Home High Security and Challenge Locks (935) Psychological Warfare #2

(935) Psychological Warfare #2


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My vises are made by Panavise, a U.S. Company.  The one with the wide jaws is the model 350.  The smaller one is the model 301. Both have the 312 Base mount – www.panavise.com



  1. I was unable to leave a story on the “Lock Picking Stories” section of the website so I’ll leave it here. I hope this qualifies an an entry in the contest. I am a property manager. I rented a storage space to a guy about four years ago. Unfortunately, this person died. His son contacted me and provided proof of the tenant’s death and proof of kinship. I had the son sign a statement attesting to no one else having a superior claim to the contents of the garage. I then allowed the son access to the garage. The son had keys to the padlock that was on the garage door, but I had overlocked it due to unpaid storage fees. The son paid what was owed and stated that he wanted to continue to rent the garage. He paid the storage fees for two more months and then stopped paying. During the two months when he was paying the storage fee, he would occasionally show up and remove things from the garage. The son stopped paying the storage fee after two months. I then contacted the son and requested payment. He said that he had removed everything he wanted and that he left me the garbage. He let me know that he had no intention of paying any more money. Since the storage fee was overdue, I mmediately placed a lien on the belongings by overlocking again and mailing a Notice of Lien, Notice of Abandonment, and Notice of Termination of Tenancy. At this point, with all the added fees, the son owed me $300. I waited the required eighteen days. In California, anything abandoned after 18 days (with proper notice) that is worth less than $700 becomes the property of the landlord. Now here is the interesting lockpicking portion of the story: the lock was a disk-type lock so I could not cut it off. I used several lockpicks and tension tools. Nothing seemed to work. Then I used a rake in combination with a Sparrows Gem. After about two minutes using the rake and Gem, I was able to remove the large disklock. I had a great feeling when that cylinder turned and the shackle opened. It was a Master with a hexagonal shackle so that gave me an extra sense of satisfaction since I know Master considers these locks to be high security (according to them). It is always satisfying to pick a lock that the manufacturer states is “high security.” I then determined that the fair value of the items was $600 so I placed an advertisement offering to sell it for $600. Two persons showed up at the same time to look at the items. I said that the first person who paid me $600 will have bought it. One of them immediately removed a big wad of hundred dollar bills, peeled off six of them, and handed them to me. I said that he had bought it. The other person said that this was not fair. I then asked this person if he had $600 on him. He said no, but he could go to the bank and get it. I said that I was accepting the $600 from the other person because he came prepared. It turns out that the items in the garage were worth well more than $600 to the right person(s). I have no problem with someone making money. I made an extra $300 by being able to pick a lock, the buyer made a good profit, and the son lost out because he was an asshole. Justice is a sweet thing. By the way, I gave the padlock to a friend who is a locksmith; he impressioned a key for it and sold it to someone. Nothing went to waste.

  2. This was my first lock picking experience. My great uncle was a locksmith and a repo man. When I was 12 he had given me this really nice zip up pocket-size lock picking set. He always had these crazy elaborate stories of when he had to do some repo were people had pet bear’s that chased him off their property and all kinds of stuff like dogs locked in cars that he had to open and almost getting attacked by them and stuff like that. So I had to have some of my own crazy stories to be able to tell him. When I was 14 or 15 me and two of my friends in the middle of the night went to prank one of our other friends, who hard-core believes in aliens. We went into his backyard and I picked the padlock on his toolshed, we took everything out that was inside and set it up in the yard in the shape of a smilie face and then we re-locked the padlock on the shed. To this day he still believes that aliens were trying to communicate with him lol.

  3. Several years back, while working for a government contracting firm, a filing cabinet lock got closed to some critical information for our tooling department. Being good friends win the lady who did the drawings and tooling specs, she left me know that there was no known KEY in the facility and that a maintenance request would take a long time to ge the cabinet open. Being familiar with the cylinder, I asked her do a paper clip and used a small screwdriver for tension. Wala, lock opened for her, and she had access to the information she needed within minutes instead of days. Loved being able to help, but then had to ask that the service be kept on the QT (for obvious reasons).

  4. In 1971 in Port Huneme, Ca. I was taught how to make and use a half diamond and a triple half diamond rake out of street sweeper bristles. I would occasionally open a locker for some of my pals that had in one way or another lost track of their key. Sometimes the key was locked in the locker, lost or just misplaced. I was home on leave in 1974 and walking down South Adams St. in Marion, In. As I passed the QuPee Grill I saw a young lady standing beside a Volkswagen. She was crying so I asked if I could help her in some way. She told me she was locked out of the car. I offered to try to get the door open and she told me to try. Never have opened a Volkswagen lock before it took me a few minutes. I used my home brew triple rake and seemed to be getting nowhere. I decided to rake the lock a few times, maintain tension, withdraw the rake and go back in with my half diamond. That was all it took. She gave me a big hug and a kiss on the cheek and I strutted down South Adams St in my dress blues feeling like I was on top of the world. That was a good day. Thirty days later I went to Orlando, FL,, got my discharge from the Seabees and became a civilian for the first time in four long years. That was another good day.

  5. Where do we post the stories? There’s nowhere on the new page to submit them, I went to learnlockpicking.com looking for a link there on the off chance, but there was squat there too. At least 3 people have figured it out.

  6. Had a lady that had recently bought a old dump truck and she had parked it near my hose because the brakes were not working properly. She had ordered a new master cylinder from a parts store and when it came in she was going to work on replacing it, but she had most all of her tools locked in a large metal tool box that was bolted into the frame under the dump box and she had misplaced the key for the padlock. She was trying to use a 2 lb. sledge hammer she had left in the cab to try and beat on the padlock which was on the top of the box with about 4 inches of clearance between it and the bottom of the dump bed. I knew it was her truck and when she told me she lost the key I told her give me a couple minutes and I’d be back and try to open the lock. I went to my house and grabbed my box of picks (most of them are hand made) and went back out to the truck. It took me 3-4 minutes of jockeying to get both hands in between the the dump box and lock box with a tension wrench and a pick but once i did it took me about a minute and a Half to get the lock picked. She was grateful and wanted me to make her a pick for her, but I declined telling her that if for any reason she was stopped by the police and they found the pick in her possession they could charge her with having break in tools, I only brought my tools out from my house since it was less than a block. She decided that might be a wise decision, and I went on my way back to my house.

  7. Not sure if I am posting my story in the right place. Was not even going to, but ill do it here,and probably feel like a fool latter.
    Anyways, I went on a long road trip with the fellows,riding the Harleys to different Watering holes. At the last bar we went to we pulled in an we were locking our bikes up. My buddy leaves his lock just hanging on his peg mount,so he doesn’t have to dig in his pocket to get to his keys. Well it was time to hit the road and we all were warming up the bikes,my bro is shaking his hands to stop every one because he lost his keys on the way there. There i was, just me and him. Even the truck that comes along on our runs took off. It’s getting dark and we don’t know what to do. It’s in The middle of nowhere, i was going to ride home,and get his old lady to bring him his spare keys back. He is freaking out by now,then I remembered I had 1 of the sparrow patches sewn in to my inside riding jacket with a number of picks,but I didn’t think I could open his Aerican lock. I consider myself a beginner in picking. I worked on it till the flashlight came out,and was going to quit, and as I was going to say I can’t get it, open the lock open . We both were so happy, I didn’t want to ride home alone,and he did not have to camp over night with his bike.

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