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Share Your Pain: Stories of Stolen Rides

1186 Views 24 Replies 22 Participants Last post by  pixelninja
I am producing a MTB magazine and it is going to debut in january, I want to start with a letters section. The topic is bike security: Why/How/Where did your bike get stolen, how will you stop it from happening again? Please, share your pain
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-=Canuck=- said:
I am producing a MTB magazine and it is going to debut in january, I want to start with a letters section. The topic is bike security: Why/How/Where did your bike get stolen, how will you stop it from happening again? Please, share your pain
My first bike was stolen when I was about 10. I went into my local store, came out and my bike was gone. I was stunned. I walked home and told my dad. He then hopped in his van and drove around looking for it. He saw some kids riding around our local rink and walked up to the one on my bike and said 'that's not yours' (easy to identify-all black BRC bmx with tuff wheels and he'd built the neck on it as I kept breaking everything that was out there at the time) the kids ran off and I got my bike back.

The second was my blue 1985 Marushi MtAce18 (my first mountain bike) that was stolen from my father's back yard as I'd forgot it outside one night. I had that bike for 10 years too. It was never to be seen again. Of course that's me being careless.

The 3rd was a frankenbike that was built from all sorts of parts, that was stolen from a beach party...that was just drunken stupidity.
hmmm, also a black bike.

The 4th was in the back of my car (honda hatchback) when I came out of my friend's place, I had a nice broken window and someone had traded me my bike for a nice, good sized rock. Wow, talk about a fair trade. It was a black bike too (Rocky Mountain Fusion). I never got that back.
3 out of 4 of those bikes stolen were black. Seems to be a high demand for black bikes. Also 3 out of those 4 were stolen while I was out in the suburbs outside of a city.
So is there more theft outside a city than in it I wonder?
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Please share folks

Ive only had one bike stolen, and it was one of the best things that have happend to me. Two years ago I had little interest in mountain biking. I owned the standard Canadian Tire econobike (unsafe components, joke full-suspension) . A week before it was stolen, I had bought a nice led light for night travel from the LBS, it was the best thing on my bike. Fast forward to the end of the week, i hadnt brought a lock to lock up my bike between classes, and some geezer nicked it... I would never see my prized light again.
The theft led me, again to the LBS, the helpfull staff piqued my intrest and I stopped by a local race to see if i liked the sport. The next week I dropped over 1000$ on my entry level Norco and have since fallen more and more into this passionate affair with all cycling.

Now, I ride a beater around town and if i need to, back up my nice ride with some Kryptonite

Share the stories folks, the best ones will see ciculation in January, though you probably wont see them. Thanks
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-=Canuck=- said:
I am producing a MTB magazine and it is going to debut in january, I want to start with a letters section. The topic is bike security: Why/How/Where did your bike get stolen, how will you stop it from happening again? Please, share your pain
My beloved DeKerf ST was stolen this summer from my garage. I'm thinking that the garage was opened during the night by someone who got into my unlocked truck in the driveway and hit the "open garage" button on the overhead panel. The bike closest to the garage door was stolen - other great bikes were left behind. How am I preventing this from occuring again? I lock my truck if it's parked in the driveway (duh). I no longer store a garage door opener in my truck. Every night, I bolt my garage from the inside. My DeKerf has never been found (sniff sniff), but insurance money funded a sweet new carbon fiber road bike with all the fixins!!

Here is my story and pics as told after it happened:
I have to say that getting my bike stolen was also good for my Bike Passion.

I had a Schwinn S9six, URT dulie. My girlfriend had a much newer Giant hardtail. We had left the bikes locked to the bike rack and each other, when I came out the next morning my bike was gone, and hers had been thrown into the bottom of a stair well.

I was sad, but it did give me an excuse to go buy a brand new Trek fuel. Thanks who ecer you were.
In May 2005 I decided to compete in a local 12-hr adventure race. For 6 hours me and my teammates ran through open fields and forested areas, canoed against the current on a river and portaged the superheavy canoe through thick brush and palmettos multiple times. We returned to the transition area to begin the bike leg and get some real calories (after pounding gels and ecaps for hours) when my teammate (my wife) says, hey where's your bike. I looked around and all I could say was foooook!
Lessons learned:
1) Mountain bikers should not enter stupid adventure races anyway (I could tell that for 90% of the teams mountain biking was not their main thing)
2) Never, ever leave your bike unattended at a race (eventhough 200 other teams did the same and none of their bikes were stolen)

I'm so paranoid now that I take my bike inside the bathroom stall!!

Hopefully karma has taken care of the fool that did this.

