If there’s one thing you should never neglect or scrimp on, it’s security. Don’t wait until your house gets burgled before you fit an alarm, or until your shed or garage is broken into before fitting better locks and definitely don’t moan about an unsecured scooter getting stolen. Be pro-active.
British motorcycle parts and clothing manufacturer/supplier, Oxford Products launched this lock, chain and a ground anchor (ironically) just before lockdown in March. It’s called ‘The Beast’ and comes with a tagline that it needs to live up to – “Too big to fail”. It’s heavy enough to have a health warning on the box and comes with the highest Sold Secure ‘Diamond’ rating.
Beast lock: £149.99
- Weighs 3.6kg
- Surface hardened throughout
- Designed to resist angle grinder attack
- 30mm hardened locking pin
Beast chain 1.5m £149.99/2m £214.99
- Weighs 12kg/15.5kg
- 22mm diameter links
- Designed to resist angle-grinder attack
- Durable black painted links
Beast anchor: £99.99
- Weighs 4kg
- Hardened steel construction
- Fits all Oxford locks and chains
- 22mm Beast chain compatible
What an anchor
Although size and weight are important attributes when it comes to security, it always comes with a compromise. You could use a chain big enough to anchor the QE2 but it’s not exactly going to be practical for everyday use on a scooter. Ok, there’s not much chance of your light-fingered yoof getting through it with his battery-powered Aldi angle-grinder but you aren’t going to be able to carry it around either. The Beast isn’t far behind the QE2 when it comes to being tough and heavy.
Putting it politely, The Beast is obese – 12-15.5kg – just for the chain (depending on the length you opt for), then you’ve got that pint pot-sized lock, that tips the scales at 3.6kg. Stick those under the seat of your Vespa GTS and you’ll be impressing the lads with your wheelieing skills. This is a lock and chain combo that isn’t made for nipping to the shops. It’s a stay at home (or work) piece of heavy-duty security designed to keep your scooter/bike exactly where you parked it.
Sold Secure Diamond
If a lock and chain come with the highest Sold Secure rating you know for a fact that it has been thoroughly destruction tested. The lock, chain and matching ground anchors all come with that coveted Diamond rating. The Beast has also been tested to destruction by other online motorcycle publications, which saves us working up a sweat whilst destroying a perfectly good lock. Obviously anything can be compromised given enough time and persuasion. The one thing most thieves don’t have – unless they get caught (and the judge has just had his scooter pinched) is time. Yes, you’ll eventually cut through the 22mm chain links with a decent angle-grinder, or you could perhaps freeze it and try breaking the chain but if it takes longer than 20 or 30 seconds a thief will usually run off in his grey tracksuit and trainers.
The lock itself is cylindrical, pick and tamper-resistant (not that your average bike thief ever picks a lock) and spins freely on the 30mm hardened steel pin, making it hard to attack by cutting. The chain slips between the body of the lock and into the pin leaving very little room for movement – so you can’t get an angle-grinder disc in there to cut the pin either. It’ll also resist this most determined hammer-wielding robber. It’s tough so try not to lose your keys (although Oxford offer a replacement service using the key number if you do get stuck).
Go for length
The chain we have is 1.5 metres long, which would ordinarily be fine for locking a scooter up. However, The Beast is anything but ordinary. Those chunky links mean a 1.5-metre chain won’t stretch as far as an ordinary chain. It means that it’s not going to be suitable for locking all types of scooter. You can’t get this chain around a set of scooter forks, or through a wheel. On a Lambretta Series 2 it will go around the floorboards and just about lock but it’s a struggle. Go for the 2-metre version if you’re buying a beast and it’ll be much more adaptable and useful. There’s nothing worse than trying to force a too-short chain through a tight lock whilst scrabbling about under a wet and hot scooter. Make life easier and splash out for the longer version.
The 1.5-metre chain fits around the frame of a Dragster easily enough, it will also go around the floorboards of a PX and a Lambretta cutdown was very easy – unsurprisingly. Full frame Lambrettas with wide floorboards are a problem though and I expect a GTS would be as well. Save yourself the bother, and go for the 2-metre chain. Simple. The nylon covering over the chain helps to protect your paintwork and also stops the painted links of the chain from getting worn away.
Positives: The Beast really lives up to its name, it’s a beast. It’s big and heavy and if secured to either a ground anchor or another immovable object you’ll be very unlucky to have your scooter stolen. It is a great heavyweight lock for anybody who needs good quality security at home, maybe if you don’t have a decent garage or shed for instance. Or at work (providing you can leave it there).
Downsides: It’s not practical to carry The Beast around and use when you’re out and about and the sheer size and weight make it less user-friendly and less adaptable than an ‘ordinary-sized’ lock and chain so it’s not for everybody.
Alternative choice: Oxford Revolver £79.99
My own personal favourite lock is the Oxford Revolver. It’s a 1.8-metre armoured cable lock. I’ve been using mine for four or five years now and it’s very practical. Its core is made of hardened high-tensile steel cable, which is protected by a layer of steel rollers and the latest steel weave technology. This is encased in a tough plastic sleeve and it can coil up easily, making it small enough to chuck under the seat of an auto, or on a classic scooter’s back rack. It’s long enough to lock two scooters together, or to lock one scooter to a post, or railings so it’s very practical. The lock is relatively light, much lighter than a conventional chain and it comes Thatcham approved.
The 1.8 metre Revolver lock is plenty long enough to lock two scooters up and is light enough to carry to Ibiza and back. You can just about make it out amongst the luggage on the picture above right.