Saturday, February 9, 2013

Lock, Stock, And Barrel Adjusters

They can have my bike when they pry it from my cold, dead fingers.
There is a willful stupidity among professional cyclists when it comes to the security of their equipment.  The latest team to be robbed, Garmin-Sharp, lost 16 road bikes last night and was forced to pull out of the Tour Méditerranéen.  What don’t you people get?  It’s not like this has never happened before.
  • May 2006—Six Landbouwkrediet-Colnago team bikes are stolen during the Four Days of Dunkirk stage race.
  • October 2006—American cyclocross champion Katie Compton loses her bike and a carbon wheelset to thieves in Boulder CO.
  • Sept./Oct. 2007—Nine road bikes are stolen from the Canadian national team’s trailer on the eve of the UCI World Championships in Germany.  The teams from Italy and Brazil lose their bikes after a break-in at their hotel.
  • July 2008—The entire Subaru/Gary Fisher mountain bike team truck is stolen in Quebec.  Fortunately it is not connected to the trailer, so the bikes are not lost.
  • February 2009—Lance Armstrong’s time trial bike is stolen at the Tour of California.  In Italy, Team Barloworld loses 21 bikes from a storage room at its training camp hotel.
  • March 2011—Team Type 1 loses bikes and other equipment valued at €500,000 at the Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali in Italy.
  • May 2012—Team TIBCO loses 14 bikes from its trailer at the team’s hotel in Boise ID.
There are other examples, but you get the idea.  It takes just one guy with a radio, a shotgun and a Thermos full of coffee to secure a team trailer overnight.  Make it happen, JV.

By the way, there’s still a 5812 Johnson Street in West Hollywood FL.  The space is now occupied by We-Kill, a pest control company that probably has access to things like rat traps and nasty chemicals but probably offers nothing with the theft deterrent impact of a firearm.  The J. Chenette Company is gone, alas.  I think the man behind the company was Joseph C. Chenette, a transplant from Michigan.  There are several patents either issued to him or that reference his metalwork.  As an inventor for the bicycle industry, it looks like he was a one-trick pony, but that didn’t stop him from marketing the same device for both firearms and fishing poles:

Boys’ Life Magazine, August 1962

Chenette must have been a great tinkerer, someone who could have fashioned a security device simple enough even for pro cycling teams to use.

1 comment:

  1. There have been numerous "bicycle" guns too. Stevens had a folding rifle. H&R had a revolver marketed towards cyclists. In fact, the last time I was in Richfield Cabela's I saw one in the antique firearms room.