Abus Bordo 6000 Folding Bike Lock Review
|Abus Bordo 6000 Summary|
|Plate thickness:||5 mm|
|Weight:||2.69 lb (1.22 kg)|
|Length:||35" (90 cm)|
|Other Security Ratings:|
The Abus Bordo 6000 [Amazon] is a folding bike lock that provides a medium level of security. Folding locks are a great choice if a U-lock is too tricky to carry or doesn’t give you the locking options you need.
But is the Bordo 6000 the best lock for you? In this hands on review, I’ll look at how secure it is, how easy it is to use and carry around, the different variations available and if it’s not quite right for you, I suggest some alternatives.
How secure is it?
However, folding locks are not as secure as comparable U-locks. The steel bars are thinner than most U-lock shackles. And the pins that hold the bars together provide another vulnerability that we don’t find in U-locks…
The steel bars that make up the Bordo 6000 are just 5 mm thick. And unfortunately that’s just not thick enough to offer a very high level of protection against bigger bolt cutters.
There are several videos where testers are able to cut through these links with 30″ bolt cutters. And most of them don’t even need to use the ground for leverage…
But it’s not just the bars that are vulnerable. The pins that hold the links together can also be cropped if the thief can maneuver the lock into a favorable position…
So I would this say this Bordo actually sits at the lower end of the Sold Secure Silver rating. For sure, other Sold Secure Silver locks can be defeated by a big set of bolt cutters. But not so easily: a thief will usually needs to use the ground for leverage.
(By the way, it’s worth noting that the Bordo 6000 is available in two lengths: 2.5 and 3′ (75 and 90 cm). And only the longer, 3′ lock has a Sold Secure Silver rating. However they both offer the same level of protection so this is only important if you’ve got an insurance policy that requires you to use a Sold Secure Silver rated lock.)
But does all this mean that we shouldn’t consider the Bordo 6000 at all? Is it a waste of money? Well, not necessarily. Yep, in the right hands, a pair of 30″ bolt cutters will make short work of the Bordo. But bolt cutters like these are not used by every bike thief!
In low risk areas, with a low cost bike this lock should be fine. With my bike, where I live, this lock offers more than enough protection. And as we’ll see, there’s plenty of other things to like about the Bordo 6000…
Is it easy to carry?
For most people, the big attraction of folding locks is the way they collapse down into a very compact package that’s much easier to attach to your bike and carry around than a U-lock.
The problem with U-locks is that their rigid shape means that once they’re attached to your bike, their center of gravity is away from the frame. And the frame mounts can struggle to hold the U-locks securely with the weight distributed this way. So the U-locks can work loose and rattle or swing about. Sometimes they even fall off!
With a folding lock we shouldn’t have this problem. The lock folds down to a neat little rectangle that sits very tightly in it’s case against the frame. It shouldn’t work loose. It shouldn’t rattle or swing about. And it should never fall off!
The Bordo 6000 comes with a sturdy, rubber covered frame mount. And it can be attached to your bike in two ways…
If you’ve got holes in your frame for attaching a water bottle carrier, then the frame mount can be screwed into these. Otherwise, there are two strong velcro straps that should fasten the mount securely anywhere on your frame.
There’s a rubber strap that stretches over the top of the lock once it’s in the frame mount to keep it tightly in place. You have to stretch it a little to fasten it, but this means it’s super tight and the lock doesn’t move about at all.
I tested my Bordo on two bikes. One where I was able to screw the mount into the frame and one where I had to use the velcro straps.
Both were very easy to fit. And while the rubber construction allows some give, they both felt very secure and there was no movement or rattling as I rode. I felt completely confident that lock and mount were firmly in place and unlikely to work loose in the future.
However, I much preferred screwing the frame mount into the frame than using the velcro straps. Not only did it feel more permanent and secure, if you use the velcro straps it’s not possible to tidy away the excess length after they’ve wrapped around your frame…
This means you’re left with untidy and annoying strips flapping about. You could of course trim them down with scissors, but then if you moved to a bike with a thicker frame, you’d probably need new straps!
The compact folded form of the lock is also better than a U-lock if you have to transport it without the frame mount. It’ll take up much less room in you bag than a U-lock for example. Once the Bordo is folded down it measures just 7.75″ x 2.5″ x 1.25″ (20 x 6.5 x 3 cm). This is clearly much, much smaller than any U-lock.
The Bordo 6000 is also a winner weight wise. The 2.5′ Bordo weighs 2.27 lb (1.03 kg). And the 3′ Bordo weighs 2.69 lb (1.22 kg).
