Here at HOT BIKE, we strive to stay on top of the most innovative parts to hit the American V-Twin industry, so we're bringing you a new tech piece entitled "First Look." With this series, we will search out the newest parts and get you the inside scoop on what they are and how they work. Then we will follow up in a future issue by actually installing the part(s), explaining the install process, and giving an evaluation.
Aside from keeping our V-Twins running and looking their best, bike security is one of the most thought-about issues that riders face. There are few feelings worse than losing your ride to the dirty hands of the bike thief. If losing your prized possession isn't enough, good luck attempting to recoup your loss from your insurance company. Many (if not all) of those custom parts and days worth of labor (either by you or paid for) are not usually compensated for. Aside from possibly having armed guards posted by your scoot, there are no guarantees to motorcycle security.
The best we can do as bike owners is make it more difficult for the knuckledraggers to nab it. If it's not that easy to steal, hopefully they'll leave it alone and move along to a softer target. Aiding our security quest are alarms, satellite-tracking devices (a la LoJack), fork locks, cables combined with locks, and disc (rotor) locks. The first two don't prevent the bike from being rolled away and work best in combination with one or more items on the rest of the list. Only a few makers offer a steering lock but still allow a bike to be moved, while a cable and lock is usually too bulky for most of us to want to haul. That leaves the compact-sized disc lock as probably the number one (personal observation here) used security device.
There are different styles of disc locks that attach to the brake rotor in an attempt to stop a bike from being rolled away. That's somewhat true. In reality, if you've ever forgotten (like me) to take your disc lock off before disengaging the clutch, you'll find out pretty fast that the bike can roll up to a few feet before the lock rotates around, slams into your caliper (and speedometer cable on older bikes), locks up the wheel, and causes you to go down. It happens fast. Another drawback to the disc lock is where to put it when it's not locked on the rotor. A saddlebag or a small bag fastened somewhere on the bike works. Many custom or stripped-down bike owners carry theirs. I don't particularly enjoy having a pound's worth of metal strapped to my belt or inside my jacket pocket.
Well, I worry no more, as the decision to have a lock or not has been made sleek and easy. RoadLoK Security recently partnered with Hawg Halters Inc. (HHI) to incorporate their Sniper Motorcycle Immobilization Device (MID) into an HHI 4-piston caliper. In plain English, the MID is a front disc immobilizer that's integrated into a high-performance caliper. With a turn of the patented key, a barrel lock mechanism extends and locks a stud through the rotor. This not only protects the bike from theft, but also you from an unwanted launch when forgetting to remove the locking pin.