How To Protect Your Bike From The Bike Thief

Double lock with serious locks such as Magnesium hardened chain and class 3+ U-lock, locking through frame and wheel to the bike rack,  keep the serial number and take photos.

I learn the hard way…  My yellow Giant TCR-2 road bike was stolen last Thursday, July 5 between 4:45 pm and 6:10 pm from the bike rack in front of Shoppers Drug Mart at the intersection of Granville St. and Dunsmuir St.  in Vancouver downtown.   The bike rack is along the Granville St which is only buses are allowed.  Busy street with many pedestrian and easy to spot if somebody try to steal the bikes.

I posted on Craigslist and Kijiji, then I got an e-mail from an eye-witness.  She said she realized something wrong. The guy was moving really fast, quite stressed by the rack. Then she saw a huge pair of clippers in his hand.  So she tried to stop him and spoke really loudly ‘the guy is stealing the bike !!’.   But nobody helped her.   She was afraid of his big pair of clippers and he looked under drugs.  She could not do more.  After the thief left with my bike, one guy came up to her – ” Was that your bike? ”

I appreciated what she did and I felt a little bit of relief to know that somebody tried to stop.   When I came out from the gym and saw my lock being cut and hanging from the rack,  I went to Shoppers and Holt Renfrew to see if I can see their security camera but they did not let me.  I did not have a phone with me, so at least a girl at the cosmetic counter let me use their phone to call the police.   I asked if the police try to find the bikes, then they said they do not look for stolen bikes or monitor the website.  Basically they will be a judge when the bike was found.  Also if you do not have the serial number, they do not give back to the owner even if you have detail description.  The serial number is very important!!

Since then, I have been  calling, e-mailing and visiting bike shops and pawn shops; posted  on Facebook, Craigslist, Kijiji, and Bike Revolution Canada; have been checking those site and also pinkbike.com

After posting on Facebook, my massage therapist whom I have not seen over 2~3 years and whose bikes were also stolen twice gave me a lot of good advises and also recommend me to go to Hasting St. to ask people.  He said this will be the best chance of finding my bike, the bike will disappear with 48 hours, probably to Montreal or somewhere else in Canada.  One of the staffs at the bike shop said he heard they go to Surrey because it is easy access by skytrain and they have more population than Vancouver.  These advises give me some idea where to search.

One of the pawn shops told me that they need to report the serial numbers to police every time when they get bikes.  One pawn shop said they need to wait one month before putting in a store.   Then one said they won’t buy it if it is suspicious.

MEC does not sell used bikes ( I thought they do… so I e-mailed my photo) but correspond my e-mail right away and told me that the store has to wait for a year.  MEC was very helpful and answered my questions and gave me an advice.  They also sent me this , where to find the  serial number.  They said they keep record of the serial number and purchase record for their members.

I also e-mailed to Global BC because I thought Holt Renfrew may show the video to a reporter.  I learn that so many people are victims of the bike thieves.  If they show what the thief looks like and how to do it on TV, they can save more cyclists.  They should report  not only encourage people to ride a bike to work  but also bring awareness of the bike thief and community to help each others .

The store seems to be tough place to sell and people are keeping eyes on the Craigslist.  Where do the thieves sell all these bikes??  Where did my stolen bike go?

I miss my bike very much.  I think about the good day with my bike,  the great feeling of  the air and the smooth ride.  It was a gift from my boyfriend in Australia.  Something is not replaceable.

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