A lightweight bike lock. That’s what we all want isn’t it? And the best lightweight bike locks will be easy to carry around and will also keep our bike safe. It’s not too much to ask, is it?
Well, there are loads of lightweight bike locks. The shops are full of brightly coloured cable locks and spindly armed u-locks. And they’re usually really cheap too. But the problem is: none of them will protect your bike!
Why? Well, unfortunately there’s a direct link between weight and security. And generally, the lighter a bike lock, the less secure it is.
But hold on, hold on! Before you run off, there are lightweight bike locks that will protect your bike. They’re just not the feather-light tat you’ll find in the shops.
So keep reading and I’ll introduce you to seven bike locks that don’t weigh a ton and will actually keep your bike safe.
But before we start, a quick clarification. All the lightweight bike locks here offer at least Sold Secure Silver levels of protection. I don’t recommend locks that are less secure than this, as they won't stop your bike from being stolen!
If you’re not sure who Sold Secure are, or how to decide what level of protection you need, check out my complete guide to choosing the best bike lock.
In the meantime, here are 7 of the best lightweight bike locks currently available:
1. TiGr Mini: Lightest Lightweight Bicycle Lock!
If (low) weight and (easy) portability are your priorities, and your circumstances are low risk, then there's no better bike lock than the TiGr Mini.
While most bike locks are made from steel, the TiGr mini is mostly titanium. And since titanium has unparalleled strength to weight ratios, this is the lightest, mid security lock available today (by some distance).
1.25" / 32 mm
0.9 lb (0.4 kg)
4 x 7" (10 x 18 cm)
Other Security Ratings:
Weighing just 0.9 lb (0.4 kg), the TiGr mini isn’t much heaver than 1 can of Coke! And it’s 50% lighter than the Kryptonite Evolution LITE Mini-6 which is the lightest u-lock offering the same level of protection.
But how secure is it? It hasn't been tested by Sold Secure. However, ART the Dutch security organisation have, and they awarded it 2/5 stars. This is roughly equivalent to a Silver rating from Sold Secure, and makes the TiGr a mid-security bike lock.
So it’s not a lock for valuable bikes in high risk areas. And it’s not a lock to protect your bike for long periods. But it’s fine for quick stops in lower risk areas and it would make a great secondary bike lock in more risky circumstances.
And it’s not just light. A great frame mount makes it really easy to carry around. It looks great. And you’ll get fantastic after sales support from a US company that really cares about it’s product and it’s customers.
It’s a very small lock, so you’ll need to make sure it’s suitable for your bike and the places you want to secure it. And it’s also pretty expensive.
But if you’re looking for the lightest bike lock currently available, that offers a reasonable level of protection, you should definitely check it out.
Read my in-depth review of the TiGr mini here to find out why it's one of the best lightweight bike locks around!
2. Abus Granit X-Plus 54 Mini: Strongest Lightweight Bike Lock
The Abus Granit X-plus 54 Mini has more independently awarded, high security ratings than any other lightweight bike lock.
Abus Granit X-Plus 54 Mini
2.56 lb (1.16 kg)
4.23 x 5.51"
(10.8 x 14 cm)
Other Security Ratings:
It’s a very special lock. Pretty light and incredibly secure, I can’t understand why it’s so often overlooked.
Not only is the 54 Mini rated Sold Secure Gold. It’s also Sold Secure Motorcycle Gold. And it has 3/4 stars from ART. All this means that it’s a very, very secure lock.
And because of it’s special parabolic 13 mm shackle, it still only weighs 2.56 lb (1.16 kg). Which is incredibly light for lock as secure as this.
Obviously it’s a mini u-lock, so again, it’s very small. But measuring 4.23 x 5.51″ (10.8 x 14 cm), it’s actually pretty wide for a smaller u-lock, so your locking options won’t be quite as limited as other minis.
Again, it’s not cheap by any means. But a relatively light, high security lock never will be.
So if you’re looking for a more traditional lock with an incredible security to weight ratio, the Abus Granit X-Plus 54 Mini could well be one of the best lightweight bike locks for you.
3. Litelok GO: Lightest Sold Secure Silver Bike Lock
Litelok now have a Sold Secure Silver rated lock to go with their Gold bike lock. It’s made from the same “Boaflexicore” material, but there’s less of it, so it’s obviously lighter (but less secure) than the Gold version.
