Thief vs. Bike Locks – Which is Best?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Thief vs. Bike Locks – Which is Best?

    As some of you know in addition to MTB I also ride motorcycles and follow this channel on youtube called Fort9. Probably my favorite Moto Related channel.

    Yesterday they released a video on Bike Locks.

    Very enlightening for anyone who thinks a lock provides any true security.

    https://youtu.be/aXHEbPzzDzE
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    Was going to say with a battery angle grinder, it's all over, but at least he covered that.

    "They make battery operated ones for ass holes who steal shit"...
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    Once Youtube recommended me the lockpicking lawyer channel and got hooked.

    After a few videos he erased all sense of security I had from locks.

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    I only watched half of that video. Did they cover the infamous U Lock easily picked with a Bic pen?
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    The only useful bike lock is the one that's harder to break than the one next to it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    Thief vs. Bike Locks – Which is Best?
    Thief.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    Very enlightening for anyone who thinks a lock provides any true security.

    Still, I bet they decrease the odds of your bike getting stolen by at least 1,000%, when I worked at a shop in a high crime area almost all the bikes reported stolen were unlocked.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by TDLover View Post
    Once Youtube recommended me the lockpicking lawyer channel and got hooked.

    After a few videos he erased all sense of security I had from locks.
    I went down the same rabbit hole for an hour.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    Still, I bet they decrease the odds of your bike getting stolen by at least 1,000%, when I worked at a shop in a high crime area almost all the bikes reported stolen were unlocked.
    Crimes of opportunity

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    as long as it cant be cut with wire cutters (cable locks), cause the rest can be cut with a grinder

    id just try to never leave bikes unwatched and insure them

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    Crimes of opportunity


    For sure, I bet most thieves don't even know they're out to steal a bike until they stumble upon an easy opportunity.
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    Enter the humble trail hound...

    ...that is trained to kill anything that touches my bike!!



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    An ounce of prevention is worth just as much as a 12 guage, but legal. So go with the ounce of prevention it's also got a better spread.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    As some of you know in addition to MTB I also ride motorcycles and follow this channel on youtube called Fort9. Probably my favorite Moto Related channel.

    Yesterday they released a video on Bike Locks.

    Very enlightening for anyone who thinks a lock provides any true security.

    https://youtu.be/aXHEbPzzDzE
    I made it through a couple minutes of that video. Endurance youtubing!

    I've been locking up the same commuter bike with a u-lock for 15 years. It's a pretty sweet ride, even in 2020, but it isn't worth anything on the stolen market.

    That's the ticket. A smart/cheap build, and a lock that's immune to opportunists. It's just a tool.
    "Things that are complex are not useful, Things that are useful are simple."
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    Quote Originally Posted by nauc View Post
    id just try to never leave bikes unwatched and insure them
    Can you provide some guidance on how to insure bikes? I had a nice one stolen last fall, and luckily got it covered through homeowners insurance, but I'd like a different approach. Thanks

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    No lock is 100% secure for anything if the theif is determined. Duh, that's not news.

    The key is to make your bike relatively inconvenient to steal. If you lock your bike up with other bikes, all it needs is a better lock than the bike next to it.

    Sometimes your renter's or homeowner's insurance covers you somewhat in the event of a bike theft, even if the theft occurs off your property. It probably won't replace the bike 100%, but it helps soften the blow. Check your policy, they vary widely. If you don't have renter's insurance, GET ON THAT.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kameramandan View Post
    The only useful bike lock is the one that's harder to break than the one next to it.
    This is the same as the old adage "I don't need to be able to outrun a bear, I just need to be able to out run the other person with me".

    I agree that you are best off either having a city bike you lock up or you need to have a better solution than those near you.

    The best advice I have gotten for public locking is use multiples. Use a U lock and a separate padlock with a chain. If they have to zip through both it increases their time there and 2 methods means that while the grinder might work well on the u lock, it might be a pain on the chain. Or if the jack works on the U it does nothing on the chain.

    Still a hoopty bike for locking is the best defense against theft.

    I have a high dollar commuter but lock it in our office garage with a cable and a Ulock. The other day someone got in and didn't steal the BSO bikes but did take those that were nice and either locked with a cheap cable or unlocked.

