10 Jan 2017

A-bus locks: Each year a heavier mangle than the last! ©



The Danish TV news website has a piece on cycle theft in Denmark. One in seven of  reported crimes is for cycle theft. Far fewer are ever prosecuted. A few different means of securing one's cycle are mentioned in passing. Including a "Skunk Lock" with pressurized, stinky liquid under pressure in the loop. If a thief tries to saw though it then they are likely to release the substance. With such deleterious effects that they are very likely to sue the owner of the lock. And win, in today's justice lottery for free handouts system.

30 years since "We" went to the Moon and there is still no serious AND LIGHTWEIGHT cycle lock on the market? The more valuable or lightweight the cycle the less likely the owner is to want to carry a 3lb+ A-bus U-lock. Many U-locks and chains weigh much more! But still the executives go home to their posh homes in their posh cars to their posh families with a completely clear conscience and sleep like babes in their posh beds. No doubt they all get together at a posh golf club when they aren't actively forging their salaries.

How much longer are locks going to live in the pre-WW1, cast iron washing mangle/wringer era? I carry my 2lb A-bus Mini U-lock everywhere regardless of the likelihood of anyone wanting to steal a "handicap" trike. Which is how a woman described it only this week when one of her young children asked what it was. I carry an extra 2lb chain when I ride to the city. 4lbs total is getting close to the weight of some CF cycles! The lock manufacturers should be damned well ashamed of still relying on heavy steel sections for security! They started making locks in 1924 and A-bus locks get heavier every year!

A-bus are also the criminals here for aiding and abetting cycle theft by denial of a meaningful security device! As are the national politic-ooze [tax vampires] in Copenhagen for not hiking the fine for cycle theft to a crippling level!

They used to hang horse thieves. Perhaps it is time to make similar examples of the cycle thieving scum! Let's U-lock the thieving scum by the neck to a post in the city center. To publicize the start of the "like-for-like" cycle value matching fine for each and every theft! With a minimum of £1000 to get the scum's and [finally] the police person's attention.

And, let's make the executives of lock companies all wear their heaviest U-lock permanently 24x365 around their scrawny, fossilized necks! At least until they stop making their ill-gotten gains under completely false pretenses!

Choose your A-bus washing mangle/wringer here: mangle | eBay

Or even here:

ABUS: Bike Lock Configurator - Configurator for bike security - Bike

Note the complete absence of weight data in the selection process? You have to select a lock and then search the technical data to discover it weighs 1.6kg or more! 1.6kg x 2.2 = 3.5 lbs in turn of the 20th Century A-bus money terms: 3.5lbs!?!?!?! Thank you A-bus! Purveyors of non-serious bike mangles for nearly 100 years! 

The Bordo Granite [whatever] weighs 1750 grams! Are Abus actually bragging about the weight? Why granite? 1.75kg x 2.2 = 3.9 lbs in Abus pounds. Nearly 4lbs!!!! Would you like to carry their latest <cough> high tech Bordo on your emaciated carbon fiber steed? You know, the one you paid several thousands for. With all the weight saving, top end parts just to save 50grams overall on a 6lb bike. But, you can have a 4lb A-BUS, upmarket lock for no more than £86 rotting, dead squid from ChainReaction UK.

 Abus Bordo Granit X-Plus Folding Lock | Chain Reaction Cycles

Scroll down for the weight!  £86/4 = Over £20 squid a pound. For dirt cheap, iron bar! That's Antiques Roadshow pricing!A>re they serious? No of course not! They make bike locks, after all.

I just checked one of the most popular Danish cycle accessory dealer's websites and found NO mention AT ALL of bicycle lock weights! Nor did Wiggle! Service with a smile? Or a sick/smug grin?

If you go to the glossy A-bus website you'll see a couple of clean shaven, male models posing in front of a computer screen with a specially staged 'skeleton' of some fancy lock system. Probably borrowed as Jpeg from a real lock company. Let's leave aside the similarities between skeletons and fossils for the moment. How much computing power you need to bend a 5/8" length of solid steel bar into a simple half loop? Something like 1k per century processor speed? That'll be the latest A-bus computer system to match the latest A-bus cycle locks. I'm amazed they don't claim "Oxygen free" like the rip-off Hifi cables. Though I'd better not give them any more clever ideas for fleecing the innocent cyclist!

My own, A-bus Mini U-lock hasn't worked properly from day one. The key won't ever go in without endless turning and jiggling to match the various layers of metal before final insertion. I feel like a seriously handicapped pensioner standing there completely unable to put the bløødy key into my humble bløødy, A-bus cycle lock! Thank you, Abus!

If you are daft enough to hang the A-bus Mini U-lock from the cycle frame it rattles like a tin can full of ball bearings on steroids! Mine still rattles even when inserted deep into the side pocket of my Carradice Camper, Longflap, saddle bag and strapped down tight. I'm exaggerating very slightly because even the A-bus Mini loop is too long for the pocket's depth. But hey! It's an overpriced A-bus Mini!

I once tried hanging the damned thing directly from the junction of the chainstays on my way to Odense. But had to stop within half a mile to stuff wet tissues in my ears to act as ear plugs! Not that it helped much to "damp" the racket from the A-bus lock. 

For those several years short of a pension: A "mangle" was a massively heavy, cast iron, clothes wringer used around the end of the 19th century and start of the 20th century. Since they were aimed only at [mere] working class women the weight didn't matter a damn. Nor did the effort required to turn the iron handle to drive the massive cast iron gears and huge rollers. "Mangle" was an ironic reference to the countless injuries. Where innocent fingers were drawn between the crushing rollers to burst like ripe grapes. 

We are talking serious "Arnie" weight lifts and jerks here. Often repeated for hours on end. The heavy washing would be lifted out of a bucket full of freezing cold water sitting on the bare, frozen cobbles with one bare, frostbitten hand. Then fed between the massive wooden rollers as they were simultaneously turned by a huge crank with the washerwoman's spare, third hand. Later machines had rubber coated rollers for decoration. Arnie would have approved.

A-bus would have used extra heavy, cast iron rollers had they been in the "cutting edge" market of mangles or wringers. Abus: "Our products weigh as much as a bus!"© That should make an excellent marketing theme!  Highly memorable and should go down a ton in the global TV commercials. At least they can't be accused of money laundering if they never made mangles/wringers. 

Strangely, Chain-Reaction doesn't mention the weight of Kryptonite locks. That's probably because they are made of priceless Unobtainium. Mined from distant asteroids, to make sure they are far too heavy for any wimpy, drug addled, bandy-legged, snot-nosed, shit-faced, micro-penised, scrag-ended, cycle thief to actually carry them away. So they can work with a little more privacy than in the shopping high street. Not that anybody would notice if they used a deafening angle grinder and showered passing shoppers with burning sparks! That would be too much to hope for!



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