1. I use a Kryptonite U-Lock with a Kryptonite cable. The cable fits through both wheels, and then runs through the U-Lock, which secures the bike to the bike rack (or some other likely object). Kryptonite is starting a bike decal program (decal can be read with a smartphone), which identifies a bike ower. The decals look like those smartphone scannable coupons in grocery fliers! I guess Kryptonite will maintain database.
2. I try to greatly limit the amount of time I am away from the bike; for example, I rush through the grocery store to pick up the necessities. I also take everything removeable off the bike (rack pack, front light, rear blinkie, bike computer.) I have asked several stores if they have cameras that focus on the bike racks; some do, some don't.
3. When I bought my Biria (for me a huge outlay of $550!), I also bought a Velosurance policy. It was $103 for the year, and covers accidental damage, theft, and injuries for myself and any other parties. They will also provide you with legal counsel if you were “not at fault.” Velosurance (owned by a biker) is underwritten by Markel. Their webpage says they don't insure bikes worth less than $800; but that is not the case.
4. When I lock my bike up in my locked garage, I put both the Krytonite lock and cable on, and secure it to a 4” heavy metal pipe.
5. I also registered my bike (serial number, year, model, etc.) with the local police department. They now have a database to compare with recovered bikes, and pawn shop inventories.
5. I saw a beautiful bike in front of the local grocery store, laden with all sorts of gear and fully loaded front and rear panniers. It was not locked! When the owner came out of the store, I chastized him for not locking the bike. He said he never locks his bike. Instead, he had both brake handles secured in “braked” position by wrapping ball-type bungee cords around the break levers and the handlebars! This will prevent the bike from rolling, and he said most people are too dumb to realize what the problem is; and it wouldn't matter to an expert bike thief anyway. He was touring cross-country, so I guess he knew what he was doing.
I wish there were a bike GPS system, something affordable and small that could be hidden in the tubing. I think there is something like this, but the monthly fees for monitoring are way too high!
By the way I LOVE the idea of the thumb print under the top tube, and fortune cookie messages hidden under the handlebar tape. These are very creative solutions.
Keep the rubber side down. . . .
Edited by: OAKASHANDTHORN at: 4/20/2014 (20:16)
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My bike may not have much monetary value, but I would be devastated if it was stolen.
If you have a lock, lock your bike in a high-traffic area. Take a look around: there's likely to be a video camera nearby if you're at the entrance to a business. If you can, lock your bike under the view of the camera. You may be able to talk the business into letting you bring your bike inside. (Around here, most large stores have "No Bikes Inside" signs. )
I have a couple of identifiers that will help me ID my bike if it's stolen and later recovered: There's a couple of fortune cookie fortunes under the handlebar tape. I know what they say. A thief is unlikely to know that. Even better: on the underside of the downtube, I smeared some clear fingernail polish. While it was still wet, I put my thumbprint into it.
I've also read tips to protect your bike when you don't have a lock: open your quick releases. If someone tries to ride off, the wheels fall off. I'm not crazy about this idea because I fear my bike would be damaged, but it does meet the "slow them down long enough to deter them" test.
Truth be told, your cable lock is fine. If someone really wants to steal your bike, there isn't much that will deter them. But theft if generally a crime of opportunity: any lock will prevent the casual bike thief from stealing your bike.
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I was just thinking about this yesterday because I wanted to ride my bike into town to do some errands but was afraid to leave it locked somewhere. I have a cable lock but didn't know how secure it would be. And while it isn't a bad area most of the bikes I see are regular street/city bikes, not as expensive as my VTT, so I was afraid it could be a target.
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"There is no single bike lock that will prevent your bike from being stolen in all situations. Even with two or more locks on your bicycle, there is a good chance the bike will get stolen if you leave it in the wrong area for too long.
Locking your bicycle should not be see as an ultimate solution to preventing your bike from getting stolen, but should be viewed only as a temporary preventative measure to be taken only when you must leave your bicycle for a short period of time. In other words, a lock doesn’t keep your bike from being stolen. Instead, it is an item you put on your bicycle in order to deter thieves from wanting to steal your bike in the first place, or to make it more difficult and time consuming for them to do so.
Seeing a lock on a bicycle may prevent some thieves from attempting to steal your bike, but it won’t keep all thieves away – especially if your bike is of value or if you have left your bike alone for a lengthy period of time."
I know I regret my first bike lock...a heavy u-bolt type which promptly fell out of the clamp which was supposed to hold it on my bike frame...thereby necessitating a pannier to stuff it in. I since have switched to a lighter cable-type of lock for times when I'm not going to leave it locked for any length of time or it's going to be in relatively secure settings.
How are the rest of you managing your bike security?
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