The following story was originally published on GearJunkie


If you’re aware of spy gear and culture whatsoever, you’re probably familiar with the idea of putting a stealth tracking device on precious cargo.

Why not do the same thing to your bike? As global supply chain delays continue to slow bicycle production, bikes are hot commodities on all markets (including the black market).

Stealth Tag has you covered when the best U-lock still fails at the hands of thieves.

The execution is as simple as the concept. The Stealth Tag is about the size of a big bottle cap. Simply seat an Apple AirTag inside it, then push the cap into the bottom of your steerer tube. “Slight expansion,” according to Stealth Tag, holds it in.

If your bike goes missing, nearby devices can locate the AirTag via Bluetooth and drop a pin on the Find My app. (Note that AirTag is only compatible with iPhone 11 and later — in this case, Android users are out of luck.)

The $15 gadget is currently compatible with multiple popular mountain bike steerer tubes from Fox and RockShox. Find out here if your fork can house a Stealth Tag. As of this writing, it’s on sale for $13.

A Quick Audit: Is the Stealth Tag Any Good?

Maybe. The concept is pleasingly simple, and if it works, it’s a stroke of elegant genius. But, of course, it has to work.

You’ve seen these plastic caps before; there might be some on the ends of your handlebar, protecting anything that may contact them. To install the Stealth Tag, punch it upward into the bottom of the steerer tube.

That means friction is the only thing securing it. Could it pop out when you land a drop or rattle your way over choppy trails? There’s only one way to know for sure. Still, a low-cost threshold might justify trying it out — especially depending on how much you spent on your bike.

Stealth Tag purchases don’t include Apple AirTags. You’ll have to buy one separately, starting at $29.

It seems like the idea for the Stealth Tag was hiding in plain sight. Now, the Stealth Tag itself will be doing the same thing.

spencer3dprints.com

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Vince E.
Vince E.
4 months ago

Apple’s updating their software to make their AirTags more stalker-proof, which makes them less effective as a tracking device.

You can’t have both.

A thief just needs a cheap Android phone with the Tracker Detect app or an iPhone (doesn’t even need cell access) and within 10 minutes the unknown tracker will make a sound, alerting the thief, and off into the river your AirTag goes.

AirTags are for lost, not stolen, items.

Richard Hewer
Richard Hewer
2 months ago
Reply to  Vince E.

Take the AirTag apart and remove the speaker unit. Demo videos available. SILENT AirTags are the answer to possibly get our bikes back!!

Spencer Ciammitti
4 months ago

Thanks for the write up! Happy to keep making these and expanding the line 🙂

Just as a side note it works on iPhone prior to iPhone 11, just not the fancy finding feature, but just a general location. Also three are third party apps for android.

Again thank you!

joby
joby
4 months ago

cost me less than 10¢ to stuff an AirTag in a piece of foam and put way inside the frame where it can’t be removed without some serious disassembly…and knowledge that it’s even there.

Cmarch
Cmarch
4 months ago
Reply to  joby

How do you plan to change the battery if you can’t even reach it yourself?

joby
joby
4 months ago
Reply to  Cmarch

I never said I can’t reach it myself. I’m a professional mechanic that can fully strip a bike to its frame in about 15 min. Removing a fork to change a battery is not a big deal.

Mike
Mike
4 months ago
Reply to  joby

Likewise. I taped one inside my bottom bracket.

Yagil
Yagil
4 months ago
Reply to  joby

But… Airtag battery lasts about a year. What would you do then?

blahblahblah
blahblahblah
4 months ago
Reply to  Yagil

put n another one

James Rockow
James Rockow
4 months ago

Works well, been running it for a bit on my HeiHei. Many people are concerned that it will fall off. I don’t think it ever would but even if it did, you can track it to where it fell off, because that’s it’s job. Hides really well and I just set a reminder on my phone to replace the battery yearly and check the battery using my phone every 3 months.

Fabian
Fabian
4 months ago

im searching for so long, for a tracking device but an apple airtag isnt really a solution, because?

when a thief has got an iphone, he also get the message theres a lost/stolen airtag in his near.

so who in this business has a really good solution for a tracking device?

Josb
Josb
4 months ago
Reply to  Jeff Schaffer

How is this helpful? More than twice the price and way more obvious…

PJS
PJS
4 months ago

cant anyone – including perps – detect the AT?

Fred
Fred
4 months ago

The problem is that of the person who stole your bike has an iPhone they will be notified that someone is tracking them. But I guess the hope is you’d track them down pretty quickly after it’s stolen, well before they are getting notifications. Nice idea esp for people who aren’t interested in finding their own hiding spot anyway, the worry about putting it inside the frame would be you block the signal which kinda defeats the purpose.

joby
joby
4 months ago
Reply to  Fred

I see this as a good thing…if they know they’re being tracked, they’re more likely to ditch the ride rather than chance leading five-o to their chop shop.

Three
4 months ago

If they have a iPhone, couldn’t they find out the bike has a tracker and move on to one that hasn’t? Whola tracker saved your bike

Ghost
Ghost
4 months ago
Reply to  Three

“Whola”?