Lock maestros Kryptonite were showing several new products at iceBike, perhaps the most innovative of which isn’t a lock at all. The Bicycle ID kit consists of tags that you fit to your bike, then register online on the Bike Revolution database anyone can register their bike for free but the scheme really comes in to its own when you put the tags on your bike; the idea is to deter theft and, should your bike ever get half-inched, help recover it afterwards.
Okay, this is how it works. You buy a Bicycle ID Kit for £9.99. Then you put the Pulse ID tags that are included on your bike. After three days, the bond is really strong. A baddie can chip away at the Pulse ID tag, but it won’t peel off. You can position one tag prominently to deter theft, the other in a less conspicuous spot so that any tea-leaf is less likely to remove it.
Once you have your kit, you register yourself as the owner online at bikerevolution.org, linking the Pulse ID tags and, therefore, the bike back to you. Anyone can download a free app for their smartphone that allows them to use the phone as a scanner for the tags, so if your bike gets stolen, the police, a bike shop, or anyone else can scan it and let you know where your bike is via Facebook or Twitter. If they don’t have the scanning technology, they just tap the number in online and find you that way. Clever!
On the lock front, Kryptonite have just launched a new size lock, the Evolution Mini-7, with a 4ft flex cable.
Evolution locks are a tried and tested U-lock design with a 13mm hardened steel shackle with a reinforced cuff over the crossbar and cylinder. The Mini-7 is, predictably enough, 7in (18cm) long. The cable is braided steel that you can loop through your wheels or other components and fasten back to the lock. It’s available now; to you, 45 quid.
Finally, if having a bike frame and lock that don’t match offends your eye, or you just fancy a funky-looking lock, you can now get yourself a Colour Skin for your Kryptonite Mini U-lock. You peel the old coating off the shackle and crossbar, soak the Colour Skin in hot water, and sling it on. It takes 10mins, apparently. That’s what they told us.
You can choose from light blue, pink, purple, red or white, £9.99 a throw. Go to www.madison.co.uk.
Mat has worked for loads of bike magazines over the past 20 years, and been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. He's been road.cc technical editor for seven years, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a past winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer.