Monday, February 16, 2015

Mortise Lockout

Adams Rite Mortise lock Seattle locksmith
Mortise type lock-sets has been in used for residential and commercial applications for many years. Most locksmith technicians should have experience working with these types locks as they are very popular form of security for most small businesses including some residential homes. What makes these types of locks popular is the complex mechanism Incorporated in them to prevent unwanted intruders from gaining access. Some of the time, even the average locksmith technician will have some issued unlocking these types of Mortise locks.

Years ago when I first started getting into the locksmith business, I remember getting a call from a store owner in the area that misplaced his keys to the store and had no other way to get in. I didn't have much experience back then working on commercial locks, but I figured a lockout shouldn't be that a big of a deal. I got the customer's store address and started heading its way.

Once I got to the store, I noticed it was part of a building which seemed to be secure without any other way to get in. The store itself was equipped with a thick glass front door that had a Mortise type lock. Luckily, I had with me a specific Mortise cylinder pick tool set that I've used before on a residential type Mortise locks with success.

Seattle locksmith Adams Rite lock
After getting the tools from my van, I immediately started working on the lock by picking it which tool longer than I expected. After about 15 minutes I finally gave up and decided to call for help. Luckily, I knew another Seattle locksmith in the area which had much more experience than I did. When I got him on the phone and told him the story, he said that the the lock must had a block at the end of the key-way which may cause issues with picking. However, he did say there was another way which involved drilling through the cylinder without damaging it. According to him, I needed to drill a small hole to the right of the key-way which will get through the screw set that were holding the lock, but without damaging the threads.

I followed my technician friend using his exact instructions for the process and I was able to remove the cylinder which in turn unlocked the door. Since i didn't want to take any chances, I went ahead and replaced the cylinder with another one even though it was still usable.  

Automotive Ignition Switch Repair Services

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Tuesday, February 3, 2015

GM Key Origination

Camaro key Seattle locksmith
As a locksmith technician with many years of experience behind me, I find that on most older make and model vehicles, originating a key can be a hassle at times. Depending on the type of key that need to be made, ignition keys usually require the removal of the ignition which means taking apart the steering column in order to get a code stamped on the cylinder. On some models, getting that unique code in order to make an ignition key is sometimes possible by getting it from the door lock. However, this is only apply to several older models. There will be times that in order to find an easy solution to generate a working key, a locksmith technician would need to improvise or think outside the box.

I remember a while back getting called for a job to make a new key for a 95 Camaro. According to the customer, the vehicle was a summer drive for him and after the long winter when he finally came to take the car for a drive, he couldn't find the key.  I knew that it would not be easy generating a key from scratch for this type of vehicle since not only the door lock and ignition were using to different keys, the vehicle was equipped with a VATS system which meant the ignition key had a chip in it. I decided to accept the job and drove to the customer's home.

Once I got to the customer's place, I ran a quick check for the correct VATS using the vehicle's VIN number to make sure I have a matching key in my inventory and luckily I did. Next,  I grabbed my tools and started working on the steering column in order to remove the ignition cylinder. The first thing I needed to do was disabling and remove the sir bag from the steering wheel. After doing so, I reached for my steering wheel removal kit and noticed that I didn't have the correct matching bolts in order to remove the steering wheel using the puller. At that moment I knew I was stuck since there wasn't any other way I could get the ignition cylinder out without removing the steering wheel.

Locksmith Seattle Camaro key
I decided to give a call to a Seattle locksmith friend of mine hoping he would be in the area and would be able to come and loan me his steering wheel removal kit. When I got him on the phone, he said he was on the other side of Seattle, but he also mentioned something else. He said that some GM 94-95 models may have the depths numbers stamped on the wafers. According to him, all I needed is a good otoscope that will help me read the numbers while looking through the ignition cylinder key-way. After taking his advice, I grabbed my otoscope from the van and I was happy to find that this particular model did have the depths stamped on the waffers which allowed me to generate a new key without removing the steering wheel.

Residential Lockout Service in Seattle

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