8 min read
So you’re looking to increase the security of your motorbike or bicycle, and you’re wondering if the Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock is worth the money.
Fortunately, this extensive Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock review will teach you everything there is to know about this alarmed bike lock.
From the security ratings it’s gained, to the durability of the materials it’s built from, this Boss Alarm Lock review covers it all.
Before we begin, I wanted to point out that this bike lock is intended for use with motorbikes. However, the Boss Alarm can be used to lock bicycles when combined with a chain lock such as the Oxford 12mm chain, which is an optional extra.
Below I’ll break down the pros and cons this lock offers as well as giving you plenty of helpful tips on how to maintain and operate the Oxford Alarm Disc Lock.
Overview - Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock Review
The Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock is Oxfords second strongest lock in their arsenal.
This lock boasts the Sold Secure Gold Motorcycle rating as well ART 4 Star Certification, showing it provides great levels of security for motorbikes and bicycles.
The Boss Alarm utilises a 100dB anti-theft alarm that is very sensitive to disturbances and will startle thieves or help to grab the attention of passersby.
A great additional security system that provides users of this lock with added peace of mind.
This Motorbike Disc Lock also uses a 16mm hardened steel shackle, which is bolt cutter proof and double bolted to repel twist and hydraulic attacks.
Finally, weighing just 2.3lb (1.05kg) the Boss Alarm Lock is relatively lightweight making it suitable for use on the go.
A great choice of lock for anyone that worries about their motorbike, moped or bicycle whilst being away from it.
You can view the most competitive price for the Boss Alarm Disc Lock here [Amazon].
|Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock Specs:|
|Shackle Width:||1.63" (4.14cm)|
|Shackle Height:||2.96" (7.51cm)|
|Shackle Material:||16mm Hardened Steel|
|Security Ratings:||Sold Secure Motorcycle Gold|
How Secure is the Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock?
Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock - Security Ratings?
Oxford’s Boss Alarm lock has been tested by many well-known security organisations and has gained approval across the board.
Firstly, its Sold Secure Motorbike Gold rating which is the second-highest rating a motorbike lock can receive. This Gold rating makes the Boss Alarm Lock suitable with all mopeds and scooters as well as more valuable motorbikes.
Next up, 4 Star ART certification, which makes the Boss Alarm suitable for use with motorcycles on the road (away from home).
Finally, both SRA and Varefakata both gave the Boss Alarm Lock their approval.
Quite a few security ratings right! But what features make the Boss Alarm Disc Lock so secure?
Let’s find out!
Components of the Lock
The Boss Alarm Disc Lock uses several features which greatly increase its security compared to your ordinary motorbike disc lock.
Oxford designed the Boss Alarm to be completely resistant to hand-powered bolt cutters, and its hardened steel, 16mm shackle does just that.
There isn’t a pair of hand-powered bolt cutters on the market that are large enough to crop this lock. Besides, it’s unlikely a human would have the strength to do so if there were a large enough pair of bolt croppers.
On top of this, the 16mm shackle is double bolted which means both sides of the shackle are secured by the locking mechanism.
Double bolted shackles like this greatly increase a lock’s resistance to twist and hydraulic attacks, increasing the safety of your bike.
This lock means business.
And if that wasn’t enough for you, I still haven’t touched on the 100dB anti-theft alarm.
The alarm feature isn’t as loud as some of the other alarmed bike locks I’ve tested, but it’s more than enough to give you a headache and will likely attract the attention of passersby if anyone tries to pinch your ride.
After speaking with Henry from Oxford he also pointed out that the alarm feature was “housed inside the hardened steel cage”, because “when we launched the Boss Alarm, there was much criticism of alarm locks because the module gets mounted atop the lock and one good whack with a hammer could disable them.
A nice security feature to have, which provides additional peace of mind to users of the Boss Larm Disc Lock.
Is the Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock Practical to Use?
Weight & Size
Weighing 2.3lb (1.05kg), the Oxford Boss Alarm Lock is relatively heavy for a lock of its size.
However, it remains highly portable and suitable for use on the move with your motorbike.
You could easily slip this into your rucksack, pannier bag or motorbike top box, and I didn’t notice its weight whilst carrying it in my backpack.
The shackle of the Boss Alarm is smaller than most other U lock shackles, simply because it’s designed solely for locking to disc brake rotors.
Measuring 1.63″ x 2.96″ (4.14cm x 7.51cm) there isn’t room for much else inside the shackle and it doesn’t offer enough room to fit around a Sheffield bike stand, making it unsuitable for use with bicycles on its own.
Later in the review I’ll cover how you can use the Boss Alarm with a bicycle should you want to do so.
Mounting system – Oxford Boss Alarm Review
There’s no mounting system supplied with the Oxford Boss Alarm, so your best option when it comes to transporting this lock is in your backpack or motorbike top box as described above.
Quality & Maintenance
After taking the Boss Alarm out of its box for the first time, you’ll instantly understand, just like I did that this is a quality bike lock.
As I’ve already covered the Boss Alarm uses a high quality hardened steel shackle with a nice matte black finish which will scratch over time, but looks great.
