Security

General Discussion about electric bicycles.
BigBZ   1 µW

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Security

Post by BigBZ » May 19 2014 7:04pm

I am really enjoying building my first e-bike and can't wait to get it on the road. My one fear is leaving it parked up in town.

Obviously I will have it well chained up but it even looks expensive (and was, when you think about it its crazy leaving £1500 of gear lying in the street) so it is bound to attract mindless vandals and opportunists making off with any bits they can prise off.

I was wondering what every bodies methods of securing their pride and joy is, as well as has anybody ever had their bike stolen/vandalised/come back to bits missing? I especially want to know if anybody has had any problems leaving Cycle Analysts. I naturally expected this would be removable but now its arrived I'm nervous. It looks so big expensive and vulnerable there all alone on the handlebars.

I personally am going to have:
- chain through the spokes of both wheels, frame and seat (yes believe me people from where I live will steal your seat if it isn't tied down)
- Alarmed U clamp
- Key switch ignition
- A cover like the ones you get for motor bikes. Hopefully if people can't see it they're going to go for something else. I might even see if there's a way of padlocking this tight at the bottom so people can't even lift it up.

Call me paranoid but, well, yes I'm paranoid.

Avitt   100 W

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Re: Security

Post by Avitt » May 19 2014 7:41pm

I haven't locked mine in public yet, bit I'm really concerned about the battery...It's the single most expensive item on the bike, and sitting in an EM3EV triangle bag, cannot be well secured...

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Ykick   100 GW

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Re: Security

Post by Ykick » May 19 2014 7:45pm

If some low-life wants it, they're gonna get it. As noted, battery is usually the most expensive single component so when locking it up on street for more than a quick errand, the battery comes with me.
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xenodius   1 kW

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Re: Security

Post by xenodius » May 19 2014 8:40pm

On my recumbent trike, I don't worry about people stealing my wheels or anything because most parts are unique. But I use a hefty U-lock on the frame and a Xena disc alarm lock so it wails at 130db if touched. Also have a Geogram One with telna mobile SIM card for backup. The usb output on my controller charges it up and it wakes for an hour whenever it experiences motion, as well as every hourto check for messages.

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mateusleo   1 kW

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Re: Security

Post by mateusleo » May 19 2014 8:58pm

Well, i have a pre built ebike and the baterry stays in a good plastic box, with a hole that I pass the chain through to lock, also on the frame and around something in the street, like a pole or so. This way it gets hard to steal it. Also, I have this keyed switch ( http://m.ebay.com/itm?itemId=321363781052) to prevent from someone to turn it on even though it's locked and do electric damage. The thing about this keyed switch is that each side stands only 10 amps, so you have to use both, also, the sides have reversed position (one is open while other is closed), so you have to ask the seller to send you the contacts with same color or you can buy two and match the ones with same position, so you can use them in parallel for 20a. Also, you can add more contacts together for more amps
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Re: Security

Post by 23skidoo » May 19 2014 10:12pm

Having rebounded from a theft, I decided to protect myself as follows:
1. Battery in a backpack so it always comes with me.
2. 2 robust locks.
3. Cheap folding frame puts the controller mounted on the inside of the fold when locked up, and one big u lock goes through both wheels, the frame, and a post.
4. No instruments (I keep track of power at home by charging and judge speed by pedal cadence).
5. The folder lets me keep the frame in my office when commuting.

I do take my chances with the rear view mirror and a rear avid BB7 brake.
26" folder full suspension with crystalyte 3525 and rc lipo in a Kevlar box in a backpack. Wife bike bmc lyen. Honda elite scooter conversion with Crystalyte 5404

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footloose   10 kW

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Re: Security

Post by footloose » May 19 2014 10:32pm

BigBZ wrote: Call me paranoid but, well, yes I'm paranoid.
Yes, and unfortunately… you should be.
A nice bike is likely to get nicked if left alone consistently for longer than say 30 seconds.

Best advice I've heard here is "make the basic construction look butt ugly, then take the battery with you, and thieves can't be bothered."

That troubles me a bit because I like a clean, elegant build a lot… it is a source of pride and pleasure … but I'll swallow my pride based on experience.

Years ago I had a non-electric bike. It was basically a gorgeous Raleigh 3-speed, that I bought new, then spray painted to make it look old.
Left it locked in a dark alley one night when I went to work.
Came back, and it was GONE!!! Broke my heart.
Then I walked out onto the main street, and there it was, leaning against a street lamp!
The thief broke the chain, stole it, then got it out into the light and said I suppose "what the hell is this thing, it won't fetch me the price of a hit, screw it, I'm going to find something valuable!"

So… get a good chain and lock… take the valuable bits with you… hide the quality of the rest of the build. (Think Q-ship, there is an old and honorable tradition.)

