8 min read
Looking for a reliable Burg Wachter 1600 HB review? You’ve come to the right place.
In this short article, I’ll be reviewing the 1600 HB and letting you know whether it’s a worthy investment or not.
At the end of the day, there’s no point using a cheap lock if it won’t do the job.
Is the Burg Wachter 1600 HB a reliable bike lock? Let’s find out.
Overview - Burg Wachter 1600 HB U Lock Review
I was pleasantly surprised by this lock. Knowing how cheap it was before putting it to the test, I was expecting a total shambles.
The Burg Wachter 1600 HB lock boasts the Sold Secure Gold rating, placing it alongside some of the more secure locks on the market.
Its 16mm, double bolted hardened steel shackle will protect your bike from even the largest bolt cutters, and its locking mechanism is impressively hard to pick.
If you’re shopping for a secure bike lock on a budget, there aren’t many better options than the Burg Wachter 1600 HB.
It’s not as smooth to use as a more premium lock, but it’s a great choice if you can see past the slightly clunky locking mechanism.
Keep reading to find out if this U lock will work for you.
|Burg Wachter 1600 HB Specs:|
|Shackle Width:||4.17" (10.2cm)|
|Shackle Height:||8.27" (21cm)|
|Shackle Material:||16mm Hardened Steel|
|Security Ratings:||Sold Secure Gold|
How Secure is the Burg Wachter 1600 HB?
Burg Wachter 1600 HB - Security Ratings?
It’s unusual for locks as affordable as the Burg Wachter 1600 HB 170 to have any credible security ratings, let alone the prestigious Sold Secure Gold rating!
The Sold Secure Gold rating means this U lock can defeat a more advanced selection of tools and prevent dedicated attacks.
Put simply, it’s pretty damn secure.
However, all locks have vulnerabilities, and I’ll cover those a little later in the article.
Alongside the Gold rating, this U lock also received Secure By Design accreditation, which means this lock meets the British Police’s preferred specifications.
Components of the Lock
One of the most popular tools used by thieves to defeat bicycles is a pair of bolt cutters.
Large bolt cutters are capable of cutting through the shackle of a U lock within a few seconds. But fortunately, Burg Wachter addressed this issue and used a 16mm thick hardened steel shackle with this lock.
16mm is thick enough to be considered bolt cutter proof, which dramatically increases the security of this lock compared to many other U locks.
The inner mechanism housing the 1600 HB uses protects the locking mechanism from cutting and impact attacks with an external hardened steel sleeve.
If a thief took a hammer to this lock, they would struggle to smash it open.
This 5-minute guide will teach you how to lock your bike properly, and by following the steps, you’ll render impact attacks useless and drastically increase the security of your bike.
On top of all this, the locking mechanism the 1600 HB uses is double bolted, a feature that significantly increases the time it would take a thief to defeat this lock. Double bolted shackles also prevent the use of twist and hydraulic attacks.
A lot of bang for your buck so far, but how practical is the 1600 HB?
Is the Burg Wachter 1600 HB Practical to Use?
Weight & Size
Weighing 3.31lb (1.5kg), the Burg Wachter 1600 HB 170 is reasonably heavy, but considering the whopping 16mm shackle this lock uses, its slightly increased weight compared to other U locks is much less of an issue.
You’d easily be able to carry this lock into your rucksack, making it suitable for cyclists who’re constantly on the move.
For those that require a larger lock for their bike, you’ll be happy to hear that this U lock is available in two lengths; 21 & 28cm.
These measurements refer to the internal length of the shackle, so if you need more locking space for multiple bikes or for locking large items, the 28cm version will be the better choice.
I found that the 21cm 1600 HB offered more than enough room to lock my bike and provided enough space to lock to any immovable object.
I show you the most effective way to lock your bike with the 1600 HB later in this review.
Mounting system – Burg Wachter U Lock Review
Mounting systems tend to go either way, absolutely fantastic or a complete waste of time.
Unfortunately for the 1600 HB, it’s the latter.
The mounting system this lock is supplied with definitely isn’t the best I’ve used! It’s made from low-quality plastic, uses a cheap rubber grip and only works with bikes that have a thin circular frame.
If you’re considering buying this lock, don’t expect anything from the mounting system. Instead, you’d be better off using a product like the Huldit universal bike lock mount, which you can learn about here.
The only saving grace for the mounting system is the price the Burg Wachter 1600 HB sells for.
The auxiliary accessories of locks this cheap are almost always terrible since manufacturers set security as their top priority, which, to be fair, makes sense.
Quality & Maintenance
I’ve only used the Burg Wachter 1600 locks for the past two weeks, so I can’t say how long they’ll last when exposed to the elements.
However, from my experience with cheaper bike locks, I’d recommend anyone buying this lock to give it a bit of love every other week.
Applying lithium grease to either side of the locking mechanism and cleaning the keyhole every now and then will ensure the 1600 HB remains in good working order for as long as possible.
Regular lubrication will also help prevent corrosion, a common problem with lower quality U locks.
As seen above the outer plastic casing of the 1600 HB brushed off the drop test, falling onto concrete from a height of roughly 1.7m (5’5″). Much tougher than I expected.