Its hardened tick plastic casing is robust and easily shrugged off five drop tests from a height of 5′ (1.5m) with nothing more than a few small dents.
If you’re regularly dropping this lock from a height, you’re doing something wrong, but it’s not going to break like a cheaper disc lock.
As with all bike locks, I’d recommend regular lubrication to avoid corrosion or any jams. However, the Boss Alarm Disc Lock is made from really high-quality materials, so I wouldn’t expect it to rust even if left outside for a long period of time.
Now obviously this lock uses batteries to power its 100dB alarm, which will eventually require replacements.
After searching online I found several users who claimed to have been using their Boss Alarm Disc Locks for over a year and hadn’t changed their batteries once.
I advise my readers to clean and lubricate their bike locks every other month or in line with manufacturer recommendations.
A small bit of regular maintenance will ensure your lock remains in good condition and is reliable to use.
Locking Mechanism & Operation
Operating the Boss Alarm lock is a dream, it’s one of the smoothest bike locks I’ve used and I would be surprised if you managed to cause this lock to jam.
Three coded keys are supplied with the Boss alarm which can be replaced if lost, by using the unique six-digit code.
The keys are a half-crescent shape, and operated the disc detainer core of the Boss Alarm.
This unique shaped locking cylinder will make picking the lock much more of a challenge for thieves. It’d be hard enough to get hold of the tools required, let alone the having skills to use them.
The keyhole to the Boss Alarm is also covered by a sliding cover, which prevents dirt and debris from entering the locking mechanism, further reducing any maintenance required.
Is the Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock Worth Its Price?
At the time of production, oxford claimed the Boss Alarm was the strongest lock they’d ever produced, and this isn’t wrong it’s a super-strong lock.
With the recent release of the Oxford Beast Chain and Lock, which achieved the Sold Secure Motorcycle Diamond rating, the Boss Alarm can now be considered Oxford’s second most secure lock.
Whilst the Beast Chain Lock is tempting it’s not suitable for use on the move like the Boss Alarm and costs considerably more.
So, if you’re looking for a high-security portable lock for your motorbike, moped or scooter, there might not be a better option!
After looking online, I found the most up to date price for the Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock here [Amazon].
Best Way To Use the Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock
How to Lock Your Motorbike - Portable Use
As I’ve mentioned already the Boss Alarm Disc Lock is intended to be locked through the disc rotor of a motorbike or moped.
Once locked in place the Boss Alarm will prevent the wheel from rotating and the alarm will sound if it senses even the smallest of disturbances.
The sensitive alarm can be a bit of a nuisance from time to time, but I’ll show you below how to resolve this.
Locking your disc rotor will prevent your bike from being wheeled or ridden away, but to fully immobilise it, you’ll want to use a chain to secure it to a lampost.
Fortunately, Oxford offer a 12mm chain and Boss Alarm bundle for customers wanting top-level portable security.
If you’re using the Boss Alarm to secure your disc rotor, I’d highly recommend using a disc lock reminder cable.
This will remind you that your bike is locked before you try to ride off. Preventing you and your bike from being damaged.
How to Lock Your Motorbike or Bicycle - Stationary Use
If you’re looking for a slightly more secure way of securing your bike in a fixed location like at home or near where you work here are two of the strongest chain lock combinations I’ve used.
First, the 16mm Pragmasis Protector chain which is super popular with motorbike and cycling enthusiasts, looking to protect their pride and joy.
Teamed up with the Boss Alarm Disc Lock, this setup is one to rival any and doesn’t provide an abovious weak point for thieves to target since the Protector’s 16mm links have the same diameter as the Boss Alarm’s shackle.
Then, the next setup is by far the most secure motorbike lock setup I’ve ever used. The Oxford Beast Chain, Beast Lock and the Boss Alarm.
Admittedly for a bicycle, this setup is a bit overkill, but for those with the most valuable motorbikes or highly valuable e-bikes there isn’t a more secure lock combination.
The Boss Alarm Disc lock is hardly necessary, but it definitely adds to the protection this setup offers and has the ability to scare off thieves with its powerful 100dB alarm.
How to Lock a Bicycle With the Boss Alarm Lock
To use the Boss Alarm effectively with a bicycle you’ll need to use a chain lock alongside it.
Oxford sent me their 12mm Chain and Boss bundle, and after testing I was able to secure my bicycle very easily with this combination.
The shackle of the Boss Alarm Disc Lock isn’t big enough to fit around a bike stand, so I passed the chain through my front and rear wheels, around a bike rack, before securing either end with the Boss Alarm.
After chatting with Henry from Oxford, he told me that all of Oxford’s 12mm chains exceed the requirements for the Sold Secure Bicycle Diamond and Motorcycle Gold Rating.
Incredible for a 12mm chain, clearly capable of providing top-level protection for most bikes.
What's Included with the Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock?
- Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock
- 3 x Coded keys
- Warranty registration certificate
- Oxford 12 Chain (optional extra)
Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock Instructions - How To Use
How to Turn The Alarm On & Off
The 100dB alarm feature this lock uses can be slightly over-sensitive sometimes.
