Friday, May 17, 2013

Lock Up Effectively When You Bike to Work

Good lock, bad technique: the front wheel quick release could mean all that is left behind is the wheel.

When you bike to work, make sure you lock up effectively to increase your chances of finding your ride where you left it. Nothing is perfect security, but there are better and worse levels of security. 

For ways not to lock up, see these posts on this blog, and for suggestions on how to lock up more effectively, see my yellow card, and also check the internet for videos and further instructions on locking up with a u-lock.



  1. I'm currently seeing DOZENS of poorly locked bikes. Well, at least those locked at all. Some still have excellent theft protection.

    1. Most, more than half, are poorly locked in Phoenix and Scottsdale. I want to go and survey Tempe, to see if the University setting has any effect on locking technique.

  2. It always amazes me how insecure some cyclists leave their pride and joy......

    1. I feel genuine sadness when I see the sliced remnants of a cable lock, or a lone front wheel locked to a rack, both indicating someone's ride to work was stolen.

  3. Let's be bold. The worst that could happen is another Star Trek movie.

    When shopping, I'm starting to think the best theft preventer is a good kickstand...just wheel the bike into the store, park it out of the way and kickstand it. Then shop. What are they going to do? Call the local police SWAT Team and all their tanks and helicopters and dogs and stuff? If they do that, why would you do business with such a store?

    Let's get serious. The workplace. More subtle and nuanced. Live as close to that place as you can stand, ride a simple folder, bring it INSIDE, tuck it away somewhere. You might be able to get away with this for a while, maybe forever. Most managers have about a five second attention span when it comes to work conditions. And a microsecond memory.

    Of course,

    Beware the workplace divas and queen bees, though. And the young ones who scurry to workplace management "authority figures" to complain because that's what their parents taught them and they haven't yet outgrown childhood family politics and attempts to mark territory like the dog they brought home from the puppy mill, over there at the mall or on craigslist. If such conditions obtain and can't be corrected, well, why would you want to work there?

    (with apologies to the lock and chain and rack industries)

    1. I saw three separate people wheel their bikes into a Walgreens this afternoon and park them just inside the door, just as you imagine, Don, including the kickstand part. This was remarkable so I am remarking upon it. Regarding riding a folder to work, your recommendation may just be the added oomph I need to overcome the activation energy for that with the household finance co-manager who is ever skeptical of yet another bicycle being added to the stable (which is as of yet sadly lacking in those of the folding type). I've started telling recruiters not to contact me if the company doesn't have at least some significant bike-friendly facilities. I would probably work for a tar sands refiner if they had locker rooms, bike lockers, and a bike commute benefit.

  4. Explain to the household finance co-manager that a decent kick scooter (1) isn't really a bicycle and therefore lies outside the annoying "too many bikes" equation they turn upside down, inside out, so lovingly. That work around might work, but we must be careful.

    As for tar sands, one can only hope there ain't none in Arizona 'cause there shure ain't 'nuff water for that and showers when we get to workplace!


    (1) The @NYCeWheels KickPed: Early Impressions

    (it goes on for a month, not unpleasant, actually interesting. And it's not actually a bike)


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