The 2.5′ Bordo is lighter than most Sold Secure Silver bike locks. Yes, there are lighter Silver rated locks. But they’re all mini U-locks. And this means they’ll give you far less locking opportunities than the Bordo 6000, which offers almost as much internal space as a standard size U-lock as well as a flexible shape.
And while there are a couple of standard sized Sold Secure Silver U-locks that are lighter than the 3′ Bordo, the bigger, flexible internal space in the folding lock will give you far more locking opportunities than you’ll get with those U-locks.
So, the compact folded down package, a good frame mount and the light weight make the Bordo a very easy lock to carry around on your bike on a day to day basis. And this is an important quality when you’re considering a bike lock. If it’s easy to carry around, you’re much more likely to use it. But is it easy to use as well?
Is it easy to use?
Using the Bordo 6000 is pretty straightforward. It slips out of the frame mount fairly easily. And once you’ve worked out the best way to unlock it (unfold the center links first so it’s easier to pull out the link that’s attached to the locking mechanism), securing your bike is easy too.
Like any bike lock, actually getting it round your bike and an immovable object can be simple or frustrating depending on the circumstances.
I’ve got to admit, in an empty bike rack, I find a standard sized U-lock much quicker and easier to use. You just line everything up and push it through. With a folding lock you’ve got to thread it through the wheel and around the frame, which is much more fiddly and usually requires two hands.
However in a busy bike rack, “lining everything up” for a U-lock can be difficult if not impossible, which may lead to locking your bike in a less secure way or giving up altogether.
In these circumstances a folding lock like the Bordo 6000 becomes much more useful. It won’t be any quicker, but you can pivot the links around so that eventually you’ll be able to lock your bike as you’d like to.
And as well as the ease of transport this is the other big advantage of folding locks: their flexible shape means you can fasten them around objects that you wouldn’t be able to if you were using a U-lock.
Not just busy bike racks, things like lampposts, wide railings and poles, that might be inaccessible with a U-lock, become feasible and easy locations for securing your bike!
However, don’t make the mistake of thinking that folding locks offer the same sort of practicality as a long chain or cable. Because neither sizes of the Abus Bordo are really long. The 2.5′ version actually provides the same internal space as a standard size U-lock. And the 3′ version doesn’t provide much more…
Having said that, I was able to just about lock two bikes, including both frames and back wheels to a single bike rack using the Bordo 6000. And there’s no way I could have done that with a standard sized U-lock…
Like all Abus locks, the mechanism turns smoothly. It comes with two keys but can be ordered “keyed alike” if you have other Abus locks and you want one set of keys to open them all.
What else? Well, the body and links of the Bordo are covered in a slightly soft rubbery plastic that feels pretty durable and should protect your bike from scratches.
And another great thing is that you can link two different locks together to make one long Bordo if you need to!
The Bordo range can be quite confusing as there’s lots of different locks and they all look very similar. It might be a good idea to give you a quick overview so you don’t buy the wrong one!
Then you have the Abus Bordo 6000 [Amazon] that’s available in two different sizes (2.5′ and 3′) and two different colors (red and white). This review is for the 3′ (90 cm) black model.
There’s an even longer Bordo 6000 called (you guessed it) the Abus Bordo Big 6000 [Amazon] which measures 3.9′ (120 cm) and is also available in red and white.
|Abus Bordo 6000 Range|
|Bordo 6000||Bordo 6000||Bordo Big 6000||Bordo Ecolution||Bordo Centium|
|2.5' (75 cm)||3' (90 cm)||3.9' (120 cm)||3' (90 cm)||3' (90 cm)|
Then you’ve got two strange variations on the Bordo 6000: the Bordo Ecolution and the Bordo Centium [Amazon]. The Ecolution’s big thing is that all the components can be re-cycled. While the Centium has been jazzed up visually (with chrome and faux leather!).
They’re more expensive than the regular 6000, but the most important thing is that they offer the same level of protection.
Dropping down another level in terms of security, there’s a whole load of other Bordo locks. The 6100 is the same as the 6000 but uses a combination rather than a key. The uGrip Bordo 5700, which is made from non-hardened steel and is available in a rainbow of different colors. And last (and by all means least) the Bordo Lite 6050 which is made from plastic covered steel wires.
These lower level locks should be avoided. If you decide to buy a Bordo, be careful you don’t accidentally choose one of these. The only Bordo locks that offer Sold Secure Silver levels of protection are the Bordo 6000s, the Ecolution and the Centium.
