SkunkLock Carbon review | Angle-grinder-resistant D-lock tested

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Date reviewed: May 2024 | Tested by: John Milbank | RRP: Around £180 | Weight: 1.97kg |


Famous for its D-lock that emits a vomit-inducing gas when cut, SkunkLock has now released a new angle-grinder-resistant D-lock that doesn’t spray out noxious fumes but does destroy abrasive angle-grinder discs.

The Skunklock Carbon’s shackle has a silicone sleeve covering it, which does a great job of protecting your bike’s paint, while the body has a resilient plastic cover.

Three keys are supplied, along with a code card in case you manage to lose them all. There’s no cover over the lock barrel, which is a shame as it’s vulnerable to dirt ingress.

The SkunkLock Carbon has not currently been accredited by Sold Secure or any other independent testing body. A US company, the retail price is $179.99 (around £145), and with shipping direct from the US to the UK it works out at around £170, though keep in mind that this may be subject to import duty and taxes. Buying via Amazon, import fees are estimated to be £38.59 and are included in the price, making it £194.64 at the time of writing. SkunkLock says it is exploring UK warehousing options.

Of the angle-grinder-resistant D-locks currently on the market, only the Litelok X1 is cheaper at current UK import prices, but SkunkLock says its ‘SkunkYourBike’ campaign will bring affordable locks to those who need them most by offering a means-tested discounted scheme. It’s not clear how large the discounts might be they “vary from person to person”, but they’re claimed to include members and veterans of the armed forces, emergency workers, couriers, those on low incomes and the elderly and disabled. This video from SkunkLock gives an explanation by the co-founder.


Pros & Cons

  • Shackle is extremely hard to cut with abrasive discs
  • Relatively light compared to most of the competition
  • At the lower end of the price range
  • Not the best in class for overall grinder attack resistance
  • Lock body would benefit from more protection
  • No cover over lock barrel


SkunkLock Carbon size and weight

The SkunkLock carbon weighs 1.97kg, which is less than the Hiplok DX1000, Litelok X3 and Abus Granit Super Extreme 2500: of the current crop of angle-grinder-resistant D-locks, only the Litelok X3 and Hiplok D1000 are lighter (and not by much).

The assembled lock is 300mm long and 180mm wide, with the important internal shackle dimensions being 235mm x 106mm, which is big enough to fit over the front wheels of a BMW R1250GS (spoked), 1999 Kawasaki ZX-6R and a Zontes ZT-350T.

Carrying the SkunkLock on a motorcycle will – like the others – mean tucking it in luggage or strapping it to the seat, but it’s worth mentioning that there’s no carrying frame supplied for bicycle use.

The shackle is easy to insert and remove, and reasonably quiet when shook, only a slight rattle coming from the discs in the lock barrel.


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Resistance to attack: lock picking

The Skunklock Carbon uses a disc detainer core, which offers good resistance to picking attacks without access to specialist tools and a lot of experience. Ultimately, lock picking isn’t an issue in motorcycle theft, so unless there’s a significant flaw in a lock’s design, it’s not something you need to worry about.

To see how this compares with the other locks we’ve tested, check out our best motorcycle locks for home and away.


Resistance to attack: bolt-croppers

The hardened steel shackle of Skunklock, and its diameter of 20mm (measured) under the silicone sleeve makes it impossible to attack with bolt-croppers.

To see how this compares with the other locks we’ve tested, check out our best motorcycle locks for home and away.


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Resistance to attack: drill

Despite the lack of a cover over the keyway, I was impressed with the drill resistance of the Skunklock, which has a tough, spinning outer disc that effectively resists drilling. After a very prolonged attack I was able to damage the core beyond use, but was still unable to remove the lock.

To see how this compares with the other locks we’ve tested, check out our best motorcycle locks for home and away.


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Resistance to attack: lump hammer

Despite a prolonged and violent attack with a lump-hammer, the SkunkLock Carbon remained secure and undamaged, the plastic body and silicone sleeve suffering only cosmetic marring.

To see how this compares with the other locks we’ve tested, check out our best motorcycle locks for home and away.



Resistance to attack: angle-grinder

The secret to the SkunkLock Carbon is fragments of silicon carbide inside the hollow, hardened-steel shackle. These really are effective, decimating five 1.0mm DeWalt abrasive discs before I was able to make just one cut with the sixth.

The shackle has an impressively limited amount of movement to it after one cut, following which it’ll pass over only slim cast spokes if fitted to them (anything fatter and it won’t), but there’s no chance of getting it over the wheel if it’s attached that way. That means that two cuts and potentially 11 to 12 cutting discs are required!

I’d like to see more of the silicon carbide used in the lock body though, as this is less resistant to an angle-grinder attack. However, when the D-lock’s fitted to the wheel, due to the size of the lock body it’s still far from quick and easy to get the lock off the wheel, requiring two full cuts in my testing.

A diamond cutting disc can be more effective on some locks than others, and it particularly struggles with hardened steel, so it’s far from the do-it-all theft solution and is less likely to form part of a thief’s toolkit. It’s more effective here, but the SkunkLock still offers better resistance to attack than a typical ‘normal’ D-lock.

To see how this compares with the other locks we’ve tested, check out our best motorcycle locks for home and away.


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Bennetts BikeSocial test results

Product: SkunkLock Carbon

Weight as tested: 1.97kg

Bolt cropper attack: PASS

Sledge hammer attack: PASS

Angle grinder attack: VERY GOOD


SkunkLock Carbon review: Verdict

Thanks to its price in comparison to much of the opposition, its weight and the good internal shackle size, the SkunkLock Carbon offers some good security. The means-tested ‘SkunkYourBike’ campaign sounds interesting, and might make the locks more affordable for those who might be eligible, but we were unable to test this or gain any figures.
While the shackle’s resistance to an abrasive disc attack is truly exceptional, the combined resistance to both abrasive and diamond attacks isn’t the best in class. It’s also a shame the body of the lock isn’t tougher, but the lack of movement in the shackle after cutting anywhere on the SkunkLock means that in most situations it’ll need a time-consuming two cuts.

Lump hammer and drill attacks also proved ineffective on this lock, and it’s great to see more brands coming up with clever ways to beat the thieves…


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