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Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

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Oldfast

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OldddffAASSTT the Spin Master Extraordinaire and American Lock Slayer
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Post Mon Dec 24, 2018 5:57 pm

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

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Ok! I won't leave ya hanging, lol. Some lock-porn
of the Jeweler's Chest within the previous Mosler.


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Yale 025 1/2
Indirect drive... 4 wheel... mesh change... friction-fence

DIALING: RLRL Right to stop (@ 84)
CONTACT POINT: roughly 91, 92
HANDLE: Turns CW to open




In a way, it'd be a shame to take just the door out of one of these. But if I ever have the opportunity to take one home with me, I'd drop several hundred dollars on the spot without hesitation. Dunno if that would be over or under paying, but I wouldn't care. These things are just gorgeous. I want one.

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" Enjoy the journey AS MUCH as the destination."
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MartinHewitt

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Post Mon Dec 24, 2018 7:05 pm

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

Great photos, great locks! You can buy such a Yale on ebay at the moment, but several hundred dollars won't get you far. In Germany decorated locks are extremely rare. There are very few decorative safes with etched glass door covers where they put effort into also decorating the locks, but all other high end locks are only functional because they are hidden inside the door.
In case you wonder ... Martin Hewitt is a fictional detective in stories by Arthur Morrison:
Martin Hewitt, Investigator Chronicles of Martin Hewitt
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Oldfast

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OldddffAASSTT the Spin Master Extraordinaire and American Lock Slayer
OldddffAASSTT the Spin Master Extraordinaire and American Lock Slayer

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Post Thu Dec 27, 2018 9:42 pm

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

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Excelsior



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36" tall ... 24" wide ... 22" deep


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Admittedly, there's some guesswork goin' on here;
But I'm thinking this safe is likely late 1800's.
I've also assumed the lock type as Alpine DE.

Most striking feature is the elongated conical-shaped knob.
This one had a 60# dial and the handle turns CCW to open.

Note: More often than not, Alpines required CW handle rotation.
Alpine also used 100# dials, tho not as prevalent as their 60# dial.
Some had 2 wheels + drivewheel. Others had 3 wheels + drivewheel,
resulting in a 3# or 4# combo. True dialing sequence(?) I'm unsure of.

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The overall dial is rather small at 2.5". The knob itself 7/8"
Distance between Handle & Dial: 4 1/8". Door Thickness: 4"




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This was the 2 wheel + drive wheel version. 3 number combination.
Screw-change (including driver) create larger pickup differences:
5 and 8 increment difference for wheels 2 and 1 respectively.

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DE lock ... 2 wheels + drive wheel ... screw change



The Spin...

Being my first encounter, I wasn't really sure what to expect from this lock. I packed my laser rig to measure handle movement if needed, but hoped to avoid using it. Instead, I imagined easily locating the drive wheel's gate and possibly using it to manipulate, as we've discussed here

Both handle & dial were a bit rough - not horrible, but enough to spend some time on before getting started. Accompanied by handle pressure, AWR & AWL gave no apparent gates. Leaving 1&2 parked, I then explored the drive wheel only. Again, no gate. There was a small portion, (from 20-31) 11 incs., where the dial would grind slightly. But other than that, the tailpiece wasn't really making much contact with the drive wheel.

Was it time to setup my rig? Not quite. Remember, technically this only a 2 wheel lock. If I can catch just one gate - it's game over. The small binding area from 20-31 wasn't much, but it might be something to go on. I brought 1&2 around every 2.5 incs. After each advance, I'd revisit the binding area to see if it had changed or expanded.

Eventually it did. Rather than 20-31, the binding began earlier at 16, then tapered off at 31. No, it wasn't much. But the binding/grinding area had widened from 11 incs to 15. The wheel(s) had been brought to a lower area, allowing the tailpiece to come in contact with a larger portion of the drive wheel.

Leaving w1 there, I came around, picked up w2, added handle pressure, continue around with it... and received a nice 'drop n stop'. W2's gate. I also noted this gate was rather tight. The tailpiece dropped into the gate at 2, then came to an abrupt stop on the very next inc, 3. I ran w1 for an opening (using 2 inc advances).