Locking Mechanism & Operation
Again, the locking mechanism this lock uses isn’t brilliant, but this is to be expected from such an affordable bike lock.
That being said, after two weeks of using this lock with my bike, I haven’t experienced any jams that I couldn’t quickly resolve.
From time to time, the mechanism becomes a bit sticky, and the key may need to be removed and inserted or gently wriggled around inside the mechanism to allow the lock to open.
A sliding keyhole cover guards the entrance to the locking cylinder, preventing dirt and debris from getting inside and jamming the lock. A nice feature to have at your disposal.
One vulnerability I noticed with this lock is that the internals are suspended in plastic, meaning that thieves could potentially use a blow torch to melt the plastic and open the lock.
I haven’t destruction tested this lock yet, but I’ll give it a go soon and update this article with my findings.
Is the Burg Wachter 1600 HB Worth Its Price?
Would I buy the Burg Wachter 1600 HB to use with one of my bikes? Yes, yes, I would.
The low price can’t be ignored, and for the security this lock provides, it’s a bargain!
Would I use this lock to secure an expensive e-bike or a bike that holds sentimental value? Probably not.
UK Police advise cyclists to spend roughly 15% of the value of their bike on its security, which makes this lock suitable for less expensive bikes.
The 1600 HB lock won’t last as long as a more premium U lock like the Fahgettaboudit Mini or perform as smoothly as the best U locks, but if you’re on a tight budget, there aren’t many better options.
Best Way To Use the Burg Wachter 1600 HB
As covered before, there are two different lengths of the Burg Wachter 1600 HB available 21 & 28cm.
The longer shackle of the 28cm model will provide an increased number of locking options when securing your bike. It will also make securing multiple bikes easier.
This short guide will teach you how to lock your bike correctly and is worth reading.
Otherwise, when locking your bike with the Burg Wachter 1600 HB, make sure to fill the shackle as much as you can.
Locking your rear wheel and frame to a bike rack or other immovable object is almost always your best bet because these are the two most expensive components.
There’s a third version of the 1600 HB (the 1600 GB), which comes with a security extension cable that allows you to quickly secure your front wheel or saddle at the same time. A worthwhile investment for deterring opportunist thieves.
What's Included with the Burg Wachter 1600 HB?
- Burg Wachter 1600 HB
- Mounting bracket
- 2 x Keys
- Cable extension (only supplied with the 1600 GB Secuirty Kit)
Burg Wachter Key Replacement Scheme
Burg Wacther don’t offer a direct key replacement scheme, but they do sell blanks that you can get cut at most locksmiths.
Blank keys are available to purchase online for the 1600 HB. Search “KB029A”. Please note these blank keys won’t open your lock until you get them cut.
You’ll need to take one of the original keys with you. Without one of the original keys, unfortunately, you won’t be able to get new keys cut.
Burg Wachter 1600 HB Warranty
Burg-Wächter UK Ltd guarantees their products for two years from the time of purchase unless otherwise stipulated on the product packaging.
If a product breaks or becomes faulty due to manufacturing or material defects, burg Wachter will replace it free of charge.
This warranty doesn’t cover improper usage of the product, and you’ll need to make sure you regularly maintain the lock to comply with the warranty.
A fairly standard warranty.
How Does the 1600 HB Compare to Other Bike Locks?
OnGuard Brute - Increased Security
The OnGuard Brute is a lock that’s featured in many reviews on this website, and for good reason.
This lock is heavier than the 1600 HB, but its bold colours are intimidating, and its 16mm hardened steel shackle will shrug off the majority of attacks.
To find out why this lock’s a better option, read my review here.
Kryptonite Fahgettaboudit Mini - Premium Portable Security
This is one of, if not my favourite U lock. The Fahgettaboudit is on another level to most, it’s designed to work flawlessly, mine still does after four years of constant use.
The Fahgettaboudit uses an 18mm shackle which deters even the most determined thieves and shrugs off the biggest bolt cutters.
Obviously, a top of the range bike lock is going to cost you more, but it’ll last longer and provide a higher level of security for your bike.
Read my in-depth review here.
About Burg Wachter
Burg Wachter was established in 1890 as a premium quality padlock manufacturer. Remaining family owned, the business today has expanded to cover a wide range of security products whilst retaining their quality.
The company now employs over 600 staff and has 5 manufacturing sites across the globe.
Summary - Burg Wachter 1600 HB U Lock
Burg Wachter 1600 HB Best Bits:
- Sold Secure Gold Rated
- Bolt cutter proof
- Keyhole cover
- Extremely affordable
- Multiple sizes avalible
Overall, I think the 1600 HB U locks are an excellent choice for cyclists on a tighter budget who want to prioritise the security of their bikes.
If you take care of this lock, I can see it lasting for years. I teach essential lock maintenance here, have a read to understand what’s required.
By all means, the 1600 HB isn’t the most premium lock on the market, but it’s not trying to be. It’s affordable, secure and works smoothly most of the time.
Otherwise, lock it or lose it.
Ciao for now!