Dirty Thieves

Bad news this week: Tony the Light Rail Blogger had his bike stolen. In his first month of going carfree. Was that really necessary, Phoenix Bike Thief? I think not.

Unfortunately, far too many of us have had this terrible experience. Is it possible to avoid?

Well, unless you have a super crappy bike that no one wants to steal, I would say no.

Exhibit A: Super Crappy Bike
(but lovely photo)
Photo courtesy of thor.der

Bar loading your bike up with seventeen locks and chaining a bear* to it, if someone really wants to steal your bike, they are going to. So in the face of that depressing thought, what can we do? Well, we can make our bikes really annoying to steal.

There are two locks that seemed to rise to the top in my research as the most secure:

1. The Kryptonite New York Fahgettaboudit U-lock:
Photo courtesy of Kryptonite

2. The Kryptonite Evolution Mini U-lock:
Despite the largeness of this picture, it is actually smaller than the Fahgettaboudit
Photo courtesy of Kryptonite

They are both warrantied and when added to a good cable lock or chain, should give the average bicycle thief pause. You can increase the irritation level of your thief even more by putting them on correctly (tips here and here) a
nd parking your bike in visible, lighted, high traffic areas, avoiding those tempting dark alleys.

Photo courtesy of Pete Reed

Photo courtesy of The Doctr

So what else? Does anyone else out there have any great tips?

*I do not in any way advocate chaining up bears, to bicycles or anything else.


*****Laura, a commenter over at the Light Rail Blog, left a link to an AWESOME video that rates different locking techniques. Check it out!! Thanks to Laura for the link!


  1. I read somewhere about using two different types of locks- like a u lock and heavy duty chain. Something about different locks requiring different tools to break them. Therefore assuring that only the most prepared theif is able to take the bike. :-)

  2. I've come to the conclusion that the bike lock(s) cost almost as much as the bike itself! Yikes! I better start saving. Or next time buy a crappy bike. Thanks Ellen for all your help with my blog post!

  3. Virg - that sounds like great advice to me! I'm off to buy a heavy duty chain...

    Tony - glad to help! Yeah, those locks are definitely pricey...