If you’ve ridden for any amount of time, you’ve probably experienced this familiar scenario: you’re out for a ride on a 75° or 80°F day, stop for lunch or to sightsee, but don’t feel like lugging an 8 or 9lb. leather jacket around. If your bike doesn’t have locking hard bags, what do you do?

One approach is to simply drape your jacket over the bike…

MC jacket on bike

…but that hardly seems wise unless you’re out in the middle of nowhere. And if you’re using a quality helmet, leaving it sitting on your bike is an invitation for someone to lift it.

There are many solutions for locking a jacket and/or helmet to your bike, and several are reviewed in this link from Frank Gates’ “Motorcycle Rider Basics” blog.

One of the items Frank mentions is the Bolt Lock, shown in this video from Cruiser Customizing:


The Bolt Lock is certainly a nifty device, but it costs $59.99 – plus $9.99 for the 36″ cable, plus shipping. The total including shipping to my zip code is $78.10 Is there a simpler, less expensive but no less effective solution? Of course…

One option, assuming you have some modest storage capacity on your bike (on mine I have a small toolkit – you can see it directly beneath the jacket in the 2nd picture above) is to simply carry a locking cable designed for locking up bicycles. In the photo below I’ve run the cable through one of the sleeves on my jacket and one of my rear shocks, and then locked it:

cable lock securing jacket to motorcycle

This particular cable lock is keyed, and I just carry the key to it on my MC keychain. This lock cost less than $20; here’s a link to a similar lock sold at Wal-Mart for $14.56 Of course you can run the cable through the D rings or strap of your helmet too. These locks feature braided steel cables sheathed in Kevlar, and they’ll stop casual thieves in their tracks. (A determined pro with a heavy duty set of bolt cutters is a different matter – in this case I’m just trying to prevent someone swiping my jacket or helmet when the bike’s parked in front of a restaurant or on the street.) In combination with the security system on my bike, I’m confident I’ll never have an issue.

kc 7/5/08

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4 Comments on How to lock your motorcycle helmet or jacket on your bike

  1. Rod says:

    you know I’ve been searching and pricing motorcycle locks ranging from $50.00 and up. Great idea at a low cost. My son uses this type lock for his mountain bike and is a very strong lock…

    Thanks for a great tip at a low cost:)


    Kevin Reply:

    Rod – thanks for visiting and I’m glad it was helpful! Thanks for commenting and I hope you’ll come back to the site.


  2. Richard J Laue says:

    Kevin, are you familiar with a company called PacSafe?

    They make travel gear (including for motorcycles) with embedded steel webbing and cut-proof straps. Their stuff is a little bit pricey, but their quality is excellent.

    A dear friend of mine — now deceased — used one of their backpacks as his laptop carrying case (it was the predecessor to their MetroSafe 300)

    He also had one of their Hip Packs, although I don’t remember which one.

    Both of those products really impressed me for their thoughtful design and quality of assembly, not to mention the ability to keep everything SECURE!

    I live in Hawai’i now, and I think the Hip Packs would be a fabulous idea for going to the beach. You can lock your wallet, iPod, etc., securely to a picnic table leg, or to a lamp post, or even a tree, and go swimming without worrying about your stuff “walking away.”

    I’ve never used their specifically-motorcycle-oriented stuff, but I have no doubt it’s the same quality and thoughtful design.

    Cheers and aloha –
    (1979 Yamaha SR500 street thumper)


    Kevin Reply:

    ooooo… a 500cc single cylinder bike. Just the mention made me immediately go to eBay to search for one. I must visit and see yours… where did you say you live????? ;-)

    As for PacSafe, yes, I am somewhat familiar with them – at one point I think I posted about one of their products, although I admit that I’ve never purchased one.

    A good idea for a future review….




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