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Is a lock necessary?

Do I need a lock? Hate to carry one if it’ll never be used.

12 Replies

mcdermott1, May 27, 2019 at 2:03 pm

I’m about to do my 4th Ragbrai, and I do not believe I have ever seen a bike locked up anywhere on the ride. However, on the other hand, if I owned a $6000 plus bike , I may consider using one. I would think if some one is going to take a bike , they would try take a higher end bike.


mootsman, May 27, 2019 at 2:04 pm

Unlikely but it does happen. Depends on how high end your bike is but I use a simple & cheap 4 foot cable lock. Its a very thin cable that fits in a jersey packet. Its not about how good the lock is but if the bike is harder to steal then the others which are almost all unlocked. So even a minimal lock works. I don’t even lock it to anything.


Joe Chavis, May 27, 2019 at 4:32 pm

23rd RAGBRAI, never locked my bike. Never been stolen, but I do for the most part ride crap bikes? A couple of my traveling partners, stole my bike from me whole is was sleeping, ( their idea of a joke) on one trip and sold it to some lady for $25. She took it to her camp, but her husband assured her it must be a joke…. they returned the bike. Go Figure… where else but RAGBRAI

Be Fun Have Safe


jwsknk, May 27, 2019 at 6:15 pm

Most that go missing are in 9vernight towns. Some accidental. Looked just like mine. Some people just forgetting where they left it. A few taken by locals usually turn up. For the most part not the higher end bikes. It’s the cheaper ones that won’t stand out as much in a smaller town. But if it makes you feel better take a small lock for at night. Like someone said they are looking for an easy score they can ride off on. Even leaning 2 or 3 together enough to slow someone down.


Uncle Kraig, May 27, 2019 at 7:14 pm

Leave it at home, you wont miss it.


jdeutmeyer, May 27, 2019 at 11:10 pm

During the route the the bikes would be unlikely to be stolen at roadside stops as everyone comes in and leaves with a bike. Would be hard to leave with 2. So you don’t need to lock up the bike. During overnight towns I would recommend locking bike. Even if it is just locked to a friends bike, it stops ride offs. Bike theft is very rare on RAGBRAI.


John Richardson, May 28, 2019 at 8:21 am



Brady Bisgard, May 28, 2019 at 10:09 am

I’ve never locked mine but I’ve also only stayed in large campgrounds. Say you were camping somewhere secluded at night alone – then maybe? But definitely don’t bring a lock on the ride each day. Entirely unnecessary.


klkoopman, May 28, 2019 at 10:45 am

We carry an Onguard Terrier lock which is a thin 7′ steel cable with a combination lock. At 8 ounces it is very light. I would never carry it during the day on the ride but it provides extra peace of mind overnight, especially when camped near a major street. I consider bikes mounted on the back of a car travelling to and from RAGBRAI to be much more vulnerable. We have more confidence running into a restaurant, truck stop bathroom or staying overnight at a hotel when the bikes are locked to the hitch mount.


garywilk, May 30, 2019 at 11:50 am

During the ride no, if you ride around town at night, you may want to prevent ride offs. My brother and I just have a small lock long enough to lock our bikes together. It is actually a small gun lock which is a small master key lock with about 2′ of very very small rubber coated wire. Easily fits into my back pocket or even a front shorts pocket. Anything to make it a little difficult to just ride off should work. Using a shoe string with a double knot would likely work.


Mary Tunakan, May 30, 2019 at 12:52 pm

We typically use a very thin, lightweight one during the day as a mild deterrent (we have some pretty expensive bikes). At night, even with our club at a separate camp site, we always lock with a thicker cable lock.


Larry Klaaren, May 30, 2019 at 1:47 pm

The one bike I know was stolen happened at a charter campground when the bikes had been unloaded from the transport truck and were waiting to be picked up by the owners. That was a very expensive bike.


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