Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

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spinningmagnets   100 GW

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Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by spinningmagnets » Jul 26 2019 6:00am

There are some well-regarded systems on new motorcycles, but they are expensive and sometimes bulkier than would be useful for us. Rather than buy one single comprehensive system (even though there's nothing wrong with that), I have separated my needs into two devices, and I am looking for suggestions about available products.

I just ordered a DogTaggs GPS tracker for evaluation, I'll post the results in a couple weeks, Our phones have GPS inside them, even with all the other crap that is required inside, so the "device" is very small. This means I knew what was possible, and it looks like this is what I have been waiting for. It's the size of a cars key fob. It looks like it takes a button-battery. The ad didn't mention any monthly tracking fee. The device lays dormant until activated by logging on to the smart-phone app. I will soon see if there is a catch ($2 per tracking event, being forced to see ads, etc).

https://dogtaggsco.com/products/pets-sm ... -equipment

Image

edit: I just googled top ten pet trackers, and I also bought two other similar brands.

When activated, the ad claims it will show where the fob is on a map (using GPS), and when you get close, it uses bluetooth. As the name suggests, the device is designed for attaching to a dog. Listed price is $25.

I am also looking for a motion alarm, and as with the GPS, having a small form factor is highly desirable. Bike locks are separate thread, but if someone is trying to cut a bike lock, I want an alarm to sound-off from motion. If they manage to succeed, I will have the motor system disabled, so they will be trying to ride off on a heavy ebike with me jogging close behind them (at least, that's the theory).

What similar products are you using? or do you know of a promising candidate that you'd like me to test?

markz   100 GW

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by markz » Jul 26 2019 12:36pm

I could have used one of those DogTaggs GPS trackers last week when some crackhead thief stole my battery.
That or a very loud motion alarm.

Looking forward to your results on the DogTaggs GPS tracker SpinningMagnets.

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by Tommm » Jul 26 2019 1:35pm

Tile pro!!! Even in a poor London suburb, where a thief could possibly take your bike, I saw 3 tile devices! It can be hidden under the seat, or anywhere you can imagine. One year standby. As big as a keyfob.

I see you found one similar tracker, but these trackers are only as good as the install base. And Tile is WAY ahead of anyone else.
About their GPS claim, if it does have GPS it will need a GSM network to send the location data, so it must have a SIM card... I don't see any mention of a SIM, so the GPS will not give you anything outside the bluetooth range. In plain english it is hogwash and won't let you find anything if you are out of bluetooth range.

If you are going for something heftier, take a look at the GPS and motion sensor enabled tracker. If your bike is moved, it will call you! This is called a silent alarm. It can also send you google maps position link in an SMS. Only need to charge it every 3-4 weeks.
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32239980475.html

For something also with a motion sensor, that will make you deaf, you can get this horn/alarm combo. It is about as loud as a moper horn once your configured it.
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32836499905.html

Of course, you need physical security that is impossible to remove without setting off at least one of the alarms, so you can arrive at the scene before they make off. But that isn't a very tall order, since the motion sensors are extremely sensitive. A good idea is to include a brake disk lock, hard to notice, so a big change of setting the alarm off without removing it first.

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RLutz   1 mW

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by RLutz » Jul 26 2019 4:10pm

I am considering adding "Spark Nano 7, 4G Micro GPS Tracker" to my e-bike. There will be a recurring cost for the SIM card. Cheapest I found works out to $4.00 a month for text and data on 4G network.

I considered Tile, and other Blue-tooth only options and cheaper GPS units. The one above seems like it is well made and will still be in business in a few years. I also like the GPS units that are hidden in bike tail lights, but they seem poorly made and get terrible reviews.

I'm not sure how effective an audible alarm is. people ignore car alarms and I would be worried about someone accidentally triggering it while they are legitimately locking up their bike next to mine.

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by Tommm » Jul 26 2019 5:18pm