1.4" (3.5 cm)
1.6 lb (0.73 kg)
27.6" (70 cm)
Other Security Ratings:
And they’ve made some improvements in the usability too. A vertical locking motion makes it easier to close, and a naturally circular shape makes it easier to get around whatever you’re locking your bike to.
And it’s also designed to be worn around your waist like a belt. So it's really easy to carry around when your riding.
It’s not quite as light as the TiGr Mini, but it has much bigger internal dimensions, giving you far more locking options.
I tested the 70 cm version. But it's available in 2 other sizes. Plus there's 2 "U" shaped versions which are smaller (so can't be worn like a belt).
Litelok GO 52
Litelok GO 70
Litelok GO 85
Litelok GO Flexi-U
641g / 750g
19x10 cm / 27x11 cm
So if you don’t need a super secure bike lock, and you’d like easy portability and lots of locking options, this is one of the best lightweight bike locks around. Read my full
4. Kryptonite Evolution Mini-6: Best Lightweight Mid-Security U-lock
The Kryptonite Evolution LITE Mini-6 [Amazon] is the lightest Sold Secure Silver u-lock currently available. And apart from the TiGr Mini and Litelok Silver, this makes it the lightest, mid-security bike lock, full stop.
Kryptonite Evolution LITE Mini-6
1.65 lb (0.74 kg)
2.75" x 6"
(7 x 15.3 cm)
Other Security Ratings:
It’s clearly a mini u-lock, measuring just 2.75" x 6″ (7 x 15.3 cm). And while that doesn’t make it particularly short for a mini U-lock, it does make it very narrow. In fact it’s one of the narrowest u-locks on the market.
So make sure it’s suitable for your bike and the places you’ll be locking your bike before you buy it. Because you’re pretty much limited to bike stands with this one.
The shackle is only 11 mm thick, but it’s made from a “MAX-Performance” steel that’s as strong as some of Kryptonite’s other 13 mm shackles.
And this is reflected in the security ratings, with Sold Secure giving it a Silver award. In fact, it’s the only 11 mm U-lock with a Sold Secure Silver award.
But it’s not double-bolted (it features Kryptonite's famous "bent foot" shackle). And this is not a primary lock for high risk areas.
But just like the TiGr, it’s a great lightweight lock for less valuable bikes, less dangerous areas and shorter stops. And like the titanium lock, it would also work well as a secondary lock.
So if you’re looking for a super light bike lock at a very reasonable price, this is one of the best lightweight bike locks currently available.
5. Foldylock Compact: Best Lightweight Folding Bike Lock
Folding bike locks are not generally light. They're not as heavy as chains. But they're heavier than similarly sized u-locks. And while the Foldylock is no exception to this rule, it's the lightest folding lock currently available.
2.2 lb (1 kg)
33" (85 cm)
Other Security Ratings:
The Foldylock weighs 2.2 lb (1 kg), making it one of the heaviest locks on this list. But the best thing about folding locks is the way they collapse down into a really small package that makes them the easiest bike locks to carry.
If you use the frame mount (which you can either screw into the holes meant for your water bottle, or fasten round your frame with Velcro), the lock lies very close to the frame, which means there's no movement or rattling while your riding.
And again, because it's so small when folded down, if you throw it in a bag you'll barely notice it's there!
The Foldylock is also incredibly easy to use. When extended, it gives you the same locking area as a standard size u-lock. But because it's flexible, it gives you loads more locking options than any u-lock.
It's rated Sold Secure Silver, so it's a great lock for lower risk circumstances. And it's probably the most practical, easy to use option on the best lightweight bike locks list!
So if you're looking for a lightweight mid-security lock, that's easy to carry and gives you loads of locking options, check out my full, hands on review of the Foldylock Compact.
6. Litelok Gold: Lightweight and Flexible
The bigger, tougher brother of the Litelok Silver, this is Litelok's original bike lock. And it's made using the same “Boaflexicore” technology.
2.5" (6.5 cm)
2.47 lb (1.12 kg)
29" (74 cm)
Other Security Ratings:
The innovative construction enables the Litelok to be the same length as a cable or chain lock, but weigh less than many high security mini u-locks, and still provide Sold Secure Gold levels of protection!
The Litelok is 29″ (74 cm) long, making it the same length as a chain like the Hiplok. And that’s not super long. But it’s long enough to give you loads more locking options that you get with a u-lock.
