When you buy a bike, do these things

If you frequent bike message boards, you’ll see tips on “what to do if your bike gets stolen,” but fewer messages and discussions about how NOT to get your bike stolen.

So what should you do to keep your bike yours?

As soon as you get your bike, do these things (and in this order):

  1. Buy a lock and learn how to lock it. Learn from the Chicago Bicycle Program’s webpage or ask the bike shop staff to show you. Even if you don’t think you will need to lock it, YOU WILL at some point need to lock your bike to something (even if it’s inside your garage or on the balcony).
  2. Take a photo of you AND the bike (freestanding and not locked). This does two things: associates you as the owner of the bike, and reminds you what your bike looks like so you can describe it to others.
  3. Record the serial number. Save it to your computer, your Evernote, and your fireproof safe. This is another way to associate you as the owner of the bike and is unique to the bikes from that manufacturer.
  4. Register your bicycle with the bike shop (if they offer it) AND the local police department.
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6 Responses to “When you buy a bike, do these things”


  1. 1 Travis Wittwer June 2, 2010 at 9:55 pm

    Great suggestions. I do all of those. I also take a photo of the serial number and any speciality items I have on the bike like saddle. I can include all of these photos and text and information on one page…PDF it. Then save the PDF and email the PDF and then print it if need be.

    • 2 Steven Vance June 2, 2010 at 10:05 pm

      Good idea. I will do the same thing!

  2. 3 dfghjk June 2, 2010 at 9:59 pm

    You forgot the most important thing:

    Take it for a ride. Love it. Enjoy it. It will treat you well.

    • 4 Steven Vance June 2, 2010 at 10:05 pm

      You’re totally right. Please, ride your bike!

  3. 5 Valentina June 12, 2010 at 12:55 pm

    Great suggestions. I do all of those. I also take a photo of the serial number and any speciality items I have on the bike like saddle. I can include all of these photos and text and information on one page…PDF it. Then save the PDF and email the PDF and then print it if need be.
    +1


  1. 1 Tweets that mention When you buy a bike, do these things « Odds and ends -- Topsy.com Trackback on June 2, 2010 at 9:52 pm

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