RLutz wrote:
Jul 26 2019 4:10pm
I am considering adding "Spark Nano 7, 4G Micro GPS Tracker" to my e-bike. There will be a recurring cost for the SIM card. Cheapest I found works out to $4.00 a month for text and data on 4G network.
It is small, but what is the battery life? It is strange it is not there in the listing. If it is well hidden, it is a PITA to charge it often.
RLutz wrote:
Jul 26 2019 4:10pm
I considered Tile, and other Blue-tooth only options and cheaper GPS units. The one above seems like it is well made and will still be in business in a few years. I also like the GPS units that are hidden in bike tail lights, but they seem poorly made and get terrible reviews.
The community driven bluetooth modules are only as good as their community... I wouldn't get an obscure brand for that reason.
RLutz wrote:
Jul 26 2019 4:10pm
I'm not sure how effective an audible alarm is. people ignore car alarms
There is no single bit of kit that will save your bacon 100% of the time. How effective is it? If you store your bike in your garage, you will hear it go off. If you go inside a shop/post office, you will hear it. If you park it in your companies guarded garage, they will hear it. So in those cases the effectivity is 80%+. It is sensitive enough to wake up to someone lockpicking. No padlock will save you from that, and this horn will. So they would have to lockpick through the alarm going off, for 1 minute+. If they physically manipulate to shut it up, they certainly would move the bike well enough for the silent alarm GPS module I linked to go off too.

You want to build a system of layers, instead of getting stuck before you start because one individual part won't save you every time.
RLutz wrote:
Jul 26 2019 4:10pm
I would be worried about someone accidentally triggering it while they are legitimately locking up their bike next to mine.
Well, where do you lock up? It only goes off for about 10-15 seconds at a time. You should lock your bike on the other side of the bike rack or a different one, away from anyone else, and it shouldn't be a problem. If they bump your bike, they will learn their lesson. You don't know if the guy who accidentally bumps it would of been a thief.

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by markz » Jul 27 2019 3:52am

For people that keep a close eye on their bicycles, like me, and audible alarm would have helped me.
https://www.fasttech.com/products/0/100 ... t-security

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RLutz   1 mW

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by RLutz » Jul 27 2019 11:21am

Tommm, I agree with all of your points.
The battery life on the GPS I am considering varies depending on settings, such as frequency of location updates, how often it is moved and if geo-fencing is used. I don't own one yet so I can only go by the reviews I have looked at but, my understanding is that if left in standby mode the battery will discharge to 50% in 8-9 days.

One of the simplest and often overlooked things that can be done to help recover a stolen bike is to record the serial number. It is located on the bottom of the frame stamped into the bottom bracket. Pawn shops, second hand stores and even online auction sites are being required to send lists of serial numbers to the police. Also more and more police departments are using share databases to record stolen goods, such as Leads-On-Line and Business Watch International. These shared databases mean if a bike is stolen in city A and sold in city B, the police in city A will know where it is because both cities share the same database.

MarkZ, I like the price, size and convenience of the alarm you linked to. That is something I would use. Thanks, I didn't know they had gotten so compact,

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by niwrad » Aug 03 2019 4:15pm

currently waiting on the indiegogo campaign for the Boomerang cyclotrac V2. I like the idea of something that deters theft in addition to tracking. The downside with V1 is the slightly larger size and the slower network capability, but apparently they'll mail you a free one if you buy the V2 as the V2 is still in prototyping stages. I haven't received one, but reviews indicate that some of the adopters have received theirs
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SamRich   100 W

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by SamRich » Sep 05 2019 3:46pm

Most US cell providers no longer support 2G so most "no contract" GPS trackers won't work. I found this DIY solution using arduino, but requires pricey sheild:
https://create.arduino.cc/projecthub/bo ... ard-01d471

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spinningmagnets   100 GW

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by spinningmagnets » Sep 05 2019 4:56pm

Thanks for posting this...

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by BlueSeas » Sep 05 2019 5:03pm

spinningmagnets wrote:
Jul 26 2019 6:00am
What similar products are you using? or do you know of a promising candidate that you'd like me to test?
Did you test the dog tracker?

Tmobile just turned on their IOT network this summer and has partnered with Roambee to operate an asset tracking service with a flat rate of $10 per month, no contract. It's difficult to find out details via an internet search. Might be worthy of a test. I might try it, but still a 6-8 weeks from finishing my first build.

Security is a concern. If I can't go meet folks for lunch or pop in a store for an hour out of sight, the Ebike isn't going to be very useful!

See:

https://www.t-mobile.com/business/solut ... management

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by MadRhino » Sep 05 2019 6:32pm

My experience is that you don’t need an alarm, as long as thieves believe you got one. Just a blinking blue led on the bike and a small disc lock are enough to discourage most of them. And, those who are not discouraged would have stolen it anyway, despite any protections.

Most of the time I don’t even lock the bike, leaving my helmet hanging on the grip and jacket on the handlebar. The bike is too big and powerful, scares them. Kids gather around it to watch every detail, never tried to rob it.
Make it fool-proof, and I will make a better fool.
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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by SamRich » Sep 05 2019 6:41pm

MadRhino wrote:
Sep 05 2019 6:32pm
My experience is that you don’t need an alarm, as long as thieves believe you got one. Just a blinking blue led on the bike and a small disc lock are enough to discourage most of them. And, those who are not discouraged would have stolen it anyway, despite any protections.

