9 min read
Founded in 1921, it’s fair to say, Master Lock have been a key player in the security market for a long time.
They manufacture a wide range of well-known products, including padlocks, safes, bike locks.
Many Master Lock products, including this 8278 D lock, are obtainable at very affordable prices.
As we’re often taught to relate lower prices with inferior quality, I wanted to find out how the Master Lock 8278 managed to scoop the highest security rating a pedal bike lock can achieve.
So here we are, a comprehensive review of the Master Lock 8278EURDPRO.
In this review, I’ll talk you through the security features this D lock utilises and how practical it is, alongside pointing out its weaknesses.
I also include some alternative recommendations towards the bottom of the page if you decide the 8278 isn’t the lock for you.
Brief Overview - MasterLock 8728
Security Rating – Sold Secure Pedal Cycle Diamond
Weight – 0.9kg (2.0lb)
Shackle Width – 8.2cm (3.2″)
Shackle Length – 15cm (5.9″)
Shackle Thickness – 14mm Hardened Steel
Warranty – Limited lifetime warranty
The Master Lock 8278 is a high-security, lightweight D lock with an affordable price point.
It’s Sold Secure Pedal Cycle Diamond rated, making it suitable for use in high-risk areas, whilst its compact size means it’s easy to carry when cycling.
At just 906g (2lb), the 8278 is the lightest Diamond rated lock on the market.
It’s not built with the highest quality materials, but it comes with a lifetime warranty to cover you from any material or workmanship defects.
If you’re lock shopping on a budget, the Master Lock 8278 is easily one of your best options.
Last update on 2023-09-29 at 01:52 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
How Secure Is the Master Lock 8278?
When assessing the security of a bike lock, two factors should always be considered:
- First, the physical security features a lock utilises
- Second, the security ratings it has (if any)
The Master Lock 8278 utilises a double-bolted locking mechanism, which secures either side of the shackle in place.
Some low-security D locks only secure one side of the shackle, which leaves them vulnerable to several popular attack methods.
Whereas a good quality double-bolted shackle would need to be cut twice before a bike could be released, doubling the time it’d take a thief to steal your bike.
The Master Lock 8278’s smaller shackle size means it’s also highly resistant to twist & hydraulic attacks, where thieves apply pressure, bending the shackle until failure.
14mm Hardened Steel Shackle
Underneath the 8278’s outer plastic casing and rubber sleeve the shackle has two different diameters.
The section of the shackle underneath the plastic end pieces measures 12.81mm, then underneath the rubber casing it’s slightly thicker, measuring 14mm.
Neither of these sections are quite thick enough to be considered bolt cutter proof, which means the lock is vulnerable to attacks using the largest bolt cutters.
That said, thieves don’t carry 42″ bolt cutters on the street, as they’re too big to conceal, and their cover would be blown.
Instead, thieves typically carry 14-24″ bolt cutters, which are somewhat concealable but will struggle to cut through the 8278’s shackle.
2.9mm Hardened Steel Mechanism Housing
A 2.9mm thick metal housing encapsulates the Master Lock 8278’s internal locking mechanism, protecting it from brute force attacks and any cutting attempts.
The internal mechanism is held in place with a plastic cast, which is a fairly common find on locks as affordable as this. [Amazon Link]
Plastic internals leave the lock vulnerable to attacks using blow torches.
However, thieves rarely utilise this method of attack as it’s fiddly, time-consuming and very likely to cause painful collateral damage.
So the plastic internals aren’t a huge concern, but as I’ll cover later, plastic components won’t be as durable in the long run as metal is.
Chunky Plastic Housing
Whilst the plastic housing of the Master Lock 8278 doesn’t offer much in terms of physical security, it does give the lock a beefier appearance.
Both cyclists and thieves associate chunkier locks with higher levels of security, meaning the beefy profile of the 8278 may be enough to deter a thief before they try anything funny.
As I’m sure you’ll agree, with the plastic housing removed, the 8278 looks much less secure.
I’m not sure if this was done intentionally, but it’s a unique design feature that I haven’t seen before, so I’ll give it to the Master Lock design team! Clever.