The Bordo 6000 is a very popular lock. And after using it for a couple of weeks I can see why. Here’s a list of the things I liked and some of the things I didn’t like about this lock.
+ Highly portable
Sure, it’s pretty light. But more significantly, it folds up into a fantastically compact package that can either be slipped into a bag or the very practical frame mount. If you use the frame mount, you can be confident everything’s going to stay in place and there’ll be no annoying rattling!
+ Loads of locking options
There’s two reasons for this. It’s has slightly more internal space than a standard sized U-lock (if you’re using the 3′ version). And it has a flexible shape. Together, this means more options when you’re looking for somewhere to lock your bike.
Need a little extra length? That’s no problem if you’ve got two Bordos. Simply link them together and you’ve got one very long lock.
– Can be fiddly to use
Maybe this is just me. But I find threading the links through the wheels and around the frame and immovable object a little cumbersome compared to a U-lock.
– Medium security
This isn’t a lock for high risk situations. It’s a Sold Secure Silver level lock. So it should be OK if your riding a less attractive bike in a low crime area and/or you don’t leave it alone for too long. And remember, this is at the low end of the Silver rating. A thief with 30″ bolt cutter should be able to defeat this lock.
For the level of security you get, this is a pretty expensive [Amazon] lock. Of course you’re getting the advantages of great portability and loads of locking opportunities. But it’s still expensive.
It’s very clear why the Bordo 6000 is such a popular lock. It’s really easy to carry around on a day to day basis and gives you locking opportunities that you won’t get with any other type of lock.
So it’s light, it’s compact and it’s easy to use. And these things are important considerations when you’re choosing a bike lock.
However it’s not a high security bike lock. It’s not a lock for protecting an expensive bike in a high risk area. Or for an extended period of time.
But if you’re risk level is “lower” in my guide to choosing the best bike lock, then the Bordo 6000 may well provide the right balance of security and convenience.
Alternatives to the Abus Bordo 6000
Of course if the Abus Bordo 6000 doesn’t feel like the best bike lock for you, then there’s plenty of alternatives…
Looking for something more secure?
If you like the idea of a folding lock but suspect that the Sold Secure Silver Bordo 6000 doesn’t offer quite enough protection, then the only logical alternative is it’s big brother the Abus Bordo 6500.
The Bordo 6500 is more secure in every respect. The links are 0.5 mm thicker at 5.5 mm. And while that might not seem much, it means this lock won’t be so easily defeated by a pair of 30″ bolt cutters.
It also features the famous Abus Granit locking cylinder which is far more secure than the cylinder that comes with the 6000.
Of course the extra security comes at a price. It’s more expensive, yes. And it’s also 5 cm shorter at 85 cm and 30% heavier at 3.48 lb (1.58 kg). But this is the only Sold Secure Gold folding lock currently available.
So if you want a folding lock but need high security protection for a high risk situation, then the Abus Bordo 6500 is the only choice!
Looking for something lighter?
If you like how the Abus Bordo 6000 is so easy to carry, but still feel it’s too heavy, then how about the TiGr mini?
This is the lightest lock currently offering a similar level of protection as the Bordo 6000. While it’s not yet been tested by Sold Secure, ART have awarded it 2/5 stars which is roughly equivalent to a Sold Secure Silver rating.
It’s made from titanium and is an incredible 67% lighter than the Bordo 6000! It also comes with a great frame mount that screws into the water bottle carrier holes in your frame. And if you don’t have these holes, you can carry it with a SKS Bottle Adapter, or just slip it in your bag.
Looking for something cheaper?
Abus locks are rarely cheap. And neither are folding locks. So if the Abus Bordo 6000 is too expensive, then how about the Kryptonite Kryptolok Series 2?
You’ll get the same Sold Secure Silver level of protection. In fact, the U-lock is almost certainly more secure. And as you can see in the photo above, the internal locking space of the U-lock is almost as big as the folding lock.
Of course, the U-lock doesn’t provide the flexibility that the folding lock gives you. You won’t have as many locking options and you wont be able to lock two bikes together properly (unless go get the longer shackle version). And it’s true that the U-lock is definitely more difficult to carry around.
But the Kryptolok Series 2 is significantly cheaper than the Bordo 6000. And since it’s probably the easiest U-lock to use, it’s a great choice if you want some of the practicalities of a folding lock at a fraction of the price. Read my hands on review here.
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Abus Bordo 6000 Specs
|Abus Bordo 6000 Summary|
|Plate thickness:||5 mm|
|Weight:||2.69 lb (1.22 kg)|
|Length:||35" (90 cm)|
|Other Security Ratings:|