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Why A Good Lock For Your Bicycle Is Important And How To Choose One

Countless accessories are manufactured for bicycles and bicycle riders. When thinking about such products we often think of helmets, lights, water bottles, specialized clothing, speedometers, and racks. One important accessory your bike should never be without is a good locking system. Just because you live in a relatively safe neighborhood doesn't mean you have no need for a lock.

Bicycle theft is a growing crime throughout the United States, and it doesn't matter where you live. Bicycles are relatively easy to steal and easy to sell or get rid of. They're an easy target for dedicated criminals, opportunists, and bored teenagers. Unless you never intend to leave your bike untended, you should invest in some sort of locking system. Even if you're just leaving it outside a convenience store for a couple minutes so you can go inside real quick, that's all the time a thief needs to make off with your ride. Don't think that thieves won't steal a cheap bike, either. They'll take whatever they can get their hands on, whether it's a rusted old girl's bike with faded streams dangling from the handlebar grips and a torn-up banana seat or a sleek high-dollar professional mountain bike with full front and rear suspension.

There are basically two options when it comes to locking systems for bikes. The most popular is the chain or cable lock with either a separate padlock or combination lock or with the lock integrated into the chain or cable. If this is the type of lock you're looking into, make sure that it's long enough to wrap around both wheels and the frame. With this style of locking system, the best choice is a chain that's as thick as you can comfortably carry.

If you'd prefer a cable lock, again, make sure you purchase the thickest one possible. The thicker the chain or cable, the more of a deterrent it'll be for thieves and scoundrels. The downside, of course, is weight. Cables tend to be lighter than chains, but they also tend to be easier to cut. You have to consider the importance of weight relative to your bicycling activity.

An avid racer is extremely concerned with weight, but such a competitor isn't going to be leaving his/her bike just lying around, either. In all likelihood, weight is not a serious issue to you. One advantage chain/cable locks have over other varieties of locks is their ability to encompass oddly shaped shaped objects such as trees, bushes, etc.

The other popular bicycle locking system is the U-lock. As the name implies, such locks have a big bend in them and are essentially big padlocks. Some are only big enough to go around the back wheel and the bike rack. Others are big enough to go around the frame as well. These sorts of locks are nice because they're quick to employ and come with clips to hook onto the bike frame without scratching it.

Whatever kind of bike riding you intend to do, unless it's solely competitive racing, you should invest in a good bike lock. You should get the heaviest one you can. An important feature to look for is some sort of guarantee by the manufacturer. Good locks come with assurances that if used correctly, and your bike is stolen, the manufacturer will reimburse you for the cost of your bike.


All Bikes Are Not Created Equal - What Makes BMX Bikes Different?

Everyone knows what a bicycle is and how to use it, but you know that a BMX bicycle is not just your run of the mill bike. What makes a BMX bike different and special when compared to any other bike in the neighborhood?

The BMX bike is one of the fastest growing bikes on the market. In the 1960's, BMX bikes began as knock off versions of motocross motorcycles. BMX bikes were used to play in the dirt. Riders were seen jumping and racing around dirt tracks, as well as, around their neighborhoods on BMX bikes. Kids who were typically uninterested in motocross or racing wanted to get their hands on a BMX.

So, what is particularly different about the BMX that has taken the bicycle market by storm? You can identify a BMX bike from your average bike in a number of ways. Specific features of a BMX bike include standard 20 inch tires. The tread on a BMX tire is much different when compared to your average bicycle tire. A regular bike tire may have a few grooves or ridges, but a BMX tire tread has large knobs and crevices to help gain traction and maintain control in the dirt. Rough terrain would be too much to handle for an average bicycle tire, but BMX tread can get the job done.

An average bicycle frame is rather heavy when compared to the frame on a BMX bicycle. The lightweight frame sets BMX apart from other recreational bikes. The sturdy, yet lightweight, frame of the BMX can withstand shock well. The durability of the frame is necessary for riders who want to really play and the dirt.

How does BMX keep their frames so light and durable? An average bicycle frame may be made from stainless steel or another inexpensive metal. BMX frames are formed from aluminum or chrome steel. Aluminum will not rust and is extremely lightweight. These qualities help to make a BMX frame both durable and practical. This is especially important for youngsters interested in performing jumps and stunts on their bike.

BMX bicycles typically have only one gear. Unlike other sports and recreational bicycles, a single chain and no gear shift. This variation from the norm allows riders to pedal with ease in multiple directions. The ability to pedal both backwards and forwards on a BMX bike allows for easier stunts, tricks, and jumps. Can you pedal backwards up a hill on any other bike?

Padding is standard on a BMX bike. You may find padding in as many as three locations on a BMX. The crossbar between the handles, the gooseneck, and the straddle bar are common areas for BMX padding to be prevalent. Safety is of utmost concern when enjoying your BMX bike. The wide range of activities during BMX competition make the padding a necessity when it comes to safety.

Another unique safety feature found on a BMX bike is seen in the stem. Four large bolts help to increase durability and stability of the frame during rough landings. A rider may place their body weight on the handles during a stunt. For this reason, extra safety precautions must be in place.

BMX bikes are built differently from an average bicycle to meet the high demands of riders in competition. Lightweight frames and durable parts make BMX stand out from the rest. Safety features are extremely important to protect riders during stunts on uneven terrain. Noting such differences between a regular bike and a BMX, it is easy to see why BMX bikes are so popular.


The Joy Of Bicycle Riding - Still There After All Of These Years

When I was a kid, a long time ago, we didn't sit around playing video games. We all get together and play football or we would jump on our backs and go riding all over town. Even though it seems like a lifetime ago, I can still remember rushing home from school and pulling my bike out of the garage to go running around with my buddies. Since we were all in our early teens none of us had a driver's license so this was the only way for us to get away from it all. If mom or dad wanted something from the local mini-mart we volunteered to go get it just so we could get out and ride our bikes. Growing up on the beach in Florida my favorite bike was a "beach cruiser" which was a single speed bike that most of my fellow surfing friends and I chose. Can you remember what kind of bike you were riding back then?

Can you remember the brand of bike that you rode? We all were riding Schwinns and Huffy but I also had some friends that rode bikes made by Mongoose and Diamondback which were pretty much known as the premier bikes of the day. If you saw a kid riding one of these you knew that their family was well to do since they were the most expensive bikes around and they were also of the highest quality.

This is one of the first things that you should look at when you are shopping for a new bike, quality. You want a bike that is well constructed and sturdy but made with lightweight materials so that the bike isn't so heavy. If you choose a bike like this it will not only be more durable but it will also stand up to your freestyle antics and any other craziness you may try on your bike. A heavy bike can be a real drag and can keep you from being able to do all of the tricks that your friends can do. I can remember we used to go to this local lake and ride our bikes down a natural ramp and jump over a spillway into the lake, that was fun although sometimes we would have to dive down to the bottom to get it back.

These days with the internet we have world wide access to bicycle brands all over the world in order to find the perfect bike for us. There are literally thousands of bike styles that you can select from and with the ability to search on the internet you can shop prices and be sure you are getting the best price as well. This enables you to be able to find the best deal on whatever bicycle brand you choose. Many sites also offer reviews by professional bicycle experts that will also aid you in making your decisions so that you know which brands are really bad and which ones you should consider. Having all of this knowledge at your very fingertips via your computer keyboard there is no reason why you can't find the bike of your dreams or those of your children.


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