Archive for the ‘Security’ Category

Product Placement: Das Pitlock for Wheel Protection

February 14, 2012

This is a response to all the problems with bicycle theft.

One of the most confounding things about bicycle theft is that while we can easily lock up our frames using a U-lock, but we can still get many of our components stolen.

One of the most common things to lose is a wheel.

When I lived in Philly, I actually carried around two U-locks so that I could lock the frame and front wheel to a post and the backwheel to the bicycle.

One of the best things about this is the peace of mind that such a simple practice gave me.

Still, however, I had trouble when my princess would ride with me. We’d try to figure out all sorts of ways to make three U-locks work. This was a huge hassle. Plus carrying two U-locks is even more of a pain in the ass than carrying one.

One easy hack to make the problem less likely is to get rid of the crazy quick release levers. I rarely failed to have the tool to take my wheel off anyway so I never saw any convenience from this. Also, this was pretty stressful as I feared getting my wheels stolen. Thus, a normal bolt is a bit better, but not great. A non-standard bolt such as a hex or even more exotic is probably all you need except for the most effective thieves.

However, finding such bolts and tools was more trouble than I expected.

Enter PitlockTM.

They make bolts and skewers especially for different makes of wheels. Thus, you can be sure that you get the proper size for your bicycle rather than having a nasty hack on your hands.

The way that it works is that there are over 200 machine made nuts which are then matched with a custom nut. You get two nuts per pack. Even better, you can order the same nuts for yourself and loved ones so that you don’t need to keep duplicate tools all over the place.

The custom nut is protected by a stainless steel sheath. This has to be seen to be believed.

I have had many people tell me that this is not as effective as I thought, but I don’t buy it.

One guy told me that a pipe wrench would get the nut off. False because the outer sheath does not turn at all.

Another advantage is that I can just lock up my wheel to a post if I have to.

Pitlock costs over a hundred dollars, but I think that it’s worth it. The high price discourages thieves from buying all the nuts and using them.

I am not even afraid of Pitlock becoming popular. I think that if it does, bicycle thieves would move on to something easier to steal–and more lucrative.

I am not on Pitlock’s payroll, but I wish I were because I love their product so much.

I can picture the commercial now. A thief tries all kinds of tools to take off a wheel and fails each time. In the end, he takes off his black, mugger’s cap and stomps on it. A German voice over says “Das Pitlock” really fast while the logo splashes on the bottom of the screen.

Oh, Pitlock, I love thee! 🙂