Home Make Your Own Tools (188) How to Pick a Circular Keyway Lock

(188) How to Pick a Circular Keyway Lock


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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 don't read Korean either, but I took a crack at it with Google Translate and got "공산품 품실경영 측진법에 의한 품질표시
    품 영 : 보조키 뭉치
    재 질 : 특수합금강, 고탄소공구강외
    윈산지 : 한국
    제조 만매읜 : (주)보성실업", or "Display quality due to industrial quality management Promotion
    Product spirit: bunch of modifier keys
    Material: special alloy steel, high carbon tool gangoe
    Win Origin: South Korea
    Manufacturing manmae uin (Note) Bo unemployment". About what you'd expect.

  2. it has nothing to do with the offset, it's that one row that's on the smooth wall. once those pins are on a sheer line and moving the key is locked in or out, period.

  3. sir: a couple of questions. 1) i saw the tailpiece moving as you started to work the left side, is there a bypass for this lock? 2) once you turned the plug 90 deg. it locked and the key wouldn't go in. is this truly because of an out of round keyway as you described or because there is no bottom bible and so no where for the the right side 'key pins' (now on the bottom) to go as you try to insert the key? i ask with all respect for your skill and knowledge, it just seemed like the more sensible explanation to me. thanks.

  4. The ring on the front reminds me of some locks I saw in another video. Those could be opened by removing the front with a screwdriver and then emptying the inside… is this possible in this one?

  5. If the key is lost and the lock has to be replaced for the "customer" fill the hole with clay after you started to turned the lock it will for sure stay in place.

  6. Bill, love your videos.  I've just recently gotten into locksport and I'm getting pretty good at picking.  What it has shown me is that home security is an illusion.  What lock, or Locks would you recommend to put on your own house.

  7. the way to make this lock a real problem would be a locking mechanism requiring a full turn or more to open
    possibly with a 4th set of 4 spring pins at the bottom such the lock would need to be fully picked at each quarter turn

  8. You can always just take two tension tools with You and pick one row, another and when You are left with the one that was locked with a wrench before, You just reapply tension to one of these that are already picked. Probably You would need to be left with at least two pins out far enough to lock Your tension wrench on them, but in the end You will change Your tension row and be free to pick the one that was originally locked by the first wrench :)

  9. I enjoy your videos a great deal, but would appreciate it a great deal more if your introductions included ladies as well as gentlemen. We are a rare few, granted, but there are [quite adept] professional lady locksmiths out there tinkering right along with the guys. Some of us even trained the guys [I did]. 😉 

  10. Nice vid. I'm wondering if you made a hollow, circular tension wrench that put light pressure on all 12 pins, if that might be easier. I admit it wouldn't be easy to make, and I would only consider making one if I worked in an area that had many of these.

  11. after you pick and you go to far as you showed. the pins on the right in the plug are still picked and that's why the key wont go in.  so you would only need to pick the left an top bank in the reverse direction.. good job …I herd in one of your vids of a 'medeco' lock picking. are you talking about the medeco cam locks? because their is a million dollars up for grabs from medeco for anyone who can pick their bi-axel locks.

  12. > but when you rotate the key the irregular shape is out out of line with the circular keyway and cannot be taken back out until you rotate it to the original position.

    Wouldn't that require some part of the key milled away near the bow, where the locks warding could retain the key? But the key in the video doesn't seem to have that.

  13. Excellent question – and it never really occurred to me to wonder about that. You made me watch my own video to find the answer! The hole in the lock is circular, but the interior keyway is octagon shaped. The key is rounded on the bottom, but angular on top, It slides in with no problem, but when you rotate the key the irregular shape is out out of line with the circular keyway and cannot be taken back out until you rotate it to the original position.

  14. Joel,
    No, a plug spinner will not work on this lock-sorry. You must either pick it counter-clockwise one time, or clockwise three times to reach the original position where you can insert the key.

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