July 15, 2014

ABUS: Obsessed with Testing and Innovation

Maybe I just patronize all the wrong retailers, but I neither own an ABUS lock nor know much about ABUS, the German firm that supposedly invented the U-lock. Thanks to the folks at D.C. bike shop BicycleSPACE (where—full disclosure—I bought my Surly Ogre), though, I got a peek this week into how ABUS puts its bike locks through the paces. 

BicycleSPACE cofounder Erik Kugler toured ABUS headquarters with, apparently, a film crew in tow:

By all means watch all seven videos from the trip—the entire playlist is embedded above—but if you're interested primarily in purposeful destruction (or at least attempted destruction) feel free to skip ahead to the testing videos, in which ABUS employees use specially constructed machines to try to smash, twist, and pull their locks into submission:

From this I gather that, where U-locks are concerned, (1) soft core is better than case hardened and (2) square shackles and a two-sided lock mechanisms offer more protection than, respectively, round and one-sided ones. Hmmm.

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