Bike Theft Chronicles: Shop reports thieves are cutting cables to steal parts

Posted by on October 20th, 2014 at 2:53 pm

This installment comes from our friends at Metropolis Cycle Repair on N. Williams and Page.

The shop owner Nathan Roll emailed us to share an alarming trend they’ve noticed at the store lately. Here’s what he posted to Facebook (emphases mine):

A heads up to all of our friends in the neighborhood. We have had 2 bikes come in during the last week that had significant parts stolen off of them. In both cases, the thief cut the control cables (brake and shift) to facilitate the theft. One had an expensive front rack taken while parked outside a workplace, the second had the handlebars and stem taken while locked outside the owners house. The first was at Thompson and Vancouver, and the second was at Williams and Morris. Unfortunately, a good lock is no defense in these situations. Stay watchful, and don’t leave your bike locked in public longer than necessary.

This really sucks. And I can relate. A few months ago while parked on the side of the EcoTrust Building in the Pearl District, someone cut the wire to my dynamo light and stole it.

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EdJohn LiuBethTodd Boulangerbob Recent comment authors
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these theft incidences are quite pathetic……… might these thieves feel if components and accessories WERE STOLEN FROM THEIR KID”
S BIKES? rather sad,don”t you think?

Todd Boulanger

It is a sad but expected trend…one that needs increased PPB resources but also more secure long term bike parking and riders to adopt simpler bikes for when you have to leave it on the street.


That is why the bike i ride downtown and leave locked up for errands and appointments is a cheap, heavy mountain bike with lackluster stuff on it. Since we will never cure theft or be rid of poverty, we have to respond accordingly to spikes in poverty-related crime. Dress down, don’t flash your cash, and don’t park in the same place every time. Common sense.

John Liu
John Liu

Bring back rod-operated brakes!


While waiting for streetcar near powells saw two guys walk by with bike frames few minutes later they came back around the corner with tires and a seat thought there must be a bike shop near but then half block away saw them putting parts on bike. This was in the middle of day on 10th and quite brazen would have taken pictures if I had caught on think word should be gotten out on their methods as their are a lot of cameras out there