Risk of getting your bike stolen in London?

nabs

Pedelecer
May 27, 2019
42
3
I still have a few months before I'll have saved all the money I need to get an e-bike finally.

Being the indecisive person I am, I am still going back and forth between a regular bike and a foldable.

At my new job, I don't have a place to lock up the bike that is enclosed or secured. It would just be locked up like any other bike is. There are bicycle bays. What I am wondering is how bad is it for getting stolen in London? This is my main reason for looking at the GoCycle. I can fold it up and take it into work.

Or I am looking at a Haibike MTB Yamaha, with a dongle. But those looks pretty nice and fancy.
 

Wicky

Esteemed Pedelecer
Feb 12, 2014
2,823
4,008
Colchester, Essex
www.jhepburn.co.uk
Big risk >


 

RobF

Esteemed Pedelecer
Sep 22, 2012
4,732
2,310
I reckon parking your bike in the same bay at the same time day after day almost guarantees it will get stolen.

Get the GoCycle and take it into work.

They ride nicely, so you won't be missing out.
 
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Nealh

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 7, 2014
15,089
5,859
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West Sx RH
The Gocycle will be a magnet for the lowlife scum, 100% keep it indoors and still keep it locked. It is a lovely designer bike.
Cwah had his locked bespoke diy bike stolen from outside a tube station, he posted a vid on here. Gone in matter of seconds in broad day light.
 

nabs

Pedelecer
May 27, 2019
42
3
Wow, so essentially anything that looks nice will get stolen?

I guess I can only use the GoCycle for the commute as I can take it in with me. Anywhere else, I'd have to park it, as I couldn't very well take it with me into say a cinema. That sucks.
 

Nealh

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 7, 2014
15,089
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There will always be some low life wanting to steal a good looking bike or even one unusual no matter where you live. For a major city or very large town you need a bike that doesn't stand out too much amongst the others though an electric one will always be a tempting magnet.
The answer is to a have a nice bike for the enjoyment of the ride and for where you can keep it safe when not in use and a crappy looking unclean bike for leaving locked up when out and about, think about security two good locks are better then one but no good when determined or professional scum are about.

Cwah's bike was personal self build which suited his needs and requirements and not one many on here would have opted for but it was taken with ease in daylight in public place.
This is Cwah's bike being stolen in #1 of the thread he started.
 
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Woosh

Trade Member
May 19, 2012
16,579
14,342
Southend on Sea
wooshbikes.co.uk
I carried a non-electric brompton around London last few days to get the feel for someone who would use an electric one which weighs 6kgs more than the 12kgs brompton. I can't do more than 200m before getting knackered carrying 12kgs leave alone 18kgs. If I had a laptop or some books to carry on top, I wouldn't even think of doing this. Pushing a Brompton on the original wheels on uneven pavement is also a no no after about 100m.
I think the idea of using an expensive folding bike for commuting is a non-starter.
A commuting bike needs to be adequate so that it can be left locked in a public place.
 

Sanjuro

Pedelecer
Sep 24, 2018
28
3
Wow, so essentially anything that looks nice will get stolen?

I guess I can only use the GoCycle for the commute as I can take it in with me. Anywhere else, I'd have to park it, as I couldn't very well take it with me into say a cinema. That sucks.
Worse than that, even if it doesn't look nice it can still get stolen. I locked up a old trek bike outside my house, it had a ruined cassette, no chain, torn up seat and I already removed the break blocks that day. I locked the wheels but forgot to lock the frame. Next morning frame was gone. Bike thieves are utter scum.
 

Sanjuro

Pedelecer
Sep 24, 2018
28
3
There will always be some low life wanting to steal a good looking bike or even one unusual no matter where you live. For a major city or very large town you need a bike that doesn't stand out too much amongst the others though an electric one will always be a tempting magnet.
The answer is to a have a nice bike for the enjoyment of the ride and for where you can keep it safe when not in use and a crappy looking unclean bike for leaving locked up when out and about, think about security two good locks are better then one but no good when determined or professional scum are about.

Cwah's bike was personal self build which suited his needs and requirements and not one many on here would have opted for but it was taken with ease in daylight in public place.
This is Cwah's bike being stolen in #1 of the thread he started.
He just used a old chain lock though, use two quality dlocks then it becomes a lot harder to steal.
 

