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Why are bikes stolen?

Old 12-08-20, 01:08 PM
  #1  
The Clumsy Oaf
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Why are bikes stolen?

Hello All:
Was reading another thread about stolen bikes and am wondering, "Why ARE bikes stolen?"
I'm sure no-one is sticking them in shipping containers and sending them away like they do with luxury cars / SUVs.
Is there a black market for bike parts? Or do people just steal these things and sell them for cheap online?
I could see someone stealing a bike to get around, but a CF race bike seems like a poor choice for a daily driver.
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Old 12-08-20, 01:17 PM
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People sell stolen bikes and parts on Craigslist all the time. There is a surplus of buyers looking for a good deal and (usually) not asking many questions. The transactions are usually completely anonymous and cash-only.
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Old 12-08-20, 01:18 PM
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Someone once said bikes are the currency of drug addicts.

Lots of stories of people finding their stolen bikes for sale on line. Most thieves don't even bother to disguise them, just sell them outright. Pawn shops are another fencing ground.

I occasionally come across $3k new, year old full suspension bikes on CL for $500 or less. Seems like the picture is usually in front of a storage unit. The ads rarely stay up more than a day so my guess is they sell in hurry to people who ask less questions than I do.

Unfortunately the market is there.

Would also say lots of cheaper bikes are just dumped somewhere else.
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Old 12-08-20, 01:18 PM
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Seriously?
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Old 12-08-20, 01:24 PM
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I see that you're in BC.
Here you go: https://vancouver.craigslist.org/d/b...rts/search/bip

I'm sure most of this stuff is legit, but 2700+ listings for "bike parts". Not hard to imagine that some of this might've come off of stolen bikes and/or been shoplifted.

Where did this person get a dozen bike forks from?https://vancouver.craigslist.org/van...243504774.html
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Old 12-08-20, 01:26 PM
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Bikes have value and are relatively easy to steal. It's sad but you can do things to protect against this, like storing your bike inside.
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Old 12-08-20, 02:13 PM
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Because they can be stolen and in many cases they can be quite easy to steal because people don't lock them up. It is a way to make money for some without much work. Plus as long as there is a market people will keep doing it. If people stopped buying stolen bikes and equipment there would be less theft and if we could provide people with good jobs that pay fairly and provide people with quality healthcare and housing without putting them in financial ruin, maybe just maybe we wouldn't need to steal much if at all. I mean one could go much deeper than that but if we all take care of each other we may not need to steal from each other?

Stealing can also provide some cheap thrills and people love excitement. Maybe provide people with more accessible thrills and that could also help.
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Old 12-08-20, 02:18 PM
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$/lb, bikes are one of the best things that a thief can steal.

Sad but true.

I know a buddy who was sitting in his velombile by a convenience store once, with the race hood on, so it looked empty from a distance. Two guys got out of a truck and literally started to lift it with him in it when he yelled and they ran away.

People suck.
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Old 12-08-20, 02:50 PM
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Bikes are pretty valuable, pretty easy to steal/transport and pretty hard to identify or prove/disprove ownership. If you don't know the serial number and don't have any custom parts, how can you tell that it's your bike and not some other of the same model?

There's a roaring trade in 2nd hand bikes of all values, some of which are presumably stolen. Most of it is opportunistic to steal something easy and sell it for $100 online, though some of it is targeted because some people won't ask many questions if a bike is being sold for a fraction of it's real value.
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Old 12-08-20, 02:52 PM
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Originally Posted by The Clumsy Oaf View Post
Hello All:
Was reading another thread about stolen bikes and am wondering, "Why ARE bikes stolen?"
I'm sure no-one is sticking them in shipping containers and sending them away like they do with luxury cars / SUVs.
Is there a black market for bike parts? Or do people just steal these things and sell them for cheap online?
I could see someone stealing a bike to get around, but a CF race bike seems like a poor choice for a daily driver.
Hello Clumsy:
Was reading another thread about tires wearing less on dirt paths and am wondering, Why DO tires wear less on dirt paths?
Im sure the pavement is not just moving around and yielding to the rubber like the way dirt does.
Is there a black market for road tires? Or do people just ride these tires then sell them for cheap online?
I could see someone using a road tire to get around, but it seems like a poor choice for riding on dirt paths.
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Old 12-08-20, 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by The Clumsy Oaf View Post
Hello All:
Was reading another thread about stolen bikes and am wondering, "Why ARE bikes stolen?"
I'm sure no-one is sticking them in shipping containers and sending them away like they do with luxury cars / SUVs.
Is there a black market for bike parts? Or do people just steal these things and sell them for cheap online?
I could see someone stealing a bike to get around, but a CF race bike seems like a poor choice for a daily driver.
Its a valued good. Its stolen for the same reasons other valued goods are stolen.
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Old 12-08-20, 03:26 PM
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Why doesn’t everyone steal bicycles?
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Old 12-08-20, 03:27 PM
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Bikes are stolen because they have value.
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Old 12-08-20, 03:57 PM
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bikes are stolen because some folks are thieves
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Old 12-08-20, 04:50 PM
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Bikes have been used as currency among the homeless and drug addicts.

