October 22, 2013

Make Sure Your Lock Job's an A

I suspect that Hal Ruzal of New York City's Bicycle Habitat would have little sympathy for the owner of the plundered Schwinn I photographed while in the Big Apple for a conference in August. The dreadlocked Ruzal has made a name for himself roaming the streets of Soho grading how well—or poorly—cyclists have secured their rides.

Now I'm no Hal—the 60-year-old has been in the biz for decades—but I'd give the Schwinn...a D? I mean, that looks to be what Hal would call a "proper lock" around the frame and front wheel, but obviously the rear wheel was left vulnerable to theft and the seat also appears to be readily swipe-able.

But why read my amateur attempts at lock-up assessment when you can watch Hal's? Thanks to Clarence Eckerson, Jr. of Streetfilms, there are three short videos available of Hal in action. I've embedded the first of these below. 

A couple fun facts about Hal before you watch, though:
  • At least as of 1996, Hal had had only one bike stolen. He was 18 and it was taken from outside his dad's candy store on Wall Street.
  • The man keeps his bikes locked in his apartment.

Like what you saw? Watch parts II and III.

P.S. While the jury's still out on whether Spice-Girl-turned-fashion-designer Victoria Beckham actually bikes around New York, the lock job she documented on Instagram in September earns an indisputable F.

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