Most importantly, I want to give a HUGE shout-out to Altashot for offering his time & expertise (free of charge) to help me bring this lock back to life. Otherwise it'd still be in a box! viewtopic.php?p=72209#p72209 This lock arrived with a broken lever. In addition, I noticed wheel 3 had a sticky fly. The flys are permanently pressed into the inner-hubs and cannot be removed. Had I tried to revive either of these parts myself... lol... well, lets just say I sent them off to Canada. They returned to me fixed and ready to go!
So Altashot, I'd like to again thank you - not ONLY for fixing the parts, but also taking time for all my questions while mounting this unfamiliar lock. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Take note of the two additional security features to the right of the lock case.... this is my way of covering up the mistake of mounting the lock the wrong way. lol Mosler's drop-in area is around zero. To achieve this the lock MUST be mounted LH.
I also spent a great deal of time fixing someone's previous half measures. Probably happens all too often.... in order to fit the lock to a current scenario, people will just decide to cut out a little bit of this and pound the shit outta that :/ Won't go into detail, but needless to say I was forced to take some half measures myself.
This one became a bit of a 'money-pit' and officially has the highest price tag in my small collection. HOWEVER, it was worth it! It's a beautiful piece of history and a wonderful example of craftsmanship.
First thing I noticed was a significant weight difference compared to most modern day locks. And although I'm not knowledgeable when it comes to metals - the composition of both the bronze and the brass seemed to be of a much higher quality than todays' mixes.
...and in a very large world... a small stack of joy.
CONTACT AREA Approximately 9 incs wide LCP 95 . . . . . RCP 4
Note the minute pick-up differences. The purpose of moveable flys are twofold: 1. to maximize the usable numbers when choosing a combination, and 2. in theory, allow the combination to be dialed from either direction. This is the first lock I've encountered that ACTUALLY does this.
And one last note before we get started. Just the opposite of most locks, this lock requires a LEFT (cc) rotation in order to retract the bolt. So the proper dialing configuration will be a R-L-R, finished with a LEFT to open.
So I've waited a loooong time for this moment! Lets... get... SPINNIIIIN'!! **readings were taken in tenths - every 2 increments - rcp only**
Throughout the manipulation, this lock consistently responded well to hi/low testing. The results were always very definitive, and always indicated the correct wheel. But here, I chose isolation in order to determine which wheel has indicated.
As always, I start by running the most likely wheel... w3. Had the gate not occurred on w3, I'd move on to wheel 2, then w1. The choice to park the other 2 wheels @91 is to maximize fence contact.
Graph2:1&2 AL...3 @ R71
And we all know what happens once two of the gates have been discovered....
Thank you Oldfast! It was my pleasure to help you out. Glad to see you got it mounted and working.
A very nice lock indeed. A bit of a money pit, I bet that one is a keeper? You maybe right about old brass and bronze being of a different composition, I noticed that old bronze was more brittle than the more ductile bronze I get today. You can really feel the difference when filing.
Again, nice job restoring this beauty, and being a LH only make it more special, I don't see a lot of those. You sure didn't waist time to manipulate it! Does it feel like old sloppy or are things still pretty tight?
Squelchtone wrote:That is a beautiful lock and it gives me hope on a Mosler I've been working on in my 'spare' time....
Thanks Squelch. I'm really hopin' to see another from you sometime. That bookcase one was exciting! On a sidenote: I'm glad I decided to go with this textured brown spay paint. It compliments the lock nicely!
Riyame wrote:....If you need some spare wheels I may have some.
Holy shit, lol... you have a few spares there! Thank you for that offer! I'll definitely remember that you have those. I'd imagine it'd be quite difficult to find the correct replacement wheel for certain locks and I KNOW you wouldn't hesistate to help.
Altashot wrote:You sure didn't waist time to manipulate it! Does it feel like old sloppy or are things still pretty tight?
No... I was really pleased... everything feels tight and precise. Very nice. One thing though - when I first had it mounted it ran perfectly smooth. About halfway through the manipulation I began receiving quite a grind. I was able to finish out the manipulation, but I'll definitely have to get to the bottom of this. I'm not sure if it's the dial or something inside. I used four screws on the dial ring, and the lock case is very tight as well.... so I don't think either could've shifted.
Also, thanks for taking the time to document your work as you went along! It's a treat to see and a great opportunity to learn a little somthing. Oh how I wish I had some of those tools and gizmos! lol
Quick question: all of your locks appear to be cleaned and lubricated before you begin. I assume you disassemble, detail clean, and then re-lube and reassemble? What products/process do you use to clean out the gunk. What do you use to lube and what are the factory recommended lube points?
My collection has grown by leaps and bounds recently (no seriously, it became an ebay addiction), and before I start mounting them, I am considering a big clean up operation. I've honestly never completely stripped one so that causes me a little trepidation. I've worked on guns quite a bit over the years so I figure it can't be to different.
At the same time, I also wonder if there might be some value in manipulating them as they came, gunk and all. I thought that might be more realistic, no?
