Author Topic: Looking for a Bicycle Lock  (Read 3384 times)

ClassyCat

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Looking for a Bicycle Lock
« on: August 12, 2015, 06:52:24 PM »
I've been enjoying my bike since I bought it, but I need some form of security so I can lock it up whenever I ride to a store. Do you guys have any recommendations for what type of lock I should buy? I was considering one of these because I fear someone would be able to quickly cut through a standard cable lock, but I'm not positive. I do live in a fairly busy city, not ultra urban but a decent number of people, average crime rate. Opinions?

Separate question, what's the best method of locking up your bike? (i.e., where and how to place the lock)

vhalros

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Re: Looking for a Bicycle Lock
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2015, 06:17:30 AM »
Definately do not rely solely on a cable lock if there is any bike theft at all in your area. That foldable lock does not look so great either.

Get a solid U-lock; if it prevents your bike getting stolen even once it has paid for it self. The most I would recommend is the Kryptonite Evolution Series 4 U-lock (http://www.amazon.com/Kryptonite-Evolution-Standard-Bicycle-FlexFrame/dp/B005YPK99I/). That is tough enough that some one will need either really collosal bolt cutters or power tools to break it, and once you bring out the power tools no lock is safe, so there is not a huge value in something even more expensive. The mini-version is probably cheaper and even more secure (http://www.amazon.com/Kryptonite-Evolution-Mini-Bike-U-Lock/dp/B000AMPRG0/ref=sr_1_17?ie=UTF8&qid=1439467527&sr=8-17-spons&keywords=Kryptonite+Evolution+Series+4) since the small space leaves less room for theives' tools, but it can be hard to get the wheel, frame, and an anchor in there.

If you want something a little cheaper, this one would still give decent protection: http://www.amazon.com/Kryptonite-Kryptolok-Bicycle-FlexFrame-11-5-Inch/

If you really like the foldable design, Abus makes one that is foldable and pretty secure, but it is kind of expensive: http://www.amazon.com/ABUS-6500-Folding-Link-Black/dp/B005VMO49U/

As far as how to lock: Make sure you secure the frame, both wheels, and the saddle. You may need a second lock or an auxiliary cable to do this. Lock your bike up next to a more expensive looking bicycle with cheaper looking locks.

The sheldon brown technique works pretty well, but can be hard to implement on some bike racks: http://www.sheldonbrown.com/lock-strategy.html

Usually, what I do is U-lock the front wheel and frame to the rack, then I have a second cable lock that I keep hanging from my saddle rails that I use to lock the saddle and rear wheel to the frame. Sometimes I also pass the cable around the rack to lock the frame a second time, depending on the situation.

This youtube series on the topic is also somewhat amusing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aTA3JsZWiec

« Last Edit: August 13, 2015, 06:23:40 AM by vhalros »

GuitarStv

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Re: Looking for a Bicycle Lock
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2015, 06:44:35 AM »
No method of locking up will prevent your bike from being stolen by someone who's determined.  It'll just slow down the thief.  I had a heavy duty U-lock seize up on me last year with my bike secured through the rear wheel and frame.  I tried using a hack saw to cut through it, which was impossible.  It took about six or seven heavy blows with a hammer to free the bike by smashing the internal tumbler - no power tools required.  In a busy area with people walking by me all over the place, and me clearly trying to break this lock, nobody even looked twice at me or asked me what I was doing.

Here's my approach:

If I'm heading out around town to run some errands and won't be leaving my bike for more than a a few minutes (library, grocery run, picking something up from the hardware store, heading to the post office) I use a cheap cable lock . . . it's lighter and is easier to lock up to a variety of stuff.  Always secure the frame and both wheels.  They're the most expensive parts of your bike, and wheels are quick to steal with quick release levers.

When I'm leaving my bike out for a long time (all day after commuting to work) I use a heavy duty Kryptonite U-lock and cable.  Because it's heavy I leave it attached to the post at work so I don't have to lug it around each way.

Lock up like this (maybe ignoring 3 and 4 unless you're in a high crime area):

Both wheels and the frame are secured.  I don't have a fancy bike saddle and have never had a problem with someone stealing my saddle that's secured via allen key clamp.  You should be able to do this with any vertical post . . .

Also important, strip your bike before you leave it alone for a long time.  Take off your lights, bike computer, frame pump, panniers, water bottle, seat post bag, etc.
« Last Edit: August 13, 2015, 06:47:51 AM by GuitarStv »

ClassyCat

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Re: Looking for a Bicycle Lock
« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2015, 11:25:20 AM »
Cool, good info on both sides. I've ordered a nice U-lock and a cable so I can secure it as demonstrated in the image. Next step is checking stores to see which ones have decent racks to use. It'll be interesting to see how common it is.

GuitarStv

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Re: Looking for a Bicycle Lock
« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2015, 11:43:35 AM »
You don't need a rack specifically.  Park benches, fences, some street signs, some lamp posts, some railings . . . there's a surprising amount of stuff you can lock up to.

vhalros

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Re: Looking for a Bicycle Lock
« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2015, 12:27:23 PM »
Cool, good info on both sides. I've ordered a nice U-lock and a cable so I can secure it as demonstrated in the image. Next step is checking stores to see which ones have decent racks to use. It'll be interesting to see how common it is.

Just avoid locking it to a handicapped parking sign, which is illegal some places, and just kind of a douche move everywhere else.

Its also worth contacting businesses if there are places you frequent (or would like to frequent) that do not have bicycle racks of any kind. In my experience they are surprisingly responsive; I guess they like customers and bicycle racks do not cost that much.

ClassyCat

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Re: Looking for a Bicycle Lock
« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2015, 03:19:57 PM »
You don't need a rack specifically.  Park benches, fences, some street signs, some lamp posts, some railings . . . there's a surprising amount of stuff you can lock up to.

Good point. I was unsure if there's specific etiquette for it, like if using a bench might be seen as rude, stuff along those lines. But given that this is a college town, I think people are used to bikes being locked almost anywhere.

Cool, good info on both sides. I've ordered a nice U-lock and a cable so I can secure it as demonstrated in the image. Next step is checking stores to see which ones have decent racks to use. It'll be interesting to see how common it is.

Just avoid locking it to a handicapped parking sign, which is illegal some places, and just kind of a douche move everywhere else.

Its also worth contacting businesses if there are places you frequent (or would like to frequent) that do not have bicycle racks of any kind. In my experience they are surprisingly responsive; I guess they like customers and bicycle racks do not cost that much.

I actually just emailed a few stores that I know don't have any sort of mechanism for it, and they've all been great about it. Even Lowe's called me back and said they have one now (which I wasn't aware of due to it being more hidden).

FLBiker

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Re: Looking for a Bicycle Lock
« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2015, 01:22:37 PM »
It's amazing how much the need for bike security varies from place to place.  When I lived in Honolulu, I always locked my bike up as shown in GuitarStv's illustration.  And if I ever forgot to take my headlights or any other accessory off, they were gone in minutes.  Here in Tampa (which, I think, is similar in terms of property crime) no one seems to care at all about bikes.  Maybe the used bike resale market is worse here?  Regardless, I've been here much longer than I was in Honolulu and I've never had anything taken from my bike.  I don't even use a cable lock anymore (though I probably should -- no harm).

hotdiggitydog

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Re: Looking for a Bicycle Lock
« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2015, 02:34:29 PM »

Heckler

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Re: Looking for a Bicycle Lock
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2015, 04:04:44 PM »
In Vancouver BC, I never use a lock.





The bikes never stay outside, or they'll be gone in no time, regardless of the lock.