With the above approach, I've had good luck with couple e-bikes last 2 years. Nothing stolen, nothing vandalized. But I accept… it is a matter of time.

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Re: Security

Post by efergy kb » May 20 2014 8:14am

i am the same re: the concerns.

i spray painted any decals and left it all black. If anyone has ideas how to make it look even older. i am down to listen.
- some people i've talked to actual duct tape their bike. ;) or make a real messy job of the spray paint.

lights/ hornit/ CA devices - i had to zip tie a few times so that if they do decide to take it; they'll need to cut through several zip ties to take it. Some people said put a plastic bag over the CA... ;)
battery - i got a mounting bolt (generally used for screwing down to a desk) and duct taped this to the battery. Then wired a cable through the mounting bolt, through the bag and around the bike frame.
Battery bag - got another lock to secure the zippers.
Front wheel/ headset - got pitlock to make them non removable.
Seat post - also got pitlock to lock this down...
Seat - haven't been able to find a lock for that... so maybe one day i'll be missing a seat.

i guess... if they are going to take stuff... then i may as well make it that much more difficult.

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MadRhino   100 GW

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Re: Security

Post by MadRhino » May 20 2014 9:05am

This issue is posted twice a year. The answer is always the same:
Treat your bike as a motorcycle, use an alarm disc lock and a GPS tracking device.
Make it fool-proof, and I will make a better fool.
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Re: Security

Post by cwah » May 20 2014 9:46am

get a removable battery rack
Help me find my stolen electric brompton: http://bit.ly/1a0vbBC and Bosch Sinus B3 http://bit.ly/1eV0WQz

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ambroseliao   100 kW

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Re: Security

Post by ambroseliao » May 20 2014 10:18am

BigBZ wrote:I especially want to know if anybody has had any problems leaving Cycle Analysts. I naturally expected this would be removable but now its arrived I'm nervous. It looks so big expensive and vulnerable there all alone on the handlebars.
To better secure your CA, you can swap out the hand turn knob with an M5 screw of appropriate length as shown in the ebikes.ca security kit. That would at least eliminate the quick passer who sees the knob and loosens it a couple of turns and pops the CA off...

http://www.ebikes.ca/shop/ebike-parts/c ... urity.html
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mateusleo   1 kW

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Re: Security

Post by mateusleo » May 20 2014 7:04pm

I find disc locks useless, since an ebike weights about 30kg and can be easily carried in a hand car, so I ALWAYS lock it with a chain to something that can't be moved, like poles, trees, handrails, grids.
1000w - 48v Ebike with 48v 20ah LiFePO4 pack from sun-thing28

heavymetalthunder   100 W

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Re: Security

Post by heavymetalthunder » May 20 2014 7:13pm

One thing I do is use an old bed sheet to cover my bike. It helps keep out prying eyes and the sun off of it.

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alsmith   100 kW

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Re: Security

Post by alsmith » May 21 2014 12:48pm

Drape & tie a couple of supermarket carrier bags or bin liners over some bits- like the controller, it makes it look very basic diy (but will keep rain off it).

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cal3thousand   1.21 GW

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Re: Security

Post by cal3thousand » May 22 2014 10:15am

I have a combination of security devices that I use based on my surroundings, but the general idea is the same. It needs to look so beefy and time consuming to mess with that they will try another bike. And if they do lack the sense to stay away, I have a GPS motion alarm that sends me an SMS when moved or with GeoFences Set.

My lock is a Grade 120 3/8" thick transport chain covered in an old bike tube and locked with a shrouded MasterLock 6327. You will need some HUGE croppers or angle grinder to cut into it. I use it when I'm not sure of the area that I will be going. Most of the time, my MasterLock Street Cuffs are good enough.

On bikes normally equipped with QR skewers, I replace them with locking skewers that require a security allen key, so I don't have to carry a cable for the wheels. I'm never going to be gone long enough for someone to get the motor off.

For my wife's bike, we use 2 locks at the same time. I will most likely be doing that with my cargo bike as well. 2 locks makes the thief thing twice and the extra weight is nothing on an ebike with the cargo capacity. Minor inconvenience, but not getting another bike stolen is huge on my list of things that makes me happy.

And at home, since I park the bikes outside, they are under camera / motion alarm and under tight fitting dust covers. The covers deter anyone from even looking and the time it takes to remove it is the amount of time it takes me to grab my angle iron and get out there.
Get a Cycle Analyst and a Multimeter, you're still a noob if you don't have at least one of each.

