There are three important items of equipment necessary to be a bicycle messenger. The first is the bike. Next is the bag, without which packages get damaged or lost. Third and most importantly is the lock, the leash for the bike while one retrieves and delivers packages. My perspective on bicycle locks is different than the average consumer. I live and work in one of the busiest cities in the world with a notorious reputation for bicycle thieves. I alternate between riding and locking my bicycle to poles, trees, and racks in all weather conditions year round.
I was recently awarded an ABUS Bordo 6100 folding combination lock as a prize for my team’s podium performance in a recent messenger race. I decided to test out this unique folding link style of lock as spending my work day wearing a heavy chain around my hips affects my ability to walk normally. The links on the chain sometimes weigh heavily on my thighs preventing me from riding at the best of my ability. I needed an alternative.
When I first looked at the Bordo I noticed an empty pod in the packaging. I thought my prize was missing keys. Upon closer inspection, I realized it was to vigorously remind the user that keys were not necessary for the lock. This feature is marvelous. In the past I have lost keys, dropped them down subway grates that line most streets in Manhattan or simply worn them out from long term usage.
The Bordo comes with a carrying bracket that attaches to a standard water bottle cage mounts. It has two thick 1″ velcro straps for mounting to frames without water bottle bolts. I tossed the velco straps aside, using only water bottle bolts during installation.The compact size of the lock inside of the bracket enables it to be transported efficiently without awkwardly interfering with one’s legs during pedaling. The bracket has a rubber strip at the top of the bracket to keep the lock secure during transport. There is a square hole in the strip that corresponds to a notch on the outside of the bracket. It is simple to open and close with a firm tug of the rubber strip.
After removing the lock from the packaging, I noticed the weight was fairly substantial. I decided it was a good thing. More metal means a greater obstacle for thieves. After using a heavy chain for years its smaller heftiness would still be easier to haul around all day.
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If you’re not familiar, Club Ride specializes in high performance cycle wear that can often pass for casual clothing. The Vibe jersey represents their second generation of western styled bike jerseys. I reviewed their Go West jersey a while back, and I can definitely say that that I appreciate the improvements.
By and large, Club Ride has simplified things on the Vibe. It’s noticeably lighter and cooler than the previous generation. Gone are the full zipper and twin buttoned breast pockets. The Vibe still features low-profile snaps down the front, and the single breast pocket and lone rear pocket feature zippered closures. Both pockets are lined with mesh fabric which also makes an appearance under the arms to provide superior ventilation.
In my humble opinion, this is a great looking casual shirt, and it’s been my number one choice when I’m biking to a bar or restaurant. I can commute to work in it and then wear it all day on reasonably cool summer days. I’ve enjoyed wearing it on hot and sweaty mountain bike rides, and it performs every bit as well as my logo-emblazoned Lycra jerseys, and maybe better.
My only real nit to pick is that the fabric tends to look a bit more wrinkled than a classic cotton button down shirt. Since it’s 59% polyester and 41% nylon, you can’t really take an iron to it.
The Vibe is available in S-XL and retails for $95. Color choices are Indigo Devo (pictured) and Raven Devo. Check out www.clubrideapparel.com