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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I work part time in a bike shop in DC. There is rarely a day where someone doesn't come in to replace their stolen bike. We show folks over and over again how to lock their bike but do they listen? Heck no!

DC is a great city for bike commuting. The weather is pretty good, cycling facilities are not bad, the Metro is over capacity and auto traffic is amazingly congested. At my day job downtown I see hundreds of bikes parked all over the place.

Very few are locked up correctly. It is easy picking for any bike thief with ambition.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
How not to lock your bike.

#1 Don't just run a lock thru the front wheel or someone will remove your bike from the wheel and get a wheel from...

#2 & 3 Don't just lock the frame or the guy who just took #1 will steal your wheels and ride away..

#4a Don't rely on a cable lock alone. For one thing they are crazy easy to cut away which brings us to...

#4b Lock your bike to something solid and make sure your bike can't be lifted over that something solid (BTW trees are not solid).

#5 If you have locks use them all the time, don't leave them dangling from your seat. Make your bike harder to steal than some one elses bike and yours is much more likely to be there when you get back.

#6 Use your very expensive lock correctly. Lock both wheels, the frame and your seat if you can.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
How to lock your bike.

#1 Run a U-Lock through the rear wheel and the frame and something solid AND lasso your front wheel with a sturdy cable that runs over your frame through the seat and down to the U-Lock.

#2 Use a big motorcycle security chain and lock through the wheels and frame and around something solid. Bonus points for being inside a locking cage. Double bonus points for being inside a secured building (don't be foolish and not lock your bike correctly in a cage, bikes incorrectly locked get taken from places like this all the time).

Bonus Note. OLDER LOCKS WITH CIRCULAR KEYS ARE NOT SECURE. I opened this lock with the Bic pen shown here. If you have a lock like this replace it now.

Few things rile me as much as bike theives, don't encourage them by making it easy for them to steal your bike.

BTW I have never had one of my bikes stolen (knock on wood).
 

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Great post, MB1. I've never had to lock a bike (well, not since I was a kid at the swimming pool, 20 years ago). I am either on mine or it's next to my desk. Most places I have lived have minimal bike services around town, so I would rather take pubic (public) transit around town and leave the bike at the office.

I have been thinking about painting over the nice paint job on my 2005 Cannondale and making it look as bad as possible. My friend did that to his Specialized and it has worked for years.
 

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Cheese is my copilot
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I've got an ancient (like 10-15 years--I don't even remember when I got it) ulock with a circular key. When last year's hoopla hit I actually sent in to get the free replacement, but I didn't have the heart to use it even though Kryptonite sent me the coupon. I figure I've gotten my $$ worth out of it.

I suppose I should still replace it, but I rarely leave my bike anywhere but in my house or office, and I'm not too worried about it at the grocery store.
 

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The Giant in the first picture.

In my opinion, which was taken from Sheldon Brown, The Giant MTB is locked in a very reputable way. A u-lock through the rear wheel inside the rear triangle is tantamount to a u-lock through the wheel and the frame. You would have to destroy the frame or wheel to remove it.

he details why is it safe here:
http://sheldonbrown.com/lock-strategy.html

Oh, and before you say that the bike in the picture does not need to be locked properly because it is just, notice that it is a serious collectors piece.


MB1 said:
#1 Run a U-Lock through the rear wheel and the frame and something solid AND lasso your front wheel with a sturdy cable that runs over your frame through the seat and down to the U-Lock.

#2 Use a big motorcycle security chain and lock through the wheels and frame and around something solid. Bonus points for being inside a locking cage. Double bonus points for being inside a secured building (don't be foolish and not lock your bike correctly in a cage, bikes incorrectly locked get taken from places like this all the time).

Bonus Note. OLDER LOCKS WITH CIRCULAR KEYS ARE NOT SECURE. I opened this lock with the Bic pen shown here. If you have a lock like this replace it now.