Planning on posting questions or buying anything on this site? Put up your country (at minimum) on your profile. This is a worldwide forum and we haven't reached clairvoyance.

efergy kb   10 mW

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Re: Security

Post by efergy kb » May 25 2014 10:02am

What GPS motion alarm have you got and where do you hide the device?

cal3thousand wrote:I have a combination of security devices that I use based on my surroundings, but the general idea is the same. It needs to look so beefy and time consuming to mess with that they will try another bike. And if they do lack the sense to stay away, I have a GPS motion alarm that sends me an SMS when moved or with GeoFences Set.

My lock is a Grade 120 3/8" thick transport chain covered in an old bike tube and locked with a shrouded MasterLock 6327. You will need some HUGE croppers or angle grinder to cut into it. I use it when I'm not sure of the area that I will be going. Most of the time, my MasterLock Street Cuffs are good enough.

On bikes normally equipped with QR skewers, I replace them with locking skewers that require a security allen key, so I don't have to carry a cable for the wheels. I'm never going to be gone long enough for someone to get the motor off.

For my wife's bike, we use 2 locks at the same time. I will most likely be doing that with my cargo bike as well. 2 locks makes the thief thing twice and the extra weight is nothing on an ebike with the cargo capacity. Minor inconvenience, but not getting another bike stolen is huge on my list of things that makes me happy.

And at home, since I park the bikes outside, they are under camera / motion alarm and under tight fitting dust covers. The covers deter anyone from even looking and the time it takes to remove it is the amount of time it takes me to grab my angle iron and get out there.

Synon   10 W

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Re: Security

Post by Synon » May 25 2014 3:21pm

Route all your battery power to some metal handbars and wait for a "ground" to try and steal it.

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alsmith   100 kW

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Re: Security

Post by alsmith » May 25 2014 3:55pm

Synon wrote:Route all your battery power to some metal handbars and wait for a "ground" to try and steal it.
you :?:really :?: believe that the DC supply to an ebike is going to shock anyone?

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sn0wchyld   1 MW

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Re: Security

Post by sn0wchyld » May 26 2014 1:18am

alsmith wrote:
Synon wrote:Route all your battery power to some metal handbars and wait for a "ground" to try and steal it.
you :?:really :?: believe that the DC supply to an ebike is going to shock anyone?
Current bike, 100 v oc... Next bike, 130 v... Neither is a voltage id like across my chest, particularly with clammy hands... That said, this is a seriosly dangerous / dumb idea. Someone accidentally bumps ure bike over, picks it up for you, happens to have a heart problem and ends up dead. :oops:

Its all about deterrants... You dont need to outrun a bear, just the guy next to you... Same for bikes. Make it more of a pita to steal than the next bike and you should be fine. Two locks and a disk lock should do. Stainless steel zip ties work well too for secureing bits to the bike. Nothing is failsafe though.

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mlt34   100 kW

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Re: Security

Post by mlt34 » Jun 03 2014 9:17am

mateusleo wrote:I find disc locks useless, since an ebike weights about 30kg and can be easily carried in a hand car, so I ALWAYS lock it with a chain to something that can't be moved, like poles, trees, handrails, grids.
Disc locks are useless by themselves, of course. They only work for motorcycles since they are heavy - and even then i wouldn't ONLY use a disk lock.

on the other hand, disc locks make GREAT supplemental locks for an ebike.

It's like tis: the name of the game in theft deterrence is making the thief less confident that he'll succeed in stealing your ride. A thief approaches a potential target bike, checks its security, then weighs the gamble in his head of his chances of defeating the security in a small enough time to not be noticed or stopped. A thief is never 100% sure he can open one lock, so he may take the gamble. But if you have two locks, now he has to account for two gambles. As unlikely as he would be with one gamble, two or three is obviously much worse, and makes him even more likely to move to an easier target.

Even if he can defeat your main u-lock on a parking meter, he has drag your bike away due to the disc lock. Not a great situation for the thief. The best would be two locks around two objects, or even two u-locks around a parking meter. That way he doesn't have the luxury of working on the second lock in his garage.
Are you planning your first electric bicycle conversion? I wrote a book that teaches beginners everything they need to know about building their own ebike.
Then I wrote the book (literally) on building custom lithium batteries.
I also write for EbikeSchool.com, a site that does mainly how-to style articles and other informational write-ups. Check out our youtube channel for great how-to battery building videos.
Lastly, I run www.Vruzend.com, which sells solderless 18650 battery kits, 18650 cells, li-ion chargers, BMSs and more!

