Friday, January 20, 2012

Locking strategy

We have just received the first proper splash of snow last night and this morning I could finally tell that winter has arrived (Even though a quick look at the calendar tells me that we are half way through it already). Last night's snowfall was pretty lousy - just about 3cm, which will likely not survive till the evening as guaranteed by today's sunny weather. We are supposed to get more snow tomorrow. We will see.

In unrelated topic, I realized how lucky I am that I don't have to carry bike locks with me on my way to work. Usually, to park a bicycle in places, which are considered insecure (i.e. most public places), it is absolutely necessary to use some sort of a "thief-repelling" device. The common practice is to use at least 2 good locks (Those rated either Silver or Gold) to secure the bike to something solid and non-removable, like a sturdy steel fence, railing, etc. Well, obviously it would be best to use a designated bike rack, but since we are not in Copenhagen or Amsterdam, finding one in the place of our interest may be as difficult as searching for Yeti.

My locking strategy is pretty straightforward:
1. I don't lock my bike at all when I get to work. I can keep it in my office (Which is on the street level). And I don't have to carry locks on bike.
2. If I can, I don't leave my bike unattendend. This way I don't have to lock it. I take my bike with me everywhere I can.
3. For all other situations, I use two Kryptonite locks: an u-lock for securing the front wheel and a chain to secure the frame and the rear wheel to the bike rack. I remove all removable accessories (lights, etc.).

Two different locks work usually best. The only problem is their significant weight. The u-lock can be mounted on the bike frame in a special bracket. Transporting the chain is a bit more of a PITA but I found out that the ~1m long chain can be easily wrapped around my waist and it doesn't interfere with pedaling.

There are other ways of securing a bike in public places. Below is an example of a novel, lightweight "thief-repellant" installed on this nice Specialized. Very innovative.


  1. One question: if you live in Boston, immigrated from Poland, why are you still citing temperature in C and snowfall in cm? The news didn't give it that way, so you're apparently translating it for your own benefit. It's kind of sad to me when people come here from other countries for the benefits of living in the US, but then refuse to integrate. (yes, I know the metric system is superior. Yes, I think we should switch. But you're not going to accomplish it here.)

  2. The thing is that I don't take these numbers from the TV but from an app on internet, which I have configured in deg C and cm. So I don't have to convert back.

    But I realize that for the benefit of most reader I should keep these units "standard" so I started using double units in more recent posts.

    It's really not about being unwilling to integrate. It's the whole thinking pattern that I learned over years. Inches and miles are easier to understand, but degrees in Fahrenheit are still very difficult.