    Also the lock picking lawyer will shut down any marketing you can find, generally nothing is impenetrable when the right person is in the room. Some locks are insanely easy to break. Check out his video of the push button storeroom lock that can be defeated with a magnet stuck to its side, then recall that you have seen these same locked doors in banks, offices, and such when they want to create a secure room.
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    Don’t provide the path of least resistance.......
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    Never once in 30+ years of LE did I ever run across a bike thief with an angle grinder. A few had some sort of lock picking tools, maybe a few dozen with smaller bolt cutters and tons with pliers of one sort or another. Like has already been mentioned, any lock can be a deterrent. I'd say 98% of stolen bike reports I took were either not locked up at all or were locked with the standard coiled cable lock. I personally have the New York Fuggetaboutit chain but realize nothing is fool-proof. I just want your average thief to see how thick & heavy it is and hopefully move on to an easier target.
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    Best to ride something the thief does not want.

    Aside from the battery powered angle grinder there is the more rarer method, silent, no sparks and a few pumps and goneso's.

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    Quote Originally Posted by k2rider1964 View Post
    Never once in 30+ years of LE did I ever run across a bike thief with an angle grinder. A few had some sort of lock picking tools, maybe a few dozen with smaller bolt cutters and tons with pliers of one sort or another. Like has already been mentioned, any lock can be a deterrent. I'd say 98% of stolen bike reports I took were either not locked up at all or were locked with the standard coiled cable lock. I personally have the New York Fuggetaboutit chain but realize nothing is fool-proof. I just want your average thief to see how thick & heavy it is and hopefully move on to an easier target.
    These days one of their favorite tools is a car jack to bust U-locks. Angle grinders are more common when the bike is left somewhere that is out of sight for the owner where there's little chance of anyone interfering, but overall fairly rare. Of course, when it comes to something like a rack on a car, it can be as easy as yanking the bike over to the side and popping the roof rails, in other words they won't care about damaging your car if they can get the bike. Otherwise they tend to go for the easy targets that can be quickly be taken with some bolt cutters or similar. I've personally seen the lock and cable cutters to be pretty common.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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    Buy a yellow Kryptonite U-Lock and use it on a "not nice looking" bicycle that has good components. A rusted frame with XTR components, the thief will pass on by.

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    Quote Originally Posted by k2rider1964 View Post
    Never once in 30+ years of LE did I ever run across a bike thief with an angle grinder
    Were battery-powered angle grinders a thing back in the good old days? Access to portable power has come a long way just in the past few years, any decent thief should have a $20 portable angle grinder

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    In resort towns in the Rockies, its common to see people with $1k+ bicycles locked up with a cable lock. A year or two ago, a Uhaul truck was being stuffed with stolen bicycles but someone called it in. I would walk up and down the streets and rarely would I even see a yellow kryptonite u-lock, let alone any U-lock at all.

    Crack thieves can use nail clippers to snip away the threads and plastic. Or steal some wire cutters from the home hardware store.

  26. #26
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    Angle grinders absolutely scream. I've always had doubts that bike thieves use them. Bolt cutters fit in a backpack and they're silent.

  27. #27
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    The only rule with locks is to make your bike more difficult (takes longer) to steel than another bike nearby.

    A few years ago a buddy in Ontario had his entire hitch rack cut off of his truck. Of course there were three $6k+ mtb's locked to the hitch rack. The bikes had been left unattended on his truck for about 20min's. He believes the thieves followed him from the trail head and just waited for an opportunity. Angle grinder took care of the rest.

    I do know an angle grinder takes about 7 minutes to cut through a Kryptonite NYC chain. I just had the lock on a Kryptonite NYC chain fail. The company warrantieed it. I harvested the chain for repurposing. Took it to a sheet metal worker, angle grinder shot sparks 10' across the floor, and in about 7 minutes the chain was cut.

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    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    Angle grinders absolutely scream. I've always had doubts that bike thieves use them. Bolt cutters fit in a backpack and they're silent.


    I've cut a bunch of locks for people who lost their keys, mostly with an angle grinder. If you just do it as matter of fact nobody will batt an eye, I've cut locks with a screaming grinder and sparks shooting everywhere in very crowded areas and no one ever said a word to me about it. Also bolt cutters don't work on decent u-locks IME.

    As mentioned the best practice is to commute on a bike that is not desirable to thieves.
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    Simply place a roll of toilet paper on the seat.
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    Quote Originally Posted by OzarkFathom View Post
    Simply place a roll of toilet paper on the seat.
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    Also bolt cutters don't work on decent u-locks IME.
    They don't, but a car-jack will pop it in a jiffy.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    They don't, but a car-jack will pop it in a jiffy.

    No doubt, but often a bike is locked up in a way that makes doing it impossible to do it without ruining the frame and/or wheel.
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    Just dont ride a nice looking bike, its really that simple.

