The Essential Tools All Locksmiths Should Own
There isn’t a definite list of all the things that a Locksmith should have, as it will be completely dependent on the services that he or she offers and if they specialise in certain areas. However, there are some tools that are essential for the common services that Locksmiths generally provide.
Here is our list of the top tools that we recommend a Locksmith should own:
- Pick Gun
You can get both manual and electric pick guns that allow quick, efficient entry through a lock. Pick guns work by using a needle to flick the pins above the shearline, which is then paired with a tension tool that holds the pins in place to open the lock. A Manual gun requires that you pull the trigger to manually flick the needle, whereas an Electric gun flicks hundreds of times when the trigger is pulled.
Similar to the ‘credit card trick’ seen in the movies this can be one of the most useful tools in your kit. MICA is essentially a reusable sheet that is used to slide between the door and the frame to push the latch in which opens the door. With the right know how and practice, this is a tool that no locksmith can go without.
- uPVC Spreader Bars
This tool is used to separate a uPVC door from the frame, which exposes the multi point locking system. This is the ideal tool for repairs where there is an issue with the multi point mechanism. This tool is extremely useful as it can be used on both uPVC doors and windows, and can leave no marks when used correctly by a professional.
- Cordless drill, with a variety of drill bits
Used to both take out and install locks, this is an absolute must for every Locksmith. As this is one tool that no matter what you specialise in you will need, it is essential that you invest in a good quality drill that you can rely on and will last.
One thing to note with cordless drills is that you should always purchase back-up batteries as the last thing you want to happen is that your drill runs out of juice!
As a Locksmith, you need to be able to work on metal, wood and uPVC and all require different sized drill bits along with flat ‘spade bits’ for drilling larger holes. The best option would be to get a set that is a mixture to ensure that you are covered in all situations.
- Cylinder jigglers
A standard set of Skeleton keys are a must-have in every Locksmith’s Bag. They allow you to wiggle a key around in a door, to open the lock. This technique is quick and effective which will save you time on jobs – and time is money.
- Bumping Kit
Key bumping is one of the fastest lock picking techniques; with a universal Bump Key, a Bump Hammer and some carefully applied force it gives you a no hassle entry method. No tool kit is complete without this set.
- Letterbox Tool
Used for opening door handles and locks through the letterbox, this provides an easy way to gain access through a door. It is fundamentally a long tool that can be adjusted to many different lengths in order to reach the lock from the letterbox. You can get a variety of styles, some of which are just a steel bar whereas others have cameras and electric motors for turning the interior door handle.
To be able to fit locks efficiently, a set of sharp chisels is required to minimise any damage that could be caused to the customer’s doors.
- Cylinder snapper
Used for snapping a euro or oval cylinder in the door when picking or bypassing the door isn’t an option. Although this isn’t a tool a Locksmith would want to use often, as it will break the lock, it is something that should be in the bag at all times in a last resort scenario.
- Rake Pick
Racking is a technique of lock picking that attempts to move multiple pins at once, and is a fast and efficient method with low-security locks. A rake is the tool that is used for this technique which is something no locksmith is complete without.
- Manual Pick Set
Lock picking (as seen in the movies) is known as Single Pin Picking and is exactly how it sounds; you ‘pick’ each individual pin until the lock opens. Although this technique takes practice and knowledge it is evidently the most effective technique to open a vast variety of Locks, and with a good set of quality tools and a bit of patience you can pick up the technique in no time (pun intended!).
One tip we do have for this tool is that it can often be difficult for beginners to hold the picks, so we suggest getting a set with handles for a better grip whilst you’re learning.
- Air Wedge
Used for gaining entry to uPVC doors and certain vehicles, this is an essential part of every Locksmith’s tool kit! It is used to widen the gap between the door and the frame to allow for easier manipulation and access. An air wedge will typically feature an inflatable bag component that slips between the door and frame; it will then inflate to widen the gap between the two.
The tools can be essential for the everyday jobs that a Locksmith could face. However, if you specialise in more specific areas such as cars or safes there may be other tools that are vital to be efficient and provide excellent service.