Security at home

by Richthornton   February 23, 2012  

Having just bought the most expensive bike I've ever ridden and in the same week been told by a police officer that there is a spate of bike thefts going on in my neighbourhood I thought I'd ask how people tend to secure their bikes at home.

Mine is currently in a padlocked concrete shed in the back yard the only access to which is through my house or through an 8 foot high gate bolted from the inside. I know this is not enough so I'm curious to get some recommendations.

Does anyone use a tracking system? Which ones are best? Do the police really consult these? I mean really?
Does anyone have a ground anchor? I have 2 concerns about these: 1) I know I would't do a good job of fitting it, and probably destroy my shed in the process. 2) If a crook is going to take the effort to cut through the padlock to the shed the they're gonna go the same with whatever I have securing the bike to the anchor.
Insurance? Separate bike insurance, or add it onto my home insurance?

What other options are there? I'm just keen to get a discussion going on this and hear what other people do, what works, and most importantly what have you tried that didn't work?
Thanks

14 user comments

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From experience (having had my bike shed broken into but I caught them in the act and they only made off with 1 bike), bike theft from home falls into 2 categories:

* Chancers
* Well equipped thieves who are coming specifically for your bike

The chancers will be garden hopping looking for unsecure sheds and easy to break locks. Make your shed visibly hard to get into from the outside. Have a mortice lock on the door if you can, or a few padlocks. Security light outside. The usual stuff. I've also fitted a shed alarm, with a sensor on the door. Yes, its easily smashable, but the noise it makes if they ever got through my shed door might send them running.

The ones that know what bikes you have and are coming just for them will be well tooled and not easily put off. Then you want to slow them down and have them make enough noise to attract attention. A ground anchor is good. As is a MASSIVE motorbike chain lock threaded through it and the bikes. That takes proper gear to break and noise.

I have a friend who built a metal framed cage inside his shed. The frame was covered with wire mesh, so its like a bike store within it. That is pretty hardcore and still not totally theft proof. But would slow someone down which is the trick so they give up.

House insurance is generally fine as long as you tell them about the bikes and often list them.

Also take photos of the bike.

posted by othello [279 posts]
23rd February 2012 - 13:31

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Thanks Othello, sounds like some good advice there, and certainly a few things I can be doing.

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posted by Richthornton [99 posts]
23rd February 2012 - 23:22

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Go to your local nick and ask for a shed bar, explaining why. They are basically a long metal bar which locks in place across your door and is held by 2 big padlocks, which i'm told are nigh on impossible for bolt cutters.

After that it's the usual lights and alarm systems.

To be fair i keep my bike in the garage joined to the house and fitted a ring into the floor which is then padlocked in place with a big motor bike lock.

But remember you can never have to much security.

If you must break the law, do it to seize power: in all other cases observe it. Gaius Julius Caesar.

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posted by stumps [2697 posts]
24th February 2012 - 14:37

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A shed bar like the one below is a good idea, BUT then again, so are the ones in these links Wink

http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2010/06/09/article-1285157-09F1CA81000005...
http://img.metro.co.uk/i/pix/2008/07/shedyearPA_450x300.jpg

I keep my bikes in the house, in my bedroom (i wonder why i never have female company Crying ) Because my shed is lucky to hold up if i fart, so don't trust it and i have no where else to keep them

shed-bar.jpg
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posted by Gkam84 [8793 posts]
24th February 2012 - 14:57

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The shed bar just means they will ignore the door and instead pull the wood away from the side of the shed. Not very difficult. It's only flimsy bits of thin wood nailed in place. Remember they won't worry about causing damage to your shed!

The floor anchor and a MASSIVE m/cycle lock and chain thro' the frames is very good. If you can't do the floor anchor, the lock is good anyway - loop it through anything else heavy/awkward, like more bikes, the lawnmover, roller etc. etc.

One thing more - don't advertise your bikes.
Don't maintain them in public view.
Don't leave the shed/garage door open with your bikes on public view.
Don't leave your bike in public view - always put it out of site, even if that's just round the back of the house, even for a few moments.

If they don't see it, they don't think about it.

