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  • DaveE33 commented on Von Malegowski's instructable How to Pick a Lock (Basics)3 years ago
    How to Pick a Lock (Basics)

    The basic problem you describe is prevalent in many trades, carpentry is a good example. Because of automation and the pace of technology, it just doesn't pay to fix "stuff." I used to save old TVs because I could fix cheaper than buying new. Since flat panels came out, I've thrown away a number of perfectly good CRT televisions. I bought my first color TV, a 10" GE portable in 1968 for $180 when I was making $5000 a year. Even though the dollar is worth much less, today, look what you get for $180.Getting back to locks, I've found, I can re key the old car locks once I can turn the cylinder. I have re-keying kits for old autos and S--g. When my friend picked the lock for me, I was able to re-key it. So far, I haven't had to cut any keys. I've collected old keys ...

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    The basic problem you describe is prevalent in many trades, carpentry is a good example. Because of automation and the pace of technology, it just doesn't pay to fix "stuff." I used to save old TVs because I could fix cheaper than buying new. Since flat panels came out, I've thrown away a number of perfectly good CRT televisions. I bought my first color TV, a 10" GE portable in 1968 for $180 when I was making $5000 a year. Even though the dollar is worth much less, today, look what you get for $180.Getting back to locks, I've found, I can re key the old car locks once I can turn the cylinder. I have re-keying kits for old autos and S--g. When my friend picked the lock for me, I was able to re-key it. So far, I haven't had to cut any keys. I've collected old keys and with an assortment of pins, I just key the lock to match the key I have.The one problem I ran into was the Mustang lock. I bought one on eBay cheap without a key. To see how it was put together, I drilled out the small pin holding the lock in the assembly. I discovered it was a straight pin held in place with a rubber o-ring. Normally, with the cylinder rotated, you could push the pin in far enough the release the cylinder. However, the pin was also removable if you could find a way to pull it. I used a very small drill to put a "notch" in the pin and used a sharp pick to lift it out. But the real problem was putting new pins in the cylinder. The pins in my Ford re-keying kit were too large to fit. I've come to believe Ford locks earlier than about 1965, used a smaller pin. Certainly, the Mustang did. I haven't been able to find any information about these pins and where to buy them, so I bought a couple of old locks, cheap, on eBay just for the pins. In addition, the kit I have includes top and bottom pins. The older locks I have seem to have the same size top pin.I have found Chinese repos for the Mustang, but for now, I'll stick with the used originals. Just wish I could find assorted pins instead of taking locks apart.

    As an aside, we use GSA combination locks for file cabinets. We had a 5 drawer cabinet with a lock on each drawer. When the locks started feeling "stiff," had a "locksmith" come out to service them. They worked great at first, but within 6 months, they became so stiff, you couldn't open the drawers. It cost $500 per lock to get someone to break in without damaging contents. He simply drilled into each lock and released it. However, one lock was so gummed up, it wouldn't release and he had to cut the bolt. We now have electronic combination locks. They are about $1000. I don't know what you do if they fail. At least they won't gum up.How do you find a locksmith who knows what he is doing......

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  • DaveE33 commented on Von Malegowski's instructable How to Pick a Lock (Basics)3 years ago
    How to Pick a Lock (Basics)

    I have found it extremely difficult to find a locksmith who could/would pick old ('60s) car locks. I own cars from 30s, 50s, and 60s. Often, you cannot find new locks and a used lock may be missing the key. Being able to pick an old lock can save a lot of money. I took a 1966 Mustang trunk lock to a locksmith. Even though the key code was readable, he wanted $50 to look at it and wouldn't guarantee he could make a new key. A friend, now dead, who was a locksmith, picked a lock for me in a few seconds. Where do you find these guys, today? You could spend hours visiting locksmiths trying to find someone who could pick these old locks. I believe my time is better spent learning how to pick them. And, for me, you're right. It's not something you can pickup in an instant. I start...

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    I have found it extremely difficult to find a locksmith who could/would pick old ('60s) car locks. I own cars from 30s, 50s, and 60s. Often, you cannot find new locks and a used lock may be missing the key. Being able to pick an old lock can save a lot of money. I took a 1966 Mustang trunk lock to a locksmith. Even though the key code was readable, he wanted $50 to look at it and wouldn't guarantee he could make a new key. A friend, now dead, who was a locksmith, picked a lock for me in a few seconds. Where do you find these guys, today? You could spend hours visiting locksmiths trying to find someone who could pick these old locks. I believe my time is better spent learning how to pick them. And, for me, you're right. It's not something you can pickup in an instant. I started with just 2 pins in a S____ge.

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