However, disabling the alarm is as easy as removing the shackle.
If you want to lock the Boss Alarm Disc Lock without enabling the alarm, simply inserts the red side of the shackle (or side with an arrow) on the opposite side to the marked entranceway.
The alarm will now be in sleep mode and won’t be active until the marked sides are aligned again.
When travelling with the Boss Alarm, make sure the alarm is not primed, otherwise, it may be a noisy ride!
How to Change & Replace the Batteries
Once in a while, you’ll need to change the batteries on your Boss Alarm.
The Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock uses
Changing the batteries is a very simple task and the instructions below will teach you how to do this.
- Using a Phillips screwdriver or Allen key (depending on the model of Boss Alarm) unscrew the small screw ontop of the lock’s outer plastic shell.
- Keeping the lock upright, unlock and remove the shackle
- The small handle on the side of the lock will now allow you to slide the alarm module out from inside the lock
- Remove the rubber waterproof housing on the underside of the alarm module
- Remove the dead batteries and install the new replacements following the direction of the placement markers on the inside of the battery compartment
- Replace the waterproof rubber seal and reinsert the alarm module
- Tighten the screw back in place and test the alarm to make sure you Boss Alarm works
If these steps don’t work, you may need to replace the alarm module on your Boss Alarm.
The alarm feature tends to last around 5 years before needing to be replaced. Replacements are available on the Oxford website should you need one.
If you haven’t had your lock for long it may be worth contacting Oxford before buying a new module to see if they can assist you!
Oxford Key Replacement Scheme
As I’ve covered, the keys supplied with the Boss Alarm Disc Lock have a unique key code printed on a small metal tag.
If you were to lose the keys to your bike lock, you’d be able to use your key code to get replacement keys cut. So make note of this code if you decide to purchase this lock.
The key replacement service is very reasonably priced, and new keys can be requested by contacting Oxford’s customer support.
Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock Warranty
The Oxford Boss Alarm comes with a standard 24-month guarantee.
Should it suffer from any material or manufacturing defects within this period just get in touch with Oxford’s customer service team who’ll be more than happy to help.
I’ve never had to make a complaint about any of my Oxford products, so can’t comment on their customer service.
How Does the Boss Alarm Compare to Other Bike Locks?
Oxford Alarm-D Pro - More Suitable for a Bicycle
The Oxford Alarm-D locks are some of my favourite bike locks out there and came out on top when I compared them to the other best bike locks with alarms.
If you’re looking for a portable bike lock that utilises an alarm as an additional anti-theft feature, there aren’t many better options than this.
I accidentally set this lockoff inside when testing it for the first time, a mistake that I won’t be repeating, for the sake of my eardrums.
You can read my in-depth review here or view the most up to date price here [Amazon].
Skunklock - Fight Back Against Bike Theft
The Skunklock is a bike lock that uses a completely unique defence system.
As pointed out above, the 21mm thick shackle of the Skunklock houses a vomit-inducing highly pressurized compound, designed to rapidly disperse into the vicinity if the outer steel shell of the shackle was breached.
You’ve probably got a load of questions regarding this one and you’ll find all of the answers in my extensive Skunklock review.
Founded in 1973, Oxford originally sold motorcycle security top boxes out of the boot of a car. Over the next ten years as demand grew for Oxford’s products, so did their team working tirelessly behind the scenes.
In 1985 Oxford began international sourcing and their product range grew dramatically. They quickly went on to become one of the market leaders in bicycle security with their Sentinel range of locks, which are still sold today!
Since the 1980’s, Oxford have continued to expand their range of high-quality products and have increased their involvement within the motorcycling and cycling communities.
Oxford also support several fantastic charities such as Cycle Smart and the NABB (national association of blood bikes).
Summary - Oxford Boss Alarm Disc Lock Review
Oxrord Boss Alarm Best Bits:
- Sold Secure Motorcycle Gold rated
- Bolt cutter proof
- Sliding keyhole cover
- 100dB anti-theft alarm
- 14mm size avalible
AlAll in all, I’ve really enjoyed using the Oxford Boss Alarm. It’s a really well-designed lock that’ll provide great levels of security for whatever you lock it to!
Motorbikes, mopeds, electric scooters, bicycles, this lock does it all.
The only slight issue I found with the Boss Alarm is that it’s really sensitive to movement and the first few times I locked it up, its 100dB anti-theft siren gave me a warm welcoming, which wasn’t very enjoyable.
However, after using the Boss Alarm for a few weeks I’ve got used to its sensitivity and have learnt to lock it without setting the alarm off!
Definitely up there with the best alarmed locks on the market. If you’re looking for a disc lock alarm for your motorcycle, there isn’t a lock comparable to the Boss Alarm Disc Lock.
Is this lock not suitable for you? No problem, check out my review of the best cheap bike locks for some more budget-friendly suggestions.
Otherwise, these uncuttable bike locks will provide incredible security for your bike or motorbike.
As always, lock it or lose it.
Ciao for now.