Most of the time I don’t even lock the bike, leaving my helmet hanging on the grip and jacket on the handlebar. The bike is too big and powerful, scares them. Kids gather around it to watch every detail, never tried to rob it.
Yeah I thought of just putting a "This bike is equipped with a GPS tracking device" sticker on it...kinda like my fake ADT sign on my front lawn :P

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by AZeBikeGuy » Sep 05 2019 7:53pm

There are too many opportunists out here to leave mine just sitting for sure - some of the places I've locked up have had the cable locks cut (owner was going with a u-lock and cable) and the wheels stolen

We all know determined thieves are going to get them so different animal but I'd like to discourage the opportunists and a tracker for the determine folks has my attention

It's very unusual for me to remove the batteries when it's locked - around here at least I don't think the low-life opportunists have an eye for them... yet... and the folks in the know understand that a used battery isn't likely worth all that much since the history is hugely important and entirely unknown... if I start to hear about batteries getting stolen, which is likely just a matter of time, the I'll likely grab them from the bike just like the GPS, GoPro, audio speaker, etc...

I'm interested in updates here for the trackers but frankly not that optimistic - they're hard to hide and it's difficult to see them not having a monthly charge for anything that will go cellular - everything else is too short range

A motion sensor sounds interesting and may be more appealing to prevent the opportunists (tweakers or whatever) looking for parts

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by lupe » Jan 26 2020 2:42pm

Hello again. I am looking for a gos tracker for my bike. In case it is stolen. I have found one on aliexpress with a USB chargeable battery. I think it is designed to charge off a car so you can by it with a 12v converter to charge the device. I was wondering if it would be possible to charge it from the 6v light connection the bbshd has? The wall charger does 5v 1a which I think is a pretty standard micro USB charger. Here is a link to the product -

#Aliexpress NZ$ 83.21 31%OFF | TK Star 3G 4G GPS Car Tracker TKSTAR TK905 5000mAh Long Battery Life Waterproof Magnet GSM GPS LBS Tracking Software APP
https://a.aliexpress.com/_s3PavA

Is there a converter I could buy from the 6v bbshd to charge the 5v 1a gps?

Thanks

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by lupe » Jan 26 2020 2:43pm

could I use this -

#Aliexpress NZ$ 0.97 17%OFF | DC-DC Step Down Module 6-24V 12V/24V to 5V 3A USB Charger Module Fr Arduino
https://a.aliexpress.com/_s1kJYe

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by markz » Jan 26 2020 3:54pm

^ U could

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by lupe » Jan 27 2020 12:37pm

markz wrote:
Jan 26 2020 3:54pm
^ U could
Thanks - will give it a try.

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by Dung » Jan 27 2020 3:01pm

I bought this one: https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000148 ... 4c4duaFemB but not install it yet. This gps tracker have a working voltage between 8 and 95 volt, it's mean you dont need any dc convert just plug it into the main battery.

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by ZeroEm » Jan 27 2020 4:27pm

On my trike would prefer to have it under it's own power and hidden. bet they would pull my 72v 25ah battery first.
The worst thing about my trike is my fear to leave it alone and I want to start using it for store runs more often but my fear stops me.
I will follow this thread and see what everyone likes, need to really equip my trike, alarm and GPS already have a cable lock but don't trust it to keep safe.
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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by miro13car » Jan 27 2020 5:42pm

what most of you dont think about or do not realize:
what you do once you know where your stolen ebike is ?????
as it was discussed here before police needs search warrant to search the place
I am sure police cannot just walk in because your GPS shows ...
what ?
do you want to use violence to recover your bike?
Eplus, Bionx

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by miro13car » Jan 27 2020 5:44pm

excellent and cheap- blinking LED light.
thief would hesitate not knowing what it is.
Eplus, Bionx

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Re: Ebike anti-theft, GPS and motion alarms, suggestions?

Post by markz » Jan 28 2020 12:02am

Oh we realize alright, its just we dont want evidence posted online.

miro13car wrote:
Jan 27 2020 5:42pm
what most of you dont think about or do not realize:
what you do once you know where your stolen ebike is ?????
as it was discussed here before police needs search warrant to search the place
I am sure police cannot just walk in because your GPS shows ...
what ?
do you want to use violence to recover your bike?

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