DBrown67

Pedelecer
Feb 26, 2017
60
23
54
Leeds
I've been locking my eBike up outside Leeds university for over two years with no issues. There's always people around throughout the day where I lock it. I use a quality Kryptonite D-lock through the frame and rear wheel and a smaller green ABUS D-lock through the front wheel (as it's quick release). I always remove the battery and use a locker for the day so I'm not carrying stuff about. Bike cost me about £1100 overall after I fitted the kit to it.
There's also a Brompton I see regularly locked up in the same spot each day (not near mine though).

However, I would never leave it overnight as the campus is practically in Leeds centre. Angle grinder would still take a short while, but ultimately it would be gone I reckon. London must be really scummy.
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
49,657
27,427
London must be really scummy.
That's unfair. The reason London has so much bike theft by volume is because it has four times the population of the next largest city and is also by far the one where cycling is most popular due to the congestion charge.

There are more bikes used in commuting alone here than there are people in most British cities.

At the root of high volume bike theft everywhere is not bike thieves, it's the cyclists who are willing to buy the stolen bikes cheaply. If there was no market for them, they wouldn't get stolen.
.
 

Sanjuro

Pedelecer
Sep 24, 2018
28
3
I've been locking my eBike up outside Leeds university for over two years with no issues. There's always people around throughout the day where I lock it. I use a quality Kryptonite D-lock through the frame and rear wheel and a smaller green ABUS D-lock through the front wheel (as it's quick release). I always remove the battery and use a locker for the day so I'm not carrying stuff about. Bike cost me about £1100 overall after I fitted the kit to it.
There's also a Brompton I see regularly locked up in the same spot each day (not near mine though).

However, I would never leave it overnight as the campus is practically in Leeds centre. Angle grinder would still take a short while, but ultimately it would be gone I reckon. London must be really scummy.
During the day London is fine, it's the night time is when they come out.
 
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BazP

Esteemed Pedelecer
Oct 8, 2017
350
171
72
Sheffield
That's unfair. The reason London has so much bike theft by volume is because it has four times the population of the next largest city and is also by far the one where cycling is most popular due to the congestion charge.

There are more bikes used in commuting alone here than there are people in most British cities.

At the root of high volume bike theft everywhere is not bike thieves, it's the cyclists who are willing to buy the stolen bikes cheaply. If there was no market for them, they wouldn't get stolen.
.
By definition then London must be at least four times as ”scummy” as anywhere else.
 
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flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
49,657
27,427
By definition then London must be at least four times as ”scummy” as anywhere else.
I didn't say it was London cyclists who were buying the stolen bikes. Maybe more likely those in the poorer regions are buying them. ;)
.
 

Nealh

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 7, 2014
15,089
5,859
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West Sx RH
During the day London is fine, it's the night time is when they come out.
Tell that to Cwah who had his nicked in broad daylight.
 

Sanjuro

Pedelecer
Sep 24, 2018
28
3
Tell that to Cwah who had his nicked in broad daylight.
But like I said he used an old chain lock, there will always be opportunists around no matter where you go. To good locks would have made it a lot harder to steal.
 

BazP

Esteemed Pedelecer
Oct 8, 2017
350
171
72
Sheffield
I didn't say it was London cyclists who were buying the stolen bikes. Maybe more likely those in the poorer regions are buying them. ;)
.
Well us poor sods north of Watford Gap can't afford to buy flat caps and mufflers let alone proper bikes. I'd have to sell 10 ferrets to get a cheap bike.
Seriously though, the risk of theft stops me using my bike for lots of local trips to the supermarket etc. Cycling organisations advocate using the bike for such trips , which I would love to do, but as I have found to my cost most bike locks are no deterrent to a determined thief and leaving a £3000+ electric bike is like waving a red rag to a bull.
My commiserations for having to live south of the border.
:)
 
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flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
49,657
27,427
My commiserations for having to live south of the border.
:)
Thank you, but no need. When I retired 29 years ago I turned to using my bike for all my shopping from shops and supermarkets. For years that was a continuation of my unpowered cycling, but later due in part to age I turned to using pedelecs for the assistance and trailer towing and have owned three good quality e-bikes.

I've only ever owned one cheap thin cable lock, never had a D lock of any kind. On one occasion ariving at one supermarket I realised I'd left the cable lock off the bike so had nothing. My solution was to take a bungee cord from the carrier and use that to tie the e-bike to the bike stand!!

In some 70 years of cycling I've have never lost a bike or any part of a bike to theft.

Now the shock for you. I live in a London Borough and have lived and cycled in Inner and Outer London boroughs since spring 1963.

So it can't be all that bad here, can it?

Indeed I was born in Soho in the middle of London in 1936 and have never suffered any personal harm in London by another's hand.
.
 
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