Put the brakes on bike theft: Best motorcycle disc locks

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Motorcycle disc locks are often a cheap and easy way of adding at least one layer of security to your bike, especially when you’re parking away from your home.

These are super-easy to transport and use, locking through one (usually the front, for better access) brake discs and preventing the wheel from turning.

This is useful because, although in itself it won’t prevent the bike from being physically lifted up and put in the back of a van (you’ll need a chain for that), it will mean it can’t be ridden away.

Best Deals at a Glance

10% off Reapp Alarm Disc Lock – was £32.99, now £23.99

38% off Oxford Quartz XD10 Disc Lock – was £39.99, now £24.99

Here is a selection of motorcycle disc locks that should help you keep your bike safe and sound.

Tried and tested by Richard Newland for five months - "If you want something that looks like you’ve got a wheel clamp attached to your disc, then this probably isn’t for you – but if you want a highly portable tough and noisy disc lock that’s Sold Secure Motorcycle Gold standard certified, then read on."

"The XA14 is certainly compact, but it’s got the minerals to slow a thief down and if the light-fingered scumbag decides to have a good go at removing it, they’ll also have the 110dB siren to contend with while they meddle."

"The lock feels solid and well-made, is attractively bold in bright yellow (black also available), comes with three sturdy keys (and a key code in case you lose them all) that won’t bend in your pocket, and boasts a fat 14mm locking pin to keep it in place. Being small, it’s easy to slip into a tankbag, pannier or rucksack – although it’d be nice it if had its own little pouch to stow away in."

"You get a reminder cord, which I know from bitter experience should always be used, and the alarm battery is a USB rechargeable unit, so you don’t need to buy a box of button batteries with it and can even charge it while riding if you have a power point on your bike. Tidy bit of kit."

Pros

  • Small
  • High-security
  • Loud!

Cons

  • Looks weedy
  • No carry-pouch
  • Quality
    5.0
  • Value
    5.0
  • 110dB alarm
  • Sold Secure Gold
  • Compact and portable
  • 14mm locking pin
MCN Rated
Price: £24.99 (was £39.99)
Tested by Gareth Evans over 1500 miles. This reassuringly heavy little lock has been a grand companion. It fits in my my jacket pocket, making it super-practical for trips when I’m without luggage.

I love its simplicity – all you need to do is push the key down and the lock barrel sinks into the casing. Rotate key and the alarm beeps loudly to let you know the 10mm pin is armed, which is mostly useful and occasionally irritating at night. I’ve set the alarm itself off for testing, and that thoroughly unpleasant experience highlighted this is one LOUD alarm.

Biggest drawback? The battery is extremely difficult to access, it’s not ‘Sold Secure’ and it’s not cheap.
  • Quality
    4.0
  • Value
    2.0

Other options to consider

Price: £47.99 (was £74.99)
A variation on a theme, this long-shackle lock from Oxford can also be used with a chain to secure the bike to a fixed object. With no chain, it can easily fit one of the bike's brake discs and uses an 11mm hardened steel U-shaped shackle in a protected case, locking at both ends.

It comes with three keys, but replacements are available, and it has been awarded a Sold Secure Motorcycle Gold standard for strength, as well as Thatcham approval and Secured by Design.
  • Thatcham approved and Secured by Design
  • 11mm shackle
  • Can be used as a padlock

Rrp: £32.99

Price: £29.99
This diminutive disc lock is Amazon's bestseller and at less than £25, it's easy to see why. It's small, packs a 110dB movement alarm to alert passers-by of tampering and will fit brake discs up to 7mm thick. If you're low on funds this is a great way to add a first layer of defence and ward off casual or opportunist bike thieves.

The lock pin is also 7mm in diameter and the locking mechanism is built into the thicker side of the U-shaped metal portion. It also comes with a handy reminder coiled cable to prevent you from riding off with it in place.
  • Very cheap
  • 7mm locking pin
  • 110dB alarm

Rrp: £29.99

Price: £24.89
Practically pocket sized, this compact lock offers a visual deterrent with its bold body colour.
  • 5.5mm locking pin
  • Dual reinforced lock cylinder
  • Comes with carry pouch and belt clip
Price: £106.23

Milenco are a real force to be reckoned with, and their Composite is a great option if you're looking for a highly visible and secure disc lock. In line with all the top strata of disc locks, it's Sold Secure Motorcycle Gold standard in terms of thief-repelling resistance.

