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Hiplok Z-Lok Security Ties are a practical, small, well-designed alternative to a 'proper' lock. They certainly don't have the same level of security as a full-on bike lock, but for some situations they provide just enough peace of mind.
The Z-Loks look just like slightly larger, regular zip-ties. They fit in your pocket easily or you can just wrap them around your wrist to transport them. What sets them apart from run-of-the-mill zip-ties is that they have a reinforced steel core, so you can't just twist them to break them. They are also reusable, with a universal key.
The Z-Loks are never going to provide the same kind of security as a regular lock – you'll get through them fairly quickly with pair of cable snips – but for peace of mind when your bike's on a rack within eyesight or you're sitting outside a coffee shop, for example, they're a great idea.
Each tie weighs 18g, so very light for carrying around in a pocket or saddle bag, and they come in a pack of two (hence the scales of truth registering 36g).
Their RRP is £14.99, which I think is a decent price given how useful they are, for bikes and almost anything else. It's one of the cheapest currently available at Wiggle, for example. Hiplok's wearable cable lock or its FX retractable lock are next up in the Hiplok hierarchy as easily portable alternatives.
I was really impressed with the Z-Lok Security Ties. It's such a simple idea, and one that has been executed really well.
A simple but well-thought-out piece of kit providing extra peace of mind
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Hiplok Z-Lok Security Ties
Size tested: 40cm locking diameter
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
A small, easily transportable security aid.
Hiplok says: "The first secured reusable zip style tie provides ultra-convenient added protection for use on car racks, with accessories and other outdoor equipment. A cutting edge concept in security with a multitude of applications"
This seems about right. I haven't seen reuseable versions before and given their small size and robustness, they're definitely useful for that little bit of protection.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
- Stainless steel core.-
- Double sided locking.
- Security cover.
Well made, and much more secure than you would expect from just looking at them thanks to the steel core.
Simple to use and add a bit of peace of mind.
They hardly weigh a thing, but still offer a bit of protection so somebody can't just snatch your pride and joy.
Difficult to say given that it doesn't really have much competition in this area. Not a huge layout for what it could save you...
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Very well, easy to store, can fit round most bits of kit, and is simple to fit and remove when needed.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The simplicity; a really easy, simple design that makes using them a breeze.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Nothing springs to mind.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your score
They look really simple and almost pointless, but in reality are a really useful piece of kit to have in your jersey pocket, small enough that it doesn't really matter if they don't get used.
About the tester
I usually ride: Mercian King of Mercia or Cinelli Gazzetta My best bike is: Cannondale Supersix Evo
I've been riding for: 5-10 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mountain biking
George is the host of the road.cc podcast and has been writing for road.cc since 2014. He has reviewed everything from a saddle with a shark fin through to a set of glasses with a HUD and everything in between.
Although, ironically, spending more time writing and talking about cycling than on the bike nowadays, he still manages to do a couple of decent rides every week on his ever changing number of bikes.