Picture of Wooden Dial Combination lock, with spring release and changable code
This project creates an end product of similar design to my other lock instructable: www.instructables.com/id/Wooden-Bar-Combination-Lock/  however this project has:
->A much higher complexity level
->Requires more time
->Requires more esoteric building materials
->Much harder to circumvent/guess
->User changeable code


This instructable will take you through constructing a wooden dial combination lock.  This particular lock will in fact be used to secure a minibar fridge (replacing the one I have already built) due to some issues with the misappropriation of foodstuffs at my workplace.

This is a moderately complex project that can be completed inside of 9 hours if you move quickly and don't make any major mistakes. Workpeice precision is a must in this project, and you should assure that you have access to some moderately precise tooling.

During the course of this project you will also be creating the dial in virtual format using openoffice (marking it by hand would be a disaster) and then printing it to transfer it permanently to the dials on the finished product.

Tools Required:
Circular Saw
Table saw
Band Saw
Belt Sander
Drill Press
Openoffice with fontwork installed

Materials required:
3/4 inch pine
1,1/2" screws
1" Screws
2" Screws
~9 hours
Felt pen
Grease pencil
Wood Glue
1/2" internal diameter compression type spring
1/2" Dowel
Spray Adhesive
Finishing nails
Nail gun nails

Step 1: Initial prep

Picture of Initial prep
Take your 3/4" pine, and plane it even
Cut the following pieces:
3     9x12" boards
2     3x12" boards
1     3x32" board
9     3,1/2" disks
4     2,1/2" dowel
2     5" dowel
I'm gonna build one for my room to keep my little bro out
Neni ľahšie odtiahnuť chladničku, vybrať čo chcem a dať ju naspäť, než sa trápiť a skúšať hľadať kód ?
starslayer (author)  terezkaterka3 years ago
oh dear, google tells me this might be something approaching slovak and translating roughly to:
'Not Lahaie pulled the fridge, selected what I want and put it naspäe, not to worry ~ and a snake skúaae the code?'

I am going to further postulate it translates to:
'Could I not just lift up the fridge, select what I want, and put it back, not to worry about a code and escape like a snake'

To whit:
The fridge is somewhat heavy, against a wall, already on a raised platform, and has a short cord plugged into the outlet. If you have the time, ability, and inclination to:
->Unplug the fridge
->Lift the damn thing, and its contents from an arms straight forward position to one over your head
->Put the fridge down
->Remove the item you want
->Put the fridge back
->Plug it back in

That would get past my wooden lock but I don't think ANY security measure within reason would stop someone that dedicated to stealing from the fridge. (If your willing to put that much effort into it you could also just remove the lock from the wall, take your item out, and put it back; which you'd also be able to do with a padlock by removing its mountings).

I have no illusions of my wooden lock being the superior locking method, or that any locking method accomplishes anything beyond buying time. This one is complicated enough that it makes most people take enough time that I can question what they are doing before they open it.
Nič v zlom. Je to pekná práca a drevo je krásny materiál. Ostávam s pozdravom.
starslayer (author)  terezkaterka3 years ago
Humm- google to the rescue again:
'Nothing? the poor. It's nice work, and wood is a beautiful material. Best regards.'

Thank you.
darkblood3 years ago
What I like to do when I need a bunch of matching disks like this is cut them oversized with a drill press and a hole-saw, then clamp them together on a mandrel (piece of all-thread with center holes in the ends would do) and mount between centers on the lathe...

A quick clean up pass makes them all concentric, and the same size, and I find it easier than parting them off later without messing up the edges.
starslayer (author)  darkblood3 years ago
That's actually an excellent idea. Unfortunately the largest hole-saw bit I have is about 3cm. I suppose I could have band sawed all disks about 30% larger, drilled center holes, placed them all on a dowel and used the dowel to establish lathe centers, then lathed them down to the size I wanted, but that is getting nearly complicated enough for its own instructable and most certainly would have had a negative impact on project complexity and build time.
torstenp163 years ago
This and your last lock look pretty impressive! pretty ingenius ideas. did you come up with these yourself? When I get some spare time, I want to build these. and maybe put them in a movie.
starslayer (author)  torstenp163 years ago
I did come up with these by myself- however the bar lock bears much in common with a suitcase lock or a chain bike lock. The dial lock I am more proud of because I can't think of anywhere else I have seen that sort of mechanism, but it does it's job quite admirably.

I would be very interesting in seeing them inside a movie- good luck with your build and thank you for your enthusiastic words.