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MadRhino   100 GW

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Re: Security

Post by MadRhino » Jun 03 2014 11:18am

The Xena alarm disc lock that I have is small and loud. it is a very good turn off for robbers since it is almost impossible to stop it from screaming when the bike moves the slightest. If someone doesn't care about the noise and take the bike in a truck, I can follow the GPS tracker on my phone. No cable or U lock can compare, or anything else that locks the bike on a post for all of them can be cut in a few sec.
Make it fool-proof, and I will make a better fool.
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mlt34   100 kW

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Re: Security

Post by mlt34 » Jun 04 2014 12:08am

MadRhino wrote:The Xena alarm disc lock that I have is small and loud. it is a very good turn off for robbers since it is almost impossible to stop it from screaming when the bike moves the slightest. If someone doesn't care about the noise and take the bike in a truck, I can follow the GPS tracker on my phone. No cable or U lock can compare, or anything else that locks the bike on a post for all of them can be cut in a few sec.
Maybe that's because canadians are so polite, if someone did steal your bike, they'd probably return it later with the tires topped off and battery charged… :wink:
Are you planning your first electric bicycle conversion? I wrote a book that teaches beginners everything they need to know about building their own ebike.
Then I wrote the book (literally) on building custom lithium batteries.
I also write for EbikeSchool.com, a site that does mainly how-to style articles and other informational write-ups. Check out our youtube channel for great how-to battery building videos.
Lastly, I run www.Vruzend.com, which sells solderless 18650 battery kits, 18650 cells, li-ion chargers, BMSs and more!

xenodius   1 kW

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Re: Security

Post by xenodius » Jun 06 2014 1:01am

MadRhino wrote:The Xena alarm disc lock that I have is small and loud. it is a very good turn off for robbers since it is almost impossible to stop it from screaming when the bike moves the slightest. If someone doesn't care about the noise and take the bike in a truck, I can follow the GPS tracker on my phone. No cable or U lock can compare, or anything else that locks the bike on a post for all of them can be cut in a few sec.
Same setup here, it's awesome, also keeps curious people from messing with my bike. I rarely use a u-lock at all since my controller locks the rear, disc locks the front, and my bike is at 100lb. Longer than 20-30 minutes, I will u-lock it too. Since it's recumbent it's also less desirable for a thief as it's quite unique.

Also lets me leave the cheap grocery saddlebag i use for extra/heavy cargo on all the time, as anyone trying to take it off would set off the alarm.

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mlt34   100 kW

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Re: Security

Post by mlt34 » Jun 06 2014 1:32am

MadRhino wrote:The Xena alarm disc lock that I have is small and loud. it is a very good turn off for robbers since it is almost impossible to stop it from screaming when the bike moves the slightest. If someone doesn't care about the noise and take the bike in a truck, I can follow the GPS tracker on my phone. No cable or U lock can compare, or anything else that locks the bike on a post for all of them can be cut in a few sec.
I've wondered about those, do they trip easily when you try to unlock it? I hate the alarms that are so easy to accidentally trip myself, but people seem to like this specific lock, so does it not have that problem?
Are you planning your first electric bicycle conversion? I wrote a book that teaches beginners everything they need to know about building their own ebike.
Then I wrote the book (literally) on building custom lithium batteries.
I also write for EbikeSchool.com, a site that does mainly how-to style articles and other informational write-ups. Check out our youtube channel for great how-to battery building videos.
Lastly, I run www.Vruzend.com, which sells solderless 18650 battery kits, 18650 cells, li-ion chargers, BMSs and more!

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TheBeastie   1 MW

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Re: Security

Post by TheBeastie » Jun 06 2014 6:49am

I use varied levels of locks depending on where the bike is kept. When I leave it outside in an area I am paranoid about I lock it up with 2-3 alarm alarm locks, 2 of them disc brake and one U lock. Then just one standard D lock to prevent the bike being dragged away.
I just use 2 different cheaper branded disc alarm locks from ebay.
http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_sacat=0 ... ck&_sop=12
I also use this alarm lock to secure the front wheel http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Alarm-Padloc ... 214&_uhb=1
I haven't done much to protect my pack, giggling the bike to remove the pack will set off the alarms, my lipos have been depuffed/had cell surgery on them a few times. I almost secretly hope some one does take my pack. If they want it they can have my pack, good luck to em cos there going to need it.

There was a ES post on here a few years back where the ebiker claimed he got maced for some reason and while staggering around half blind some one stole his battery pack, so it does happen.
footloose wrote: Years ago I had a non-electric bike. It was basically a gorgeous Raleigh 3-speed, that I bought new, then spray painted to make it look old.
Left it locked in a dark alley one night when I went to work.
Came back, and it was GONE!!! Broke my heart.
Then I walked out onto the main street, and there it was, leaning against a street lamp!
The thief broke the chain, stole it, then got it out into the light and said I suppose "what the hell is this thing, it won't fetch me the price of a hit, screw it, I'm going to find something valuable!"
Cool story, and it reinforces my belief for at least my area that most thieves are looking for something to take and sell. If it looks crappy and hard to sell they don't want it.
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