So what’s the drawback? Well, it’s quite expensive. It’s quite bulky. And it’s not as flexible as a cable or chain. This means getting it around your bike can be frustrating and carrying it about is more challenging that you’d imagine.
However, Litelok have recognised that portability isn't just about weight, (it's also about bulk and the way you carry a lock on your bike). And they've introduced a wearable version of the Litelok Gold that allows you to strap it around your waist like a belt.
This wearable Litelok Gold is a marked improvement on the original Litelok that I tested, and is definitely the best lightweight bike lock they make. It's available in three sizes...
Litelok Gold Small
Litelok Gold Medium
Litelok Gold Large
There has plenty of discussion about how secure the Litelok really is. But it has been rated Sold Secure Gold. And they're so confident about how well it will protect your bike, that they offer their own "theft protection" scheme.
So if you're looking for a Gold rated lock that will offer you loads of locking opportunities but that doesn't weigh a ton, it might just be the one for you.
Read my full, hands-on review of the Litelok to find out why it's one of the best lightweight bike locks currently available.
7. Tex-lock X-lock: Lightest Sold Secure Gold Bike Lock
A bit of a unusual one to end on! The Tex-lock is an innovative German bike lock that combines a textile sheathed 6 mm chain with a mini u-lock that they call the "X-lock".
It's worth reading my full review to get your head around how this works!
1.41 lb (0.64 kg)
29" (74 cm)
Other Security Ratings:
But the most important thing here, is that the X-lock is currently the lightest Sold Secure Gold rated bike lock. And that's because it's tiny!
Measuring just 5" x 1.93" (12.7 x 4.9 cm) it really is small. It only just goes around a Sheffield bike stand. And even then, the rubber sheath catches and you have to force it over slightly.
I'd imagine that the people at Tex-lock didn't design it to go over a Sheffield bike stand. But it's a pity they didn't make the lock just a couple of millimetres wider as then it would be a perfect fit.
I may end up removing the rubber sheath that covers the shackle on mine. This would get rid of the stickiness, but a naked metal shackle is obviously more likely to scratch your paint work!
As it is, it just about fits. And that means that for those of us in cities and towns that almost exclusively use these stands, the X-lock is a great option. It's so small it can genuinely slip into your pocket.
You won't be able to secure either of your wheels (you could use the textile/chain lock for that, or look at other options). And you've got to apply a bit of pressure to get it around the stand.
But if you're looking for the smallest, lightest, Gold rated lock that's usable on it's own, then the X-lock could be the best lightweight bike lock for you!.
If it sounds a bit too restrictive, then the Abus Ultimate 420 140 [Amazon] and the Seatylock Mason 85 140 [Amazon] are the next lightest Gold rated bike locks and more "normally sized" mini u-locks.
These are definitely two of the best lightweight bike locks that are both high security and practical to use (as long as you're prepared to modify your locking technique).
Abus Ultimate 420 140
1.98 lb (0.90 kg)
5.5" x 3.15" (14 x 8 cm)
Seatylock Mason 85 140
2.13 lb (0.97 kg)
5.5" x 3.35" (14 x 8.5 cm)
Just be careful that you choose the Gold version if you go for the Abus Ultimate though as it used to be rated Sold Secure Silver and there could still be a few of the older models hanging around!
Best Lightweight Bike Lock Summary
So those are the 7 best lightweight bike locks available today. Locks that will actually protect your bike!
When you’re choosing your lock, think carefully. All bike locks offer a balance of three qualities:
You need to find a balance where your lock is affordable and easy to use and (most importantly), secure enough to prevent your bike from being stolen.
If you want a particularly lightweight bike lock then you’ll need to make sacrifices elsewhere. Maybe it will be smaller. Maybe it will be more difficult to use. Maybe it will be more expensive.
Maybe it will be slightly less secure. Just remember that security is the most important job of any lock!
Make sure you’re aware of the security level you need for your circumstances and choose from the best lightweight bike locks that meet that security level.
Never buy a cable lock. And never go less than Sold Secure Silver!
Need more help understanding what level of security you need? Check my extensive 3 step guide to finding the best bike lock for you.
This page contains affiliate links, which means I may earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase. You will not pay any extra. More details here.
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The 560g seems quite interesting, can’t see it available in the Uk though
Which ones that Peter?
