key to the Arbus heavy duty chain lock. The key was in my car located thirteen miles away. I had my car key with me, but not the key to the bike lock.

First part of this fail: Not keeping the key with me.
Second part of this fail: Not keeping the bike lock locked. If the lock was locked before I could use it, well, I wouldn't have been able to use it since I didn't have a key with me. Then, I would have never found myself in this situation.

Luckily, there was an outdoor sporting goods place nearby. They sell and rent bikes, canoes, camping gear, etc, etc. And, they had a "Master Key", also known as bolt cutters. This was a large bolt cutter, with handles about three feet long. They let me borrow the cutters, and asked only to hold onto my driver's license. So, I cut the $50 Arbus chain. But there was still a problem. The bolt cutters cut the chain, but not the canvas fabric that protects the chain from scratching the bike. After taking back the bolt cutters, I had to borrow some scissors from the restaurant to cut the fabric.

All the time of stealing my bike, nobody said a word.
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Old 10-27-15, 07:51 AM
  #22  
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@Ray Lovinggood my bike lock wont let me lock it without the key in the lock.. and once again sad that no one said anything but that brings up another question


how would you prove that it is your bike?
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Old 10-27-15, 09:01 AM
  #23  
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I would say "Follow me to my car where I have the key to my lock and I will show that the key will indeed open the lock. By the way, my car is 13 miles away..."
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Old 10-31-15, 08:41 AM
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Another "self-thief" here. Middle of August, 2014. I had a job at certain electronic connector making/assembly plant in the Czech Republic. My family has two houses, one "main" in a town and another one in a small village where we mostly go on weekends and during the summer holidays (what's the English name for this?). We were there so I was commuting about 15 km one way instead of the 30-something I'd have to ride otherwise but sometimes I'd take a round trip to the town, mostly to go to the post office or water the plant in the other house, 70-80 km in total. One day, I clocked out as normally and went to unlock the bike and ride to the town to get my hair cut. "Oh *****, the key's gone!" I had the key in a pocket in my backpack and it apparently managed to fall out. I spend about half an hour searching for it, found nothing, and decided to give up and cut the lock. The problem was I did not have anything to do it with and nobody seemed to have anything more than some small wire cutters. Another half an hour later I've managed to get what could well have been the only hacksaw in the entire plant... Another "Oh *****!" moment: it's really NOT easy to cut an 8+ mm diameter steel cable like that. It took me maybe minutes to do it, then I returned the saw and went on to finally GTFO. And "Oh sh!it!" one more time: I thought I was supposed to be at the town 3 hours later, decided to make sure by calling the hairdresser. Well, it turned out I only had about 1:45 to do those 40 kms... On top of that, I had been riding an entry-level MTB that was a bit too small for me (now it's waiting to be converted to a drop bar touring bike), which meant I was about as non-aerodynamic as I could be, and I wasn't very fit either (not that I now am). Ended up calling the hairdresser to wait for me (I was supposed to be the last customer that day) and arriving about 15 minutes late.

My way of proving the ownership of the bike would probably be knowing almost every part of all my bikes (except the newest one; none of the bikes is stock or even a common model (my 2008 Hardrock XC Disc is the only one I've ever seen, even on the internet), and I've used some uncommon parts), older photos of the bikes, hidden signatures (e.g. inside a rim or on the end of the seatpost), and if it were really necessary, I'd call my dad and have him get the purchase receipt(s) I keep at home and read the frame ID written there.

Last edited by praivo; 10-31-15 at 09:00 AM.
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