So....

First; As the drop n' stop indicated, the gates are not all too wide on this one. A few pictures up and you can see the tailpiece versus the gates. Not much leeway there. I'd say they're 2 incs wide at most, possibly less. I wouldn't advance wheels by more than 2 incs.

Second; I'm not entirely certain of this being an Alpine lock, nor am I sure of the proper dialing sequence. I gave the owner a LRL combo, but only to coincide with how he's use to dialing his other safes. Not a huge deal really... but would be nice to know for sure.

Lastly; It's always neat to sit in front of a box that's well over a century old :) Happy Spinnin' Folks!

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" Enjoy the journey AS MUCH as the destination."
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MartinHewitt

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Post Thu Dec 27, 2018 10:08 pm

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

Thanks. No flower under the safe this time, but many in the safe.

Do you note on these safe locks which allow only a very limited set of combinations the possible combinations? Or is this a waste of time because of imprecise production, intended variation and/or rarity of locks?
In case you wonder ... Martin Hewitt is a fictional detective in stories by Arthur Morrison:
Martin Hewitt, Investigator Chronicles of Martin Hewitt
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Oldfast

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OldddffAASSTT the Spin Master Extraordinaire and American Lock Slayer
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Post Fri Dec 28, 2018 1:09 am

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

MartinHewitt wrote:Thanks. No flower under the safe this time, but many in the safe.

Indeed. I neglected to get a closeup photo of it...
but it was a beautifully hand-painted bouquet.

Though most of the older safes I open are empty...
all of them, in a way, have a surprise treasure inside.

MartinHewitt wrote:Do you note on these safe locks which allow only a very limited set of combinations the possible combinations? Or is this a waste of time because of imprecise production, intended variation and/or rarity of locks?

I didn't, and don't in general. Certainly not because it'd be a waste of time though. Surely, gathering such info on particular locks could prove useful. Good point.
" Enjoy the journey AS MUCH as the destination."
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L4R3L2

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Post Fri Dec 28, 2018 6:31 am

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

Nice! According to one resource, Excelsior Safes used "their own lock".
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Oldfast

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OldddffAASSTT the Spin Master Extraordinaire and American Lock Slayer
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Post Fri Dec 28, 2018 4:00 pm

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

L4R3L2 wrote:Nice! According to one resource, Excelsior Safes used "their own lock".

Good to see ya Terry! Thanks for taking a look through some of your files.

From what I can tell, the main difference here seems to be with the boltwork. Every photo I've seen of Alpine has boltwork that surrounds the handle cam. And, for lack of better words... the 'sliding portion' (where the screw is to help keep it on track), is usually situated above the wheelpack. On this one though, you see all of that sets below the wheelpack and handle cam. Beyond that, the wheels and dial of both locks look damn near identical to me.

Technically though, I'm beginning to wonder if "their own lock" would be a more accurate label.

p.s. You, or anyone else, find true dialing sequence for Alpine or the like?
" Enjoy the journey AS MUCH as the destination."
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L4R3L2

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Post Sat Dec 29, 2018 5:42 am

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

Oldfast wrote: Every photo I've seen of Alpine has boltwork that surrounds the handle cam. And, for lack of better words... the 'sliding portion' (where the screw is to help keep it on track), is usually situated above the wheelpack. On this one though,.....


I'm confused. This safe appears to be an Excelsior, not an Alpine. Wouldn't that explain the difference in bolt works?

I'm seeing both the Alpine and Excelsior locks use RLR.
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Oldfast

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OldddffAASSTT the Spin Master Extraordinaire and American Lock Slayer
OldddffAASSTT the Spin Master Extraordinaire and American Lock Slayer

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Post Sun Dec 30, 2018 3:37 am

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

L4R3L2 wrote:I'm seeing both the Alpine and Excelsior locks use RLR.

Excellent! Thank you. Again, this isn't crucial... but I do think it could be useful knowledge when manipulating locks like these with large pickup differences that could overlap when dialing from unconventional directions.