Hi Carl, the 560G is Altor’s lock (altorlocks.com)
Ahh OK, thanks Jon. I’m very dubious about the Altor lock!
Please test the Ottolock. It looks like a good lock and is under 1 lb. Let us know what you think! Thanks.
Yes I’d really like to review the Ottolock! From what I’ve read it will make a great cafe stop lock for racers etc.
But I don’t think it will be strong enough to use on a day to day basis, as anything other than a secondary lock.
How does ottolock compare to the Tigr mini?
Great article. Have you also looked at GPS trackers
I talk about them briefly at the bottom of this article…
But I haven’t looked into them in too much detail yet. I will though!
please review the ottolock!
Just noticed a review on the Ottolock website. For UK (and presumably, EU) customers there’s a 65% markup to clear customs. That’s not worth it to me. Shame. I’ll wait until there’s an EU distributor.
Will you try the texlock bike lock ?
The Texlock looks really interesting. But they haven’t had it evaluated by any third party testers so it’s difficult to know how secure it really is. If they get it tested, I’ll review it.
However, even without such an evaluation, I’d say it’s much tougher than a cable lock and may be suitable as a secondary lock for wheels and seats. I definitely wouldn’t use it as my primary lock at the moment though!
Please review Tex-Lock!
I’ve been using Master Lock’s Streetcuffs for 10 years and no one has tried to tamper with them. They have to be used correctly though, I lock 1 shackle round the bike stand and the other around the rear wheel but within the rear triangle. If they cut the one round the stand or the link they still have to deal with the one on the wheel! They weigh about 2.5kg so not super light, but they fold in two and you don’t need the key to lock them. I carry them in a deuter frame bag. I’m thinking of getting a second one for high risk areas, I’d use this one for the front wheel meaning the thief would have to make 2 cuts minimum to ride away, but then 1 shackle would still be on the frame requiring an extra cut before the bike can be sold! So, for me it’s not just about how strong the lock is but making life very difficult for the thief.
Good points Sean!
I think for me, at Sold Secure Bronze, the Streetcuffs are just not secure enough. Presumably the low rating is because the links between them can be easily cut?
However, as you point out, if (after having cut through the links) they’re still not able to ride the bike away (because of the cuff around the wheel), they’re much less likely to bother.
It’s all about finding a system that works for you I suppose!
How does the Abus Granit Futura 64 compare to the Kryptonite Evolution Mini-6? It’s just 726 g with an 11 mm shackle. So the specs are very similar to the Kryptonite.
They both seem to be a perfect compromise between weight and security. I’d just like to know if one of them is stronger or harder to pick.
Well, I’d say the Abus is probably more secure as it’s double bolted, while the Kryptonite is only locked on one side. That means the Kryptonite is more susceptible to leverage attacks.
I’m not sure which would be easier to pick but I wouldn’t worry about that too much … they’ll be both difficult enough to pick to stop it happening in the street.
Hope that helps!
I see Altor have just released a steel version of their lightweight Apex. Still no sign of an independently-tested security rating. Many of these lightweight locks are fairly pricey and would probably be of interest to those with high-end bikes looking for good security and low weight. However, no Sold Secure rating basically means no sale in the UK if the bike is to be covered by most insurers!
Yep I agree. And regardless of the steel, those joints look very vulnerable to me.
Might want to check this out, and then reconsider how much faith you put into a sold secure rating:
(stick with U locks)
Fair point, but whilst I’d rather not have my bike stolen by a scumbag, I certainly don’t want the issue compounded by my insurer refusing to pay out. So it’s not so much a case of putting faith in Sold Secure, it’s the need to meet the conditions of my insurance which require Sold Secure Gold.
Sure, a determined thief can break/pick/circumvent a Gold lock, but a Bronze or no-mark lock is even easier to defeat. So I’m also pushing the problem elsewhere by choosing a better quality lock. Another bike nearby will have an inferior lock on it, or won’t be secured properly through the frame, etc etc
Fully acknowledge however that if a scumbag wants to steal my bike, they will if they’re determined enough. I can’t stop that happening, regardless of lock choice.
I see the TiGr Mini + now has a Sold Secure rating, and it’s Bronze. https://www.soldsecure.com/search///tigr-blue-mini.html
With many insurers wanting silver or bronze, that’s not going to do the trick.
