Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Locks, a Temporary Annoyance

It was a close one, my friend, very close indeed.  Almost had a three way tie with that last poll. No worries, my faithful followers, the topics will be there tomorrow ;)

Many of you may suffer from the unfortunate birth defect of being born into a corporeal body, and thus cannot pass through doors like the rest. This guide is for you. Another quick and easy way to make your life easier, and your enemies lives harder. Just make sure it's a real enemy, and not something I'll have to testify in court for in the future. To understand how to pick a lock, you must first understand the internal mechanisms held within that steel-clad box of security.

A lock has 3 basic parts. The plug, the shell, and the pins. The plug is where you stick your key into, its a long cylindrical tube. The plug is held within the shell, which is simply the outer part of the lock. It's also where the pins enter to lock it. There exists a place called the Shearline, and simply put., its the space between the plug and shell. Inside the tumble lie pins, usually 5 of them, but some have less or even more. the pins themselves are split into two pins, one resting ontop of the other. The goal is to raise each pin enough that the split in the pins matches the Shearline on all pins.

How do you do this? Well, you buy or make some lockpicks and a tension wrench. The Pick/s are used to  rake, scrape, bob and dip along those pins, puhing each down slowly, or raking across them at varying pressures. The tension wrench turns the plug as you do so, locking the pins that set into place one by one. So very simple to explain, but difficult to master. So let's go a bit deeper, shall we?

First thing you need is a tension wrench. This has to be a long, thin strip of steel or other strong metal, a bobby pin won't do.For a solid piece of metal already pre cut, ground, thinned, and heat treated, find the nearest car, and take their windshield wiper blade. That is, assuming the car is abandoned or yours. The metal strip behind the rubber wiper blade is strong and the perfect size, and come in a variety of widths for different sized locks. Take a wrench, and bend about a 1/4 inch from the tip into a 90 degree angle, and twist gently about half an inch down from that. Twist only a half turn. Next, put it in your pocket.

Second piece of equipment you must craft is the pick, or picks. A true locksmith might have up to 72 picks for various needs (I carry a 24 set), but we'll stick with your basic rake. The rake will be used for sliding in and out, up and down inside of the tight, quivering walls of the tumbler. This action is refered to 'raking', hence the name. For this, you'll need to grind or cut another metal strip. You only need about a 1/2 inch maybe more of pick at the tip, so lets grind it into a pattern like this.  If you're careful, you could even use metal snippers, just don't snip too hard. Wrap the base in a nice handle of your choice, and put it in your pocket.

 Now you're ready for the seemingly fun, but really actually quite annoying task of picking a lock. Insert the tension tip, and push down gently to turn the lock the proper, left direction. Insert the rake and begin to gently rock it up and down inside, moving in and out just a little bit. You should feel the lock stiffen some when a pin clicks into place, keep working those pins with trial and error until CLICK. You'll hear it, and you'll want to roar out in triumph.


But... But Daddy Kane. I can't seem to do it.Thats just fine, nancy boy, here are some other tips to consider adding to your repetoire.Make some more tips if you want, but the rake should pop anything but the trickier locks. The real trick is practicing your patience, and gently rocking motions. Fine tune that thing, and it will open unto you as a flower in spring-time. Get yourself a cheap padlock, secure it with a vice or something, and practice away. You might be surprised how quickly you catch on. As I said, easy to teach, hard to master.




Things to watch for. Many high end, expensive locks can include internal traps to confound the would be burgular. A shell might include side slots with pins in them. When the plug is twisted, the pins drop down and lock it into place once more. This blocks the 'bumping' type of intruder, a style of crude lockpicking, more so than it hurts the true lockpicker.  When you run into this, simply repick the dropped pin, easy as pie, and you dont have to line anything up.


Some locks might even have an "I" or "T" shaped top pin. This will easily turn your hardened, emotionallly bottled self into a quivering pile of tears and shattered dreams. if your not careful. It's designed to jam the lock if its being picked, flat and simple. The "T" side will drop down when you're raking with a tension wrench, notching onto the edge of the shell, and held there by the the pushing plug. You now have to recenter the plug, push the pins carefully all the way up, and gently try again, keeping the pick high to keep the pins high. The trap pin's edge is barely a milimeter in height, so theres not much room for error. This ornery bastard will take your time from you, and call you a bitch for trying.

To be clear, there are a few kinds of traps and safeguards. But they're mostly in the high end locks, found in high security areas. But this should do for a solid Beginner's Guide.

Next... The Combo Lock. This is a little easier. In fact, it's alot easier. The first step... Is to make a pick. Yup, we're going to pick the combination right off. Get a soda can, and cut off the bottom. Now, cut a 2 inch wide strip, and about 3 inches long. In the middle, cut a rounded V shape to about halfway up the width as shown, and then fold over the top to make the length thicker. Wrap the jimmy on the opening side of the padlock's U Bolt, sliding it downwards so the V tucks inside of the lock, against the U Bolt. Then just twist, it'll break the connection between the locking hook, and the recessed divit on the U Bolt. Pull down on the padlock, it'll pop right open.

Hope you enjoyed, mate, don't use this in anyway that will get me in legal trouble, please :) Feel free to vote for the next topic, my avid followers will notice a few familiar ones.

-JKane

30 comments:

  1. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this post Kane, you sure do have a way with words, and a style thats very unique and a bit frightening, but really interesting.