Thanks Allen. Hope it helps, or at the very least, inspires. I know you've been wondering about literature & locks. Odds are, you've probably already found these... but it's a good place to start, they're good reads, and they're free. -In terms of papers in the public domain, Safecracking for the Computer Scientist is by FAR the most detailed. -Also search S&G pdfs. Sargent and Greenleaf Mechanical Safe Lock Guide pdf is also a good learning tool. There's certainly plenty more to be had (stick around & you'll find more)... but this would be a great start. As far as locks, keep an eye out on ebay. You should be able to purchase one for around $30 or less. There's a seller (safebros) that regularly lists S&G 6700's for a starting price of $25 (free shipping). There's many group 2 locks that would be find for starting. I'd steer clear of LaGards at first tho.
Trevor!!! So sorry for such a delayed response on your question.... not like me. You've most likely already settled on your own method for cleaning/lubing by now I'm sure. Nevertheless, I'll still post how I go about it.
CPT1911 wrote:At the same time, I also wonder if there might be some value in manipulating them as they came, gunk and all. I thought that might be more realistic, no?
p.s. My laptop just received a makeover, leaving me trying to get use to a whole lotta change.
Oldfast wrote:Thanks Allen. Hope it helps, or at the very least, inspires. I know you've been wondering about literature & locks. Odds are, you've probably already found these... but it's a good place to start, they're good reads, and they're free. -In terms of papers in the public domain, Safecracking for the Computer Scientist is by FAR the most detailed. -Also search S&G pdfs. Sargent and Greenleaf Mechanical Safe Lock Guide pdf is also a good learning tool. There's certainly plenty more to be had (stick around & you'll find more)... but this would be a great start. As far as locks, keep an eye out on ebay. You should be able to purchase one for around $30 or less. There's a seller (safebros) that regularly lists S&G 6700's for a starting price of $25 (free shipping). There's many group 2 locks that would be find for starting. I'd steer clear of LaGards at first tho.
Oh yea, I started reading it but put it down for a while. This thread is probably the most helpful in that someone asks a question I may have overlooked or not thought about and someone answers it and adds extra tips. Thanks Allen
Geez, you sure do have a lot of patience. I really love that safe cracking is starting to get some more mention around here. I've always found it really intriguing, I've just never had anything to practice on. When I get something, I'll be sure to do a more thorough scan of your threads and bury you with PMs.
Been awhile since I've posted a spin here. Also, it's great to see there's a number of fellow spinners around the board now!! Much my delight, some of you (although you won't admit it!) are well beyond my skill level now. Good stuff... GOOD STUFF! I'll continue posting my humble spins/thoughts and look forward to learning with you.
As I continue rolling with this thread there's a few things worth mentioning:
1. You'll notice on my graphs, I've highlighted (yellow vertical lines) where the gate(s) are. I've also included the combination not only at the end of the thread, but right from the start. I'm hoping this makes it easier to follow, learn from, and critique what I've done. Although I've been at this for awhile now, I have a ton to learn still! So give it to me straight guys! Yeah, it's always good to hear "Nice job!" However, I'd rather hear, "Nice job.... but..."
2. A while back I had someone contact me. He was a little discouraged after looking through these manipulations.... how "everything seems to just fall into place so smoothly & quickly." Keep in mind that the majority of locks in this thread were initially cracked by free-spinning. I then re-work the manipulation, this time graphing it. This not only leaves me with data for future use, but also enables me to share it here. When free-spinning, it's not uncommon to explore several avenues in just a few minutes. I'll admit that sometimes I forget things, and other times I'll intentionally leave something out (just cause it'd be too damn wordy, lol)..... but for the MOST part I do my best to include everything that happened - especially any 'dead end' roads I took along the way. Anyhoot...point being... don't be discouraged.
3. And finally, a BIG THANK YOU to CPT1911. He brilliantly put together a program that randomly generates combos within certain guidelines... and was kind enough to share it! Don't worry guys, it hasn't put the lovely Alison/certified combo change girl outta business. Just means that she now has a crazy amount of TRULY random combos to choose from. Trevor exploded onto the scene, progressed quickly, and has contributed a great deal. His obsessive work ethic & brilliance reminds me of someone I know, lol. Ok, ok... well maybe not the brilliance part LOL. Thanks for all you do! The student has become the teacher. Spin on my friend... spin on.
So I'm gonna call this one a.... lesson in rotation
Some all too familiar results from a traditional hi/low test. lol. Nothing definitive to roll with. Take note of the rotations used: 92 is approached from the LEFT; the direction it was found with. And the test # chosen (82) is consistently approached from the RIGHT during each configuration.
The very inconsistencies within a lock that allow us to crack it can also work against us sometimes. The first two graphs illustrate just how much direction factors in. Not only does a gate appear in the second graph, but the highs and lows are drastically different both in height and where they occur.
A change in rotational direction involves the flys. The width of them creates a slight change in the wheels' positions in relation to each other. There's also a small amount of play that exists between the wheels and the wheel post (some locks more than others). Different rotational forces may lift the wheels up or press them down onto the wheel post. Again, creating more inconsistency.
