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Bike locks in the UK/Ireland?

Old 06-13-16, 09:52 PM
  #1  
Sharpshin
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Bike locks in the UK/Ireland?

One of those "opinion" questions with no definite answer but here goes....

I have arrived in the UK w/bike, solo touring will start next week after son returns home to the US, I expect to spend the next 42 days after that touring the UK and Ireland.

My present lock is an "On Guard Doberman 8030 " 6ft combination cable lock, classed as "heavy duty" for "medium to low-risk areas".

Since all my stuff will be in four Ortleib panniers I am unlikely to be out of sight of the bike for long, especially in urban areas (most of the tour will be rural).

Should I buy a better lock?

All opinions appreciated.

Mike
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Old 06-13-16, 10:15 PM
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My personal experience in Belgium/Netherlands: No. I had a cheap combo cable lock, the purpose of every lock in those countries were to keep someone from jumping on your bike and riding away. Most of the time it wasn't even locked to anything secure, just to another bike.

The longer answer: where are you storing your bikes? While I had no problem with the cable lock for securing stuff when I went in for lunch or a drink, I did feel good with a U-Lock for the nites it was sitting outside on a rack. Never touched the U-Lock other than in that situation, though.
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Old 06-13-16, 10:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Sharpshin View Post
One of those "opinion" questions with no definite answer but here goes....

I have arrived in the UK w/bike, solo touring will start next week after son returns home to the US, I expect to spend the next 42 days after that touring the UK and Ireland.

My present lock is an "On Guard Doberman 8030 " 6ft combination cable lock, classed as "heavy duty" for "medium to low-risk areas".

Since all my stuff will be in four Ortleib panniers I am unlikely to be out of sight of the bike for long, especially in urban areas (most of the tour will be rural).

Should I buy a better lock?

All opinions appreciated.

Mike
A combination cable lock is as far from heavy duty as one can get. Maybe it is heavy duty in the lowest crime areas but they are so easily cut and combination locks tend to be easier to get into then keys that heavy duty is a poor name. However it is all marketing fluff to make you feel safe.

I don't know that you would need to buy a better lock except for use in urban areas that you might be away from your bike for longer than a few seconds. I would hope in the country things calm down as far as bike theft but in any major city you should worry about it. The British might be polite but they can still steal bikes.

"Pardon me, sir, I am so frightfully sorry to impose but I noticed you had a bicycle outside and if it wouldn't be too inconvenient for you I was hoping to borrow your bike without the intention of returning it, again of course if not totally inconvenient for you than if so I do most humbly apologize however I will still be taking your bicycle forthwith"

I don't really trust anyone with my bike unless they are friends and multiple people are watching the bikes. I certainly don't trust a cable lock for anything but a light deterrent against front wheel theft. However again you might not need heavier protection in the countryside. Be careful and smart and always try to stay with the bike or bring it inside.
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Old 06-13-16, 10:26 PM
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I read about an older Germany guy who rode 'round the world but bike was stolen in UK just before finishing. In Amsterdam I never saw a nice bike left outside & the cheapos have 4 kg chains.
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Old 06-14-16, 03:17 AM
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I live in London where professional bike thieves operate, and there are areas that I wouldn't leave a bike overnight with ANY lock on. On the other hand, I went touring a few weeks ago to mainly rural areas where I didn't feel concerned about anything other than opportunistic thieving. I used a Kryptonite D Lock and cable and probably wouldn't want to go any lower-security than that.
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Old 06-14-16, 11:21 AM
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When touring in the UK I use a lightweight cable to stop opportunist thieves. I don't carry my heavy shackle lock and I don't leave the bike unattended in the city. I would probably upgrade to a better cable if I thought about it.
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Old 06-14-16, 11:44 AM
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Armored , cable within a segmented sleeve of steel segments, One from specialized ( Kevlar Cable inside ) And 1 from On Guard..

Abus Bordo Folding lock , Abus steel chain Combined with key lock,

Axa Defender ring Lock, on the frame and a steel chain-lock that uses the Ringlock .. to hold front wheel and Bike to rack are My various Lock purchases

on tour a Long light cable got used to go around PicNic benches and into chain link fences at CampGrounds and around trees.
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Old 06-14-16, 12:01 PM
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What do you think of the motion alarms? The Sammy Screamer uses your smart phone for on and off. A couple of others use a combination. With a opportunistic cable I'm thinking a good possibility.

