As with any other trade, locksmithing has its own set of unique tools. Looking at them piece by piece should be puzzling, if you do not have a background on locksmith service at all. Special tools are used for special purposes just like a carpenter's hammer is used only for pounding nails into place. Locksmiths have a keen eye for detail as well as skilled and deft hands to pick on the tiny little parts and mechanisms of a lock.
Lock picking is probably the most common task asked by customers from locksmiths, as this is the easiest and most inexpensive method of opening a locked door. Rather than have a locksmith replace your lock, you will always try to have him to open it first without necessarily prying the door. Locksmiths use several tools for this specific purpose as listed below:
1. Plug Spinners. Plug Spinners are used to lift, rotate and move the plug so that it goes back to its natural unlocked state. Handling this instrument requires a locksmith to have prior knowledge of the accurate positioning of the lock components.
2. Computerized Picks. Computerized picks are used by locksmiths for more complicated lock types such as combination systems. This instrument is made of steel and is capable of configuring up to 6 pins and disc patterns.
3. Tension Wrenches. The tension wrenches are used to control and apply the exact amount of turning pressure needed to access the shear line. Locksmiths usually carry 3 types of torsion wrenches: light, medium and rigid.
4. Key Extractors. These tools are used by locksmiths to remove broken keys, key parts and other foreign material parts, broken keys and other foreign material that are wedged into the lock cylinders.
5. Electric Pick Guns. Electric pick guns are basically small drills powered by electricity. The picks can be replaced, just like any other regular electric drill. A locksmith will typically have an array of picks in different small sizes.
These five tools cover the basic gadgets for lock picking. There are more tools used by locksmithing for other purposes such as installation and repair. Some of them include deadbolt installation kits, locksmith hammers, key cutters and router drills. The next time you call on your reliable locksmith service, check out what instruments he uses when performing the job. Having fundamental background on the tools of locksmiths will give you a general idea on how the work is done, and if indeed your locksmith is carrying with him the right equipment.
Using the wrong tools may cause more damage than good! If you are suspicious of your locksmith's tools, you can purchase your own set of lock-picking tools which can be found at practically every hardware store. The next time you call on your locksmith, you can ask him to use your tools instead. Or depending on you can try using the tools yourself – who knows, you might have a future career as a highly skilled locksmith! Make a little effort to experiment and find out if you indeed have the natural ability to pick locks.