Bikes one story tall, metal Piranha bikes, a CD domed karaoke bike and a bike powered rock concert were all part of the heavily attended 2016 PedalFest at Jack London Square. Also part of the scene was the Boomerang Bike booth. Many people were drawn to the main “End Bike Theft” message and were curious to learn how Boomerang technology helps to protect their bikes. One young college bound cyclist was grinning from ear to ear having found what he had been looking for after 2 years of searching – a proven anti-theft GPC tracking device. Another festival attendee told us he “had four bikes stolen” and had given up on cycling altogether, but was going to get back to cycling with a CycloTrac. His story was a common one – many people who love cycling have had multiple bikes stolen and were resigned to give up cycling. Until now.
When they were shown Kevin’s (Boomerang’s President) smartphone displaying his bike’s location in real time, along with the analytics many had their ‘Oh wow!’ moment. Since the bike was armed, if anyone had touched the bike the alert would have come instantly. As always, Kevin’s bike was safe the entire day.
One question was, “How long has this product been out?” The answer is it has been out for three years protecting bikes and providing detailed ride feedback to cyclists of all stripes. Owners of the device tell us they feel exposed when they ride bikes without a Boomerang. The other is, “How much does it cost?” Some prefer to pay the one time fee including one year of Verizon with $4.99 month after or the monthly $28. for a year and $4.99 Verizon monthly thereafter. Details here.
Throughout the event there was great interest in the CycloTrac with many committing to do their research on Boomerangbike.com. We also asked the attendees if they had their bike registered and for those that didn’t, we have a link on Boomerangbike.com under Tips. We urge everyone to do so if you haven’t registered yet. It’s the first step in bike recovery.
Although the temps were on the high side that day, there was much at Pedalfest to see, experience and taste including the concert powered by 20 stationary bikes. Very cool. Nice band, too.
Why Cities Buy Into a Live GPS System for Security and Operations
Wow! What a trip! It is always great to get out of the office and in the field to spend time with customers. What I learned is we have wonderful customers who love our product. They know the benefits better than we do!
First, we stopped at OKC, and they are replacing an old bike share system with a new fleet of 50 bikes. The OKC bike share is housed in an amazing historical building built in 1930. I believe that the Director of Operations, Josh, is one of the smartest people around. He’s a Bio Chemistry major out of college, and his passion for cycling led him to manage OKC’s bike share system. They are scheduled to launch in mid-August.
Boomerang tracking app shows bike route and current location
Second, we stopped at McAllen Texas: a border town with 80 bikes. The Operator’s name is Robert, probably the most conscientious and attentive person to manage a fleet. McAllen gets a lot of late evening and night riding when the temperature cools. Robert said to me, he can’t go to sleep until all of the bikes are returned, and the Boomerang Fleet system allows him to see all of the bikes in real time. If he did not have the system, he would have to wait until 5:00 a.m. to verify the fleet was intact. Robert has not lost a single bike!
El Paso Bikeshare
Third, we stopped in another border city, El Paso Texas, which currently has about 80 bikes, growing to 160 bikes. El Paso Bike’s share is part of the redevelopment of downtown EL Paso. The Director of Operations, Cesar, has the luxury of a great staff and the best shop music thanks to his son, Diaz.
Of the Boomerang Fleet management system, Cesar was the most complimentary, and his choice of words were perfect: “The Boomerang GPS Device gives the bike a “ presence.” The beep and the red flashing light give the bike a presence and communicates to the riding community that the bikes are being monitored and can not be stolen.
In addition to being a deterrent to bike theft, Cesar has many more uses of the system. The traffic pattern history will help locate their new stations. On a daily basis they have about a dozen of bikes per month “missing.” The Boomerang system is used to locate, find and get them returned.
The fourth and last stop was Columbus Indiana. What a beautiful city! And the bike shop was just as great as the city. The bike shop was completely organized and ready to get to work on a one-time software upgrade. Matt, who maintains the fleet, is a professional bike racer, and he treated our work like a cycle-cross race. Although Matt had the hard job and I had the easy job, he was twice as fast. Luckily on day two and hour 10, I stepped out for a quick dinner before I bonked. (80 bikes in a day and half)!
In conclusion, I would like to thank all of the cities with their hospitality and generosity. We’re so happy with the feedback and glad that everyone liked our solution! We are very pleased and excited about these new relationships!
If you prefer, you can register by phone (800-848-BIKE)
Information from NBR Website “Many stolen bikes are recovered by police but there is no way to identify the owner. With the NBR service, you can register your bicycle by serial number in our national database and apply the special label you receive to your bike. If your bike is ever stolen, it can be identified and you can prove ownership. Law Enforcement anywhere can access our database, advise us that your bike has been recovered, and you can be notified immediately.”
After you have registered your bike take a few photos of your bike and save them with your serial number and registration information.
Step 2: Use a Quality Lock
Heavy-duty U-locks and jacketed hardened chain locks designed for bicycles are ideal. In addition, Boomerang recommends a second U-lock, chain, or cable to secure both wheels and the frame to something solid. Inexpensive locks are very easy to cut. The more you spend on a lock the longer it will take for the thief to cut it.
We also recommend keeping your lock clean and working efficiently by following the manufactures recommendations.
