Muc-Off's Clever New Product Allows You to Hide an Apple AirTag in Your Wheel

May 13, 2022 at 14:24
by Sarah Moore  


Muc-Off has introduced a new way to stow an Apple AirTag on your bike, completely hidden and not easily removed by bike thieves. The new Stealth Secure Tag Holder is a covert tracking solution, hidden inside the tire of a tubeless-compatible mountain or gravel bike.

According to a study from Direct Line Insurance, in the five months between April and August 2020, there were more than 110,000 bike thefts in the UK. As for the United States, bike registration specialists 529 Garage reported that there are over two million bike thefts every year. Locks, alarm systems, and insurance have historically been the best ways to protect your prized possession, but with the release of the Apple AirTag in April of 2021, we've seen an additional way to keep tabs on your bike.

There have been a couple of different companies that have released products that allow you to hide an Apple AirTag on your bike, including the Ninja Mount that hides the AirTag under your saddle and Project4AGZE's holder that mounts under your water bottle. Muc-Off also has a similar product called the Secure Tag Holder which allows you to install a tracker to your frame using the bottle cage mounting holes, so you can track down your bike down in the event of theft and locate it.


bigquotesTechnologies like the Apple Airtag can be a great defense against would-be bike thieves. This is what led us to develop our Tag Holders, we wanted to give riders secure and thief-proof ways of fixing the tracker to their bikes. The newest offering – the Stealth Tubeless Tag Holder - is a completely unique undercover solution unlike anything we have seen on the market so far. We will continue to embrace emerging technologies to enhance every rider experience, as we continue our exciting program of innovation in the future. Alex Trimnell, CEO at Muc-Off



The Apple AirTag (not included) on the Stealth Secure Tag Holder is housed in a protective, 3-part silicone and rubber tubeless valve mount and supplied with a range of tubeless valve bases, so you can ensure an airtight seal is achieved against the rim when installing inside a tubeless tire.

Also built-in to protect the rim and the AirTag from high-impacts is a sacrificial stem that compresses and rebounds under extreme loads. Although the holder will absorb impacts, Muc-Off says it is secure to the valve with a durable stem mount which allows sealant and air to flow through the valve as usual and will not rattle inside the rim and tire.




The Apple AirTag itself works by allowing users to track any item from their phone, using the Find My app. Once activated, any item to which the tag is connected appears on the radar within the app, so you can track down your bike by looking on the map.

If the thief has an iPhone, their iPhone will notice when an AirTag is separated from its owner and is travelling without you and send the thief an alert. This is an anti-stalking mechanism. After a while, if the thief hasn't found the tag, it will start playing a sound to show where it is. Regardless, the AirTag hidden in the wheel should give you more time to alert the authorities and hopefully recover your bike than other options.

The Stealth Tubeless Tag Holder retails via Muc-Off distribution network and at muc-off.com for £14.99/€19.99/$19.99 and as part of a kit which includes a set of black Muc-Off 44mm Tubeless Valves for £34.99/€42.99/$44.99.


147 Comments

  • 263 2
 I have an AirTag in my wife's purse and I've noticed she's always going to my best friend's house when I'm at work. I think they're planning a surprise party for my birthday! I'm so excited!
  • 69 0
 @Brett198
What a coincidence, she has an AirTag on your wallet so she and your best bud know when it's time for them to put the party planning on hold and rush home before you arrive. "Oh hi honey, how was your day? I'm just going to hop in the shower, I'm all sweaty after my run..... again."
  • 18 0
 @dlford: While the comedy is not lost on me. I had this exact thing happen to me. AirTag didn't exist at the time tho so I had to use other means to learn about my surprise party planning sessions. haha
  • 150 6
 I don’t have anything snarky to say. This is a genuinely good solution to a problem nobody ever wants to confront, and it seems very well thought out.
  • 35 2
 Idk it seems like a cool idea but honestly it would Make me worry so much about the wheel. If they could show a test of it with someone hammering down a trail. I would be all for it
  • 54 8
 What happens when u get a flat? U cant ride the bike cause you will smash the airtag.
  • 37 0
 @letitwhip33: We need slow motion huck-to-flat video; I’m sure after enough attempts that could land on the stem section of the rim.

