Hexlox review – Secure your bicycle wheels, saddle and headset
The Hexlox is a tiny little magnetic attachment that sits inside your existing seat post bolt, headset bolts and wheels skewer bolts. With it in place, it makes it a lot harder for a thief to steal your bicycle components.
It’s a brilliantly simple idea and the brainchild of Marcus Tonndorf, a Swedish serial entrepreneur and Ian Berrell an Australian Product Designer.
The Hexlox is sold and shipped from Germany and comes in a number of different packages:
- Saddle and seat post set – €36
- Wheel security set – €36
- Total security package – €71.99 (includes saddle lock, seat post lock, wheel lock and fork and stem lock)
Will the Hexlox fit your bike?
As the name suggests, the Hexlox sits inside your existing hex bolts (also known as Allen bolts). These are commonly used to secure your saddle, seat post, wheels and headset.
If all your components are secured with hex (allen) bolts then all you need to know is what size are those bolts. You can find out by using an allen or a hex key. Once you know the size, order off the Hexlox website and you can get it installed in about 60 seconds.
The Hexlox will only secure your bike if your bolts are magnetic. Which they are if they are made from steel. Other materials, such as titanium and aluminium are not magnetic enough to keep the bolt in place. For this situation, you can either include the Magnetic Insert which you fit into the hex bolt before adding the Hexlox or replace the bolt (these are also available from Hexlox).
If your bike has quick release skewers, then these will need to be replaced. Hexlox sell their own set of skewers, which are sold as a package with the Hexlox for a total of €55.99. Alternatively, you can of course buy your own skewers from a bike shop or online. The skewers sold by Hexlox provide additional security with their conical head and anti-spin tooth that sits in the dropout to protect against attacks with pliers. Hexlox sell two different sizes – shorter ones for road bikes and longer ones for mountain bikes, touring bikes etc. Again it’s worth checking the length of the skewers on your bike that you are replacing.
Hexlox also sell solutions for solid axle wheels.
Installation and removal
In your order, you get a key and then a tiny little magnetic attachment which is called a Hexlox. Each key comes with a unique identifier that allows you to order additional Hexlox.
Obviously, the danger here is that you lose your key and/or your unique identifier. Make sure you make a note of your unique identifier and keep your key somewhere safe. Hexlox said they also store your unique key when you order, so they should be able to retrieve it for you if you haven’t made a note.
Installation is quick and easy. On my bike I had the additional step of replacing the skewers as they are quick release. However, even with this additional step, I was done in under 5 minutes. Hexlox provide some handy videos on their YouTube channel showing you how it’s done.
Removal is just as easy. You simply insert the key and pull out the Hexlox.
The Hexlox is held securely in its place with a magnet, which attaches it firmly to the top of the hex socket. This combined with the tight fit make it very hard to remove without the key. If a thief tries to steal your wheels, headset or saddle, they won’t be able to insert an allen key.
But couldn’t someone simply remove it with another magnet?
The magnet is built in to the back of the Hexlox shielding it from the outside. According to the manufacturer, this protects it from being removed with another magnet. Hexlox have a video demonstration of this in action on YouTube.
What about attacking it with a tiny knife or pliers or a toothpick?
This seems hard to do and of course I did try because it looked vulnerable to attack, but I didn’t get anywhere after a few minutes.
What if someone has another Hexlox key?
Each Hexlox has three different variables to make it unique. The first is the size of the hole that the key fits into. The second is the shape of the cone and the third is something that the Hexlox team are not sharing publicly.
No security system is unbreakable given enough time and resources. However, it is highly unlikely that somebody will go to the trouble of stealing your bike components, when there are so many other easy targets out there.
The Hexlox is incredibly convenient. It’s a security system that adds nearly no weight to your ride and once you’ve installed it you can forget it. Of course, should you need to replace a saddle or repair a puncture, you’ll need to use your key.
There are other somewhat similar systems out there. For protecting your wheels, the Kryptonite WheelNutz (£25) and Kryptonite Wheelboltz (£35) are convenient, as they don’t require a key to unlock. You simply lift the bike upside down.
For around £60 the Pinhead system will secure your front and rear wheel, seatpost, saddle and headset (Although it no longer seems to be stocked by Wiggle, CRC or Amazon).
Overall, we are very impressed with the Hexlox system and happy to recommend it to London Cyclist readers. Installation is quick and easy, they weigh next to nothing and they provide a good level of security without any additional hassle. I feel much happier knowing my bike components are secured by the Hexlox. As a bonus, the Hexlox design reminds me of the red eye of the terminator.
At €71.99 for the total security package, the Hexlox costs a lot less than replacing your stolen components.
Hexlox can be ordered directly from Hexlox.com.
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