Three of the best Sold Secure rated bike locks

It’s easy to understand why a bike lock is never considered an exciting purchase. You’ve just splashed out on a super amazing new £1,000 carbon dream machine, and now you’re being told you need to spend a further £100 to keep it safe? Not a great thing to hear. However, it’s often quoted that you should look to spend 10% of the value of your bike on a lock.

I am sorry to bring bad news, but Transport for London tell us that around 20,000 bicycles are reported stolen each year. Considering many people don’t actually report a theft, that’s a lot of runaway bikes in the capital, so you do need to protect yourself.

Sold Secure

Most brands have a rating scale for their lock, but insurance companies usually want you to have a Sold Secure rated lock, of a certain standard. Sold Secure are an independent organisation, that grade locks as Gold, Sliver or Bronze – Gold being the most thief proof. If your bike is insured and you don’t want to be told you are not covered in the event of a theft, make sure to stick with the regulation.

If you’ve chosen not to insure your bike, and you want a lock based upon how breakable it is, a Bronze rated lock can be busted in a minute with basic tools, Silver locks take three minutes with more tools, and Gold locks take five minutes with sophisticated tools.

Cable locks are light and easy to transport, but they’re also pretty easy to destroy with a pair of cable clippers. D-Locks are heavy and cumbersome, but they are safer as a rule, and chain locks are harder to break through.

Here’s a look at some of the best on the market at each sold secure level:

GOLD – Abus BORDO Granit X Plus 85cm – £89.99

The Abus heavy duty lock

The Abus heavy duty lock

Boom! This one says don’t mess with me. And for your convenience, the chain lock folds up and comes with a storage pouch, ready to attach to your bike. At 85cm long, it will wind around the frame, through the wheels, and can be attached to a wider anchor, such as a lamppost. Protection comes from 5.5mm hardened steel links.

One customer review states: “The lock is a little on the heavy side but that is probably why it has such a good strength rating , and because it attaches lower on the bike where your water bottle would you don’t notice the weight as much.”

Admittedly, if you’ve bought a lovely light and lively bike, this might not be the ideal accessory, but bear in mind if you’re regularly commuting to the same location, such as work, you could find somewhere safe to leave it at your desk or in the reception – but this option isn’t available for everyone.

SILVER – The Hiplok V1.50 Wearable Chain Lock – £55.99

I really do think that Hiplok are onto a bit of a winner here. It’s simple – the lock sits around your hips – which means no nasty heavy lumps in your backpack, or weighing down your bike. Admittedly, the weight is still on you – so it will have the same adverse affect as gaining 1.8kg, but it’s kept central and in a more manageable position and doesn’t, for example, make just the back end of the bike feel heavy, as a seat post mounted lock would. The 9mm chain is encased in a 8mm material wrap, so you don’t experience any rubbing, and just to be quirky, this comes in several colours – safety can be cool!

Here’s a quick video to show how much the Hiplok (doesn’t) effect your movement:

BRONZE – Abus Keyed Alike Parnter Pack Bike Lock – £63.74

abus-keyed-alike

The Abus Keyed Alike Partner Pack

Bronze is the lowest rating, and a minute with basic tools doesn’t sound too reassuring. However, this Abus lock does provide you with dual safety, through a cable and D-lock – which both use the same key, to reduce the liklihoood of that horrible “breaking into your own bike lock” experience. The system comes with a frame mount, too.

This system is good because it adheres to the method of locking that is often advised by industry experts. The most popular theory on the best way to lock your bike is that you use the D-lock to secure the frame and rear wheel to the secure object, then loop the cable through your front wheel, round the frame, and onto the d-lock – creating two security devices. If you can use the cable to fill any gaps in between the d-lock and the immovable object, this will help as it prevents a thief getting much leverage.

For more advice on where and how to lock your bike, check our our bike lock guide and the secrets of the unstealeable bike.

Join 9,241 fellow cyclists who are subscribed to the London Cyclist newsletter

Sign up for our free newsletter to get...

  • Advice on the best cycling gear
  • A Friday roundup of all the latest London cycling news
  • Exclusive content not available on the blog

Subscribe today, and get exclusive access forever! (It's free)

*No spam, ever!