Take note, that not all Diamond-rated locks offer the same level of protection for your bike.
In addition, if you ride a monetarily or sentimentally valuable bike or an e-bike, I advise you to consider a more secure lock that offers Sold Secure Powered Cycle accreditation or anti-grinder features.
Locks with Sold Secure Powered Cycle approval offer higher protection against the most brutal attacks, including power tools. Aka, very, very secure!
Secure by Design, a British police initiative, gave the 8278 their approval after testing. Any lock bearing the SBD badge has passed resistance tests which use up-to-date attack methods.
VdS, the German security rating organisation, also gave the 8278 their two-star approval making this D lock suitable for use when the level of risk is above average.
How Practical Is the Master Lock 8278?
Weight & Size
Weighing just 0.9kg (2lb), the Master Lock 8278 is the world’s lightest Sold Secure Pedal Cycle Diamond-rated bike lock.
A nice accolade for Master Lock and any users of this lock to boast, but bear in mind, the 8728 offers much less locking room than most bike locks, meaning you’ll want to check it’ll work for your bike before getting carried away.
Measuring 8.2 x 15cm (3.2 x 5.9″), the 8278’s shackle is relatively small.
However, I found that it offers enough space for the Sheldon Brown locking method, which all cyclists should be aware of. I’ll cover this later in this review.
The 8278’s hardened steel shackle offers enough space to secure a bike to most racks and stands.
That said, this small lock will struggle to secure to larger immovable objects such as street lights and chunky fence posts.
So if your bike or what you frequently lock your bike to is chunky, it’s worth measuring to make sure the 8278 will be suitable.
If you require more room than the 8278 offers, the Master Lock 8279 is exactly the same lock, just with increased shackle space, offering an internal locking area of 10 x 21cm (3.9 x 8.3″).
How Portable Is the Master Lock 8278?
As the lightest Sold Secure Diamond-rated bike lock on the market, it’s fair to say that the 8278 is as portable as they come.
Weighing 906g (2lb), this D lock won’t be noticed in a backpack when riding, making it suitable for long-distance rides as well as daily commutes.
One of the 8278’s downsides is that it’s not supplied with a mounting system.
If you want to ride without a backpack, I’d advise you to pick up a universal D lock holder, like the Huldit Mount, which I’ve reviewed separately.
If you’re after a lightweight, high-security bike lock, you should also read my review of the best lightweight bike locks, for some other similarly secure suggestions.
If you like the look of the 8278 but want a lock you can mount to your bike, the slightly larger 8279 model is supplied with a mounting bracket for easy transport.
Quality of Materials & Maintenance Requirements
For the price the Master Lock 8278 retails at, the materials it’s built with are of very reasonable quality.
The plastic housing of this D lock will gradually show signs of wear, but like with any bike lock, as long as you clean and lubricate the 8278, it’ll serve you well.
The 14mm hardened steel shackle is coated in a soft rubber casing, preventing the lock from damaging your bike when locking up.
Four keys are supplied with the Master Lock 8278, which operate its disc detainer cylinder.
Unlike other brands, Master Lock don’t offer an in-house key replacement service for their locks.
Instead, you’ll need to order key blanks from a local distributor and take them to a shop capable of cutting disc detainer keys.
I’ve asked Master Lock to provide more information on this and will update this section once I know more.
I had no issues with the 8278’s cylinder during my two weeks of testing.
My only advice is to ensure the key is fully inserted into the lock before opening it. Of course, the same goes for any lock.
Is the Master Lock 8278 Worth Its Price?
For a D lock at the bottom end of the price range, there are no two ways about it, the Master Lock 8278EURDPRO is a bargain.
That said, price opinions remain subjective and will depend on how often you use the lock, what you’re using it for and what you require from a bike lock.
However, if you’re looking for a high-security, lightweight, budget-friendly bike lock, the 8278 is one of, if not the best option.
You can view the most up-to-date price for the Master Lock 8278 on Amazon.