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt4x4 View Post
    Just dont ride a nice looking bike, its really that simple.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Finch Platte View Post
    Boy those graffiteers do stay cutting edge don’t they.
    Excellent imagination, I like that.
    Indi looks a little like he got smacked in his right eye though.
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    I purchased two (crowdfunded) Altor titanium bike locks a few years ago. Used one to lockup my (not very fancy steel) commuter bike inside a cage w/ pushbutton lock, 2 floors down in a parking garage at my last job.

    The only other times I use a lock are when I need to run in and use a bathroom or grab something from a convenience store. So in those situations I use both Altor locks figuring it would take more than a couple minutes to grind/burn/??? through them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BansheeRune View Post
    Pfft! .357 .44 44-70
    Was waiting for that response.

    I have a sticker on the back back of my SUV's window...

    "The owner of this bike rack is armed and trained. There is no bike on it worth risking your life for."

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    Quote Originally Posted by fredcook View Post
    Was waiting for that response.

    I have a sticker on the back back of my SUV's window...

    "The owner of this bike rack is armed and trained. There is no bike on it worth risking your life for."

    9mm or .45 in my case, depending on mood.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BansheeRune View Post
    Amendment number two!
    And when he goes to court for killing someone for stealing his bike, they'll be able to show his intent in this thread! Win!
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  40. #40
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    I still want more information on the OP's topic. Which is best, bike thiefs or locks?
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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    Quote Originally Posted by fredcook View Post
    Was waiting for that response.

    I have a sticker on the back back of my SUV's window...

    "The owner of this bike rack is armed and trained. There is no bike on it worth risking your life for."

    9mm or .45 in my case, depending on mood.
    Not sure why you replied under my comment. Don't give a rats ass about gun bragging nonsense and sincerely doubt that stickers on your vehicle will deter a thief.

    Guns won't do much good if you are nowhere near your vehicle or they are inaccessible when your bike gets ripped off.
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    Forget guns. Maybe this thread needs a new direction: which bike lock is best for bludgeoning a person to death for stealing a toy!
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    Quote Originally Posted by fredcook View Post
    Was waiting for that response.

    "The owner of this bike rack is armed and trained. There is no bike on it worth risking your life for."
    Well, that is dumb. If the bike isn't worth risking you life for, why would you brag about your willingness to risk life, as in life in prison for it. Do they still execute people for murder?
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    I think that the lock and chain manufacturers could improve resistance to grinders. As a shop kinda guy that has worked as an engineer in industry, I know how vulnerable grinding wheels are to "glazing". That is when metal or carbon plugs the spaces between the grits and the wheel loses its abrasive qualities.

    If the lock and chain manufacturers would coat their products with either a soft grinding wheel killing metal (like zinc and its alloys) or a polymer that would smear into the wheel and carbonize, cutting would fail. There are locks where the shank has a hardened bit of tubing around it that spins when the wheel hits it instead of cutting. Unfortunately, this can be defeated with vice grips but they are on the right track.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    And when he goes to court for killing someone for stealing his bike, they'll be able to show his intent in this thread! Win!
    Quote Originally Posted by MattiThundrrr View Post
    Forget guns. Maybe this thread needs a new direction: which bike lock is best for bludgeoning a person to death for stealing a toy!
    I read chapter one in Trolling For Dummies. Evidently, the publication is a very well written how to...
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    FWIW, in Texas you are legally allowed to protect your property by any means necessary. There was a fella in TX, who left his garage door open, and sat in the dark waiting with gun in hand.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BansheeRune View Post
    I read chapter one in Trolling For Dummies. Evidently, the publication is a very well written how to...
    Long live the sarcasm!!
    You missed the chapter on clapback.
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    Quote Originally Posted by matt4x4 View Post
    FWIW, in Texas you are legally allowed to protect your property by any means necessary. There was a fella in TX, who left his garage door open, and sat in the dark waiting with gun in hand.
    That's the sound of freedom son, free to set traps to murder your fellow man in cold blood.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MattiThundrrr View Post
    You missed the chapter on clapback.
    Congratz on contracting the clap!

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    Quote Originally Posted by BansheeRune View Post
    Congratz on contracting the clap!
    Yeppers, moms need love too!

    Not sure what the other thing you said means
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  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by matt4x4 View Post
    FWIW, in Texas you are legally allowed to protect your property by any means necessary. There was a fella in TX, who left his garage door open, and sat in the dark waiting with gun in hand.
    Brilliant.

