Litelok X1 bike lock armoured with Barronium
Litelok say their Litelok X1 is the next generation of angle-grinder resistant D-Lock
Bicycle theft is an age-old problem that us cyclists have been trying to solve since Karl Drais leant his bone-shaker against an inn wall and stopped for a thirst-quenching stein. So how do we prevent our pride and joy going missing? If you’re a commuter or have to store your bicycle out of your sight, what are your options? First off you need to lock it, preferably to something solid. Then you need a lock that can hold off a thief’s best tool, the angle-grinder. These cheap and portable tools will make short work of most locks in under a minute. Is there anything that can slow them down? Well the Litelok X1 claims it can give them a good run for their money.
The Litelok X1 is a D-lock from the Litelok company. Litelok were set up in 2103 after their founder, Prof. Neil Barron got fed-up after having several of his bikes stolen. Tired at having to carry around heavy bike locks, he set about designing high-security and lightweight bike locks. The Litelok X1 and its big brother the X3 are the latest locks to come out of the company and they share a common ingredient: Barronium
What is Barronium?
It’s a composite material that was developed over five years in association with Swansea University School of Engineering, their metallurgy labs and with UK and Welsh Government support. Barronium is fused to the hardened fine-grain, high-tensile steel core of the Litelok X1, which will slow an angle-grinder attack. And Litelok have repaid the investment by manufacturing their locks in Wales.
If you watch the many YouTube videos of people attacking these locks you will be amazed at how much longer they take. And many of these videos are filmed under perfect conditions. A thief will not want to be stopping to change discs or even batteries while about their nefarious deed!
Cutting_DLock from litelok on Vimeo.
While Barronium is the main defence on the X1, that’s not its only feature. As well as being very resistant to angle-grinders, the X1 will shrug off any other attempts to remove it by twisting or hammering. It has been independently tested by Sold Secure, who are a UK testing and certification house for security products. Sold Secure have given the Litelok X1 a Diamond rating, which is the highest score for locks.
But it’s not just super-secret ingredient metals and top security ratings. Litelok have covered the X1 in a soft plant-based rubber to protect your frame from scratches. Eighty percent of this eco-rubber is sourced from non-food grade plants. This reduces the amount of petrochemical plastic required while manufacturing their locks and the waste can be recycled and reused.
The X1 also has a self-sealing keyhole cover, keeping dirt and water out of the lock. It comes with their Twist & Go frame mount, which they say will fit any bike. I’ve never been keen on frame mounts for locks, they always seem to rattle, so it will be interesting to see how this one fares. However if a frame mount isn’t your thing, you can get a Restrap belt holster instead. And if you are wearing your lock, then the reflective stripes will help you get seen. I’ll be trying the X1 out on the mean streets of Eastbourne over the coming weeks and will let you know how I get on. I might even have a go with my angle-grinder, loathe though I am to destroy what looks like a fantastic bit of kit.
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