Would probably be a decent accessory for commuter bikes though, which quite frankly are probably more likely to get stolen on a regular basis.
  • 15 1
 @KadeStoltz: you don’t need to worry about anyone stealing a bike with a flat tire then.
  • 17 0
 @KadeStoltz: Also not an option for tire insert users
  • 11 0
 @KadeStoltz: you ride with a flat?
  • 7 0
 I put mine in a small pouch of bubble wrap, zip tied around my fork steerer to retrieve should I need to change the battery. They work just fine inside carbon frames.
  • 2 0
 @naptime: its a last resort, but I have a couple of times over my 37yrs of mtb. in 92 I flatted in a xc race 250metres from the line, I wasnt going to stop & fix it. my 1st ever win was my most memorable.
so no I wouldnt recommend it, but sometimes you just need to get home or at least to civilisation/ mobile reception to bum a lift
  • 1 0
 Exactly. That's really good idea in a long time without marketing bullshit everywhere.
  • 5 6
 The thing is, why would anyone want an air tag on their bike in the first place? The things are useless for theft prevention, unless the thief knows it’s there, and they’re useless fir getting a stolen bike back, because the airtag will alert the thief, long before you have a chance to get to them.
  • 2 1
 @FuzzyL: Yeah that's so stupid!! They alert the thief if he has an Iphone and if the thief didn't find the device, it will make a sound just to be sure that he can find it, destroy it and get away with it! We want to find the thief and makes him regret it or at least make him arrested by the police so he doesn't continue with other bikes!
  • 1 0
 @Timo82: I’ve had one in my bike for a few weeks now, I’ve ridden and drove around with iPhone buddies, stayed in the same apartments, with the bikes in close proximity, etc, they’ve never been notified that there’s an AirTag near them. I think maybe if you stuck it in their pocket or bag, etc, it might see that as stalking, but if you’re just regularly moving around the tagged thing, then they’ll never know.
  • 3 0
 @pbuser2299: Did you have your iPhone with you? Of course there won‘t be an alert if you travel with your airtag.
  • 5 0
 @willdavidson9595: honestly you could cut a hole in a cushcore and put an air tag in it
  • 2 0
 @FuzzyL: that mechanism is so people don't have one unknowingly placed on their car, for example, then followed and assaulted/murdered. A bit more important than the guarantee of getting your bike back
  • 1 0
 @FuzzyL:

Agree: "...After a while, if the thief hasn't found the tag, it will start playing a sound to show where it is..."
  • 2 0
 @abprice: I still don't think the thief would find it. Ever tried to track down a creak in your frame?
  • 1 1
 @naptime: right... the only acceptable reason to ride with a flat is racing a UCI world cup....
  • 2 0
 @abprice: You can disable the speaker pretty easily.
  • 1 0
 @Timo82: exaxtly!
  • 37 0
 At this point bike companies should just start installing gps trackers into the frame.
  • 1 0
 Agree. Should be an option. If I lived in a high theft area I'd pay for it.
  • 11 4
 definitely, bikes are too cheap and need more expensive gimmicks
  • 1 0
 The problem is how does the tracker communicate with you?
Does it communicate with your phone? In which case it needs a sim too. If it communicates directly via bluetooth for example, that's pretty useless. Or does it communicate with its own receiver? In which case you can add a bulky receiver and £600 to the cost of the bike.
It's an easy solution to suggest until you consider what it actually involves.
  • 32 0
 Why not just stash it inside the frame via the head tube or swat box or bottom bracket openings? Use some double sided tape or something….

