Poor Man's Paperclip Lockpicks





Introduction: Poor Man's Paperclip Lockpicks

About: Twitter: @mindsforge

Using a squashed paperclip, and a tension wrench you can begin learning the art of lock picking!

Step 1: Supplies

You will need:
1. Fairly large paperclip
2. Hammer
3. Something to smash the paperclip on, anvil, rock, concrete
4. Tension wrench

Possiblities for tension wrenches:
1. Small screw driver with a bent tip
2. Another paperclip
3. Model rocket engine clip
4. An actual tension wrench out of a lock picking set

Step 2: Straighten the Clip

Straighten out the paperclip as shown

Step 3: Flatten

Flatten out the end of the clip thats poking out, this makes the paperclip rigid and flat enough to fit into the lock.

Step 4: Test Out Your New Pick!

Picking locks takes practice. Check out the basics on how stuff works , another good document is the "MIT Guide to Lockpicking"

If you really are interested, purchase a lockpick set (around $15 for a basic one from southord). Be sure to check your state laws reguarding lock picking tools and the legality of it all, its always a good idea to see how deep you are getting before you jump in!

Attached is a video of the paper clip lock pick in action. The first section is using a small paper clip as the tension wrench, the second section I used a tension wrench out of a normal lockpick set.

Video is taken with my "stick the camera halfway in your pants" method



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    If i had a lock picking set why the hell would i try to make one out of a paperclip, this is just stupid.

    lol, i like the name SMASHER

    I made a set awhile back and one of the best things for a tension wrench was cutting open an old windshield wiper blade and using the metal part.. It worked great!


    no, I don't think so, a hammer works great

    I can't get the paper clip to get flattened.I tried using a vise and a pair of pliers but it own't work.As for the screwdriver tension wrench, I can only bend it like a millimeter.

    I believe that the clip of a uni-ball pen can be bent and used as a tension wrench although I haven't tried...

    1 reply

    I'd hate to bastardize such an amazing mechanical pencil, but the clip from a Zebra M-301 is also a pretty good tension wrench

    there is no more "MIT Guide to Lockpicking" !


    2 replies

    there is i am on the website and using it right now




    i wanna hear more about these pranks. ;)


    The video isn't necessary :)


    "flat enough to fit into the lock." depends on the lock, but if you have vernier calipers and like to be precise, I'd say no more than 1mm, probably closer to .7 or .8mm. However, what really matters is: "Does it fit into the lock?" and "Does it break when I try to use it?" if the latter occurs try again and don't smash it so hard ya goof! ;)

    i like using screwdrivers that are tiny enough for screws on toys to pick locks inside my house like the ones on bedroom doors

    what did u use for a tension wrench in the video??

    1 reply

    He used a paper clip the first part and i think a bent up mini screw driver the next. I use the mini screw driver

    LMAO stick the camera halfway in your pants. Interesting, I'll try it!