Lockpick

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Hive13 Project
Lockpicking

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Status: Active

Lockpicking

Overview

Summary

This page is for information on hobby and recreational lockpicking and related locksmithing activities.

Project Manager

Events

Cincy Locksport

General hobby and recreational Lockpicking meetup with tutorials, general discussion, and occasionally other related activities.

Hosted by Jeremy Yap, usually on the first Saturday and Monday of each month barring schedule conflicts.

Meetup link: https://www.meetup.com/Cincy-Locksport/

General Skills Overview

This is general list of lockpicking skills to master by lock type. This is will be expanded later.

  • Pin Tumbler Locks
    • Standard Pins
      • Picking pin tumbler locks with no security pins.
      • Recommended Practice Locks:
        • Master #3
        • Master 141
    • Spool Pins
      • Picking locks with “spool” pins, a common type of security pin.
      • Recommended Practice Locks:
        • Master 140
        • Abus 55/40
        • ACE Hardware Brass 40mm
        • Schlage Standard Deadbolt
        • Defiant Deadbolt (Kwikset)
    • Paracentric Keyways
      • Picking locks with paracentric keyways that may require dealing with odd angles and wardings due to their shape.
      • Recommended Practice Locks:
        • Yale locks with Y1 keyway
        • Abus 72/40 Euro keyway
        • Master 410 with paracentric keyway
    • Serrated Pins
      • Picking locks with “serrated” pins, another type of security pin.
      • Recommended Practice Locks:
        • American Lock 1100 series
        • Commando Lock Peacemaker
    • Other Pin Tumbler Security Features
      • Some pin tumbler locks may have additional features such as sidebars, multiple shearlines, finger pins, and others.
      • Recommended Practice Locks:
        • Medeco Classic, Biaxial, or M3
        • Schlage Primus
        • BEST brand SFIC locks

Useful Tutorials and Resources

Tools and Equipment Recommendations

Purchasing Lockpicking Tools

As far as buying picks go some sites I would recommend include:


If you want to buy picks individually and build your own kit, I suggest the following picks and tensioners as good for starting out with:

  • Short Hook (Southord SLS-09, Sparrows "Short Hook", Peterson "Hook #1")
  • Half Diamond (Southord SLS-04, Sparrows "Half Diamond", Peterson "Diamond")
  • Bottom-of-Keyway Tensioners (Southord TW-23, Sparrows "Level 1 Tension Set", Peterson "Tension Tool 0.030 Bent")
  • Top-of-Keyway Tensioners (Sparrows "Flat Tension Bar Set", Peterson "Prybar Lite")

With those to start with you should be able to pick enough locks to know what else you'll need and be able to build the rest of your own kit from there.


If you want to buy a whole kit to start with then there are a few kits in particular I'd recommend.

Depending on your budget either the Sparrows "Kick Start" kit or the more complete "Tuxedo" kit have a nice selection of commonly used picks. With either kit I would highly recommend picking up the "Flat Bar Tension Set" as well so you'll have some top-of-keyway tensioners.

TOOOL offers a kit called the "Tremendous Twelve" kit on their site and it's fairly inexpensive while covering a lot of the basics. This kit probably has the best tensioners included that I've seen for its price point.

Another kit would also recommend is the Dangerfield "PRAXIS" kit available at LockPickWorld. That kit contains a very good selection of commonly used picks in both 0.023 and 0.015 thicknesses. It also includes both top-of-keyway and bottom-of-keyway tensioners.

Making Lockpicking Tools

Placeholder, Work In Progress