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What do you do if you see someone closely checking out your bike?

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What do you do if you see someone closely checking out your bike?

Old 04-07-16, 10:37 PM
  #1  
corrado33
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What do you do if you see someone closely checking out your bike?

You're in a small store, with a glass store front. You're browsing the merchandise when you see someone outside bending over your bike checking it out. You watch them for a while and they continue to look at your bike. What do you do?

This has happened to me once. My bike was locked very well with two locks, so I wasn't really worried that he'd be able to steal it. I still kept him in my sight though. He eventually came into the store and I asked him if he liked what he saw (Don't quite remember what I said, perhaps "Did you like my bike?")

Turns out he was just a bike enthusiast who liked my internal hub. We sat and talked about bikes for a while. But still, I was slightly worried when he was looking at my bike.

What would you do?
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Old 04-07-16, 10:57 PM
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As someone who has scoped out bikes from time to time, I'd tell you to accept it as an unspoken complement, implying that at the very least your bike is interesting.

OTOH- It may vary from city to city, but here bike thievery is a quick crime of opportunity. Wheels are wheels, and thieves tend to be more interested in good looks, or even color that actual spec. It's about fast turnover and high end bikes don't necessarily sell for much more than clean garden variety bikes.

If anything, a thief would more likely be looking around to see if anyone is interested in him, than at the bike. The guy to worry about isn't the one focused on your bike. It's the guy giving it a quick once over while tying to look nonchalant and uninterested.
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Old 04-07-16, 11:22 PM
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I'll second FB. Those looking at it with real interest and making no attempt to hide that fact are probably the least likely folk to steal it. And yes, it can almost always be construed as a compliment.

You can always go out to chat with the viewer. If is a cyclist, the conversation is often interesting and fun. And it he's a thief, he won't come back for your bike! (He knows he would never survive the police line-up!)

Ben
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Old 04-07-16, 11:52 PM
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Most of the time it's just people looking, I do this with old cars, hot rods and motorcycles.

If he is removing parts from your bike, sneak up very very quoit, rabbit punch him in the back of his head knocking him out.
Then with a black Sharpe write Vote for Hillary on his forehead, drag him to the nearest 4X4 truck with big southern flags on it and hand cuff him to the truck hitch.
It's all up to his Karma at that point.

Last edited by goraman; 04-07-16 at 11:56 PM.
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Old 04-08-16, 12:04 AM
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Originally Posted by goraman View Post
If he is removing parts from your bike, sneak up very very quoit, rabbit punch him in the back of his head knocking him out.
Then with a black Sharpe write Vote for Hillary on his forehead, drag him to the nearest 4X4 truck with big southern flags on it and hand cuff him to the truck hitch.
It's all up to his Karma at that point.
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Old 04-08-16, 12:30 AM
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Originally Posted by goraman View Post
Most of the time it's just people looking, I do this with old cars, hot rods and motorcycles.

If he is removing parts from your bike, sneak up very very quoit, rabbit punch him in the back of his head knocking him out.
Then with a black Sharpe write Vote for Hillary on his forehead, drag him to the nearest 4X4 truck with big southern flags on it and hand cuff him to the truck hitch.
It's all up to his Karma at that point.
Sounds like something that a Trump supporter might do, right? Anything is better than responding to the question the OP asked.
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Old 04-08-16, 12:47 AM
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Originally Posted by bikemig View Post
Sounds like something that a Trump supporter might do, right? Anything is better than responding to the question the OP asked.
I did in the first line.
If more people had just a little Donald Trump in them it would be a safer world.
Read a little Winston Churchill.
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Old 04-08-16, 04:40 AM
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Enough with the politics, please.
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Old 04-08-16, 05:28 AM
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Back to the original subject. Happens to me all the time. Usually not just one person, though. A group of guys will be walking past and one will stop dead in his tracks, then wave the others back. They'll all stare at it for a minute or two, probably trying to decide what it is or if it's a home-built. Then they'll all wander off, with the first guy to stop being the last one to tear himself away.

