VIEWS: 4 PAGES: 1 POSTED ON: 2/6/2010
Bike locks WNYC radio host Brian Lehrer, who I listen to every morning, recently had his bike stolen. In a way it's not a big deal, since thousands of New Yorkers have their bikes stolen every year, but this one was different - this one was personal. You see, Brian Lehrer is one of the city's treasures. He's without question the finest journalist in New York City. His wisdom, good humor and patience make his show beloved by people of all creeds, colors and political persuasions. It's not just "good listening," it's informative, topical, and always entertaining. So New Yorkers as a whole were offended when Our Brian's bike was stolen. Maybe more than he himself was. True to form, though, he turned lemons into lemonade by doing a show the following week on the best bike locks, calling on experts as well as regular New Yorkers to throw in their two cents about which ones work best, and which do not. It's a sad fact that most bike locks can be cut rather easily and quickly by a skilled thief. All it takes is a bolt cutter and, literally, less than three seconds when nobody's looking. Or sometimes you can do it in front of a crowd, and nobody will be brave or decent enough to step up and say anything. Sad, sad part of the culture. Anyway, as I mentioned most bike locks can be disposed of rather easily by a skilled thief. Even if you string the chain through both the front and rear tires, the frame and then around a secure pole, all it takes is one bolt cut in the correct place and they're off with your bike. That's why it's important to do your due dilligence and do some research on which bike locks work best. Of course the best known name is the Kryptonite, which introduced U-locks thirty-five years ago and still produce some of the best today. The Kryptonite New York Fahgettaboudit U-lock ranks incredibly highly in terms of its durability and difficulty to cut through. It's nearly two centimeters of solid, tempered steel make it the sturdiest of its kind on the market. As far as traditional bike locks go, this one is tough to beat. The one problem with it is that, since it's so small, you can only lock your frame to another object and have no room for locking the tires as well. For this reason, you might want to pair your U-lock with a chain/lock combo as well. Sure, it's a couple of extra pounds to carry, but the redundant security would make almost any thief think twice, then three times, and then finally move on for bike locks that are less secure.
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