    Killing another human being (foe or otherwise) and living with it is not so easy. Hopefully the nimrod didn't inadvertently blow away a neighbor (or shoot himself in the foot, or worse).
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    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    Brilliant.

    Killing another human being (foe or otherwise) and living with it is not so easy. Hopefully the nimrod didn't inadvertently blow away a neighbor (or shoot himself in the foot, or worse).
    No kidding.

    I'm all for protecting yourself and your home, but sheesh.

    I think I'd go for the bear spray first...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    And when he goes to court for killing someone for stealing his bike, they'll be able to show his intent in this thread! Win!
    Texas castle law...

    Besides, it's meant to be a deterrent.
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  54. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    I still want more information on the OP's topic. Which is best, bike thiefs or locks?
    Probably 50/50 (just an uneducated guess). But is the question locks versus thieves that actually try to compromise a lock? Or is the question, locks versus thieves that includes thieves that don't even try in the first place due to a lock? Probably a statistic we'll never know the true answer to.
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  55. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    Not sure why you replied under my comment.
    Huh? I replied to BansheeRune.

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  56. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by matt4x4 View Post
    FWIW, in Texas you are legally allowed to protect your property by any means necessary. There was a fella in TX, who left his garage door open, and sat in the dark waiting with gun in hand.
    I'm not sure if that guy would be protected or if that would be considered entrapment in criminal law, but it would for sure be pursued in civil law, it's a really really bad idea to try and kill/assault someone in a situation where it's not necessary. It's not going to end well.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  57. #57
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    It was years ago. I think they charged him, but went to trial and he got off under the Texas Castle law. Law is law, I doubt the laws been changed since.

    As for bicycle protection, just dont buy a shiny expensive bicycle and lock it up with any sort of cable lock. Buy a yellow Kryptonite NYC U-lock as thieves just walk right on by, looking for an easier target. If anything, paint your shiny new bicycle so it looks real shitty, scratch off all the XTR markings. Even then the thief might notice that the brakes are hydraulic disc and get an angle grinder to it within 1 or 2 minutes have it to ride.

    No flash bicycle
    Black on black
    no markings, like XTR, Zee
    yellow kryptonite nyc u-lock

    Also common sense, where you lock it up too

  58. #58
    psycho cyclo addict
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    Quote Originally Posted by fredcook View Post
    Huh? I replied to BansheeRune.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Ummm- negative....

    -screen-shot-2020-03-30-5.47.39-pm.jpg
    【ツ】 eDub 【ツ】

  59. #59
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    I was watching YT last night.

    Some aussie news channel, but uploaded to YT.
    Not sure how old the news cast was but it was on blacks causing troubles in aus-land, were the news stories for that YT Algorithm.

    A family, got home invaded. Car stolen.
    Fancy car? yes it was. Some desirable Audi. Less ego, say Ford Focus, probably not home invaded and vehicle stolen. Flash the bling, be followed, and wonder why you've been robbed.

  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    Ummm- negative....

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Not sure what view you provided, but the image I provided is a screenshot of my reply... done so by clicking on "Reply With Quote" while viewing the BansheeRune post.

    And looking at the image you provided, I see my post ("Probably 50/50") looks like I responded to myself, which I didn't. Seems the hierarchy in that view you using is glitchy. Let's see where this post shows up. I am replying (with quote) directly to your post.
    You didn't quit riding because you're old, you're old because you quit riding.

  61. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by fredcook View Post
    Not sure what view you provided, but the image I provided is a screenshot of my reply... done so by clicking on "Reply With Quote" while viewing the BansheeRune post.

    And looking at the image you provided, I see my post ("Probably 50/50") looks like I responded to myself, which I didn't. Seems the hierarchy in that view you using is glitchy. Let's see where this post shows up. I am replying (with quote) directly to your post.
    Ahhhh- now I see; hybrid mode displayed it that way. Thanks for pointing it out. Now what I see in Threaded Mode is that this reply is to Matt4x4's post

    I guess I'll take a look in all three views before making "assumptions" lol

    -screen-shot-2020-04-01-4.48.00-am.jpg
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  62. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    Ahhhh- now I see; hybrid mode displayed it that way. Thanks for pointing it out. Now what I see in Threaded Mode is that this reply is to Matt4x4's post

    I guess I'll take a look in all three views before making "assumptions" lol

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Interesting that my last reply to you shows as a reply to matt4x4. Go figure...
    You didn't quit riding because you're old, you're old because you quit riding.

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