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SpotOn 01-24-12 11:38 PM

Bicycle security: U-lock and other safety accessories [Q].
I bought myself a Specialized Hardrock 2010 (new bike, "last year model") for $300 some months ago, and I am now looking into buying a good lock etc. for my bike.

I am thinking about purchasing these locking skewers from; $3.99, to replace my quick-releases, for the front and back wheel. Do it seem like a good product? Anyone here have experience with these or similar ones?

Also, if anyone have suggestions/links to locking skewers for the seat post, or cable/locking-mechanism for the seat, I'd appreciate that as well. Or if someone suggest how to buy cable + clamp thingy @ Home Depot etc and an easy way to make that... F. ex this one for the seat?: Saddle leash.

Second, when I bought the bike I bought a Kryptonite cable lock with it. However, after reading up on bicycle security, I have now determined that I want to get a hold of a U-lock as well, with a cable preferably. I know that cables can be sold separately, and I can do that if necessary if the cable does not come with a good deal on a U-lock...

What are your recommendations on these U-locks?
Kryptonite (does not specify what model...) (WalMart - $17.96)
OnGuard U-lock w/ cable (again, no model...) (Target - $19.99)
OnGuard Bulldog Mini 5015 w/ cable (Amazon - $21.99)

Again, if you have any other recommendations I'd be glad to read those as well. The key word is; a lock with relative high rating that does not cost too much.

fietsbob 01-24-12 11:58 PM

Allen skewers are OK, for vertical dropouts, but the eccentric with the lever
may be needed on a horizontal dropout, so the wheel won't slip.

I use the Abus Steel-o-chain, lock a lot, now, and the Abus link folding lock
is sure easier to carry than a U lock, because its 6 links fold.
and includes a frame mounting pouch.

have Onguard's armored cable lock , Brompton folding bike got it.
cable is inside the segmented tube, for armor, to be flexible.

Colleges are theft places for bikes,
park next to the fancier bike, with the lesser lock. good Luck

amgarcia 01-24-12 11:58 PM

I can't really recommend any of those. I imagine they're all the about the same, but none will stop a thief for long.

cpach 01-25-12 02:59 AM

For locking a nice, newer bike being locked at a college, I'd buy a nicer u lock than you mentioned. From Kryptonite's line, the Evolution Mini and the NYFU locks are worth looking into. The NYFU is more secure but a lot heavier, but this shouldn't be a primary concern at a college. These are expensive locks, but your bike is a lot more expensive. A heavy chain like the Fuggetaboutit would probably make your bike unusually inconvenient for any thieves when paired with a good u lock. It's possible that you could leave a secondary, heavy duty lock of some kind at the bike rack. You might want to ask about that, though. A cable lock is probably not a particularly helpful addition to the security of the frame, but wouldn't hurt, and would be good for security the seat and/or wheels.

Secure wheel skewers are a good idea. I have Pitlocks on a bike and they seem excellent, and while there are ways to defeat them, I'd be surprised if they got defeated in practice. They're probably a lot more secure than a cable. The skewers you linked to are not as secure, but probably a lot better than nothing. In addition to being defeatable with common hand tools, a thief with a hex wrench could also remove the entire fork from the bike. Pitlock has a system to secure this as well. If you're already securing the rear wheel with the frame with your primary lock you also don't really need a secure skewer in the back (which also speeds up flat changes). I'm also considering trying out Zefal skewers for another bike that I don't leave locked up as much. There are ways to attack these skewers on the internet, but could defeat a casual thief and would be a lot cheaper and more convenient.

I honestly just use a relatively insecure kryptonite cable for my seat. There are systems that secure the seatpost collar, but they generally don't secure the seat itself to the clamp. You can secure it more permanently with a cable and some clamping hardware. Another common solution is some bicycle chain and a piece of old inner tube.

By the way, while I genuinely think Pitlock has a more clever system than most, I just happen to know Kryptonite's stuff better than other brands, which also make quality products.

The best thing you can do for security is see if there's more secure parking possible at your school. Some schools offer bike lockers, or maybe you can find somewhere to park it inside.

I probably sound paranoid but I live in an unfortunate den of bicycle thievery (Santa Cruz, CA).

Telly 01-25-12 03:07 AM

Don't just stick to quality... go with quantity.
Even the best locks can be opened in a matter of a few minutes with the right tools. If you have a couple or more different type locks, that in itself is a deterrent (time-wise) for a thief who might pick another easier to steal bike.

degnaw 01-25-12 06:33 AM

Before listening to anyone above and splurging on a $75 lock, look around your campus to see how other people lock their bikes - I know that at my campus, I've seen several $1000+ bikes "locked" with a cable for weeks at a time without issue. Not that I would do the same, but there's obviously no need for a high-end lock.

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