Uggh... it still hurts to think about it. Back in kollege when I was Very poor I scrimped and saved for the entire summer to buy myself a brand new Giant ATX 780 (I think it was 1990). I had it for only 2 weeks before it was stolen. I was studying at the tower library at UMASS for the night and had locked up my bike with about 100 others when I went in. A few hours later I came back out and wtf.... WHERE IS MY BIKE. I spent about an hour searching every bike rack around the library thinking that I had forgotten where I parked it (I had a fair amount of short term memory loss back then ;)), but slowly came to the realization that it was gone. I trudged down to the police station and filled out a report, but the officer said that at least 50 bikes a week were stolen from UMASS and they rarely got any back. He said that there were pro's who did nothing but lurk around college campuses waiting for sweet rides to be left unattended (locked or not). They would steal them and then load them up on a truck and sell them out of state.
It took me another year to save up for my next bike (Cannondale M800 'Beast of the East') and have always locked my bike with at least 2 locks ever since. It won't stop them, but if I make it a little more difficult, maybe they will move on to another easier target.
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not quite stolen, but almost.

was in riverside park, had to pee. Broguth my bike into the bathroom with me (public restroom...eeew) but before went in shifted into highest gear. leaned bike against wall behind me and began peeing, finish up turn around just in time to see some guy wheeling my bike out the door. I run after him (tucking as i go_, he jumps on bike...hehehe...only to have his feet slip off the pedals and crotch himself on my top tube. I pick up bike a ride away, i dont want to deal with cops...leave guy curled up in ball holding crotch, karma's a *****...
3 bikes stolen over a week

I had a situation last year where I believe (and this is all speculation based on circumstantial evidence) that my neighbor's chidren were stealing bikes to ride to and fro across town. First bit of evidence was the fact that every time the kids came to visit their mother, they were on a different bike. Sometimes they were new, sometimes they were older. Sometimes it was a girl's bike, sometimes a boys, even though both children were male.

Well, my kids Wally World specials were parked out in front of my house, unlocked. As it happens, my kids had outgrown the bikes, and I was going to give them to our church, but someone beat me to it. One night, my son's bike disappeared. We went away for a short vacation, and when we got home, my daughter's bike had disappeared. Another neighbor's son donated his BMX bike to my son (as he had just got his drivers licence, thus negating the need for his BMX bike, I suppose) and brilliant father that I am, I neglected to bring the bike in the night it was given to my son. Next morning...well, you know the story. All this happened within a 7 day period.

I reported this all to the police, and gave them the info on what I believed was going on, explaining about the bounty of bicycles that moved in and out from my neighbor's house. They duly took the info down, and as expected, informed me that there was little that they could do about it. Needless to say, my bike and my children's new bikes don't spend much time sitting idly in the front yard. The neighbor has since moved, and I would guess that somewhere chidlren's bikes are disappearing daily, only to be abandoned across town once the rider got to their destination.

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Here's one with a happy ending. My friend had nice bullit stolen out of the back of his truck while eating lunch in Bozeman, MT. This sucked, but wasn't the end of the story with the bullit thankfully.

Two days later, one of his friends was walking home when they spotted a punk kid riding the bullit. "Thats a nice bike, feel like selling it?" he says. "how much? says the punk kid. "I'll give you 500 dollars right now, I just cashed my paycheck" "sure" says the kid. "let me test ride it to make sure it fits" he says.. The kid agrees and he jumps on the bike, riding it right back to it's rightful home.

Now the bullit is locked down with a very large cable lock at all times.
These stories serve to reinforce my opinion...

If I EVER catch someone trying to steal one of my bikes, I will beat them with out mercy. I worked too hard, in some cases two jobs, in order to aford my bikes. I'll be damned if I'll let someone take one with out there being a consequence. :mad:
-=Canuck=- said:
I am producing a MTB magazine and it is going to debut in january, I want to start with a letters section. The topic is bike security: Why/How/Where did your bike get stolen, how will you stop it from happening again? Please, share your pain
Last August, my wife's S-Works, and my brand new Blur were stolen. Since then, I've been checking on Ebay, and for any suspicious Blur or S-Works postings. We replaced our bikes, but I still checked periodically. On the 11th, I checked Ebay, and saw this:

My bike! It's my bike! Holy CRAP!

So, I called the insurance company, and they told me to call the police. I call the police, and of course had to leave a voice mail...the police called me back, and asked me if I was sure that it was my Blur, and I said I was. The police called ebay, closed down this auction, then because the posting was an in town pawn shop, they were able to recover not only my bike, but my wife's bike as well. The moron who pawned them used his real and valid ID (first lesson when pawning hot items would be to use a fake id, right?), and now has a warrant out for his arrest. Evidently he lives in Idaho Springs. Because the insurance company paid out the claim, and we have replacements, our old bikes are now the insurance company's property. They offered us a buy back, but it's the amount of the claim, so the insurance company is now going to auction them.

Bottom line, this bike theft has a happy ending, and this bike thief is going to get justice. Not too many bike theives have to face the music...but this one is. I may never see my old bike again, but seeing justice served is good enough.

They still havent arrested the thief...

