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Locking Skewers (Wheels/Seat)

Old 10-18-13, 08:52 PM
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Locking Skewers (Wheels/Seat)

I have the Delta Cycle Axelrodz from REI, but was looking at some reviews and saw that the botls can easily be stripped from overtightening. I do not have anything for my seat post, I would like to get something.

Anyway, I was thinking that, perhaps, I should replace them with another brand? Perhaps, one that has better reviews?

Thoughts? Does anyone else use these? Do you feel safe using them (i.e. added "piece of mind" for theft deterrent - to an extent -, actually riding on them etc.)?

Thanks!
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Old 10-19-13, 07:28 AM
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Without an in-depth understanding of the environment you leave you bike in, it's hard to advise. I always lock my wheels with the same u-lock(s) or chain(s) I lock the bike with. Someone will state the obvious, that with bicycles you can never reach absolute security - that might as well be me in the first reply. Anyway, in security skewers there's the Pitlocks and the Pinheads. Bicycle Bolts offers security torx screws for seatpost, saddle and stem.
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Old 10-19-13, 08:38 AM
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Originally Posted by LiteraryChic View Post
I have the Delta Cycle Axelrodz from REI, but was looking at some reviews and saw that the botls can easily be stripped from overtightening.
Simple. Don't overtighten them.

The truth of the matter is that, if you overtighten anything, then you will either strip the threads or twist the bolt right off. Doesn't matter if it's bicycle skewers or the bolts holding rocket engines together. Overtighten if you want to have problems.

That said, IME the Deltas are a bit more frail than others, since their nuts use thread inserts instead of having threads cut into them. Still, they're just fine if you tighten sufficiently without overdoing it.

I've used Pitlocks, but it's easy to bugger up the threads on their skewers, then it's hard to remove them to fix a flat. Plus, in order to use their pit keys, you need a wrench that's uncommon in bicycle land (14mm instead of the usual 15mm). Although this is fine for things I don't need to change in the field. I still use their seatpost and headset bolts.

For skewers, I've reverted to the plain old hex-head ones sold by Sunlite, Nashbar and others. (Sunlite also sells the "Lock and Roll", which uses a weird five-sided key instead of a standard hex.) They work well enough for me. If I'm locking in a sketchy area, I use two locks anyway.
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Old 10-19-13, 12:31 PM
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I think it's high time we switched to locking sewers.
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Old 10-19-13, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
I think it's high time we switched to locking sewers.
Just make sure they have adequate ventilation, as a methane buildup inside could be quite catastrophic.
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Old 10-19-13, 01:39 PM
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I think it's high time we switched to locking sewers.
Jean Valjean , has already used the sewers to Escape ..

for the literature impaired,http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean_Valjean ..http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Les_Mis%C3%A9rables

there's a film Musical http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Les_Mis...es_(2012_film)


actually DHS sends out welders to weld up the manhole covers in case of insurrection.


to the original post.. I have regular hex bolt skewers .. rear
the tire wont come out inflated anyhow .. Front one came with the Dynohub..

Pitlocks are using a non standard Pit-key no 2 alike ..

unless you order the whole set same keyed.


like the custom wheel keeper lug nuts for your Mag -custom car wheels ..


my Koga has a ring lock for the back wheel, and a chain goes around
the front wheel and a post or something, to lock to, and it snaps into
the ring lock.. same key opens both..
Chain pin catch on the opposite side
of the lock m from the key.

Last edited by fietsbob; 10-20-13 at 09:50 AM.
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Old 10-19-13, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by tcs View Post
Without an in-depth understanding of the environment you leave you bike in, it's hard to advise. I always lock my wheels with the same u-lock(s) or chain(s) I lock the bike with. Someone will state the obvious, that with bicycles you can never reach absolute security - that might as well be me in the first reply. Anyway, in security skewers there's the Pitlocks and the Pinheads. Bicycle Bolts offers security torx screws for seatpost, saddle and stem.
When at home I leave my bike in my apartment. When out and about, it really depends on the area I'm in (and I'm thinking ahead for future cities I may live in, too). I lock my rear wheel and frame to a fixed object with my OnGuard U-Lock, and my front wheel to the frame with my Knog Party Frank.
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Old 10-20-13, 07:01 AM
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I rely on heavy man hole covers to lock my sewers. No lock required.

For seat and wheels on my bicycle I use pitlocks from http://www.urbanbiketech.com. My kids have these on their bikes a major urban university for several years with no problems and the bikes are outside the whole time.

J.
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Old 10-20-13, 07:52 AM
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Originally Posted by tsl View Post
I've used Pitlocks, but it's easy to bugger up the threads on their skewers, then it's hard to remove them to fix a flat. Plus, in order to use their pit keys, you need a wrench that's uncommon in bicycle land (14mm instead of the usual 15mm). Although this is fine for things I don't need to change in the field. I still use their seatpost and headset bolts.

