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We've created an open source bike registry to fight bike theft and save the world
We've created an open source bike registry to fight bike theft and save the world
309 backers pledged $51,217 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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$51,217

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Github repo, facebook, The Bike Index!

Registering a bike "increases exponentially the odds of getting it back" - Chicago police Officer Jose Estrada.

We built the Bike Index because we were frustrated by the prevalence of bike theft. We regularly saw people trying to sell stolen bikes, and would search for the bikes online—but it was too difficult to find definitive information about them because too few people save their serial numbers.

We've been working on the Bike Index for a year. It now does what no other registry does and what we believe a registry needs to do: it provides a way to verify used bike sales, offers a comprehensive search and reaches bicyclists who don't know that registration is possible.

We were able to build the Bike Index on our own, working on development and speaking to local shops and improving the Bike Index until it provided the services that we wanted it to provide.

But now we need to spread the word and connect with more people and locations. We need a dedicated staff to be able to move forward.

We need help to offer useful bike registration to everyone

We need to hire another developer to help streamline the registration process, integrate with Point of Sale systems at bike shops, and combine with existing services to create a universal search for stolen bikes.

And we need resources to travel to other cities to create location specific advice for responding to bike theft and set up bike shops to register bikes.

Local governments are interested in providing a good registration system for their constituents, we need your support to show cities that people want a useful, open source bike registry instead of another proprietary system that further fragments recovery efforts.

With your help, we will work on the Bike Index full time this fall and winter, expanding to new cities in the US and improving the service so registration starts becoming an expectation.

Our expansion will give us the leverage we need to talk with local governments and manufacturers and integrate with their databases to create a national registry that makes bike theft much less profitable.

The cost of registration

  • It is and always will be free for bike shops and bike advocacy organizations to register bikes.
  • It's free for the first 10,000 bikes, after there will be a one-time $6.99 fee to register (if you don't go through a bike organization or shop).

Sponsors

Rewards

The Team

Risks and challenges

Registration isn't going to magically return stolen bikes or instantly end bike theft.

But recovering a stolen bike requires proof of ownership and a way to contact the bike owner.

A functional bike registry provides both those things and is the foundation of any effort to reduce theft.

Right now we are serving a relatively small number of users and we need your help to grow. Providing reliable service while the organization expands will be difficult but with winter coming, fewer people will be biking and bike shops will have more time—giving us the opportunity to improve the service and make sure it works for everyone.

We need to integrate with other registries that structure their data differently. We need to reach out to services and connect with them.

We're working with the folks behind the Chicago Stolen Bike Registry to create a common set of attributes to describe bikes that can be shared between all of our services.

And Bryan Hance, the founder of stolenbikeregistry.com, one of the Internet's first-ever registries to track stolen bikes, is excited to collaborate as well because he believes in it—and he thinks other bikers will, too. "The biking community can smell authenticity," Hance said. "They know when someone's trying to sell them something, and they know when someone is honestly, genuinely interested in trying to tackle the problem. That's the sense I get from Seth and Bike Index. It's obvious he knows what he's doing."

Join us. Let's stop bike theft, together.

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FAQ

  • 1) We reach bicyclists who don't know that registration is possible by partnering with bike shops.

    2) We make selling stolen bikes more difficult by offering a way to verify used bike sales.

    Offering these two features are what motivated us to start the Bike Index.

    Also, not to brag, but no other registries provide a complete search, look good on mobile devices, or are nearly as much fun as we are.

    Last updated:
  • We're working on partnering with bike manufacturers, local governments and organizations to provide us support.

    Last updated:
  • Adding already stolen bikes to the Bike Index will always be free.

    If your bike was stolen, we think everyone should know about it, and you shouldn't have to pay any money.

    Go to BikeIndex.org to learn more.

    Last updated:
  • The opening song is Snow Tip Cap Mountain by The Octopus Project. They're fantastic! like them on https://www.facebook.com/octopusproject.

    We strongly recommend that you buy Hello Avalanche (the album with Snow Tip Cap Mountain).

    Last updated:

Support this project

  1. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    REGISTER IT. We'll send you a registered sticker to put on your bike (or on some other thing if you prefer) and we'll keep you in the loop with all our exclusive updates!

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    Pledge $8 or more About $8

    STICKER IT. A bike registration, a registered sticker and two larger stickers, to make sure everything gets stuck.

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    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    IDENTIFY IT A bike registration, a registered sticker, and a spokecard with a QR code that links to your bike's page on the Bike Index.

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    51 backers
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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    BOLDLY STYLED Bike Index t-shirt, made in the US, printed here in Chicago, fitted to make you look fly. Specify M/F and size.

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    42 backers
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    GRAB IT ALL and receive all of the above prizes plus 5 Bike Index themed vegan cookies. Specify M/F and size (for the t-shirt)

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    INFINITY AND BEYOND. Lifetime free bike registrations. Register all of your bikes, forever.

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    GRIP HARD. Bike Index pedal straps. Awesome design, amazing utility, stick to your pedals like a champ.

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    Pledge $90 or more About $90

    CYCLE WARRIOR. Team Bike Index Jersey. Specify M/F and size.

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    10 backers
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    Pledge $170 or more About $170

    CYCLE SUPERHERO. Team Bike Index kit (Jersey and matching Bib Shorts). Specify M/F and size.

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    Pledge $450 or more About $450

    HIGH WHEELER. All the prizes from the GRAB IT ALL, plus your name permanently etched into the Sponsors and Supporters page on the Bike Index.

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    Pledge $900 or more About $900

    HIGHER WHEELER. A double sized logo or name permanently engraved into the Sponsors and Supporters page on the Bike Index.

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  12. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,500 or more About $1,500

    YOUR CITY. We will come to your city, whatever country it is in, and set bike shops up to register bikes on the Index. You also receive all the GRAB IT ALL prizes.

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    BRUNCH N' RIDE. Two round trip coach plane tickets to Chicago (at a time that works for both you and us) to meet the Bike Index team and eat brunch made by a fantastic private chef. Afterwards we will take you on a bike tour of Chicago, visiting a few of our favorite sites in this lovely city. We can provide bicycles and if you'd prefer not to pedal, we will transport you in a pedicab.

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    Pledge $9,000 or more About $9,000

    HOLY COW. Honorary board member. Discuss strategy and directions with the Bike Index. Receive an illustrated portrait of you doing REALLY right by your bike (whatever that means to you) done by the Bike Index graphic artist and illustrator.You will also get a double sized space on our Sponsors and Supporters page.

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Funding period

- (29 days)