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Best Bike Locks for Security in Every Scenario

  • In five minutes' time, you can order a coffee, check your email, politely glance at the other café-goers, receive said coffee, and return to where you left your unlocked bike, which was stolen four minutes ago. Shouldn’t have asked for an extra shot, but hindsight is 20/20 and now your prized bicycle is listed on a neighboring city’s Craigslist for pennies of what you paid. The FBI reported 131,777 bike thefts in 2018, although the real number is likely higher because many property crimes go unreported. An Oregonian analysis of 13,000 Portland bicycle thefts found that only 2 percent of reports ended in arrests, which means your bike is probably gone for good.To get more news about ebike lock, you can visit official website.

    A thief with the right tools can defeat any bike lock in five minutes, but that doesn’t mean all locks are created equal: The crook will raise hell cutting through a hardened-steel U-lock or chain with an angle grinder, so he or she is more likely to go after a cheaper, lightweight cable lock with a set of bolt cutters. To decide how much security you need, consider your location and duration of lockup.

    All-day lockups on college campuses and in major metro areas where thefts are common require more security, says Kryptonite brand manager Daryl Slater, and anything left out overnight necessitates paranoia-level countermeasures (using multiple locks that can’t be defeated by the same bolt cutters is a good start). Here’s how the basic lock types differ, in order of most to least secure.

    Just like all bike locks are eventually susceptible to cutting attacks, all bike locks can also be picked. But most modern locks can’t be defeated by amateurs, says competitive lock picker Schuyler Towne. Disc detainer locks, which use a series of rotating discs, are considered the most difficult to pick. Slider locks, like those from OnGuard, have keys with laser-cut slots and flat sides and can provide high security. “The more cuts on the key, the more secure it is,” Towne says of slider locks.

    Pin-tumbler locks are a classic design that can sometimes be foiled by brute force attacks, although others require more skill. And wafer locks are considered the least secure—more vulnerable to entry-level picking—but individual wafer locks may prove more secure than others. Find a detailed description of each type of locking mechanism at the bottom of this guide.

    Once you’ve bought a lock, you have to put it to work. “Make sure you lock according to value,” Slater says. “The frame (being most expensive), the rear wheel, then the front wheel.” Unlocked frames and wheels will likely be stolen eventually, so your best bet is locking both wheels to the frame with a chain or cable lock (or another U-lock, in high-risk areas). Aim for well-lit places and never leave a lock against the ground, as thieves might get the necessary leverage to pry it open. Make sure your bike can’t be lifted up and over a poll or tree. Slater says he’s encountered victims whose bikes were locked to street signs, over which a bike can easily be hoisted, or small trees, which were promptly cut down. As a general rule, the thing you’re locking to should be stronger than your lock. Lastly, take down your bike’s serial number (under the bottom bracket) and register it with your local police department in case the worst happens.

    Having a bike stolen is absolutely the worst and unfortunately too often there isn't much help available to victims of bike theft. If you're tapped into your local cycling community then putting the word out on social media can often be your best bet of recovering your stolen bike. At least it was until portable trackers like Apple's AirTag have been introduced. They're far from perfect because they need to be near someone with an updated iPhone to give you a location so they likely won't work for riders in rural places. If you live in a denser place with lots of iPhone users an AirTag and a compatible bike mount could greatly increase your chances of recovering a stolen bike.

    Every lock here has been thoroughly evaluated and vetted by our team of test editors. We research the market, survey user reviews, speak with product managers and engineers, and use our own experience with these locks to determine the best options. We’ve used these locks, weighed them, and evaluated their mechanisms. We’ve cut a few in individual tests, and we’ll update this guide with full destructive testing as soon as we can return to our office. For now, we’ve researched testing and picking conducted by outlets like Wirecutter and Bike Radar and experts like LockPickingLawyer to identify the best locks in each category.
      November 20, 2022 6:36 PM MST