Tag Archives: bike lock

You can't be with your bike at all times. Therefore,  you'll have leave it unattended once and a while. Read on for some info on the different type and style of bicycle locks and other tips to ensure your bike's safety.

Bike locks vary, how to pick the right one for your bicycles safety

by John Brown, HaveFunBiking.com

You can’t be with your bike at all times. Therefore,  you’ll have leave it unattended once and a while. That doesn’t mean you can’t take precautions to protect it. Read on for some info on the different type and style of bicycle locks and other tips to ensure your bike’s safety.

Types of Bike Locks

Not all situations require the same level of security. Also, there isn’t a lock in existence that a motivated person can’t get through.  Therefore, there are many different types of locks for different situations. Picking the right lock should dissuade a potential thief from even trying to take your bike.

U-Lock

The strongest bike locks are U-locks. They consist of a steel bar, bent in a ‘U’ shape, that fits into a straight locking mechanism. These locks are also resistant to bolt cutters and hacksaws, and a potential thief would need a lot of uninterrupted time and loud tools to get through one. Many U-locks offer an insurance program where the lock manufacturer will pay you to replace your bike if it is stolen. All you have to do is register your bike.

 

Chains

Chain locks are also popular. While some chains can be cut with bolt cutters, some versions rival the strongest U-locks in durability. Chains use hardened steel links and padlocks to keep your bike secure, and offer a lot of flexibility in what you can lock your bike to. Look for versions that have some sort of covering over the chain (either rubber or fabric), because it goes a long way in protecting the finish of your bicycle.

Cables

The least secure lock is a cable lock. Cable locks use steel cables with built in key or combination mechanisms to secure your bike. These locks are great for stopping someone from grabbing your bike and running off with it. But if a thief is prepared and motivated, they can cut through these locks in a few seconds. However, cables do offer the greatest flexibility in what you can lock your bike to.

How to Lock

Location, Location, Location

First and foremost: Lock your bike in a secure location. The ideal location is in plain sight with a lot of traffic. The more conspicuous a thief needs to be stealing your bike, the lower the chance is of them trying to take it. And always remember to lock your bike to something secure. For example, a parking meter might look secure, but if an industrious thief has removed the hardware that secures the meter to the post, they can quickly slide your bicycle and lock up the post and be on their way. So search for immovable objects like a bike rack that’s bolted to the ground.

lock it up rack booby trap

This bike rack was cut and taped back together by a bike thief. Be sure what you lock to is secure.

Protect Your Bike Parts

Bikes are built with quick-release wheels and seats. It’s fine to lock the frame, but a thief might just take a front or rear wheel if available. If you are using a cable or chain, lace it through both wheels, the frame, and whatever you’re locking the bike to. If you’re using a U-lock, then remove the front wheel and place it next to the rear wheel. Then capture both wheels and the frame when you lock it up. Many manufacturers make component-specific locks that secure your wheels or seat to the bicycle frame.

Lock it up Frame and QR lock

Frame locks, and locks that replace your wheel’s quick-release levers are common on commuter bicycles

If you follow these tips then you’ll be on your way to making sure your bike isn’t stolen, and it’ll be one less thing for you to worry about.

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The summer is prime time for fun in the sun. Take a look at how to plan for an enjoyable, safe, and prepared bike trip this summer.

A Guide To Planning a Safe and Fun Bike Trip This Summer

By John Brown, HaveFunBiking.com

Now that summer is in its prime, for fun in the sun, lets plan a fun bike trip. While hundreds of people flock to the lakes and local pools for refreshment many, like myself, will find refreshing the soul on two wheels the best way to go. Take a look below at how I plan for an enjoyable bike trip through the summer.

A Short Bike Trip

Just because you are limited on time doesn’t mean you need to miss out on riding your bike. You can have fun right around your neighborhood! I have found that a great way to plan a short ride is to first determine a destination point. That destination can be an ice cream parlor, a road you have driven down but never seen up close or maybe a nearby water park? Once you pick your destination, try to link in some sections of bike path, rail trail, or some quite back streets or road, even though they may not be the most direct route to your destination. After you pick a destination and a route the rest of the planned excursion tends to materialize easily.

What To Bring Along

For a short trip just pack water and the tools to fix a flat. These rides usually only last an hour or so but can do a lot to help your peace of mind.