With this changing the battery means dismounting the tire…
  • 7 8
 inside the frame will block the signal. Also inside the tire, would destroy a carbon rim if it gets punctured. We need something else still maybe tape to the saddle could work.
  • 25 0
 Gp lama has tested airtage position vs range extensively
youtu.be/aLtWN1Mp2Qc
1.Inside aluminium stem. Signal completely blocked (useless)
2 inside carbon bb signal distance lowered to 21m
3 onhead of metal seatpost 23m
4 in plastic 3d print bottle cage mount. So basically outside of bike. Best range at 35m ( a bit obvious for the smart thief)

People have successfully recovered bikes by having mounted 2 tags. Thief removed one before taking bike to home location of their own phone and then 2nd tag pinged location
  • 7 0
 @FastRiding: Mine works perfectly taped to the inside of my frame
  • 3 0
 Somebody must be able to work something where the frame acts as an ariel? Isn't alu good for receiving FM signals or something? Unless the CB enthusiast I knew as a kid was full of sh#t?
  • 4 0
 @naptime: I was hoping that given Find My is a protocol than can be used by other products. I had hoped that the focus would have been on say a Find My compatible stem cap, rather than various holders for Air Tags.
  • 3 1
 @gcrider: Why in would anyone put an RF device inside the BB when they could put it anywhere else? Your signal is blocked on at least 3 sides by metal bearings & the axle. Literally anywhere else inside a carbon frame would be better. Likewise, why would you put it directly on metal seatpost when you can tape it to the saddle shell? Sounds like this Lama character has more spare time than sense.
  • 1 1
 In the bottom bracket was actually under the cat flap beside the bottom bracket in his carbon frame
On top of metal seatpost was not visible to thief but outside of frame ( all shown in his video)
Having it taped to saddle would be easier for thief to spot and remove if the thief was smart ,

@LokiTheCat:
  • 3 0
 I have it double sided velcro taped to inside of both my E-Bike (Intense Tazer) just out of reach (you need a key to remove the battery), and on my Spaz Enduro it's behind the bottom of the SWAT box. Same double sided velcro tape. No issues and range is perfect.
  • 33 1
 Wouldn't this get damaged when the tire deforms on a landing or big hit?
  • 42 1
 keep my BigHit's name out.. of..your f**king mouth..
  • 22 1
 I never knew AirTags would alert a person near it that it's been separated from its owner. This pretty much makes them useless as an anti theft device doesn't it unless you instantly know your bike is missing which would rarely be the case?
  • 1 0
 yea i heard the same thiung
  • 3 3
 Only alerts thief once they get home. And saves location for the owner to view. @Kimura:
  • 15 2
 @Kimura: Before this I thought AirTags were one of the smartest things out there, now I think they are one of the most useless things out there. They literally will tell people that they have/are near something expensive of yours and that you are nowhere to be found. Awesome.

Not knocking this Muc Off product, it's actually quite smart aside from this Apple flub.
  • 17 0
 @gcrider: From Apple:

If someone else’s AirTag finds its way into your stuff, your iPhone will notice it’s travelling with you and send you an alert. After a while, if you still haven’t found it, the AirTag will start playing a sound to let you know it’s there.

So I would say they will know long before they get home.
  • 9 1
 @warmerdamj: that seems like one hell of a design flaw! And apple doesn't give the air tag owner a way to toggle that feature on/off ? Seems very dumb....maybe the a result of anti-surveillance laws? I guess it's a pretty powerful tool for stalkers/criminals who might want to use it for other purposes
  • 50 0
 @rory: Stalking is exactly why they have it make a noise, so somebody cant air tag you then follow you home and kill you.

This is human innovation at its best:

1. Make a really useful device to find lost things.
2, Realize that people are such f*cking pieces of shit they will exploit it to hurt others.
3. Make said device less useful.
  • 6 0
 Article mac rumours apple update 2022
“An AirTag away from its owner for eight to 24 hours will play a sound to alert you to its presence, letting you know if someone has illicitly stuck an AirTag in your belongings.”

@warmerdamj:
  • 1 0
 @warmerdamj: it’s good to track your kid(s) with
  • 1 1
 So initial alert sounds when tag is out of range of owner. So all depends on if you park your bike and if you move out of range or the thief moves it out of range. If the thief moves it. They will get alerted. But so will you. Then they will have to remove tag or battery before they get to where they are taking the bike to before you get to them.
  • 9 0
 You can DIY remove the alerting speaker piece inside the AirTag.
  • 2 0
 @rory: It's so your spouse knows you're tracking him/her. There are plenty of less ethical devices out there.
  • 3 0
 Interesting, doesn’t happen with Samsung SmartTag+
  • 3 0
 @warmerdamj: apparently there's a DIY solution to mute the damn thing, via stripping it of its speaker.