One thing I use is an 8ft x 1/8 cable that's used to retain garage door springs should the break and try to cut your head off. Long enough to run through the pannier handles for the grab and run situations. With a small combo lock less than 4 oz.

For around town I use a ski/ski board lock. 3 ft x 3/32 combo, rolls up on it's own. Very convenient.
There have been times when I simply take off my front wheel and bring it in with me.
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Old 06-14-16, 12:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Squeezebox View Post
What do you think of the motion alarms? The Sammy Screamer uses your smart phone for on and off. A couple of others use a combination. With a opportunistic cable I'm thinking a good possibility.
What happens when you realize your cell phone is dead because you left Strava and navigation running in the background?
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Old 06-15-16, 08:47 AM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
What happens when you realize your cell phone is dead because you left Strava and navigation running in the background?
Well if your phone died then you can't turn on Sammy when you go into the store. Dead batteries do happen. i'm not saying it's the perfect answer just maybe an option.
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Old 06-15-16, 08:12 PM
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Would be nice if stores/restaurants etc had bike racks with heavy chains built in so riders would only need a padlock. DC area has become more bike friendly with many bike lanes & paths but bike rack situation hasn't kept up.
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Old 06-20-16, 06:31 AM
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sod the lock talk, tell me how the motogp customer bike and the 500 two strokers sounded!!
I briefly saw some "new lap record 132 or 33" or something news headlines, but didnt really follow it. Did you get to numerous viewing points during your days there, must be absolutely bonkers seeing them go by at close to 200.

back to locks, I have only travelled in primarily rural areas, and have only used a coil lock probably less sturdy than the one you have--for me, the main issue is using common sense. Lock bike to an object near your tent, or to itself outside a store, coils through handles of rear panniers, but really, it comes down to using your common sense and being aware of a given environment and listening to what your instinct says (hopefully your instinct is good....)

and of course, putting it inside in places when possible, or asking someone to keep an eye on it, or hold it for a while, again, using social instincts to get a feel for who to ask.

Ive always strived to keep weight down, so have never considered taking a heavier lock, but then the areas didnt warrant it. I always locked my bike up when camping, to a tree or whatever.
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Old 06-20-16, 07:55 AM
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Hostels usually had Bike Sheds with racks to lock up To
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Old 06-24-16, 10:11 PM
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Hey sharp, I just read a BBC article starting that up to the time that the article was written, there has been 5 fatals at the TT this year.
I sincerely hope you were not witness to any of them.

I've been racing at a race meeting in new Hampshire where a guy died, not in either of my classes, so didn't witness it, but it ain't fun nonetheless.

Safe riding
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Old 06-25-16, 02:38 AM
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I live in Dublin and have toured here, in Wales and in mainland Europe often without any lock. Having said that I wouldn't leave my bike unattended/unlocked for more than a few seconds on the street in any large urban area like Dublin.

No you don't need a bigger or better lock, just use the one you've got sensibly.
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Old 06-26-16, 10:07 PM
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Originally Posted by djb View Post
Hey sharp, I just read a BBC article starting that up to the time that the article was written, there has been 5 fatals at the TT this year.
I sincerely hope you were not witness to any of them.

I've been racing at a race meeting in new Hampshire where a guy died, not in either of my classes, so didn't witness it, but it ain't fun nonetheless.

Safe riding
IN RE Isle of Man TT? Terrifying course there & now I see TV with "real road racing" from England/Ireland. Last month went to Summit Pt road-racing track to see moto races, now mostly local/regional amateur riders but still fun to watch with the clean & fairly safe racing.
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Old 06-27-16, 04:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Caretaker View Post
I live in Dublin and have toured here, in Wales and in mainland Europe often without any lock. Having said that I wouldn't leave my bike unattended/unlocked for more than a few seconds on the street in any large urban area like Dublin.

No you don't need a bigger or better lock, just use the one you've got sensibly.
Caretaker next time your in Ardee visit the bikeshop there you can actually ride your bike inside sit down and have great coffee and scones,
no danger of some scumbag stealing your pride and joy.as for locks i never use them extra weight i just dont let my bike (road bike theses days) out of sight.
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