The idea is to neutralize these variables as much as possible. Rotation is one of the few things we can control. So here's something I like to try that will sometimes give me more consistent results. In this case the gate was initially found with a left rotation. Hence, EVERY number in EVERY test is also dialed with a LEFT rotation.
Remember, we're looking for the reading to 'go bad'. That's how we know we just moved the gate out from under the fence. In the previous hi/low test the only fluctuation was w1 which actually got 'better' by 1/10. But this latest test, approaching everything with a left rotation, offers something much different. When I moved w3 away from the known gate (92), the reading goes bad by 1/2 an increment! Rotation played a major role! I can now confidently tag the gate to w3.
I am not presenting this as a cure to the hi/low dilemma though! It's just another tool for your bag. I find this method most useful with locks that have extreme highs & lows. And not so effective, or not even needed, when working with a lock who's graphs tend to be more or less level.
You may think this is complicated & time consuming. But it's neither, once you get the hang of it. Essentially, all we're doing is bringing wheel(s) PASSED their destination, so we can pick them back up and approach the target number from the other direction. More rotations? INDEED! We're talking about roughly 17 rotations versus the 7 rotations it normally takes for a test. It can go fairly quick though, and has the added perk of making onlookers a bit dizzy. lol
So now that there's more of you spinners around here: If you already utilize this, or plan to try it, I'd love to get some feedback from you. How much of a difference (if any) did this make for you?
Anyway, enough on that... lets finish out the manipulation. I chose to run wheels 1&2 together, leaving w3 on its' gate.
The results leave little to run with. So I try w2, leaving wheels 1&3 @ 92
Odds are pretty good that I could've coaxed a gate out of this graph. But I was in the 'coffee drinkin', 'data collectin' mood, lol... so I ran w1.
R32 - - R92
From here there was no need to graph. Nor did I have to start at 36. The previous graph shows that I could start w2's run at around 54 and likely hit the gate much sooner. But again, I was in the spinnin' and graphin' mood anyway
OPEN:R32 - L58 - R92
So I didn't want to get too far off topic as we're mainly taking a look at rotational direction here. But if you look at the very first graph... with my experience (or lack there of), graphs like this still tend to send me on a bit of a wild goose chase. However, I'm certain a more experienced spinner could take a graph like that and begin coaxing gates from it quickly and efficiently! I'm currently working with a handful of LaGards in hopes of doing just that. But it's a slow learning curve.
This is GREAT information! The whole thread is awesome...I'm still working my way through it. It's a great read...I'm treating it like a textbook, not a novel, and reading, studying, going back and rereading, etc. Following your journey has helped me immensely in mine. And this :
Oldfast wrote:A change in rotational direction involves the flys. The width of them creates a slight change in the wheels' positions in relation to each other. There's also a small amount of play that exists between the wheels and the wheel post (some locks more than others). Different rotational forces may lift the wheels up or press them down onto the wheel post. Again, creating more inconsistency.
...is a HUGE revelation for me. If I understand this correctly, this explains why AWL and AWR will give different results. I could never wrap my head around that one and this little tidbit of information helps me to understand what's really going on behind the cover.
I haven't tried the L-L-L or R-R-R hi/lo test yet, but I will when I get time. I consistently get inconsistent results when hi/lo testing on one of my locks and it drives me crazy! I figure it out by isolating, but this method might be an alternative that will yield better results. It might be a week or so as my wife and I are headed to Mexico for a week leaving on Tuesday, and I won't be bringing any locks. I will give it a try though and report back.
Thanks for the great info!
I have an amazing grasp of the obvious. Beyond that, not so much.
Results like graph 1 make me wonder why I am wasting my time. Results like graph 2 give a feeling of exhilaration that are second only to the final click. When I know that I have one gate all doubt fades away and it becomes "not if, but when" will the lock open.
Another fabulous installment, thanks Mike. I share everyone's enthusiasm for your chronicles. This is the best place on the net to learn manipulation, period. There are certainly other resources, but the chronicles offer a cleanly executed, carefully explained "case study" approach to teaching this. Many thanks!
I know you are like me in that you prefer constructive criticism and the opportunity to learn over gratuitous pats on the back. Unfortunately, I cannot offer anything beyond commenting that I have found a few cases where dialing all wheels to the left or right can be beneficial. Your application of this technique on the hi/low test is sheer brilliance.
Man, watching you dial actually makes me feel bad about myself. I am pretty up on this stuff now, and I had to watch your video three times to keep track of what you are doing. You're stops and starts are so precisely executed--I just can't keep up buddy. I really can't.
I'm sure your readers will get a lot out of the comparison between AWR and AWL. I found this phenomenon affects a lot of locks. I have also found that you can sometimes confirm a sketchy indication by just checking the area really quickly going the other direction. For example, I have found cases where the "drops off and stays down" or "rises and stays high" indications will actually look like a totally normal gate going the other direction.
I will noodle on this a little more and see if I can offer anything.
In the meantime, if anyone here wants me to send them the combo generator file (excel), feel free to PM me.