    Don't worry I won't use anything you write for evil purposes, if anything this might come in handy in other ways later on.

    Keep up the good work, always behind ya!

    - Rad

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  2. Awesome info right here unfortuantly i dont have the patience required to be able to sit down and try this id rather either break something or just find another way in.
    great info as always keep it up buddy
    cya

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  3. I didn't know they made 'traps' for locks. Pretty wild.
    How do you feel about those 'lockpick guns' I see in crappy knife magazines? The electric ones look slightly better than the squeezy one.

    Also, lockpicking requires some finesse, which I don't have. I'll just continue to hurl squirrels and small children at any locked barrier until it opens.

    Way to arm the bloggers with anarchical information!

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  4. YES!!! Awesome post! I've always been interested in locks and lockpicking. It all started when I worked at a liquor store and another employee got a paper clip stuck in the lock that keeps the housing on scratch off lottery tickets shut. I was able to get the paperclip out and then, out of boredom, I picked the lock just to see if I could do it. I randomly try to pick some of the locks (on things I own) to see if I can do it. Thank you for this post!

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  5. It's actually quite simple, the raking method is the Beginner's method for a reason. Just jigle and twist til it opens.

    Now, if your a real asshat, and need something even more simplistic ;) Credit Card in the door jame, kick the door by the handle/doorjam, or get a bump key.

    Bumping involves finding a key that at least fits, most normal locks only have a few styles for easy key copying. While the more advanced ones use specialty cuts, so you can't bump period unless you get a key from them.

    Take that Key to the keygrinder, Home Depot or something, and ask for a '999' cut on the key, which is the deepest cut available on all notches. So it'll look like a saw blade. Insert all the way, then pull out just a bit. Twist... Firmly and slowly.

    And hit the fucker with a hammer.
    -JKane
    Seriously, that's bumping.

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  6. Nice. I love this blog. All of these 'life hack' kind of info posts are ridiculously useful.

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  7. I came back to read this a second time so I had to comment a second time, too.

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  8. Yeah Veg, I find I get a few multiple readers :) I try to respond to comments as much as possible. You guys give me so much hope for the world, so thirsty for knowledge. Never stop learning mates, question everything.

    Thank you, again, for making all this worthwhile.
    -JKane

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  9. Another incredible read, but as with some of your other posts, you should probably remind your readers that even possessing a set of lockpicks when stopped by the police can lead to your arrest for criminal mischief or any number of other charges..

    But in the safety of your own home, a great skill to have, and as you said, a difficult one to master...

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  10. La Comedie,
    Ruining my blog since 5:44 PM.

    Oh Michael, thank you for the kind comment :) I love an appreciative reader. I was thinking about posting something along those lines. But then I thought to myself "Hey, Kane. Why not just let Casspir warn them?" This of course, was only the tip of the conversation. What followed what a majestic journey into the very core of my being, ancient fears and hidden wounds were abolished by the sumptuous feast of understanding and empathy that I thought to myself.

    It really was just a delight.
    -JKane

    Thank you Casspir ;)

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  11. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  12. These locks are very complex. Thanks for the great write up about them

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  13. Wow,I had no idea there was so much information on locks or getting around them for that matter. Great post! Looking forward to the next one. :)

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  14. I'm mildly amused (and mildly frightened) that my innocent comment could foster such an emotional (though hopefully not physical) response from you, but I suppose I've got to take it where I can get it.

    Yes, as a warning, Loyal Readers of Kane, the police may find your homebrew lock picking kit quite interesting, and you may find yourself looking at some mischief charges. Unless, of course, you happen to be a tow-truck driver or a licensed locksmith. In either of those instances, you're probably good to go.

    You can NEVER go wrong, however, with a flashlight. Though, some of the pointy crenelated smack-you-in-the-bridge-of-the-nose Fuck Your Shit Up flashlights (See: SureFire E2DL Defender, SureFire 6PL Defender) may get you odd looks at airport security.

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  15. thanks for tip, for when i lock myself out of my dorm lol.

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  16. hullo again mr kane,

    your knowledge never ceases to amaze me. not going to lie, this one was a little too in depth for me to read right now but this is definitely some great knowledge and i will keep this post in mind if i ever need it.

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  17. I always appreciate a blog and poster that takes the time to put some effort in. Followed for sure.

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  18. Thanks for the insightful comments on my last blog post!

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  19. I've always been interested in lockpicks (for hobby purposes of course). Where do I actually obtain them though?

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  20. I feel Raging may not have read the post... If by that you meant where can I buy instead of make them, then that's better. ;) To be certain, try lockpicks.com I right clicked on the word lockpicks, and that's google suggestion. I would however suggest making them, and not bragging about them. Casspir has a solid point, and one I probably should have stressed. I don't want my brothers getting in trouble.

    On a side note, theres nothing illegal about owning windshield wiper blades.
    -JKane

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  21. Goddamn it Janus, I should be preparing for an Organic Chemistry lab but here am I instead. xD

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  22. No Kane, I did mean buying them. I'm a wreck when it comes to crafting even the simplest of things... Plus, I'd like something professional so I can freely screw around with it. I might try making some though.

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  23. Haha, no worries mate, I got you covered. Lockpicks.com has a great selection, I just finished browsing through them. Anyhting from an electric auto picker to specialty picks and tension wrenches.

    Tell them Daddy Kane sent you.
    -JKane


    Don't tell them that.

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