Binky

posted by davebinks [125 posts]
24th February 2012 - 16:22

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Also, make sure you've done the simple stuff. If your shed has windows, cover them with an old sheet or that opaque spray so the chancers can't look in and see all your kit. replace some of the screws on the door hinges with coach bolts so that thieves can't just unscrew the doors.

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posted by Dave Atkinson [7311 posts]
24th February 2012 - 17:14

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am down to 4 bikes now ..just sold my cube mtb ...i would never leave the in a shed outside Surprise mine all stay in the house 3 upstairs in a boxroom 1 under the stairs and the g/f bike is in in the hall.. Big Grin

posted by theloafer [17 posts]
24th February 2012 - 18:41

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Obviously if you have a sh*te shed dont bother with the shed bar and keep your bike in the house.

I went to the expense of buying a tongue and groove shed with individual planks to store my fishing gear in - the wife went nuts Devil - but as said earlier my bike is in the garage.

If you must break the law, do it to seize power: in all other cases observe it. Gaius Julius Caesar.

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posted by stumps [2697 posts]
25th February 2012 - 23:47

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Speaking from experience I have a really crap shed and about four years ago had four bikes stolen, resulting in a haul in the region of £6k+

The police obviously weren't interested and simply gave me a'crime number' to pass on to my insurers. I had all my bikes insured individually on top of the home contents, it didn't cost that much extra with the Halifax, and I have to say Halifax were brilliant and payed out in less than two weeks! Though they will only cough up for the original cost of the bikes, i.e. they will not cough up for any upgrades, and I'd spent thousands on upgrades for these bikes. I had a £300 shock on my MTB that I'd ridden once which I couldn't claim for, pretty gutting to be honest.

Anyway, it was foolish of me, I was very complacent. We live in a quiet cul-de-sac and there is no reason for anyone to come down here unless they live here. However, I think we were definitely targeted by a professional group of theives. They must have seen us coming and going with all kinds of bikes and the car on the drive with cycle carriers is a dead giveaway!

I now keep my bikes in the house which is a pain but I haven't got round to sorting the shed out yet. I may make that a project for this spring, install a ground anchor, get a shed bar and my Bro-in-law us a metal worker and said he could whip up some sort of cage also!

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posted by _Karlos_ [65 posts]
26th February 2012 - 9:54

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In another thread, there are some pretty nifty ways of keeping your bike inside, quite arty.

My 2 London bikes both live indoors, looking into finding a way to hang them up, and my other bikes are in a garage, under a Laser Hull.

Should keep them hidden Plain Face

Sir Velo

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posted by Raleigh [1728 posts]
26th February 2012 - 12:50

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I've always kept my bikes in the spare room. We have three hung on the wall and they don't get in way at all. I just never feel comfortable with them outside the house, but of course this isn't always a viable option for everyone.

posted by Securivaj [45 posts]
26th February 2012 - 19:43

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I think my gf would go nuts if I told her I was gonna hang my bike in the spare room. I have a concrete shed with no windows so I think a shed bar might be the way to go, and a ground anchor too. Anybody had any experience of fitting a ground anchor? I'm quite inept with DIY-style things.

not much talk of tracking devices so far, does nobody use them?

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posted by Richthornton [99 posts]
26th February 2012 - 20:00

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I think there are various reason's against tracking devices

Cost - they can be expensive
Re-movability - certain trackers can just be taken off and then become useless

If a thief knows what he's looking for, then tracking devices are no problem to them, having a sticker on your bike advertising your tracker, as i've seen a number of times, is even worse.

If your insured, there is no point in having a tracker, unless your bike is a one off model limited edition and worth an absolute fortune

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posted by Gkam84 [8793 posts]
26th February 2012 - 21:57

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davebinks wrote:
The shed bar just means they will ignore the door and instead pull the wood away from the side of the shed. Not very difficult. It's only flimsy bits of thin wood nailed in place. Remember they won't worry about causing damage to your shed!

The floor anchor and a MASSIVE m/cycle lock and chain thro' the frames is very good.

Will they not have demolished your shed before they realise the bike is anchored?

Keep my bike in the garage but no extra safety measures. Added insurance on to the home insurance.

posted by paulfg42 [374 posts]
29th February 2012 - 21:33

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