Re: learning to pick

... my question is, when
>learning to pick locks, is there a preferred shape of pick to use? I
>thought that it would make sense to use a rake-tip pick on a pin and
>tumbler lock, so as to learn how to pick by individually manipulating the
> this a good idea, or should I use a different learning >technique?
How does a rake allow manipulating one pin stack at a time?
People vary in choice - I like the finger/hook for this purpose. Many
prefer the half diamond or round.
Another question I have is somewhat naive, but how do I mount the lock in
>such a way that I don't have to hold in my hand as I pick it?
In a board which it held upright (i.e. parallel to a wall.) Either
hold it in a vice, or make an upside-down T shape to keep the board
Reply to
Henry E Schaffer
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Speaking only for myself, my policy is that I don't teach picking techniques unless I've personally known the person for two years.
You can find many forums on the web, but that's out of my control.
When I was new at locksmithing, I was completely fascinated by picking. Now, after 20+ years in the trade, it's an important part of the job, but not totally fascinating. There is so much more to the job.
Reply to
Stormin Mormon
Generally to pick individual pins use a hook. They have varying dimensions. In general use the tallest one that will fit under the pins. You can also mix the raking and individual pin picking techniques. Give the lock a quick rake and then try setting any pins that weren't set by lifting them individually.
As someone else said create an upside down T shaped holder for the lock. The simplest way to make the T joint is to place the upright portion perpendicular to the base, just as you plan to permanently mount it. Now tightly sandwhich the base of the upright between two other pieces of wood screwed to the base. Then just mount the lock in the upright. You'll need a hole saw and a drill.
Reply to
Hook, and your patience, for individual pins; half diamond for cheap padlocks and furniture; s wave rake for cheap Kwikset door locks and tough furniture; ball, double ball and s wave rake for auto locks; specialized double-sided picks for double sided locks-yep you WILL break them experimenting so buy an extra set; HPC peanut for Ace 7 pin locks; a tungsten drill bit and bolt cutters for the tough stuff!
practice, practice, and more practice. I have a tree of 12 padlocks of very different types, sizes and styles that I pick for practice regularly.
Uhhh, use the force Megan, you must feel what is happening within the lock.
There is a joke that the more picks you have, the more practice you need. Experienced pickers generally have 3 favorites for various types of locks. Each of us has a favorite few, it depends on the feel and action received, which can be different for each of us.
Good luck, David
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