So, I finally received my long-awaited (4 whole days!) S&G 6741-039... I can't remember being so excited about something for long time - I felt like a kid at Christmas when UPS showed up. Thought I'd share a little about our first day together, since it's because of you guys that I was actually able to successfully manipulate it. Big thanks again to Oldfast and Daggers especially, and a dozen other names I just can't remember yet because I'm new and names take me a while.
First, I say I successfully manipulated it, which is true-ish... I knew the combination before I started (it was written huge on the inside of the box lid, so couldn't not see it), but I did my best to not cheat and only use that knowledge to verify my results. I also didn't brute-force the last number because I knew it already and it was just after 1am and my shoulders... nobody told me about the shoulder cramps! Anyway, for the record, the combination as written was 64-24-52... more on that later.
So of course, the first thing was to mount it... found a scrap board and measured/drilled and got it all set up square and nice, and just set it in a small flat vice I have to keep it straight. Works for now, tho I want to do something a little nicer once my woodshop is unpacked again. I've left the back off, partly because I wanted to be able to examine the parts, but mostly because I'm planning on remounting it later and didn't want to cut down the spindle bolt yet. Only problem with that is the re-locker, but turns out that's not really a problem except I can't actually retract the bolt at the end. I would just take it out, but it's a new lock and it's hard for me to break new things, even knowing it won't hurt.
After a break for dinner, I started into my first AWL graph... it was then that I realized there was some slop in the wheel - my readings were pretty random, and they would even change slightly between having it leaned back a little or straight vertical, and I could see the spindle bolt 'bounce' a little as I touched the LCP. So I had to backtrack a bit and added a few layers of post-it note paper behind the lock to shim it out a bit, re-centered it and got it rolling smooth again, and started over. I immediately saw a noticeable difference in my graph, contact points were much more consistent. There's still a little bit of wobble, but only if I touched my contact points too hard... I've got a light touch already from other hobbies, so it wasn't hard for me to avoid. I'm tempted to put a light spring-washer behind the dial to eliminate that but I figured they're not going to be that way in the real-world, so I shouldn't cheat on my practice lock and spoil myself.
So, my first graph went surprisingly well... AWL graph clearly showed me two of my numbers and pretty much nothing else, so I felt reassured that I was on the right track.
At first, I'll admit, I picked 24 because I knew 24 was in my combo, but re-reading I saw that it's the middle of the gate we're looking for, and my graph put that closer to L25. Of course, that's actually correct as my 24 is wheel 2 and is R24, so would be offset by one digit turning left... That didn't occur to me 'til later, but didn't really play into the solve anyway. There was also a pretty good signature at 52, which I was happy to see knowing it was another of my digits.
High-low testing confused me for a solid 2 hours... 4x left, 3x right... 4x right, 2x left... "wait, did I do that right? crap." I kept mis-counting turns or starting the wrong direction. What really helped was to stop counting turns and start thinking in terms of what was happening... around once picking up wheel three, around again picking up 2, etc. Once I started thinking that way instead of counting the times I passed numbers, everything got a good deal simpler and I stopped screwing up (as often). It was about that point where it occurred to me I should have picked 25 instead of 24 anyway, so I started again. So on my graph there, it shows H/L combinations with 24 (14/34), but in actuality the measurements and results are based on 25 (15/35). As you can see, my results still didn't lead to much confidence, and even suggested L25 was wheel 3, which I knew was wrong. H/L tests for L52 seemed much less ambiguous, clearly pointing to w3 on both tests, and I like to think I would've rolled with that even if I didn't know it was right.
So, X-X-L52... had my first number from my first graph of my first lock... big moment. On to graph 2, 1&2 AR/3@L52.
Still a bit of strange randomness on the RCP, but a clear drop from 25-21, so rolled with 23.5 and H/L testing verified w2. This went much more smoothly overall... the only time I got momentarily confused was when I passed the 52 point and nearly added an extra turn to set w3, but caught myself pretty quickly. I was a little surprised there was no indication on either graph of 64, but I guess that's how these things go.
So I found X-R23.5-L52 legitimately, I think. Since I knew w1 was 64, I didn't bother with brute forcing that one (it was already after 1am), tho I did test the combo at 65, which is what I would have tried if I was testing every 2.5 increments... And it did open, so the final combination I ended up with would have been 65-23.5-52. Looking at the gate alignment, I think the real combo is 64.5-23.5-52 for them to be perfectly in-line, but this lock has a +/- 1.5 dialing tolerance.
So there you have it. Took somewhere around 5-6 hours, but a lot of that was being confused by the hi/low test... I think the next one should go a good deal quicker. Of course, I don't have a change key so I have to wait for that now, but in the mean time I have another challenger - a stack-on gun safe with a direct-access (is that the proper term?) dial combination... just need to get it in the house.
Thanks for watchin'