That’s a different lock to this one though I think.
Indeed Carl – it seems to be this forthcoming Kickstarter item https://tigrlock.com/blue/ which says it’s a blue steel variant and harder to cut than the Ti version with some tools. Still 2 stars on Art, and now Bicycle Bronze on Sold Secure. From that description and rating, I’d be surprised if the Ti versions were anything better than Bronze if they were put forward for Sold Secure testing, if this one’s harder to cut.
I like the idea of this lock, the Art score is ok, but for me it just isn’t a strong enough bike lock compared to the others on this page. However if I’m wrong and a TiGr lock gets at least a Silver rating, that would be very much worth a look given the low weight.
Yeah, I hear what you say. But I’m not sure there are any 2 star ART locks that are also Sold Secure Bronze.
In fact it usually goes the other way…
The Kryptonite New-U Mini 7 which is the Wirecutter’s favorite lock (partly because they reckon it can’t be defeated by bolt cutters, (I’m not so sure!)), is Sold Secure Gold and has only got 2 stars from ART.
Now you could say that this just shows that the rating systems are defective. And I’d agree they’re certainly frustrating!
I think they’re too broad to be wholly useful. But getting a load of locks and trying to break them yourself has drawbacks too.
What do you think about this one: https://www.abus.com/eng/Mobile-Security/Bike-Safety-and-Security/Locks/U-locks/Ultimate-420
0,9 kg and Sold Secure Bicycle Gold sounds pretty awesome. I’m planning to use this + Ulac The Bee Go (0,18 kg) as a super light combo for long trips. https://www.ulaclock.com/collections/neo-alarm/products/the-bee-go
Sure, its just a cable lock, but it has an alarm that is activated both when cut or jostled around. And the Abus Ultimate will be there too. Thoughts?
I think that’s a pretty good combination. As long as you always use both locks! And the Abus will obviously always go around the frame.
Just an update on my comment. I’m not satisfied with the Ulac lock: The batteries get drained very fast, and they also keep loosing connection with the lock so that you never know if the alarm function is really on or off. The alarm has also been activated by movement even if i the alarm function was off. And the lock is incredible easy to pick open.
Because of the super light weight i will keep using it, but only on long trips, and i will have to try to use duct tape to keep the batteries in place, and remove the batteries when i’m not on a long trip so they do not get drained.
I am happy with the Abus Ultimate. Its very light and strong. The Abus Granit X-Plus 54 Mini, even if its 260 grams heavier might be an even better choice, as it is even stronger, has a dust cover and is extremely pick resistant.
Can I get a horseshoe rear wheel lock for my Dawes lightweight? has anyone tested one of these locks? Ta.
Hi Carl. Thank you for your excellent reviews. I’m principally a tourer. I live in a low risk area. Have you ever looked at combination locks? What i want is is a well mounted lock that will withstand lots of rough roads – preferably under the seatpost like the rockbros, or if not there then on the top tube but clear of the cables running underneath. All my bottle holders are in use. I’m looking at the big lufu folding but would it mount on the top tube ? or on top of the top tube? I like the foldylock but the same applies and it isn’t a combination. not having a key is one less thing to worry about when touring.
thanks for any advice, Peter
So sorry about the late reply!
Yes I’ve written about combination locks here.
Abus do combination folding locks. None of them are Sold Secure Silver standard (or higher) though. So you’d need to be sure you’re very low risk.
Or what about one of the Hiplok combination chains you can wear around your waist? Although again it’s not super secure.
The problem is combination locks tend to be less secure.
If you’re prepared to forego the combination then the Litelok is a good option for touring. And you can wear it round your waist.
I hope that helps!
Confused – this article says that the LITELOK is lighter than the mini U-locks, but it is actually the same weight or more…..
When I wrote the original article the Litelok was the lightest Sold Secure Gold rated lock.
So lighter than any Gold rated mini u-lock.
The other locks on this page weren’t Gold rated.
Since then I’ve added the Seatylock Mason which is both Gold rated and lighter than the Litelok.
So yes it’s no longer accurate!
I need to weigh both locks myself to confirm. And then I’ll update the article.
Thanks for pointing this out 🙂
As far as I know the Seatylock Mason is the only Gold rated lock that’s lighter than the Litelok.
