Monday, October 17, 2011

How to lock your bike properly so it doesn't get stolen

My dear Oyama Metropolitan bike in Oxford (that I still have!)
Bike theft is VERY common in Oxford. Hopefully after reading this it won’t happen the first term, but the key is to make sure its not you. Here’s how to do it:

Get a good lock. Not those coils of any sort, but a true D-LOCK. The ones that are shaped like a D. Some people call them U-LOCKs, but a good one from a good brand is the way to go. Kryptonite is the brand I recommend.

Love your bike. And by that, I mean LOCK your bike. Lock it! This may sound silly, but people who actually lose their bikes actually forget to lock their bikes. A quick errand here and there, leave it out for a couple minutes, and then its gone. Also make sure you lock your bike in the right place (ideally to lock the wheel and frame, either using that one lock or two locks- the coil one and the D-LOCK together are good), and actually locking o an immobile opject. Some people lock it to lampposts, forgetting that you can just lift the bike over the lamppost and its gone. Also some people just lock the bike to itself- which is good, except that the bike can be taken and put in a car, and then slowly broken into later. What you want to do is make it so that it would be obviously that someone is trying to steal it. Any theft that takes 1) time, and 2) Noise, (chainsaw to get that lock, or prying with a fork), usually won’t happen, unless you lock your bike in a very quiet area, and don’t go back to it for ages. I hear once they get the bike they ship it off to Cambridge to sell (and vice versa). You can TAG your bike- ask your nearest police station how they can do that for you.

Do make sure that if you get a nice bike, you spend some good money to get a lock, and then actually use it ok? That will make things a lot more enjoyable.

The right way to lock your bike.  The most valuable parts of a bike are (in order of price)1) frame, 2) back wheel, and 3) front wheel.  So make sure they are locked and that the frame (not just the wheel) is locked to a secure object.

Below are some great videos from people with years of experience living in some of the big cities where bike crime is very common:

Always use two different type of locks on your bike!  I have 3 on mine (one Kryptonite D-Lock for the frame, one cable lock for the wheels that are locked to the D-Lock, and another small cable to lock the seat to the bike.

Here Hal shows how a cheap bike lock can easily be broken.  Spend more and buy a good U-LOCK or D-LOCK along with a cable lock!

No comments:

Post a Comment