Bike Trip

Ice cream is always a great mid-ride snack no mater if its a long or short bike trip.

A Long Bike Trip

On a longer bike trip it takes a bit more planning, though it follows the same order as above. Pick your destination with several attractions or points of interest close to one-another. Then, add some bike friendly routes and the rest of the planned  bike trip will materialize. On longer trips, it is also important to make sure your bike Is working well. Lube the chain, adjust the brakes, check your fit, or drop it off at your local shop for service at least two weeks before you plan to depart.

For longer trips, I like to employ the use of guide books (Like our Minnesota Bike/Hike Guide) to find the best places to ride. Once you determine the location, reach out to local businesses like bike shops, hotels, business associations, or tourism boards to find out more details about the area. As I mentioned before, a bike guide is a great place to start planning, but also reach out to local tourism bureau’s. Bike paths and trails have become a popular attraction for most towns and visitors centers are more than happy to talk about their bike friendly amenities and usually have the most up to date information. Also consider using software programs like: Ride with GPS, Map My Ride and Strava for more route ideas.

Packing For A Longer Trip

Packing for a long trip is more involved than what a short trip normally requires. If you will be driving a long distance or flying to get to the ride you don’t want poor weather to keep you off your bike – so pack for the worst! As an example, I once did a 24-hour long mountain bike race in West Virginia in July and while the race started under sunny skies at 95 degrees, it was snowing on the top of the mountain, that night. Take a look at our comprehensive bike trip list for all the items you may be forgetting.

Bike safety

A great bike trip is a safe bike trip. There is no more important part of bike safety than a helmet that fits. While crashes are uncommon, they do happen and a helmet is the best way to protect yourself from serious damage. Other than the helmet, practice riding safely with hand signals, situational awareness and limited distractions to keep you out of trouble. If you are on a family trip, it’s also important to talk to your kids about bike riding safety.

Bring The Bike Lock

If your ride involves time stopping, maybe at a restaurant or ice cream parlor, be sure to lock your bike securely. Follow these three rules when locking your bike. One, Lock it to something secure. If the bike rack or a sign post you plan to lock your bike to isn’t secure, you are making a would-be bike thief’s job easier. Two, Lock the frame and at least one wheel of your bike. Locking just a rear wheel or front wheel makes it easy for someone to walk away with the rest of your bike. Three, Lock your bike in a well trafficked area. Bike thieves will be less likely to try and take your bike with witnesses around.

Its All About The Fun

Most important part about making a bike trip fun is to remember, it I all about fun. We all have days that start late, roads that get closed, out of the blue rain falls, and generally stuff that happens. Remember that the bike trip is all about the ride, not necessarily the destination so enjoy your time in the saddle.

Bike Trip

Always keep it fun!

 

InterLock, a Hidden Bike Lock in Your Seatpost

Pete, Electric Bike Reports

Sometimes remembering to bring your bike lock is a pain and that is where the InterLock comes in. The Interlock is a very convenient lock because it is “hiding” in your seatpost and it is always on your bike.

Interlock-seatpost -2

You can see that the InterLock fits well behind the seatpost.

I am a fan of making the bike convenient and easy to use for everyday riding to work, errands, and cruising downtown. The more convenient it is to simply grab your bike and go, the better.

I look forward to the day when are bikes are “turn key” like a car.  They will be easy to ride (electric assist) and they will have all the convenient accessories to make riding your bike to work an easy choice.

The InterLock is one of those accessories that gets us closer to that fully equipped “turn key” bike.

The Interlock sells for $59.99 which is not bad considering that a seat post and a lock separately would be about that much total.

Here is a one minute [video] of how the InterLock works from the inventor and CEO of Interlock, Adrian Solgaard.

And here are some more pictures to give you further information:

Interlock-seatpost-lock -3

This is the InterLock removed from the bike. You can see that the cable of the lock fits in the seat tube of the frame of the bike. If you have a smaller frame, the cable may not fit all the way down. The seatpost comes in two sizes: 25.4 and 27.2 and you can get shims to fit your specific frame seat tube size.

 

Interlock-seatpost-locked-6

In this photo I have locked just the frame (and seatpost) to the bike parking structure. In most cases the InterLock cable is long enough to lock the frame and rear wheel to the parking structure, but with most e-bikes the rear wheel is bolted on so it is not as much of concern to lock it. If you need to maximize the cable reach you could remove the seatpost or lower it in the frame.

