Murphy's Laws of Locksmithing

I don't know where I found this but I couldn't help laughing when I
read this.
Murphy's Laws of Locksmithing
An Irish bartender named Murphy is credited with a large and still
growing (despite his death) number of laws relating to the likely
hood of difficulties. Some thing Murphy was a pessimist. True
Pessimists feel he was unduly optimistic and fear that things are
really much worse. Here are a few of the laws that apply to
A broken lock will always work when demonstrated for the locksmith.
The lock will stop working the minute the locksmith leaves.
The only thing you didn't check for a malfunction will be the source
of the problem, but you won't find it until you are called back.
What ever the customer has told you to prepare for the service call
will be wrong.
A dropped part will always roll to the exact geographic center of the
largest available object for it to roll under.
The probability of the loss or breakage of any part is directly
proportional to the difficulty of getting a replacement part.
Irreplaceable parts will always break or be lost, and at the worst
possible time.
Replaceable parts will only become available after an important
deadline has passed.
Parts that are difficult to install will freely fall out on their
Parts that go in easily will be extremely hard to remove, and removal
will be necessary to accomplish the needed repair.
The part you will need will be the irreplaceable part you threw away
last week because there are no more locks of that type around.
The number of customers that visit your shop is inversely
proportional to the number of employees you have to wait on them.
When your entire staff is available no one will come.
When you are there alone, everyone will come and they will be
The probability of an auto lockout varies directly with the intensity
of the rain.
The length of time it take to open any vehicle varies directly with
the intensity of the rain.
The length of time it take to open a vehicle or pick a lock varies
directly with the number of on-lookers making fun of how long it
takes you.
The length of time it take to open a vehicle or pick a lock varies
directly with the number of television and movie characters your
customer claims can do it in only a few seconds. {There is a dispute
as to whether it actually takes longer or whether time just seams to
drag when certain customers are around}
The number of witnesses available is inversely proportional to the
skill you demonstrate.
There will never be anyone around to see you do something brilliant,
When you really screw up, you will get network coverage with a 40
The probability of having someone closing a safe and spinning the
dial while you have the back of the lock off will vary directly with
the square of the number of people you tell not to touch the safe
while you get something out of the truck.
The probability of having someone close a safe and spinning the dial
while you have the back of the lock off will vary directly with the
square of the number of re-lockers that will be tripped.
The more elaborate the precautions you take the more likely they are
to close a safe and spin the dial while you have the back of the lock
off. {Nothing is foolproof because fools are too ingenuous}
The probabilities of arriving at the job site without a needed tool
or with the wrong hardware are directly proportional with the square
of the travel distance.
You will always have what you need when the job is next to your shop.
They lock will always be the wrong hand and not field reversible when
the job is more than ½ hour travel.
Any written specification you have been issued by the customer will
be the old one that has since been revised.
Any lock finish or style that you have with you will not match the
rest of the hardware in the building.
The harder it is to obtain matching hardware, the more the customer
will insist on an exact match.
If you have an exact match the customer will say " Matching isn't
important, don't you have anything cheaper?"
When a customer has a large number of specialty locks, that lock will
require very expensive service and pin kits.
When you buy the kits, you only get to use them one time, or you find
that something you already have can be used instead.
When you don't buy the kits, nothing else that you have will work
instead, and you will have constant problems that would have been
avoided by buying the kits.
By the time you finally buy the kits your lost time will exceed the
cost of the kits by ten fold. Then your customer will go elsewhere.
The harder you try to get to a call quickly, the more other
locksmiths will beat you to it and the less likely you are to get
paid for coming out.
The more difficult the customer, the more locksmiths he calls to come
The more people they call, the less likely you are to get paid.
Major ass holes call every locksmith for a hundred miles radius.
They only pay the first to show up and complain about the price they
have to pay, even though they were quoted that price before they told
you to come.
No matter how low you bid the job there is always an idiot out there
willing to do it for less.
The more you cut your price to get business, the more likely you are
to go out of business.
The more you try to compete on a price basis the lower your prices
will go. Your income will follow.
The bigger your yellow pages ad is the more low priced calls from non-
repeat customers you will get.
Increasing the ad size and cost increases the percentage of low
profit calls you get.
The prize for beating out all other locksmiths for the biggest most
expensive advertising in all the different yellow pages books is
The more you advertise that you have 24 hour service the more
security guards and Insomniacs will call you in the middle of the
night with request for price quotations.
You will get angry calls from people who stopped by your shop at
midnight and you weren't there even though you advertised 24-hour
You will get calls after midnight from people who saw your 24-hour
service claim and want to have you meet them at your shop immediately
to cut one key on your 89-cent coupon special. {On this lost Leader
you lose your mind and your sleep.}
Your best apprentice will quit and open a shop across the street and
cut your prices. The one who is un-trainable will stay with you
Reply to
Stormin Mormon
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"Stormin Mormon" <cayoung61-#spamblock*> wrote in message news:S1PLd.18653$ ---snip---
funny how a lot of that becomes true :-)
Reply to
Everything disappears in shag carpet (except wood chips)
The probability of a greasy part falling greasy side down is directly proportional to the lightness of color and cost of the carpet.
The distance a retainer clip will fly is inversely proportional to the availability of a replacement.
Any tool dropped under a car will roll the center of the vehicle.
People who lose the keys to their car NEVER park in the shade.
Reply to
Bob DeWeese, CML

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