Master Lock 8278 Alternatives
Burg Wachter 1600HB
Even more affordable, slightly less secure
Security Rating – Sold Secure Pedal Cycle Gold
Weight – 1.5kg (3.31lb)
Shackle Dimensions – 10.2 x 21cm (4.17 x 8.27″)
Shackle Thickness – 16mm Hardened Steel
Warranty – 2 Years
With a chunkier 16mm hardened steel shackle, unlike the 8278, the Burg Wachter 1600HB is thick enough to be considered bolt-cutter-proof.
It’s another high-security, affordable D lock, but it only gained the Sold Secure Pedal Cycle Gold rating, so it’s slightly less secure than the Master Lock 8278 but still suitable for use in high-risk areas.
At 1.5kg (3.31lb), 1600HB is also considerably heavier than the 8278 but comes with a mounting system allowing you to attach it to your bike’s frame for convenient transport.
Burg Wachter 1600HB Price:
Improved material quality, less bulky, diamond rated
Security Rating – Sold Secure Pedal Cycle Diamond
Weight – 1kg (2.2lb)
Shackle Length – 8.5 x 14.7cm (3.3 x 5.8″)
Shackle Thickness – 13.75mm Hardened Steel
Warranty – 3 Years
The Seatylock Mason is one of my favourite bike locks on the market.
It’s essentially a higher-quality version of the Master Lock 8278, featuring more durable materials, an upgraded locking mechanism, an automatic keyhole cover and several other benefits you can read about in my extensive Mason review.
The Mason retails at a slightly less affordable price, and is marginally heavier, but is likely to last longer as thanks to its more durable materials.
If you’re looking for the next level up from the Master Lock 8278, this is it. Read the in-depth review here.
Master Lock & Environmental Sustainability
Looking at the Master Lock website, I discovered that many of their padlocks are made using a high percentage of recycled metal, which is good to see.
Their padlock manufacturing process is also fine-tuned to produce minimal scrap metal.
But apart from a short section on a select group of padlocks, nothing else is mentioned on the “Commitment to the Environment” page.
I did appreciate that there wasn’t much plastic used in their packaging, which is good. The only plastic used was two small zip ties to hold the cardboard information sleeve to the lock.
Either Master Lock aren’t doing much to benefit the environment, or they need to update their website and add more information to this page!
For such a big corporation to seemingly be doing so little, it’s a shame.
Room for improvement here.
What’s Included With the Master Lock 8278?
- 4 coded keys
- Masterlock EURDPRO 8278
How to Lock Your Bike With the Master Lock 8278?
Locking your bike with the 8278 D lock is fairly easy.
As always, you’ll want to make sure you secure your most expensive components in order of worth.
This normally means your frame will take priority, and then the rear and front wheel, in that order.
I mentioned the Sheldon Brown locking method earlier in the review.
This unique locking method secures your frame and rear wheel and is particularly effective with smaller locks like the 8278, as it doesn’t require a large shackle.
To lock your bike using the Sheldon Brown locking method, you must secure the rim of your rear wheel to an immovable object, with the lock positioned inside your rear triangle.
Locking like this secures your rear wheel to the immovable object and the frame of your bike, meaning a thief couldn’t remove the wheel or the bike frame as the lock won’t pull through your chain or seatstays.
All that’s left to secure now is your front wheel, this is optional, but I always carry a cable extension as it’ll help deter opportunist thieves.
Conclusion - Master Lock 8278 Review
I produce these bike lock reviews to help cyclists decide whether or not a product is suitable for them and their bike.
If you’re looking for a combination of top-tier security and portability, the Master Lock 8278 provides this at an affordable price point.
However, if your bike is valuable or attracts second looks, such as an e-bike or high-end carbon road bike, you’ll want to invest in a more secure lock.
Take a look through my list of the best uncuttable bike locks for some inspiration.
Similarly, if you decide the 8278 isn’t suitable for your situation, check out my review of the best D locks for some seriously high-security, cutting-edge alternatives.
Finally, I hope to have answered all of your questions in this Master Lock 8278 review, if not, leave me a comment below, and I’ll get back to you!