Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

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londonbikerider
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Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby londonbikerider » 16 Aug 2019, 8:06am

Hello, has anyone seen D-locks or padlocks in general, being subject to tampering by chemicals over time?

Yesterday I went to my local supermarket, where I leave a basic D-lock (if I'm not wrong, it's a 12mm Abus) to secure my bike. Since the surroundings of Finsbury Park are becoming more and more risky for anything left in sight, I refrain to go there with an expensive bike, rather using a simple "off the peg" old bike that's not very attractive.
With my surprise, I had found my lock wrapped with a piece of towel -right where the key hole is- and imbibed with some liquid. I cannot say it was the smell of WD-40 but something similar. Must have been there for a while, possibly days.

I did not lock my bike, went back home and will not use that shop for a few days, then will remove that lock. Provided is still there.
My feelings are that my bike has been targeted, though it's far from being my favourite bike, I surely won't like to see it gone.
I've heard that some thieves do use "freeze-spray", but a long-term acting substance is new to me.
Hopefully I'm wrong, but I won't take the risk and find out this was true.

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Paulatic
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Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby Paulatic » 16 Aug 2019, 8:31am

Looks like they are targeting your lock not your bike. Maybe trying to move it?
Are things that bad down there that someone is going to spend days waiting there for the chance to steal your bike?
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the snail
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Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby the snail » 16 Aug 2019, 8:56am

I think there's a tactic where they disable your lock, in the hope that you are forced to leave your bike unlocked. If you leave a lock in a public place, then there are people with nothing better to do than target it, I think you would be wise to buy a new lock.

Tangled Metal
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Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby Tangled Metal » 16 Aug 2019, 9:01am

I doubt the owners of the shop will use that method to remove unwanted locks left at bike stands using that method. Surely they would just use brute force attack with a powerful angle grinder having put warning notices up about plans to remove unaccompanied locks after a set period of time?

Personally I'm opposed to leaving locks at popular locations for you to leave a bike. But I am even more opposed to bike thieves so if you can avoid that location and then use a different lock. Perhaps check that lock out closely or simply replace it as well. I hope you get to keep your bikes in future no matter what you do.

Postboxer
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Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby Postboxer » 16 Aug 2019, 3:05pm

Maybe bike stands at popular locations could be accompanied by a bike lock stand. Or sturdy locks on long chains.

alexnharvey
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Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby alexnharvey » 16 Aug 2019, 3:19pm

Maybe people could take their locks home after shopping rather than littering supermarket stands with them and they also wouldn't be at risk of such attacks.

I do leave a lock on the rack at work, is that hypocrisy? :oops:

MOARspeed
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Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby MOARspeed » 16 Aug 2019, 4:14pm

Leaving a lock to get tampered with is asking for trouble.

It might be that someone thinks the lock is corroded and abandoned, so they slather it in WD40 or simlar in the hope that the owner will remove it.

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Paulatic
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Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby Paulatic » 16 Aug 2019, 4:54pm

Maybe someone else also uses it who has a similar key. :D
They felt it need lubricating.
Whatever I am, wherever I am, this is me. This is my life

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The utility cyclist
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Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby The utility cyclist » 16 Aug 2019, 6:17pm

Stop being lazy, take your lock with you, personally I can't stand the look of racks and lamposts/railings with several locks adorned to it, especially since you know full well many don't actually get use! it's selfish as it makes life harder to lock your own bike up and it's unsightly.

Jon Lucas
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Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby Jon Lucas » 16 Aug 2019, 6:45pm

I've never understood why people do leave their locks on a stand. Does it mean they never do any other journey apart from to that one location? Surely most cyclists do occasionally go elsewhere? Or do they have a collection of locks?

I must admit if I see a stand with a lot of locks attached to it, I will lock my bike that to that stand just to make a point to whoever those locks belong to. Stands are for all our use, they don't belong to any one person.

mercalia
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Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby mercalia » 16 Aug 2019, 7:58pm

I have wondered if any one has ever put super glue in a locked bike so that the owner has to leave it there ,then the thief come back with his/her angle grinder...

Tangled Metal
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Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby Tangled Metal » 16 Aug 2019, 9:57pm

It would be nice if someone put superglue in the locks left on stands. Perhaps a lock vigilante trying to stop the left lock habit.

MOARspeed
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Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby MOARspeed » 16 Aug 2019, 11:01pm

mercalia wrote:I have wondered if any one has ever put super glue in a locked bike so that the owner has to leave it there ,then the thief come back with his/her angle grinder...


I think the preferred method is a cheap cable lock.

DaveReading
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Joined: 24 Feb 2019, 5:37pm

Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby DaveReading » 17 Aug 2019, 10:13am

Jon Lucas wrote:I must admit if I see a stand with a lot of locks attached to it, I will lock my bike that to that stand just to make a point to whoever those locks belong to. Stands are for all our use, they don't belong to any one person.

That'll teach them, when they have to lock their bike to the same stand.

Oh, hang on ...

geocycle
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Re: Tampering with locks: wet rag on it?

Postby geocycle » 17 Aug 2019, 10:38am

alexnharvey wrote:Maybe people could take their locks home after shopping rather than littering supermarket stands with them and they also wouldn't be at risk of such attacks.

I do leave a lock on the rack at work, is that hypocrisy? :oops:


I agree. I also leave my 2kg gold standard d lock at work, not to reserve a stand but just to avoid carrying the lock every day. I’d never do that in a public place like a supermarket.