Originally Posted by The Clumsy Oaf View Post
I'm sure no-one [sic] is sticking them in shipping containers and sending them away like they do with luxury cars.
I wouldn't be so "sure." Bike theft can be incredibly organized. It's much easier to sell stolen goods outside the market in which they come, even if it's in the next state over.
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Old 12-08-20, 04:58 PM
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Sometimes, I believe, bikes are just stolen by bored kids, but the majority are probably stolen for resale. I have read that bicycle theft is worst in areas where bike riding is popular. Contributory, I suspect, is also less than energetic pursuit by the police. Perhaps some of the victims here could comment on that.
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Old 12-08-20, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by The Clumsy Oaf View Post
Hello All:
Was reading another thread about stolen bikes and am wondering, "Why ARE bikes stolen?"
I'm sure no-one is sticking them in shipping containers and sending them away like they do with luxury cars / SUVs.
Is there a black market for bike parts? Or do people just steal these things and sell them for cheap online?
I could see someone stealing a bike to get around, but a CF race bike seems like a poor choice for a daily driver.
$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
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Old 12-09-20, 01:51 AM
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Originally Posted by SurferRosa View Post
I wouldn't be so "sure." Bike theft can be incredibly organized. It's much easier to sell stolen goods outside the market in which they come, even if it's in the next state over.
True, it'll be much easier to pass a high value bike off as legitimate if it's in a different country/state. There's less chance of any bike registration scheme covering both countries or the owner stumbling across it for sale.

I wouldn't be surprised if bikes were stolen in the US to be sold in stores in Mexico, for instance. It wouldn't make sense for a Walmart special, but would for the higher end stuff.
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Old 12-09-20, 06:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Herzlos View Post
I wouldn't be surprised if bikes were stolen in the US to be sold in stores in Mexico, for instance. It wouldn't make sense for a Walmart special, but would for the higher end stuff.
I would be. Unless you're in a border town transporting a $1000 or less item makes no sense. I don't know how much high end disposable income exists in Mexico either.
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Old 12-09-20, 06:34 AM
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Originally Posted by dedhed View Post
I would be. Unless you're in a border town transporting a $1000 or less item makes no sense. I don't know how much high end disposable income exists in Mexico either.
Only if you're driving a single bike over, then it's not worth the time. Take a van full of bikes/parts over and you could easily make enough. I've no idea how much Mexicans spend on bikes but presumably there are still plenty of people who'd want a $10,000 bike for $2,000.

I'm only using Mexico as an example since I assume most of the forum is Mexican. I was originally thinking something like Germany to Albania (which is where a lot of stolen cars end up). It'd probably work within a country too; almost no-one in Florida will be looking for their stolen bike in Vegas.


One of the bike parks here is getting a bad reputation for bikes going missing - groups of cyclists mostly standing about watching people and then their bikes being stolen a few days later, people leaving a bike unattended for seconds and it being in a van and away.
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Old 12-09-20, 07:14 AM
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No need to go to Mexico .... Steal a few vans-full of bikes at college campuses, drive a hundred miles to the nearest major city .... Everybody wants a $10,000 bike for $2,000 .... just some of us would realize it was too good to be true and wouldn't get involved.
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Old 12-09-20, 07:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Herzlos View Post
True, it'll be much easier to pass a high value bike off as legitimate if it's in a different country/state. There's less chance of any bike registration scheme covering both countries or the owner stumbling across it for sale.

I wouldn't be surprised if bikes were stolen in the US to be sold in stores in Mexico, for instance. It wouldn't make sense for a Walmart special, but would for the higher end stuff.
LOL. I have a house in Mexico and lived there for many years. You'd be surprised at how not stereotypical it is. You are so wrong, its not funny. High end bikes there are more expensive because of import costs, and they are not stolen.

There are some very wealthy people there, it is a nation of haves and have-nots. The "haves" have a LOT.
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Old 12-09-20, 07:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Herzlos View Post
Only if you're driving a single bike over, then it's not worth the time. Take a van full of bikes/parts over and you could easily make enough. I've no idea how much Mexicans spend on bikes but presumably there are still plenty of people who'd want a $10,000 bike for $2,000.

I'm only using Mexico as an example since I assume most of the forum is Mexican. I was originally thinking something like Germany to Albania (which is where a lot of stolen cars end up). It'd probably work within a country too; almost no-one in Florida will be looking for their stolen bike in Vegas.


One of the bike parks here is getting a bad reputation for bikes going missing - groups of cyclists mostly standing about watching people and then their bikes being stolen a few days later, people leaving a bike unattended for seconds and it being in a van and away.
This sort of thing goes on here in Canada. I know one person in my city (in Ontario) whose high-end bike was stolen. It was found months later in Calgary, Alberta, under new "ownership". Located because the original owner had registered it with a dedicated site, and filed a proper police report when it was stolen.
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Old 12-09-20, 07:32 AM
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Old 12-09-20, 07:37 AM
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