Before a general study of lockpicking can be made the basics of lock design should be considered. Let us first think in terms of what a lock is and how it achieves its purpose. Basically, a lock is a latch intended on holding the object to which it is attached in a certain position. A simple gate latch is, by definition, a lock.
It does not require a key, only the knowledge and dexterity to perform a simple movement. Fortunately, for the farmer, cattle and other farm animals do not normally possess this knowledge and dexterity. We say "normally possess" because- occasionally an animal will learn to manipulate or "pick" a gate or door open. In effect, this animal is a "lockpicker", the pick being that part of their anatomy used to open the latch.
Definition of "Lockpicking" - The means of opening a lock mechanism by the intrusion of a tool or mechanical device, other than the normal operating key. This tool can be as simple as a bent paper clip or an expensive pick set or pick gun.
Why Locks Can Be Picked - A lock mechanism becomes vulnerable to picking for two basic reasons: design shortcomings and manufacturing shortcomings. Both of these flaws are directly related to the selling price of the locking device. The design flaw allows a pick, wire, pick key, paper clip, hair pin, knife blade, etc. to be inserted into the keyway in such a manner as to reach and operate the mechanism.
Improvised Lock Picks is a comprehensive and well illustrated book which offers a great deal of information on various types of lockpicks.
The topics are covered in following order:
- Basic lock design
- METHODS OF PICKING
- Simple Warded Locks
- Pin Tumbler Locks
- Pick Guns
- Rocker Picks
- Picks For Tubular Locks
- COMMERCIALLY AVAILABLE PICKING TOOLS
- Pick Sets
- IMPROVISED PICKING TOOLS
- Picking the Sesame Padlock