Because sure, everyone wishes to be obliged to check back on its belonging every hour or so. Like the whole purpose of deciding to rely on a tech solution wouldn't just not be to avoid that. Freakin' Apple genius.
  • 1 0
 Yes, this is true and is also the reason I have Tiles instead of AirTags mounted under all of my bike's saddles. This is true for ALL devices that use Apple's Find My Network. I reached out to Chipolo, another company that makes an Air Tag competitor that piggybacks off the Find My Network and they confirmed this. Tile FTW. With the Amazon Sidewalk network (pings off of all Alexa and Ring devices, just like the Find My Network pings off of iPhones and iPads) the Tile's are just as good, but can also be used for theft recovery.
  • 1 0
 my solution is AirTag and camera with motion detection and app notification. This is obviosuly for home storage. Outside of that storage I do not leave my bike unattended for even a moment.
  • 1 0
 @gravitybass: I am sorry but I am pretty sure there much less ring and AMZ devices around than iPhones Big Grin
  • 21 0
 Wont it get dizzy in there?
  • 20 0
 Not if you ride backwards for a bit :-)
  • 13 0
 “An AirTag is traveling with you” notifications are going to become mandatory for thieves so they can tear bikes apart and toss the AirTags. We live in an interesting future.
  • 2 0
 Only works on stupid thieves. Also don’t those AirTags only work for tracking if iOS devices are near by? So just make sure you crew only have android
  • 5 0
 @mfoga: there’s always an iOS device somewhere. I put one on my bike and sent it to the LBS. I could see it moving inside the shop from the shelves to the work stand. Find My is an amazing mesh technology, more accurate and available than GPS.
  • 2 0
 @Mtmw: not in my house.
  • 6 0
 @Mtmw: So did it just start beeping in the shop then and annoy the f*ck out of the staff?
  • 3 1
 See my comment above and gp lamas videos
  • 3 0
 @Mtmw: honest question about how these things work. The tag will be picked up by any IOS device and then those devices will send your phone a signal via cell phone network?
  • 5 0
 @Speeder01: any iOS device will read the tag, send the location at that point in time to the cloud, where your phone retrieves the location for you. Neither phone ever know where or who the other phone is/belongs to.
  • 15 0
 @Speeder01: the Find My architecture is incredibly complex. It is an anonymous, global, peer to peer mesh location API. I’m going to wildly oversimplify here: The AirTag tells any iOS device where it is. That message gets put into an unbreakable envelope and shuffled out into a global mishmash of devices until it gets to your phone, which holds the only key which can break open the envelope. Apple has no idea where the device is and neither does the network.
  • 1 1
 Only after 8 to 24hrs at this point in time
  • 8 5
 @Speeder01: There are three ways to prevent AirTags from working on an iOS device: 1) opt out of "Find My" network, 2) turn off Bluetooth, 3) turn off Location Services. On my phone, bluetooth is *always* off b/c I hate the technology with a passion, so I'll never be a transmitting or receiving part of Apple's AirTag surveillance racket.
  • 2 0
 @powturn: Just out of interest, what do you not like about bluetooth?
  • 7 6
 @MaplePanda: Crummy, unreliable connections. There is nothing BT can do for me that WiFi or a cable can't do better.
  • 2 1
 @powturn: action cameras
  • 2 0
 @mfoga: within 21m of your house though?
  • 5 0
 @powturn: What kind of WiFi wireless headphones do you use?
  • 8 1
 @warmerdamj: Use high-end RF wireless headsets when proper speakers are not an option for home cinema or hifi. Otherwise I do not use BT headsets, they're sonic garbage.
  • 15 3
 Every Bike shop I ever worked at was typically a bunch of single dudes, some were a little too single if you know what I mean? Ladies if the same bike shop guy that fixed your flat keeps "running into you" on the trail, check your valves...
  • 10 0
 Does it make the tire more progressive, and how many Air-tokens can I put in??
  • 10 0
 Air tag in my air bag? Why not GPS in my AXS?
  • 10 0
 Ive run inside my rimpact for 6 months now, works great!
  • 11 2
 Does it affect the wheels balance at speed?
  • 4 4
 Less than tire sealant I’d think
  • 5 2
 It must.
  • 12 0
 @louiefriesen: sealant will equally spread itself out along the outside of the rotating tire. This will not, but I doubt it weighs more then a fancy valve cap.
  • 1 0
 @louiefriesen: Isn't tire sealant actually going to help balance a wheel? Like balance beads?
  • 5 0
 So airtags alert the thief to their location? What a stupid idea. How the hell do you get their trophy fingers if they know they're being stalked??
I've got books to bind in the softest leathers.
  • 6 0
 Customers also bought:

- Baseball bat
  • 1 0
 In principle a neat idea and good solution for … riders running tubeless.

Two problems with having it in the tire:

- Low Psi-setups over rocks or roots seems a menacing risk to the airtag being smashed
-Flats

In general:

Airtags not being paired with your personal iOS devices notify you that someone elses is travelling with you after about 45 minutes to an hour. Experiencing this with my Airpods Pro from work that i take home with my work-MacBook.

Tire issues - these can happen and you might destroy a couple of Airtags.

Notifications - at least you will have about an hour to see where your bike is headed, in case it hasn’t been discovered.
Or … the thief does not have an iOS device.
  • 2 0
 Adding to this:

Probably the best solution would be if the industry would settle on a technological GPS-tracking and Owner-ID standard, similar to what VanMoof is doing integrated in frames.

But you know … standards. Looking at you, UDH.
  • 1 0
 @whiteboarder: aren’t Van Moof using the Find My network…
  • 1 0
 @whiteboarder: it looks like it also supports it - www.vanmoof.com/blog/en/find-my-bike
  • 1 0
 Apple recently introduced an update to the app to alert users to the presences of nearby airtags, due to the numbers of people using them to track/stalk their ex's. This of course means thieves might just go looking for a bike to steal that isn't setting off an air tag alert if they have an iphone and the app.
  • 1 0
 An “AirTag Found Moving with You” notification appears when your iPhone or iPad has picked up the same Bluetooth ID as you move from place to place over some unspecified period of time. In addition, one of the following conditions must also be true:

You’ve arrived home, as determined by the address set for the Me card in Contacts.
You’ve arrived at a “significant location,” explained below.
It’s the end of the day (whatever that means), even if you haven’t gone home or to a significant location.


What’s a “significant location?” Your iPhone and iPad track locations that they believe have some relevance to you, whether you’ve visited once or every day for a month.


Also:
At a random interval after 8 to 24 hours, the AirTag plays a sound. The sound recurs every so often thereafter.
  • 1 0
 all these are enough for me to figure out where the bike is and hit the thief in a head. The last part takes about 5 min to remove / disable speaker for good so there is no sound whatsoever ( Also 3d printed sleeve reduced sound by like 75% ( just my personal feel)).
  • 2 1
 I don’t see the point of the AirTag for theft prevention as in the U.K. the police still won’t do anything even if you show them the location. They are more likely to arrest you for attempting to recover your own bike than arrest the thief
  • 1 0
 Why the Fk won't they??
  • 2 1
 @DavidGuerra: the U.K. police don’t do arresting thieves. They can’t be bothered
  • 1 0
 @DavidGuerra: There aren’t enough of them. Cuts to funding mean a drop in police numbers. So it depends on how busy they are as to whether they’ll turn up. Best bet is to inform them an assault is taking place, they’re a lot more likely to come quickly.
  • 1 0
 Especially with eBikes, there’s just no excuse for manufacturers to not add gps locators to bike frames. Beyond that, there are companies working on the problem. Also, if you look on Facebook marketplace, you will find a low cost option that hides the AirTag in the bottom of the steertube, but as has been pointed out, AirTags aren’t the best solution.
  • 1 0
 Airtags have an OD of 31.9 mm (support.apple.com/kb/SP840), so they could fit inside most fork stanchions. Bet someone clever could make a little pocket for one in a 3D printed volume reducer.