L4R3L2 wrote:I'm confused. This safe appears to be an Excelsior, not an Alpine. Wouldn't that explain the difference in bolt works?

No, no, you're right - it's an Excelsior. I just thought the company was maybe using Alpine-made locks on their safes.

But given what you've said and found...
I think I'd be comfortable now in saying

this is an Excelsior safe, with their own DE lock, that uses a RLR dialing.

Really appreciate the extra info you've provided for this one.
Always nice to know a little more for the next one I run into.
" Enjoy the journey AS MUCH as the destination."
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MartinHewitt

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Post Sun Dec 30, 2018 7:38 am

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

I am not sure that this lock has in practice a proper dialing sequence. The mechanics does not enforce it. The number is not noted on it like eg in mesh change wheels. So the user changes pins and then finds out the combination. Who knows if he starts R or L.
In case you wonder ... Martin Hewitt is a fictional detective in stories by Arthur Morrison:
Martin Hewitt, Investigator Chronicles of Martin Hewitt
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Oldfast

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OldddffAASSTT the Spin Master Extraordinaire and American Lock Slayer
OldddffAASSTT the Spin Master Extraordinaire and American Lock Slayer

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Post Wed Jan 02, 2019 5:07 am

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

MartinHewitt wrote:I am not sure that this lock has in practice a proper dialing sequence. The mechanics does not enforce it. The number is not noted on it like eg in mesh change wheels. So the user changes pins and then finds out the combination. Who knows if he starts R or L.

I've since confirmed Terry's findings on this lock and it does call for a RLR sequence.

Martin, I feel the same way, that this may not be critical in most cases... but knowing the factory sequence (dialing direction the lock was designed for) can be something to keep in mind when manipulating locks containing screw-change wheels with large pickup differences;

Particular settings on the wheels could create a combination that requires dialing from one direction. In this case, attempting to dial it from the other direction will actually disturb a previously set wheel. This scenario is probably rare (and may not apply w/ all screw-change wheels) but it is, nevertheless a possibility.
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MartinHewitt

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Post Wed Jan 02, 2019 11:02 am

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

Oldfast wrote:Particular settings on the wheels could create a combination that requires dialing from one direction. In this case, attempting to dial it from the other direction will actually disturb a previously set wheel. This scenario is probably rare (and may not apply w/ all screw-change wheels) but it is, nevertheless a possibility.

I don't think this is possible. With fixed flies it is not possible to dial every combination, but if a combination can be dialed in one direction it can be dialed also in the other direction. At least that is the result of my thoughts after doing a boundary value analysis where the gates are near.
In case you wonder ... Martin Hewitt is a fictional detective in stories by Arthur Morrison:
Martin Hewitt, Investigator Chronicles of Martin Hewitt
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Oldfast

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OldddffAASSTT the Spin Master Extraordinaire and American Lock Slayer
OldddffAASSTT the Spin Master Extraordinaire and American Lock Slayer

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Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2011 3:16 pm

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Post Mon Jan 07, 2019 1:03 am

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

Man, I really up'd my game yesterday guys.
Gotta call from a fella with a Mosler Bank Vault.
Was able to open it in a matter of minutes!

Can't wait to crop the photos and post.
" Enjoy the journey AS MUCH as the destination."
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bitbuster

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Post Mon Jan 07, 2019 1:37 am

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

Oldfast wrote:Man, I really up'd my game yesterday guys.
Gotta call from a fella with a Mosler Bank Vault.
Was able to open it in a matter of minutes!

Can't wait to crop the photos and post.


HURRY!
"This squid is so undercooked I can still hear it telling Sponge Bob to fuck off."-----Gordon Ramsay
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madsamurai

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Post Mon Jan 07, 2019 3:13 am

Re: Safe Chronicles, Part II - Beyond the Lockroom

Oldfast wrote:Man, I really up'd my game yesterday guys.
Gotta call from a fella with a Mosler Bank Vault.
Was able to open it in a matter of minutes!

Can't wait to crop the photos and post.


LOL... when it takes longer to crop the photos than to open the safe, is that a good thing?
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