Being London based bikers, we are through necessity always interested in the latest motorcycle security developments. Keen to stay one step ahead of bike thieves and keep our bikes secure. So, when Litelok approached us with their new Litelok Moto lightweight motorcycle security chain, we were of course, excited to check out this innovative British designed and built security chain.
Litelok was founded by ex-Rolls Royce aero engineer Professor Neil Barron and his company has built up a reputation of producing strong, but lightweight bicycle locks. The Litelok Gold Moto 108 is their first heavy-duty product aimed at motorcycles, essentially taking their tried and tested design and beefing it up. We’ve been using the Litelok Moto over the last couple of months, read on to find out our verdict and if this really is the best lightweight motorcycle security chain currently on the market.
Litelok Motorcycle Security Chain Construction
The Litelok Gold Moto 108 is made from a patented Boaflexicore material (named after the Boa Constrictor snake!), constructed from hundreds of high tensile alloy strands in a polymer matrix. Basically a very clever braided wire, six of which are then combined into a flat 5.5cm wide band. This provides a super-strong, yet flexible and lightweight design which can easily be threaded through your motorcycle’s wheels or frame. When locked it forms a flexible circle of about 35cm diameter, enough to go around a wheel and through a ground anchor close to. It is quite springy, so you do need to watch it doesn’t spring out straight and ding any paintwork as you bend it around. The lock itself where the two ends join is built from a drill resistant hardened alloy steel with marine grade stainless steel rivets, so should not offer any weak point. A rubber covering on one end also helps avoid it scratching your bike, shame both ends didn’t have such a covering. A small circular key pokes into the side to unlock it, easy enough to operate once you realise the key needs to be pushed in further than you initially think. Three keys are provided, handy to avoid swapping keys between both of us when each of us goes out with the lock.
The steel wires are covered in a black plastic mesh which in turn is surrounded by a removable neoprene outer cover, available in a choice of red or black colours. The neoprene is nice and soft and avoids scuffing or damaging any paintwork and I do like how this cover can be Velcro’d off and on to fling in the washing machine when it gets a bit grubby. A handy carry bag is also supplied, again useful to stop a grubby lock dirtying other stuff in your luggage.
It should also be noted Litelok is a British firm which manufactures their motorcycle security chains at that Swansea factory. Always nice to support a local business, as let’s face it, in the current political and economical climate British business needs all the support it can get!
A lightweight motorcycle security chain for commuting & touring
A lightweight chain needs to be porable enough to carry on your bike and that is exactly the use case this lock is targetting. A portable lock you can throw in your bike luggage and secure your motorcycle wherever you go. Weighing in at just 1.6 kg, its 1.1m length can be coiled up into a small bundle around 25cm in diameter, thus perfect to throw in a hard luggage box or tank/tail bag. A couple of Velcro straps on the lock help you keep the lock coiled up and stop it springing out (which it likes to do with some force). All of which has made the Litelok Moto our goto lock for carting into the city when commuting or when touring further afield. Definitely preferable to lugging around over 10 Kg of 16mm Pragmasis chain and Squire lock in a big top box.
The Litelok Moto carries the Sold Secure Motorcycle Gold rating, which provides a fairly reasonable level of confidence it will hold off a thief and might earn you an insurance discount too (check out our guide on motorcycle insurance tips). Although we haven’t tested the lock to destruction, many other YouTubers’ failed to defeat the lock with bolt croppers and it is apparently only susceptible to very specialised and expensive steel cable cutters (see Bennetts destruction test). The clever alloy and polymer matrix is too strong and flexible for standard-issue bike thief croppers, they simply can’t cut through due to the non-continuous nature of the wire matrix. The width of the band would require several crops to work through it, increasing the difficulty and duration of an attack. That said, I would not envisage it resisting an angle grinder attack, but few chains can (and the Sold Secure Gold rating does not include an angle grinder attack).
The lock typically retails for around £140 (or £126 with our discount code below), which puts it in competition with many other small or medium chains with 10-12mm links that weigh significantly more and often less resistant to a bolt cropper attack. Especially those with thinner or brittle (through-hardened) links. If desired, the Litelok Moto also sells in pairs with a common key for a slight saving at £270. A straight forward way to double your security for a particularly desirable bike.
Compared to a disk lock the Litelok is certainly bulkier and less portable but has the advantage you can chain your bike to a railing or ground anchor so it can’t be lifted away. However, you could always pack a disk lock for use in conjunction for double protection. One will fit nicely in the centre of the coiled Litelok Moto in your luggage. Remember, the best security strategy is to use multiple layers of protection, where each of which needs different tools and more time to defeat.
Is the Litelok the best lightweight motorcycle security chain?
In all honesty, there’s not much I can seriously criticise about the Litelok. Sometimes I wish it was a bit longer to reach around some railing or object I’d like to secure the bike too, with a top box on a bike, you can’t always park close enough for it to reach. The locks desire to spring out can make it a bit of a handful to thread around stuff and coil away, but you soon learn to manage it.
So, no, the Likelok Moto does not afford the same protection as some super-fat Pragmasis or Almax security chain. No, the Likelok Moto will not withstand an angle grinder. But that’s not the point, what you have here is a lock that is portable and lightweight motorbike security chain, that doesn’t cost crazy money but will offer you a reasonable amount of protection against attacks from most bolt croppers or other run-of-the-mill tools. At home, a tougher security device would be advisable, but away from the home the Litelok Gold Moto 108 offers a respectable amount of protection in a convenient package at an agreeable price.
Get more information and buy from the Litelok website. Beginner Biker Adventures can also offer a handy discount code that will blag 10% off the price:
Discount code: BeginnerBike10
Enter the code on the Litelok store checkout.