Cable locks are probably the most versatile type of bicycle lock out there. From heavy and secure armoured cable locks with additional overlapping steel sleeves to simple spiral locks, there's a huge variety of sizes, lock types and colours to choose from. If you only ever use one cable lock to secure your bike, we recommend using a heavy-duty cable lock with additional armour - such as Abus Steel-O-Flex series locks or a Trelock armoured cable lock. In combination with a folding, shackle or chain lock, light, thin and easy to handle spiral locks are also ideal for seperately securing components and accessories.
The classic bicycle lock is the cable lock. This type of lock will appeal to cyclists who prioritise convenience and practicality. It’s a very popular security solution when basic levels of protection are all that are required.
Bike Cable Lock Pros
Cable locks are:
Highly practical and easy to secure to static objects
Lightweight and easy to transport. It can be looped around most bikes or attached to your bike via frame mounts
Useful for securing saddles and tyres so that thieves can’t specifically target these elements
Bike Cable Lock Cons
For all of its advantages however, there are disadvantages commonly associated with bike cable locks as a lock type. Cables are less secure than solid shackles and links and both of these options offer poor visual deterrents. Their security level is comparatively low, so that this type of lock is especially recommended for additional securing of wheels and saddle, or for securing bikes that will only be left unsupervised for a short time in locations with low theft risk.
There are also safer armoured cable locks, but these are then usually significantly larger and heavier.
What to Consider
There are particular considerations and questions to ask yourself when looking for a new cable lock. We’ll look at these by components:
Is it flexible and relatively low weight?
Is it solidly constructed from a thick, high-quality and durable material? Thick cables have a better deterrent effect on many petty thieves and armoured cables provide better protection against cutting or sawing. Is it made from impact-resistant and hardened steel?
Does it feature some form of sheathing or synthetic coating to protect your bike’s paintwork from damage?
Is it a coiled or a standard shaped cable? Coiled cable provides a longer cable length – making it easier to fix to things. The longer the cable, the better the reach.
Does it come with high protection against manipulations, e.g. picking and drilling?
The case as well as supporting elements of the locking mechanism should be made of a special hardened material such as steel
Does it automatically lock when you insert the locking bolt?
Does it include corrosion protection and a dust cover?
Does it offer a codecard for replacement and replacement keys
Does it feature a manually operated cover for the keyhole against dirt and corrosion
Are the keys provided user-friendly and reversible? Are they supplied with the lock?
Opting for a combination lock also means that you have no keys to lose but combi-locks are considered less secure than keyed versions
Does it come with a mount? Is it a universal bicycle bracket? Can t be easily attached to the saddle clamp
Popular Manufacturers: Abus, Trelock, Masterlock, Kryptonite , BBB, Onguard , Red Cycling Products, RFR, Giant and AXA rank amongst the most trusted and well known manufacturers of innovative and top-quality cable locks.