Home Make Your Own Tools (257) How to Pick, Decode & Cut a Key for a Tubular Lock

(257) How to Pick, Decode & Cut a Key for a Tubular Lock


LockLab is Fan funded!  Help pay for stuff to review, break and talk trash about, and maybe even give away when we’re done.  Join the Tribe!

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. The way you picked, decoded and cut that key blew me away. I had no idea what was entailed. Fantastic.

  2. Bill great videos! I've been able to pick tubular locks and decode and reset my pick and place the depths and reopen easy enough. Question is.. When I'm looking at the open face of the pick as if it were a key and the center pin is at the 12 o'clock position.. is the 1 o'clock(clockwise) position there the actual first number to write down as number 1 position to the 7th or 8th or is the 11 o'clock (counter clockwise) the first to write down going the other direction to the 7th or 8th? I need to get some keys cut at a locksmith. Thank you.

  3. Hi bosnianbillI got into lock picking several years ago and I had the opportunity to purchase a 7 pin and an 8 pin tubular pick along with instructions on how to use them. Never got them to work until I watched your video. Picked a seven pin first try. Thank you so much!

  4. F poo under your video as I was trying to identify a lock I came across, and figured you might be able to ID it, it looks like a old soda machine lock, but it is sunken in abit, and the keyhole is a circle with squares on the top and bottom of the circle hole in the middle

  5. hi bosnia bill, i am a big fan, i am visiting florida, orlando, and want to pick up a herty gerty, can you help me and tell me where they sell them, i have tried to find one on line but no success!!

  6. Did something similar for a 7 pin tubular steering head lock on my bike when I bought it(no key). Used the same pick I got from our Weapons Tech to decode and got him to cut a key.
    My question is, where did you get the cutting gizmo you were using? That thing is the cats meow for portable work. Also, will it work on 5 pin tubular locks?
    Thanks and keep the vids coming.

  7. It's possible because the spinning of the lockpick in the lock creates the exact measurement for the pin. Then he can use the pick's locking function to lock the pins in place for that specific lock. Since the pin measurements are just about identical everywhere, you can use any decoding tool to measure the number of that pin. Once you've got all the measurements down it's easy easy as cutting a blank to that exact height.

  8. That nub shouldn't have any effect. With partially picked tubular a I often file off the nub so I can operate the lock. Good luck and please let me know what it turns out to be. A mystery!

  9. Sorry it took so long to answer you – I've been out of town. I suspect that one of the bittings on the key is not cut right or is worn/damaged. Can you narrow it down to one particular key? If ALL the keys do it, then I'd say you need to decode the lock and compare what you get to the coding of the keys. If its not the same, cut new keys. If it IS the same, I'd suspect the lock is failing or needs lube. Again, sorry for the slow reply.

  10. A few of us have thrown around that idea, but unfortunately some people are not out for the community, but to make a buck off fellow pickers. Maybe there is something that we can work out.

Comments are closed.

WP Facebook Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com