View Full Version : stuck ulock

08-21-2006, 07:26 PM
My last intention is to give any bike thieves new ideas, but I do have a serious problem with a ulock that I can't get off my bike.
The key to my Planet Bike ulock broke off inside the lock. I managed to get the half of the key that was stuck inside the lock out, but, in doing so, I have messed up the interior lock mechanisms rendering spare keys useless.

There are a few things I have tried, some looked more promising than others, but were very close to bending my frame. I am not going to list all that I have tried because I don't want to give people ideas on how to steal bikes--just because these methods didn't work when I was worried damaging my bike doesn't mean they wont work when someone that doesn't care about the bike tries.

If anyone has any ideas, i would appreciate them. If you're not down with submitting it to an online thread--i don't think i really would be--, you can send me an email also, manunkynd@gmail.com .

Thanks for any info.

09-01-2006, 09:48 AM
A couple of years ago, my U lock froze when the bike was parked in downtown Eugene. Key just would not turn it. Called a tool-handy friend, who showed up with this giant pliers-looking tool, with which he grabbed the U part of the lock and bent it till it broke.

Made me realize 1. the power of leverage + the right tool and 2. how easy it is to break a minimum size krypto lock if you have #1.

Of course, it was a BIG tool and took him at least 5 minutes, so it's not something a thief would do in broad daylight (this was at night after 10 pm on a well lighted major street in front of a closed restaurant.) Then again, after reading the WWeek cover story last week about bystanders not interfering with bike thieves....

09-01-2006, 09:36 PM
Assuming you are willing to sacrifice the lock, an angle grinder will do the job in about 60 seconds. I have a small bike shop and fairly regularly perform this service (after some attempts to determine if the "customer" is the real owner!)

I lift the bike up and clamp the ulock in my vice, being careful then to cut it in a place that the lock will not immediately fall apart and dump the bike on the floor. One minute really is a realistic estimate, although it will be a very noisy, minute, with lots of sparks flying!

09-03-2006, 06:36 AM
Talk to a locksmith. Atlasta Lock & Safe, which is near River City Bicycles (702 SE Grand Ave), ought to be able to advise.

09-03-2006, 08:42 AM
an angle head grinder or a cut-off wheel on a circular saw or drill will get through your lock. use a towel or blanket to protect your frame from sparks, if you are concerned with hitting the frame with the cutting wheel, use a piece of wood as a shield. definetly wear safety glasses, and a pair of gloves with a long sleaved shirt will help protect you as well.

09-14-2006, 04:53 PM
One method that has been used to compromise the U or D locks is to use a jack inside of the D and apply pressure until it pops. It may not be easy to find a jack that fits in there, but depending on how its locked to whatever its locked to, you may be able to but it between a structure and the lock (pole, ground etc)

I think most of the ways to compromise these locks are pretty common knowledge. Its more a matter of it being easy or worth the trouble. If someone wants your bike, there gonna get it if you allow them the opportunity to work at it, regardless of the locks you use. Any lock can be cracked in time, but a lock being watched is much more difficult to break.