For skewers, I've reverted to the plain old hex-head ones sold by Sunlite, Nashbar and others. (Sunlite also sells the "Lock and Roll", which uses a weird five-sided key instead of a standard hex.) They work well enough for me. If I'm locking in a sketchy area, I use two locks anyway.
Although I've never used them, I think that Zefal's Lock n Roll skewers address the pain-in-the-butt issues of proprietary wrenches while still providing lockup security and ease-of-use in the field.

Their trick is that the bike needs to be upside down in order to open the lever and release the clamp, which is clever since a properly locked bike is almost impossible to flip upside down, and if you're needing a fix out on the road, upside down is one of the most convenient ways work on wheel and drivetrain issues that might necessitate wheel removal.
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Old 10-20-13, 03:33 PM
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I use velo orange skewers which are pinned allen bolts. It gives a reasonable balance between security and convenience and you could get it open without a special key by breaking off the pin or drilling it out. Should be good enough to deter casual thieves.

Is there any rule of thumb -- as there is with QR skewers -- regarding how tight to make these? I generally go until there's resistance and then another half turn. Does that sound reasonable?

Last edited by asmac; 10-20-13 at 03:40 PM.
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Old 10-20-13, 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
Although I've never used them, I think that Zefal's Lock n Roll skewers address the pain-in-the-butt issues of proprietary wrenches while still providing lockup security and ease-of-use in the field.
I've read that these can be defeated with a magnet.
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Old 10-20-13, 04:21 PM
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Originally Posted by asmac View Post
Is there any rule of thumb -- as there is with QR skewers -- regarding how tight to make these? I generally go until there's resistance and then another half turn. Does that sound reasonable?
That's exactly what Pinhead recommends for their skewers.

Originally Posted by asmac View Post
I've read that these can be defeated with a magnet.
Yup. And if your bike has a computer,there's a magnet right there on the wheel a thief can pop off and use.

I'm also not a fan of these because since they look like regular QR's,I can see a thief messing with them thinking they're just really tight and damaging something trying to get them off.
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Old 10-20-13, 05:59 PM
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You guys are paranoid freaks.
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Old 10-20-13, 11:24 PM
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Yeah, for a commuter setup I have bombproof tires and the Sunlite Lock 'n' Roll Skewers. They basically use what looks like a five (instead of six) point hex-like key. I used to carry the little tool with me everywhere, it's not much trouble to toss it in the bottom or side pocket of any backpack or even keep it on your keys. But the tires I've been riding for years have never failed me, so far I've worn out three sets of the same model tire (Vittoria Randoneur) and have never ever had a flat; so now the tool stays at home. Even if I do get a flat, my commute is only five miles one way and public transportation can get me home easily where I'd rather do the repair than on the roadside. As mentioned prior, any security skewer is just a minor deterrent for a determined thief. I personally evaluated that for me, I'll take my chances with a more affordable skewer rather than blow a hundred or more dollars on a semi-custom set (pitlocks) that can be compromised nearly as easily by someone who knows what their doing. And yes I have had the Axle Rods from delta strip out on me. I am happy with the Sunlite Lock 'n' Roll's as the best balance between cost and security.

http://amzn.com/B002K2IYPY
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Old 10-20-13, 11:49 PM
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I recommend getting the Onguard Three-piece Locking Skewers. Similar to Pinhead. This will lock your wheels as well as the seat post. The tool to remove the skewers is smaller than my thumb, fits on a keychain, and it doubles as a bottle opener.

If you're not locking the bike up overnight you should be fine just locking the frame with a good U-lock. I suppose if you live somewhere like NYC and/or if you have expensive wheels with disc brakes, etc, a thief could be tempted to defeat the locking skewers. If you have a valuable saddle, such as a Brooks, you'll want to lock the seat itself with something like a bicycle chain.
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Old 10-21-13, 01:50 AM
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Originally Posted by urbanescapee View Post
. But the tires I've been riding for years have never failed me, so far I've worn out three sets of the same model tire (Vittoria Randoneur) and have never ever had a flat;
I'm at year 6 rolling on Vittoria Randonneurs flat-free! Same set, too, though they do come off about 4mos out of the year. Great tires in my experience.
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Old 10-21-13, 08:55 AM
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Originally Posted by GeraldF View Post
I recommend getting the Onguard Three-piece Locking Skewers. Similar to Pinhead. This will lock your wheels as well as the seat post. The tool to remove the skewers is smaller than my thumb, fits on a keychain, and it doubles as a bottle opener.

If you're not locking the bike up overnight you should be fine just locking the frame with a good U-lock. I suppose if you live somewhere like NYC and/or if you have expensive wheels with disc brakes, etc, a thief could be tempted to defeat the locking skewers. If you have a valuable saddle, such as a Brooks, you'll want to lock the seat itself with something like a bicycle chain.
You can remove these with a **tool** on each side very quickly - I've done it. Because of this, we replaced our one set and went with pitlocks on both the university bikes.

