Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Iron Irony: When A Lock Is Not Locked

In a basket at the rack: a lock, but not locked (twice)

Wouldn't reach, so not locked

More secure lock left in bracket in preference for a quick buddy cable lock-up

I don't know that the Little Yellow Public Service stickers / cards would help much here. I have one more post coming, where I cut up some cable locks, or try to, with various cutting implements up to and including bolt cutters, in order to demonstrate their almost-useless (but better than nothing) security level. But, I have learned from this little adventure in public service security mindedness: although I am overwhelmed by how widespread the poor cable locking practice is, it at least offers a opportunity to strike up a conversation if you feel like helping out a fellow cyclist. And, I will give it to you cable locker-uppers out there: actually using the lock is better than nothing at all. But, I would suggest, once you elect to lock up your bike, once you cross the "I want to slow down the person who wants to take my bike," line, why not go beyond the "slow them down five seconds line" and move on to the "look for easier pickings" place? When everyone is using cables, a properly employed U-lock has to be a pretty good deterrent. OK, almost done with the lock obsession. Cable destruction ahead. Get up. Go ride.



  1. I am *really* looking forward to the "cable destruction" post. I assume that cable locks will require a bolt cutter, but WTH, I've been wrong before. Geez I hope I don't have to start lugging a u-lock around with me.


  2. Yeah, I'm with jt ...

    (BC grins ... sheepishly)

    I hope I ain't shamed into carrying around a u-lock AND a cable lock with me. After all, all of my bikes have quick release hubs, so a cable lock is a necessity.

    And, like, on Hardiboi, when I have BOTH frame water bottle cages with bottles in them, where the heck am I gonna PUT a u-lock?

  3. jt, you are correct, for me anyway, a bolt cutter, albeit a small one, was required.

    BluesCat, carrying a u-lock and a cable lock, it should be stated, requires a would-be thief / ne'er-do-well to carry more tools, and adds inconvenience and time to their grand self economic expansion plans. And you can put the U-lock bracket on a seat stay, or seat tube, with the lock nestled up against the frame with just enough room for the brakes.

  4. Bluescat, also, my next evolution in the locking game may be the mini u-lock+cable. It is easier to carry, a little more secure since harder to lever open, and can be used in either a rear triangle rack lock, or else rear wheel rack lock if space permits. Else two mini u-locks one for the front wheel, one for the rear, Sheldon-style.


Please feel free to comment here, almost anything goes, except for obvious spam or blatantly illegal or objectionable material. Spammers may be subject to public ridicule, scorn, or outright shaming, and the companies represented in spam shall earn disrepute and ire for each occurrence.