Kinda funny, actually.
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Old 04-08-16, 05:31 AM
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Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
As someone who has scoped out bikes from time to time, I'd tell you to accept it as an unspoken complement, implying that at the very least your bike is interesting.
I enjoy looking at interesting bikes when I travel around. Last fall I stayed at a Long Island City hotel, and across the street someone had locked up the precise model and year Gary Fisher bike that I ride as a mountain bike. Distinctive frame coloring, one of my favorite bikes, and was the first time I'd seen another of that same paint job in the wild. I almost knocked on the nearby apartment door just to say "hi" to the owner. But that would be kind of an odd thing, so I just moved on w/my day.
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Old 04-08-16, 05:32 AM
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Old 04-08-16, 05:50 AM
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Originally Posted by BlazingPedals View Post
Back to the original subject. Happens to me all the time. Usually not just one person, though. A group of guys will be walking past and one will stop dead in his tracks, then wave the others back. They'll all stare at it for a minute or two, probably trying to decide what it is or if it's a home-built. Then they'll all wander off, with the first guy to stop being the last one to tear himself away.

Kinda funny, actually.
Are you talking about one of your bents? Coz I can understand if someone would show such interest.
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Old 04-08-16, 05:51 AM
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I did think when the OP posted:

I think you'd run... if the bike was stolen.

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Old 04-08-16, 06:37 AM
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If I saw someone closely checking out my bike, I'd probably feel a little self conscious. It looks like crap, which while being a good theft deterrent, also makes me look like I can't afford a good bike.
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Old 04-08-16, 07:14 AM
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People are constantly checking out my road bike because, well, it's super duper good looking. You won't see another one like it.
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Old 04-08-16, 07:14 AM
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I'd watch him like a hawk and surreptitiously move closer to the door just in case. They're probably just looking.
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Old 04-08-16, 08:02 AM
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Happened many times to me. My commuter has an IGH and dynohub and that attracts people because it's not common, they just look at it and ask a few questions, that's all.
Agree about thieves going for looks, they would steal a shiny new crappy MTB over an old steel De Rosa with full Campy NR any day.
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Old 04-08-16, 08:06 AM
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On a similar topic, do you do anything different when you're checking out another bike? I find myself clasping my hands behind my back when I get within a few feet, just an instinctive thing I do to say with body language, "I'm not going to steal anything, but that is an interesting bike!"

More for bookstore or restaurant looks than major supported bike ride looks. When there's hundreds, or even just dozens, of bikes, I don't feel self-conscious about looking at them.
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Old 04-08-16, 09:35 AM
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Depends on the person looking and if they are carrying bolt cutters.
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Old 04-08-16, 03:08 PM
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I have had this happen when I was at the pool. I just walked over and asked if I could help them. They thought that it was an interesting bike because it has hydraulic rim brakes
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Old 04-08-16, 03:23 PM
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I'd be totally stoked that someone thinks enough of my bike to stop and look it over. Myself, I'm a sucker for Raleighs (even new ones), so I am a moth-to-a-flame, checking out everything on it. That having-been-said, I'd still watch the guy, though, even if just to enjoy his reaction(s).
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Old 04-08-16, 04:08 PM
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I've struck up some nice conversations over bicycle gawking, and met a good friend that way.
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Old 04-08-16, 05:00 PM
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Originally Posted by goraman View Post
Most of the time it's just people looking, I do this with old cars, hot rods and motorcycles.

If he is removing parts from your bike, sneak up very very quoit, rabbit punch him in the back of his head knocking him out.
Then with a black Sharpe write Vote for Hillary on his forehead, drag him to the nearest 4X4 truck with big southern flags on it and hand cuff him to the truck hitch.
It's all up to his Karma at that point.
Okay...that's excellent and now I got nothin'.
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Old 04-08-16, 05:08 PM
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Originally Posted by pdlamb View Post
On a similar topic, do you do anything different when you're checking out another bike? I find myself clasping my hands behind my back when I get within a few feet, just an instinctive thing I do to say with body language, "I'm not going to steal anything, but that is an interesting bike!"

More for bookstore or restaurant looks than major supported bike ride looks. When there's hundreds, or even just dozens, of bikes, I don't feel self-conscious about looking at them.
I do the same thing. The body language equivalent of saying "I'm not touching, I promise!"
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Old 04-08-16, 05:19 PM
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Like has already been said - I'd watch them like a hawk, see what their body language tells me. If they linger, they're probably checking it out and liking it. If they look, walk away, then come back and look again, they're probably looking to see how they can steal it. So I'd let a security guard know if there was one, and probably go out to my bike even if I wasn't done shopping or whatever.
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