As seen on The Guardian, BBC and The Independent.

13 Responses to Three of the best Sold Secure rated bike locks

  1. Rangjan 30/01/2014 at 9:38 am #

    “If you’re bike is insured” -

    Oh dear.

  2. Kellyman17 30/01/2014 at 10:11 am #

    A good article, ruined by mistakes in spelling and grammar. Almost every “your” is wrong.

    • Cas Burke 06/02/2014 at 4:18 pm #

      Bad grammar won’t stop your bike getting nicked, these locks might.
      Informative article Michelle.
      Just ignore the anal-retentive grammar Nazis. Their obsessive need to correct others for their mistakes is a direct result of the their own failure to accept their lives and desperate attempt to improve themselves to combat unhappiness.

  3. Andrew 30/01/2014 at 10:46 am #

    The Abus BORDO Granit X Plus isn’t particularly highly rated compared to a D lock. For that price a Kryptonite New York is more secure (albeit less flexible).

    • Vincent 30/01/2014 at 5:08 pm #

      Yes. The more parts, the more likely it’ll fail.

      A strong, compact D/U lock is still the best solution (compact : leave as little room as possible between the frame and the parking rack.)

  4. Robbi 30/01/2014 at 11:46 am #

    Why no mention of Abus Granit X-Plus 54 230mm? An excellent lock. The brackets available are very versatile and reliable, the lock is very well designed despite being lighter than the competition it performs as well as them.

    Combined with an Evolution Mini never had any problems.

  5. Robbi 30/01/2014 at 12:48 pm #

    Also worth mentioning that prices of locks really does vary, hunt around online – don’t just look at the usual big sellers. Abus X-Plus 54 can be as much as £35 cheaper online.

  6. Vincent 30/01/2014 at 5:14 pm #

    > Gold locks take five minutes with sophisticated tools.

    Are there other tools than….
    - a wireless angle grinder, which is anything but discreet (www.youtube.com/watch?v=HpvTSZO11gw)
    - picking locks, which requires quite some skills and isn’t easy to perform while bent over a bike (www.youtube.com/watch?v=_5UCpKLipQM)
    ?

  7. kris 30/01/2014 at 8:38 pm #

    Kryptonite New York all the way the best for me !!!

  8. Spencer 30/01/2014 at 9:04 pm #

    Personally I use a combination of an Abus Granit City 1060/110 and a Kryptonite D lock. Working on the theory that two different types of lock should make my bike less attractive to thieves.

  9. Marek 30/01/2014 at 10:09 pm #

    I bought Kryptonite Series 4 D-lock for my shiny new bike. While the lock itself is very good, the bracket to attach it to bike’s frame is absolutely hopeless. Fairly easy to mount but the lock rattles when riding so I bought Abus D-lock as well. On Abus the mounting bracket is excellent, no rattle and feels very sturdy.

    My Kryptonite now lives on the rack at work so I don’t have to lug around 1.7kg of steel. Abus is kept at home for those rare moments when I have to take a lock with me to leave my bike unattended.

    Pitlock skewers for wheels and a saddle save me from having to carry a cable with me to secure them.

  10. robbi 31/01/2014 at 3:05 am #

    Kryponite brackets are notoriously badly designed, particularly for use with heavier locks. The Abus EazyKF mount is excellent though.

    I also have a Kryptonite NY Lock which I’ve relegated to being my leave-at-work lock at it’s too damned heavy and the bracket is rubbish. Interesting that the American-designed Krypto have a basic manual plastic sliding cover to protect the keyhole from weather and debris whereas the Abus X-Plus 54 has an integrated keyhole cover mechanism.

    Kryptonite NY locks are also prone to seizing up in my experience – when left out in the rain it doesn’t take long before rusty brown water is collecting within. Never had that problem with Abus X-Plus 54.

    +1 for PitLocks too.

  11. Phil 06/02/2014 at 11:24 am #

    I use a Kryptonite New York, and it is prone to seizing unless it gets a squirt of GT85 in crap weather, which at the moment means every four days or so.

Leave a Reply