The pitlocks make this more difficult because they have a piece that prevents you from grasping the locking nut, it's a collar that turns freely on one side.

J.

Last edited by JohnJ80; 10-21-13 at 01:07 PM.
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Old 10-21-13, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by GeraldF View Post
I have mixed feelings about seeing this posted publicly. It's valuable information, but, in addition to educating us, you're educating bike thieves. Is it possible you could edit your post to not include such detail? Perhaps say something like "it is possible to remove the Onguard locking skewers with the right tools."

Of course now he'll have to edit the quoted material your post also. I don't expect bike thieves cruise bike forums for tips.
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Old 10-21-13, 01:20 PM
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I edited my post, but I think it's useless gesture in a big way. I found it on the internet and it many places. It's not hard to figure out either. There are no secrets anymore.

Personally, I'd rather have it posted so that the manufacturers do something about it. It's now harder getting it out than a broken skewer would be but you get to pay $70 or so for the privilege. None of this stuff works against a determined thief - noting that many can be through a U lock in <10 seconds.

The whole point of all of this is making your bike harder to steal than the one next to it.

Here, for example, are another 2-3 ways to get past them and almost any locking skewer.

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...1#post14353885

There is no theft resistant, there is only theft delaying products. The thing that gets me is when we are sold a product and it can be defeated rapidly - at least make it so that the bike gets destroyed by trying to get it free (Mutual Assured Destruction concept) or make it take a long time with obvious tools.

The good news is that if you park your bike where other bikes are parked, it's a given that virtually ALL of them will be less protected than your bike with a U lock and pinheads or pitlocks and, therefore, a much more likely target. My kids have their bikes at a university in a major city and with pitlocks (and for a year with pinheads) for a total of 5 bike-years without so much as an issue (fingers are crossed). To a thief, looking at our bikes, they are a *major* hassle compared to other bikes right along side. That's what makes it work.

Here's another product that caught my eye. Probably a whole lot cheaper than either pinhead or pitlocks for that matter.

http://www.brycefastener.com/security/penta-nuts.cfm


J.
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Old 10-21-13, 06:32 PM
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Originally Posted by geraldf
i have mixed feelings about seeing this posted publicly. It's valuable information, but, in addition to educating us, you're educating bike thieves. Is it possible you could edit your post to not include such detail? Perhaps say something like "it is possible to remove the onguard locking skewers with the right tools."

Originally Posted by asmac View Post
of course now he'll have to edit the quoted material your post also. I don't expect bike thieves cruise bike forums for tips.
I'm not saying a thief would do this, but couldn't one track your IP address from the vBulletin forum software using a decompiler and target an individual user, say for example, if they had a desirable bike?

Not sayin' it happens, just askin' if it could... uh, wait a minute...I'd better go; I hear helicopters outside.
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Old 10-21-13, 06:39 PM
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
[/i][/color]
I'm not saying a thief would do this, but couldn't one track your IP address from the vBulletin forum software using a decompiler and target an individual user, say for example, if they had a desirable bike?

Not sayin' it happens, just askin' if it could... uh, wait a minute...I'd better go; I hear helicopters outside.
No, not without a GUI interface written in visual basic. Ugh, now I feel dirty even mentioning that.
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Old 10-21-13, 07:05 PM
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Originally Posted by J.C. Koto View Post
No, not without a GUI interface written in visual basic. Ugh, now I feel dirty even mentioning that.
If the bike thief works for your Homeland Security crowd it's even easier. Send the forum admins a national security letter and your bike can be theirs. Maybe they already have. You'll never know.
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Old 10-21-13, 08:51 PM
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The Sunlite Lock & Rolls are sold under a variety of brand names, from many sources -- even Walmart. I have a set on my bike, and my sister's bike (hers had the wheels stolen a couple years back, her son locked the frame & not the wheels). I know how to defeat them, but I'm not telling. I'm getting another set for my daughter's bike too, now that she has one I'm actually concerned about losing.
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Old 10-22-13, 01:16 AM
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I have one of the Zefal ones on my seatpost binder on my commuter. No issues so far.
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Old 10-23-13, 02:43 PM
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Here in NYC most thieves aren't interested in breaking locks. They'll typically just "pick" whatever is easiest, meaning saddle/seatpost, lights, bars, unsecured wheels, fork etc. Locking skewers are a great way to deter theft at those points. Nothing is foolproof, but even basic locking skewers and filling the remaining hex bolts with silicone are a good start.

On my two commuter bikes I currently I use Pitlocks to secure the headset/fork, front wheel, and seatpost clamp. All the remaining hex bolts are filled with silicone. The big deal for me is not having to carry a 2nd lock, that alone is worth the high cost of decent locking skewers.
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