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A couple of years ago my older brother, who was in a very generous mood, gave me his '99 Specialized Enduro and he went out and bought himself a new GF Sugar. Well, within a year of me receiving the bike, the local Spec. dealer noticed a crack on the frame during a tune-up. BAM! Brand new 2004 Enduro frame. Thankfully, my brother gave me the original receipt as well.
So after a few upgrades (fork, brakes, etc) I had a great new bike that cost me less than $1000 out of my pocket (thanks bro).
Anyway, this past August we did a trip to Moab then over to Vegas for some fun. One morning, we went out to the free parking parcade in our hotel, The Venetian, and wouldn't ya know it; My car, with my bike inside was gone. ALL of my bike gear was in the car as well. The car was stolen not 50 feet from the elevators.
So after a month of collecting receipts and making a list for the insurance company, I have a brand new Titus Motolite that in a way, my brother gave me. He is now jokingly claiming he just 'lent' me the old bike, and now wants it back, and will accept the Titus instead. :D

Insurance can be a great thing.
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Back in the late 90s out side of washington DC, I was with a friend. We planed on riding some urban stuff in DC later that night. We stopped at a seven-11. He waited outside with the bikes when 2 small ghetto rats about 12 years old came up and tried to steal his brand new Tomac DH bike. I think he took out a 2nd mortgage to buy that bike. He blew them off when they asked for the bike the first time so they busted out a calbe of some kind and whiped him across his caff. It busted open as if some one had slicked him with a razor blade. He looked at his legg and the 2nd kid tried to grab the bike so he hit the kid right in his nose and flattened it, That kid was knocked out while the other one ran. The kid gave up the name of his friend when the cops showed up. My friend still has his scare to this day. He later had a bad crash, sold his bikes and never rode since.
During the summer of 2004, a neighborhood kid kept coming by my house asking for work. He was pretty persistent, so I thought I'd help him out and throw the occasional odd job his way. He ended up being an ok worker, so I started using him more and more through out the summer into the fall.

One fall weekend, he came by looking for work, so I had him clean out a bunch of old bricks and trash that were in the back corner of my yard. Since he was hauling heavy bricks to the dumpster, instead of making him go the long way around the yard to the alley, I allowed him to go through my garage, which backed up to the alley. At one point during the day, I happened to look out a back window and saw him standing in my garage, and appeared to be looking at my bike (2003 Ellsworth Isis), which was locked with a simple cable lock to an old cast iron radiator. That evening, after he left, the thought of bringing my bike indoors crossed my mind, but I really didn't think this kid was a thief so I soon forgot about it.

The next morning I came downstairs into my kitchen, which looks out over the back yard. I happened to look out the back door and noticed that the side door of my garage was open. My heart sank because I knew what had happened. I ran outside and sure enough, my bike was gone.

A few days later, this kid had the nerve to come by and ask for more work. I laid into him, telling him that I knew what he'd done, and the cops were looking for him. He ran off, but not after telling me that I shouldn't threaten him because, "People in this neighborhood get beat up. People in this neighborhood get shot!"

I never obtained any hard proof that this kid actually stole my bike, but I find it odd that ever since then, I've never seen him around. Not even walking down the street.
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Titus Racer-X

I had a brand new custom Ti Titus Racer-X stolen at this years Transalp race (long read). Next year I'm going to chain the bike to my leg.
A little OT, but nice ending nonetheless

I got this story from the Darwin awards:

In February, Santiago Alvarado, 24, was killed in Lompoc, Calif.,as he fell face-first through the ceiling of a bicycle shop he was burglarizing. Death was caused when the large flashlight he had placed in his mouth (to keep his hands free) crammed against the base of his skull as he hit the floor.

Kharma can be a beotch!
Happy ending~!

My friend works in a bike shop and pulled up with his bike in the back of his truck with some other stuff. Needless to say he took the other stuff in first only to come out and find his bike had been swiped~! Bummer.
Anyway some mutual friends of ours were out doing an urban ride in a not so nice neighborhood and saw some punk riding the bike. They tailed the guy inconspicuously until he pulled up to a house and parked it on the porch. They then proceeded to wait it out a bit......then stole it back.
It's was all good when they gave it back to the original owner, but they did get some suspicious stares getting it back to their crib........2 people, 3 bikes.
The local "bullies" knew I had good rides and managed to break into our garage in the middle of the night. It was a blue anodized Norco BMX, circa early '80's. It had blue pads, tires, grips and such on it. It was the best looking bike in the neighbourhood - I was very proud.

I was very sad when that one was stolen. That was the last new bike that was bought for me - after that it was visit's to the Police Auctions. Great deals to be had.
A long time ago I got my brother's Diamondback stolen for having it outside in the front yard. I live in a neighborhood with no punks(at the time), just 7 year olds. To make a long story short, it was stolen by a construction worker, who gave it to one of the kids in the neighborhood. Eventually, the kid gets of "his" bike in our yard to play with his friends and walks home. He he, stupid kids make me laugh.
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