Still have the problem of alerting the thief, but I bet most thieves wouldn't think to open up a suspension fork. They'll just destroy the rest of the bike trying to find it, lol.
  • 1 1
 Or, you know...I could just put it in the frame. Or paint it black and put it under the seat. After all, I wouldn't be surprised to see it parted out immediately. This is pretty much good for if you forget you wheels places. One hard rock strike is going to destroy this
  • 1 0
 Keen to hear some real world experience. I’ve been trying to work out how to get an Air Tag, or other Find My accessory, on my bike without it being too obvious. I had never considered putting it inside the tyre.
  • 1 1
 steerer tube at the bottom.
  • 4 1
 Soooo.... the actual airtag costs about 25$ and the silicone sleeve is 20$. MTB pricing at its finest
  • 1 1
 I was in the hospital over the winter and came home and my bmx bike got stolen and this is now the 6th bike ive had stolen threwout my life it is insane how dirty people are ...the one kid that got caught steeling 3 of mine literally walks around covered in dirt disgusting people out there
  • 4 1
 This might put Smith and Wesson out of business.
  • 2 0
 spencer3dprints.com/products/stealth-tag

Steer tube mount option works for me.
  • 1 0
 Wunderbar, thanks for the link!
  • 3 1
 Not a bad idea assuming a rock doesn’t crush it
  • 1 2
 wait till one of these MFs rims out on their air tag! or if you are running your TP a little too low, and you just feel the bump every couple of feet! It´s a cool idea, but I´m not sure how it´ll perform.
  • 2 0
 Put it in suspension as a volume reducer; would be better IMO
  • 3 0
 I doubt it would be able to get a signal when all encapsulated in metal like that.
  • 3 0
 Huck to flat video?
  • 2 0
 Haha Must run 42psi or more to be safe
  • 1 0
 Pretty sure last time I checked the FRAME is worth more than the WHEELS. Do your homework!
  • 1 1
 Leave it to Mucoff to creat yet another pointless product no one needs. I'm surprised they don't claim how green and environment friendly it is simultaneously.
  • 1 0
 Just another tool to try treating symptoms of theft without actually preventing theft.
  • 1 0
 Robber: here’s noise in stolen bike tire, try’s to take the tire off but doesn’t know what tube less is.
  • 1 0
 Seems like the first big hit near the valve stem would destroy the AirTag and possibly the wheel as well.
  • 1 0
 Anywhere else on your bike it would be fine to have an airbag but this is just about the most ridiculous spot to put it.
  • 1 0
 Would this work with Cush core? Seems like a decent idea. Bike thieves better pray I don't find them.
  • 1 0
 So when you land on this thing, it breaks and also damages the rim? Seems like this design is not good for mountain biking.
  • 3 2
 this will be wonderful when you get a flat
  • 2 1
 if you burp the tire in that exact spot...
  • 1 0
 I just use a fork quirk and shove my airtag in there.
  • 1 0
 Glue one in your fork as a spacer?
Damn Faraday cage.
  • 1 0
 Then it wasn't April Fool's Day
  • 1 0
 What about as part of an air token in a fork ?
  • 1 0
 How does it handle impacts?
  • 1 0
 If the thiefe has an I phone the devise alerts the thieves . I'll pass.
  • 1 0
 I need this in my bar cruiser to find it the next morning
  • 5 4
 Are the comments broken?
  • 6 0
 All your bases are belong to us! ...and behind a paywall!
  • 1 2
 load of similar products on ebay, I've got similar devices hidden in my bikes
  • 1 0
 i don't see this lasting
  • 1 0
 I mean, now thieves know. ditch the wheels and just run off with the frame.
  • 1 1
 This is why there are microplastics in our blood
  • 1 1
 Fits in a steer tube
  • 6 1
 And Blocks signal
  • 1 0
 May work with decreased range in full carbon stem. But not aluminium
@SvenNorske:
  • 1 2
 @SvenNorske: it doesn't.
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