Thank you so much for the response! I’m trying to decide between the Litelok and the Abus. I saw an amazon reviewer post a picture for the Abus showing how it had been cut with an electronic cutter in broad daylight in an urban center. It was a clean cut for sure! Crazy. Since no lock really seems to deter the criminals in any situation, which lock do you think you would more prefer – the Litelok or the Abus?
I can’t seem to comment on the Litelok review but are you aware of this video of it being defeated very quickly with bolt croppers?
I really don’t think that it can be considered high security; it’s much more a medium security lock.
Just bought the x-lock Tex-Lock direct had it shipped from Germany to UK. Didn’t want the textile bit just the lock.
To clarify, the lock you’ve pictured above isn’t the one that weight 450g (mini u-lock), you’ve pictured the one which I’ve bought (x-lock) which is 650g – https://www.tex-lock.com/en/shop/4-04-01-00067-x-lock-mini-u-lock-622?category=3#attr= Also you’re referencing the fabric and u-lock combo which actually weighs 1160g including the fabric strap.
It’s still the lightest and thank you for this site as I used it to pick a lock 🙂
Good spot Sam, I’ve updated the table!
Nice one, seems a decent lock and was just over €40 inc postage so very reasonable.
Thanks again for the handy page
Thanks for the reviews.
After trying a few locks I agree that the Abus Granit 540 is the best overall bike lock. The Kryptonite Evolution seems just as good as a lock but has a terrible mounting and rattled. The Litelok Gold is more flexible but at 2.4kg is heavy and for fitness cycling not great to wear and also can be cut with large bolt croppers.
However, I would like to have a secondary lighter, smaller lock just for securing the front wheel and making the bike overall a bit more secure.
I did consider the Abus 54 mini. However, it is about £80 and does not come with the USH mount that the 540 came with. It also weighs about 1.15kg
The X-Lock Shackle looks like a great option as a secondary lock. It is about half the weight of the 54 and also half the price. I am sure it is not as secure as the 54 but even a less secure Gold lock is probably good enough as a secondary lock.
Perhaps a 540 and an X-Lock Shackle is the ideal combination – at about £100 and 2kg.
Thanks for your message.
The thing you need to be careful of with the X-lock is that it’s very narrow. So it will only work with Sheffield stands. And even then, you may find that the rubber cover eventually wears off!
But if you’re OK with that, then it’s a great lightweight choice.
PS: the Litelok can’t be defeated with large bolt cutters, it’s large cable cutters. The importance of this distinction is that these giant cable cutters are much less commonly used by thieves.
Have you considered pitlock skewers for your front wheel? (you could then get a heavier and more secure primary lock rather than having two)
Pitlock skewers stop someone stealing a wheel but do nothing to secure the bike oeverall.
From what I have seen there isn’t anything much more secure than my existing Abus 540 as a single U-lock. One review said it took longer to cut through a Kyrytonite lock that had a thicker 18mm shackle whereas another found that the Abus took longer to cut through – they speculated that while the shackle was thinner it may have been made with harder steel.
I think that two locks (of at least Sold Secure Gold rating) will always be more secure than any single lock.
Actually there is one lock that is more secure than any Abus or Kryptonite U-lock or chain and that is the £300 Altor SAF (Strong as F*uck) U-lock. This weighs over 6 kilos and is the only U lock that claims to be angle grinder proof. Tests seem to confirm this – technically you can get through it with an angle grinder but it takes over an hour and uses up multiple batteries and grinder disks.
According to this NY Times review they cut through the Hiplok Gold with bolt cutters – they show a picture of the 24″ and 36″ bolt cutters they used and they are not cable cutters.
“Hiplok Gold: This chain [can be worn.] It’s a nice feature, but the cut time for this lock was among the quickest, and the real dealbreaker was our ability to snip it quickly with large bolt cutters.”
(However, 24″ cutters seem to be more commonly used by thieves than 36″ bolt cutters. Plus – I bought the Hiplok a few eeks ago when Amazon were selling them for £30.99 so it was very good value.)
The NY Times review is limited though as it only focuses on how easily locks can be defeated. They did not consider aspects such as ease of use and weight like you do. For example, the Abus 540 was lower rated than the Kryptonite NY 18mm lock as it could be cut in less time. However, the Kryptonite is considerable heavier and does not come with any frame mounting options.
