Sometimes the best revenge is served via vomiting.
A new bike lock called the SkunkLock, which debuted on Indiegogo on October 21, promises it will do just that. The lock looks like a normal bike U-lock. But when it’s tampered with, the lock releases a noxious mist that will likely make the would-be bike thief back away or throw up.
The gas is made up of a mixture of chemicals including capsaicin, an irritant found in chilli peppers that’s also used in pepper sprays.
“The chemicals are so disgusting they induce vomit in the majority of cases, and elicit an instinctive response to run away immediately,” SkunkLock’s description reads.
The chemicals are stored in a pressurised, hollow interior compartment, so they don’t get released unless the lock is actually penetrated. To break open that chamber, the thief would have to be using a specialised cutter, like an angle grinder or heavy-duty bolt cutter — two tools frequently employed to steal bikes. Using those tools can already make a scene if people are around, but the makers of SkunkLock hope that the noxious chemicals will add yet another deterrent to bike theft.
The SkunkLock has already exceeded its fundraising goal. Once it’s manufactured, the device will join the ranks of several other interesting bike theft prevention gadgets. Already on the market are quiet, stealthy GPS trackers that let you know where your stolen bike is headed. There are also loud bike alarms and even exploding bike alarms. But the SkunkLock is the first one that will likely leave your would-be thief in physical discomfort.
If you want in on the schadenfreude, the SkunkLock is currently being sold in limited quantities for $109 on Indiegogo.