Few things rile me as much as bike theives, don't encourage them by making it easy for them to steal your bike.

BTW I have never had one of my bikes stolen (knock on wood).
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Are you talking about the Red Giant Yukon?

If so I locked it up myself for the picture and this post to illustrate a properly secured bike. The U-Lock is locking the rear wheel and left chainstay so it is indeed locked very securely.

(True you could just run the U-Lock around the Tire-Rim inside the rear triangle and you have effectivly secured the frame but would a thief know that? The idea is to encourage a thief to move along and leave your bike alone so it helps to visibly secure the bike. Otherwise some dunce will mess with your rear wheel trying to steal a securely locked bike.(Have I mentioned that I hate bike thieves?)).

I got tired of looking for a bike that was locked correctly to illustrate this post, "If you want something done right, do it yourself."
 

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True, I suppose there is some value to deterring a thief. There is also value in getting as much into the U as possible to avoid leverage. In my experience I will put the frame in the lock if there is room, but I use a smallish lock.

That said, the locking mistake I see most often, is the lock through the frame and front wheel with quick release rear wheel left unattended. Why these people don't understand that their rear wheel is just as easy to steal, and worth far more money I don't know.
 

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Roadie with unshaven legs
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I noticed that the bike messengers in San Francisco's downtown lock their bikes to parking meters like in picture post #2 pictures 2 and 3. I'm guessing that they do this in the interest of speed since it's more secure than just leaning your bike against the meter and walking away but it isn't as secure as locking it up properly. It takes time to lock up a bike properly.

There's only one time in the week when I lock my bike outside. I take the front wheel off, wedge it between the frame and the meter then lock it with a new-style Kryptonite lock. I remove anything that a casual thief may pull off the bike then walk into the building. I'm in there for no more than 10 minutes, tops, and I still don't lock my bike like the bike messengers do.
 

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wooglin said:
When last year's hoopla hit I actually sent in to get the free replacement, but I didn't have the heart to use it even though Kryptonite sent me the coupon. I figure I've gotten my $$ worth out of it.
I wonder if that's still valid? I never bothered, being in a small town and all.
 

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I hope I didn't waste money on an expensive chain lock.

Sorry to drag up a month old thread, but I was wondering why its so bad to have a chain lock. I get why it is good to have a U-lock + cables to wrap around the wheels, but a chain lock is also very strong according to Kryptonite. One look at this burly chain lock should be enough of a deterrent to any thief.

I just bought the chain lock below. The chain is covered by the black fabric. I thought I was getting the best protection, but now second guessing myself. I don't know if it will fit, but if I can get this chain around the wheels and the frame, the my bike would be protected as good as the U-lock + cables described above. Correct?

 

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SCW said:
I have been thinking about painting over the nice paint job on my 2005 Cannondale and making it look as bad as possible. My friend did that to his Specialized and it has worked for years.
1 can Krylon black, 1 can Krylon white, one "Huffy" stencil.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
barbedwire said:
Sorry to drag up a month old thread, but I was wondering why its so bad to have a chain lock. I get why it is good to have a U-lock + cables to wrap around the wheels, but a chain lock is also very strong according to Kryptonite. One look at this burly chain lock should be enough of a deterrent to any thief.

I just bought the chain lock below. The chain is covered by the black fabric. I thought I was getting the best protection, but now second guessing myself. I don't know if it will fit, but if I can get this chain around the wheels and the frame, the my bike would be protected as good as the U-lock + cables described above. Correct?

Actually it is a 3 year old thread but who is counting!

I lock my bike with a Kryptonite NY Chain w/Disc lock AND a NY Kryptonite U-Lock. My chain is just barely long enough to go through both wheels and around a sturdy post.

I suspect that if your chain has the same reach as mine it will be fine although I have always thought that a chain or cable with an integral lock is a bit weaker than the same chain with a nice sturdy seperate lock (I've seen those integral locks beaten apart with a hammer).
 
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