Yo! I’m James Grear, a lifetime cyclist and the lead editor of BikeLockWiki.
I created BikeLockWiki in 2018 and have been researching & studying bicycle security since 2013. I Built BikeLockWiki to share the valuable security tips and tricks I’ve learnt with the worldwide cycling community.
Ultimately, BikeLockWiki was built in the hope that people don’t have to become a victim of bike theft to realise and understand the importance of bicycle security.
Throughout my time on two wheels, I’ve always been an active member of the cycling community.
As a teenager, I used to repair old battered bikes to keep myself or sell for some pocket money.
Because I enjoy bicycle maintenance, I’ve also volunteered with a charity close to my heart, The Bristol Bike Project.
The Bristol Bike Project gives back to the local community in Bristol and supports those who can’t afford to maintain or purchase a new bicycle. They run an earn-a-bike scheme where people can learn how to repair bicycles free of charge, before passing these skills onto newcomers and eventually being rewarded with a free bike!
I’ve spent a lot of my life riding and have always tried to engage with my local cycling communities over the years.
Unfortunately, along with many other cyclists, I have been a victim of bike theft multiple times.
Before I began researching bicycle security, I’d had three bikes stolen along with countless accessories, including saddles, seat posts, wheels, handlebars and bike lights.
Yep, you name it, if it’s anything to do with a bike, chances are I’d had it stolen.
None of the bikes I had stolen were significantly expensive, but they all held sentimental value, and I was absolutely gutted on all three occasions.
However, I didn’t let these thieves get in the way of my love for cycling, and here I am, providing weird and wonderful bicycle security and otherwise bike-related information for the worldwide cycling community years down the line!
Since 2017 I have been riding a BMC Time Machine TMR02 for fitness and leisure. I also ride a Specialized Langster, which is less appealing to thieves, meaning I can use this bike when I need to lock up for extended periods.
Currently, I’m riding and locking my bike on the streets of London almost every day, which means I’m riding and locking in the highest-risk areas in the UK.
However, after studying bicycle security for many years, I haven’t had a bike or component stolen (*knocks on wood*).
Cycling became my passion at three years old in my grandparent’s back garden. I would wake up in the morning and cycle the day away. Eat, sleep, cycle, repeat.
Fast forward just over 20 years, and almost nothing has changed, except that I no longer cycle around my grandparent’s garden!
During my time on two wheels, I’ve been a keen road cyclist, cycle courier, mountain biker and commuter.
I’ve often found myself with two or three different bikes, and at one stage, I foolishly thought I knew everything there was to know about bicycle security. This was until I was lucky enough to have my first bicycle stolen!
As a young paperboy, I used to put money aside every week to buy and build the bikes of my dreams.
However, I never considered putting any amount of money towards a quality bike lock. I would kit my ride out with all the gadgets and gizmos, only to secure it with a flimsy cable lock.
You call me naive, and I’ll agree, I was. But you’d be surprised walking around town, just how many people do the same as I used to! A whole lot of bike, secured with a lock resembling a thin piece of string.
After unsuccessfully trying to track down my noble steed, I began researching how to increase the security of a bicycle whilst it’s locked.
I was surprised to find out how much there is to learn about bicycle security, but how difficult valuable information was to find.
In my opinion, every cyclist should consider their bike lock as a detachable component of their bike.
In other words, if you have invested a reasonable sum of money into your bike or it has sentimental value, then you should match this with a valuable/good quality lock.
Not only will this provide you with that much-needed peace of mind, but if used correctly, your quality bike lock should save you from splashing out on a replacement bike!
Unlike most other content creators, I don’t recommend products with bias, as building BikeLockWiki and increasing the understanding of bicycle security is a passion and a long-term project of mine.
Subsequently, there’s no room for bias in the content I produce. As a cyclist who’s had multiple bikes stolen and been through many useless cycling accessories, I don’t recommend products based on the potential for financial gain.
I’ve tested and used all the products I recommend so that my readers can make informed decisions about their bike’s security.
If you’ve read this far, hopefully, you now understand a little more about BikeLockWiki and myself!
I always love hearing from my readers. So if you have any questions or suggestions related to BikeLockWiki, me or anything else, get in touch using the contact form at the bottom of the page, and I’ll get back to you!
As always, lock it or lose it!
- March 23rd, 2023 – Small tweaks to improve readability.