Overall I do think that there needs to be some education/rebranding of Sold Secure Gold. Some of these locks, like the Litelok Gold seem quick and easy to defeat (look at all the Amazon reviews where people have pictures of these locks after thieves have cut them) whereas others like the Abus and Kryptonite D Locks are much more secure and only really vulnerable to angle grinders – which can defeat any lock. Sold Secure really need to get on with splitting these Gold rated locks into Gold and Diamond to differentiate them – or instead rating the locks out of 5 like ART do.
The Hiplok Gold can definitely be defeated buy bolt cutters: it’s a 10mm thick steel chain. The Litelok Gold would be very difficult (if not impossible) to defeat with bolt cutters as it’s a cable type construction and the jaws of a bolt cutters tend to squash the cables rather than cut them.
A lot of the bad reviews of the Litelok on Amazon refer to the LockPickingLawyer video (in which he used a very large pair of Japanese cable cutters), rather than personal experiences. The ones with their own photos look like they’ve been cut with an angle grinder, which will for sure go through the Litelok a lot faster than a u-lock.
But as you say: an angle grinder will go through anything. And there are plenty of bad Amazon reviews of my favorite lock (the Abus Grant X-Plus 540), with photos of cut locks.
I think the Litelok gets a bit of a hard time to be honest. I think this is the most level headed assessment of the Litelok I’ve seen.
Totally agree with you about the NY Times article though. To dismiss the Abus 540 because the 13 mm shackle took less time to cut through than the 18 mm Fahgettaboudit shackle is so strange it seems suspicious.
And yes the arrival of Sold Secure Diamond is definitely welcome! Hopefully it will lead to more clarity.
PS Just for the record (and hopefully it is clear from the site) I still think a D lock is the best choice for most people.
One interesting point from the NY Times article was that they found it easy to cut through the Litelok Gold with their small (24″) bolt cutters. (Not cable cutters as others have done.) They could not cut the cable itself with bolt cutters but they WERE able to cut through the lock mechanism with bolt cutters, showing that was a significant weakness.
Walking around central London I notice that pretty much every bike is locked with a U-Lock now. (The vast majority of these are Kryptonite locks.) I am guessing that anyone who locks their bike with a cable lock or thin chain learns a painful lesson pretty quickly. I still see the odd bike though where they have used the U lock to just lock the wheel to the frame – without locking it to the bike rack. 🙁
I think that there is value to having a small secondary lock that locks a wheel of the bike – as long as it is used together with a decent U lock for the frame. Locking say just the front wheel with a small liteweight U lock (like the Gold rated TexLock X Lock which is about 600g) will make a bike thief either have to defeat two locks or just defeat the frame lock and walk away with a bike without a wheel.
I found it interesting that in every CCTV video I saw of bikes being stolen, no matter what tool was used be it bolt cutters or angle grinders they always rode off on the bike. So a secondary wheel lock (or even just a disk lock?) – would make your bike less attractive to a thief than the bikes around it. Although i am sure some bike thieves use vans to load bikes in to that seems to be a small minority – I suppose because vehicles are easier to track from CCTV than a person with their face covered.
Thank you so much for a really informative website, Carl.
I found the idea of the LiteLok interesting, so I clicked on the theft protection link for the LiteLok Gold, but got a 404. I clicked around on their website, and they’re no longer offering the theft protection (https://www.litelok.com/pages/litelok-theft-protection).
Ahh that’s really interesting Jennifer, good spot and thanks for letting me know!
The Abus 420 comes up at 780g (checked on two sets of scales), and the (Sold Secure Silver) Kryptonite Evolition Lite at 690g. Maybe their listed weights include the frame mounts.
Yeah I think they usually do.
The Abus Bordo 6055 Lite weighs 440g (with a holder to strap it to your bike for 60g); you can get one for 40GBP average, it’s solid & there are different varieties. There’s no competition!
It’s light and compact, AJ. But I don’t think it’s secure enough, to be honest. Your circumstances would have to be very low risk to get away with this lock.
What is the best lock for quick (<5-10 minute) stops, ie. at a bathroom or cafe?
It depends on many factors, Bo. What do you think of the Litelok GO on this page?
LiteOks can be undone in 16 seconds by cablecutters… why you gave them 4 stars?
Because it’s not a tool that is commonly used to steal bikes, Konrad. If you’re concerned about this, they have released a version called the Litelok Core which can’t be defeated by these cable cutters.