Step 3: Know where and how to lock your bike safely
Of the 53 stolen bicycle reports BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit Police Department) received in May 2014, 19% of them were locked up overnight outside. In all situations, its best to not leave your bike outside overnight. The rest of the time remember to:
Always try to use a bike rack. If a rack is not available >
Lock your bike to a solid, metal non-movable object (avoid a tree or wooden railing)
Shake the bike rack or non-movable object to ensure that it’s tight and secure to the ground.
Always make sure you secure the frame when using a lock. Just putting the lock around the wheel doesn’t provide nearly as much protection.
Remove the front wheel, then lock both wheels together along with the frame to the rack.
After you lock it make sure thieves can’t simply lift the bike over the rack or object
Park in a visible spot where there are lots of people around all of the time.
Customize your bike by adding color or stickers for easy identification.
Park your bike near nicer bikes to make your bike less of a target.
Don’t park or lock your bike in the same location every day.
Although there are many locking strategies, every lock at the very least should secure the frame and rear wheel directly to the rack. It’s important for the front wheel to be secured to the rack or frame.
Sometimes you can use two U-locks: one for the front wheel and one through the rear triangle of your frame. The locks should always encircle the tire & rim and not solely the spokes of the wheel.
Avoid locking your bike where it blocks the sidewalk, curb railing, or ramp. In some areas, locking you bike to a parking meter is not allowed. This can result in a confiscated bike. If a rack is available, use it instead, and if there’s not enough bike parking, contact the city to request more racks. Oakland, for example, allows people to request a bike rack online so that you can avoid crowded racks.
Because no locks can offer full bike coverage and 100% security, employing a smart locking strategy that has double or multiple layers of security can prevent theft. Thieves will ultimately try to steal the bike that offers the least resistance and attention. So if you know how to lock your bike properly and correctly, thieves will probably go after the next bike that’s poorly secured.
Step 4: Use a Boomerang CycloTrac
When you lock up your bike and set the Boomerang CycloTrac to arm on your device, your bike will be extra protected. The CycloTrac helps deter theft by being visible and making noise if the bike is tampered with.
Boomerang Bike’s CycloTrac just takes a few minutes to arm via your smartphone. The CycloTrac is an advanced bicycle theft protection system connecting the device via a cloud server to your smartphone and the Boomerang computer dashboard. The device has an anti-theft alarm, a GPS/tracker, ride analytics, and a GEO fence. When riding with the CycloTrac, it allows you to keep track of your bike (and your ride) like never before. Learn more about the setup of the CycloTrac: https://boomerangbike.com/how-it-works/
Step 5: Your Bike Was Stolen Anyway
If you bike gets stolen don’t give up, as a little determination can significantly increase the chances of getting your bike back.
Crucial First Step: Track your bike on the computer dashboard or smartphone app and contact the police to help you recover it.
If you don’t recover your bike:
File a police report. You may think that contacting the police would be pointless but stolen bikes are actually recovered quite often. Also, police reports may help police know where and how to allocate their resources.
Beginning of Friday’s E-Bike Expo set up for riders to try the Boomerang CycloTrac
Electric Bike Expo
Stanford Shopping Center, Palo Alto, California
This event was designed around e-bikes and all the complimentary gear that goes with them. It was fun to test the latest innovations and people were grinning ear to ear on the test track in the specially protected Stanford Shopping Center parking area. All morning. All afternoon. All early evening!
We knew it was going to be good event for us when 2 women came to the Boomerang booth and exclaimed, “There is no way we are buying an electric bike without one of these. When can we get one?” Many people came to the booth genuinely interested and stayed to listen to the benefits and how it works.
One of the first questions is where do you put it on. Fortunately we have display that has the unit mounted on a short down tube with a bottle cage attached to it with a long theft-resistant screw going through the mounting holes and into the water bottle bosses.
People were also interested in seeing the tracking system showing our customer Linkedin Corporation’s bike movements on the booth monitor. They were also able to track their own results from the test track.
There was also a positive response to the new pricing plans – giving cyclists a choice to add a brand new level of security.
Amazing turnout once again at the Sea Otter Classic in Monterey, California. Over 70,000 plus came put to see many competitive races – road and dirt in and around the legendary the Laguna Seca Racetrack. Packed into the main Sea Otter exposition area there were 700 booths to wander in and out of to find pretty much any kind of cycling equipment and gear you could possibly want…or not want.
The Boomerang CycloTracs debuted at the Bosch E-Bike booth. The CycloTracs are a perfect match for e-bikes – they protect a vulnerable and expensive vehicle. They compliment the performance -minded folks with an app that goes beyond the smartphone and some on-board systems.
Once riders came back from the demo rides, they could see the data specifics for their ride: How far they travelled, average speed, carbon offsets, gas saved, elevation, temperature and more. We saw a lot of enthusiasm for the CycloTrac especially for those cyclists who constantly worry about the security of their bikes.
We thank the folks at the Bosch booth for their generous support.
Enjoy the photos – it was a fabulous event and some world-class scenery to boot.
Boomerang CycloTrac mounted to Felt E-bike tracked riders for manufacturers security and feedback data for the ride.
CycloTrac screws into the waterbottle mounts with special hardware included.
Boomerang CycloTrac is lightweight and stays out of the way of pedaling.
All-in-one booth display shows a heat map and a cool mounting CycloTrac display.