The hardened steel locking pin is 60mm x 14mm and locks into an integrated steel disc on the inside edge of the unit. The ‘composite’ part of the name refers to its material construction – and not being a solid lump of steel means that this defender is significantly lighter than similar Gold standard rivals.
  • Sold Secure Gold
  • Solid steel construction
  • 14mm locking pin
Best heavyweight disc lock
Price: £216.97
Abus have long been at the forefront of bike security, and this 8008 is a serious unit that also features a 100dB alarm to deter anyone who's not deaf from tampering with it. If someone does, or knocks it by mistake, the alarm will sound for 15 seconds, then re-arm itself again.

The body is all steel construction for serious resistance, while the locking pin is a very chunky 16mm. Once you’ve pushed the pin through and locked it in place, rotating the black plastic key shroud slides a cover over the locking hole to help keep dirt and moisture at bay. It knows if it’s on a disc or not, so won’t alarm itself during transport.
  • 100dB alarm
  • All steel construction
  • 16mm locking pin
Price: £101.88
'You talkin' to me, well are ya?' Er, yes. Security has come a long way, and there are now numerous Bluetooth and WiFi-enabled locks. This XX15 is one of them. It boasts tough-as-hell full steel construction and a 120dB alarm, 14mm carbide reinforced locking pin, and is corrosion and ice-spray resistant. Connect to the app and you can change your alarm settings and monitor the battery health.
  • 120dB alarm
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • 14mm locking pin

Rrp: £54.99

Price: £48.99
The Patriot from Oxford is a compact unit, using a mushroom-shaped hardened steel pin that goes through the brake disc and locks into a secure body. Two pin lengths are available, allowing the lock to be used with a chain, and the short-pin version comes with a bracket to mount it to the bike for ease of use. It has been rated as Sold Secure Motorcycle Gold and it's SBD approved, as well.
  • Thatcham approved
  • Can be used as a padlock with longer pin
  • 14mm locking pin
  • Comes with a bracket to carry on your bike
Price: £19.99
A tiny lock using a 5mm locking pin, designed to be as easy to use as possible. It sits against the outside edge of the brake disc and the locking pin goes through one of the cooling holes to prevent it from turning. It's a simple push-to-lock system and comes with two keys and a reminder cable.
  • Small and compact
  • 5mm locking pin
  • Very cheap
Price: £39.99
Essentially a U-shaped padlock with a plastic-coated shackle to prevent damaging the bike's brake disc, this lock from Mammoth is simplicity itself. It can secure around any section of the disc that is accessible and features a 13mm diameter shackle and a hardened steel body. It comes with a reminder cable and can also be used to secure the bike to a fixed object with a chain.
  • 13mm shackle
  • Can be used as a padlock
  • Thatcham approved
Recommended
Price: £99.95
Another through-the-disc lock, this one from Abus has a low-profile head for bikes with tight clearance between spokes. The brake disc and the 14mm diameter steel bolt goes through the disc and locks into the hardened-steel body. Like other Abus locks, it can also be ordered keyed-alike and can be used with chain combinations to secure the bike to a solid object.
  • 14mm steel bolt
  • Handy LED torch in key
  • Thatcham approved

Disc locks in detail

Opportunist thieves may not be able to get your engine running, but if your bike is only protected by its built-in steering lock, that’s easy to get around and then, one can sit on your bike while another pushes it from a moped or similar. With a disc lock in place, they can’t do that and will hopefully move on to the next, unprotected, bike.

While a motorcycle disc lock is not something that you would rely on in isolation – for example, protecting your bike for long periods – it’s definitely a useful addition if you’re popping into the shops or leaving the bike for an hour or two while you go exploring.

What features should a motorcycle disc lock have?

In addition to physically locking your bike and preventing it from being ridden, disc locks can also have additional features built-in, such as Bluetooth location services and high-intensity alarms, to draw attention to themselves if someone is tampering with the bike.

Many will also come with a safety lanyard to remind you to remove it before you ride off – you would be surprised by how many people forget it’s there and get a rude awakening after just a few millimetres of their journey.

Like any security product, look for Sold Secure approval; this not-for-profit testing house is run by the Master Locksmiths Association and rates products by their attack resistance. Look for Motorcycle-rated products with Gold or Diamond being the second-highest and highest standards, respectively.

About the author: After qualifying as a mechanical engineer, Jim Blackstock began working on magazines in the early 1990s. He remains passionate about product testing to ensure readers know what products offer good value and why. He relishes torrential rain to see if riding kit keeps water out and an hour or two to tinker on a project bike in his workshop.

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