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Let’s get the obvious out of the way: if you’re parking your bike in a high-theft or high-risk area, Hiplok’s Z Lok Combo Security Tie is not the right tool for the job. It is, however, the right tool for a great many locking situations, including on your car rack and quick trips into the corner store.
In other words, situations that don’t require high security measures are ideal for the Z Lok combo. For starters, it’s light and small. You could fit it in a jersey pocket or hang it from the belt loop on your jeans. And you don’t have to carry a key.
The three-digit combo head is customizable with the push of a small button (you’ll need a pencil or paper clip to press it), so you can set your own combo that’s easy to remember. The dials move easily, though the numbers painted on them are pretty small. Our only worry is that the paint will eventually wear and it will become difficult to clearly read the combo.
A big release button makes it easy to unlock the tie. And when you lock the tie in place, positive ratcheting clicks tell you it’s firmly in place. That means it’s quick and easy to attach, and just as quick and easy to release.
The tie itself has a steel core that’s very difficult to cut through, and it’s wrapped in a tough nylon shell.
Hiplok claims 40cm of locking diameter, which is pretty small. It’s enough to get around a frame tube or wheel and a bike rack. But that’s all. If you want a bit of extra security on your car rack as you run into the grocery store, this is a great lock to have on hand. We’ve also found it useful for locking helmets to bikes while running errands around town.
Because it’s small, light, and easy to use on quick trips to the coffee shop, it’s likely we’ll end up using this security tie frequently.