Interlock-seatpost-lock-close-up-7

Here is a close up of where cable comes out of the seatpost.

 

Pros

◦You will always have a lock with you and it is hidden well so your bike still looks good.
◦ It is very easy to use compared to spiraled cables that you have to unravel.
◦It can secure the frame and rear wheel (and possibly a front wheel if you remove it).
◦$59.99 is a reasonable price for a lock and seatpost.

Cons

◦The length of the cable is pretty good but it would be nice to have it a little longer to be able to lock to large parking structures (trees, etc.).  That may be difficult to achieve because there is limited seat tube space for varying sizes of frames.
◦It is not the most robust lock for leaving your e-bike for long periods of time in high theft areas.  It’s good for quick errand running or locking in low theft risk areas.

Overall I think the InterLock is a good lock solution.  It is nice to always have a lock on my bike.  It is easy to use and it further makes my bike more convenient for commuting and errand running.

Here is more information on the InterLock and this is where you can buy it.  And here is where you can get shims to fit your frame if needed.

P.S. Don’t forget to join the Electric Bike Report community for updates from the electric bike world, plus ebike riding and maintenance tips!

Keeping Your Bicycle Safe With ABUS Bike Locks

Tyler Lowthian, HaveFunBiking.com  

With thousands of bicycles stolen each year, what are you doing to ensure your bicycle’s safety?

20140123-FS8A0220-2The most important aspect of a safe and secured bike is having a reliable bike lock. Securely locking it in a well lit – high traffic area and having photo(s) along with your bike’s serial number, and information on where it was purchased on file.

 Here we found ABUS, a long time industry leader in security, with numerous products to protect your equipment when you are not riding. Here are a few ABUS Bike Locks:

01_111617_540_160 HB230_aGranit X-Plus 540

The ABUS Granit X-Plus 540 has a 15/15 security rating, and is ideal for urban areas. If you need protection on high quality bicycles, the 540 provides strong protection with a patented 13mm temper hardened steel square, parabolic shackle, and a double bolting shackle/lock body.

With its patented ABUS Power Cell technology providing the highest protection against hitting and pulling attacks, and the X-Plus Key cylinder offering extremely high protection from lock picking- the 540 features the most advanced technology available in a U-Lock.

Granit X-Plus U54 Mini Processed with VSCOcam with k2 preset

The U54 Mini features the most advanced technology (the same as the U540) but in a short shackle version. The lock retains the wide profile of its full size siblings in the Granit X-Plus U lock family, making it ideal for use in cities that have reinforced parking meters available for bike parking and where a narrow shackle profile won’t fit.

The lock is double bolting, meaning that any thief attacking the lock with a grinder will have to make two cuts, as opposed to one cut for other brands whose locks are single-bolting.

uGrip Bordo 5700 uGripBordo5700_IMG_3741

Designed in a range of 5 bright colors (black, orange, blue, lime, and pink) the new uGrip Bordo is the perfect locking solution for suburban or low-theft risk locking needs.

An updated, rotating lock body and “snap” closure make the uGrip tremendously easy to use. The rattle-free carrying case mounts quickly to the bike by using the provided Velcro straps, or can be screwed directly into the bottle cage mounts, making transportation incredibly easy. A one-touch button frees the lock from its pouch and a color-coded link and lock body make it simpler to identify the locking side of this lock.

The uGrip Bordo can also be ordered “keyed” with specific coil cables via special order.

Ultimateultimatestd 420

Made of high quality, temper hardened steel; the Ultimate 420 has a slightly narrower inner width and lock body than the beefier Super Ultimate. The 14mm shackle double bolts into the lock body for robust protection against cutting and torsion attacks.

All ABUS locks feature industry leading corrosion resistance-perfect for wet, rainy, and snowy climates!

Check with your local bike shop for these models and other product to safeguard your bicycle investment.

PennCycle_728x90aIt’s also a smart idea to register your bicycle through the Minneapolis Police Department or the city you live in. Then, if your bicycle gets taken, call your local precinct and make a formal report. Be sure to include color, manufacturer, model, serial number, or any other identifiable features.

 Pictures and information provided by Joan Hanscom,  ABUS Marketing and PR Manager