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Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

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grit1

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Post Fri Jun 05, 2015 9:37 pm

Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

Hey Guys:

I got a new key for work, for a facility that is very large and extensively master keyed. It's old Medeco Biaxial, and has more cuts than I am used to. Here's a cropped picture of a couple of cuts that appear to me to have double-bevels:
medeco.jpg

I'm not intimately familiar with master keying practices in Biaxial, but my theory is that a large system might use more than one sidebar code, varying both the rotation of the pins in a given chamber and the position (fore/aft). This master key has cuts that will fit multiple sidebars. Can anyone confirm this?

The total number of low spots on the key is 8.
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MBI

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Post Fri Jun 05, 2015 10:19 pm

Re: Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

Yes if they are the same depth, you can have both fore and aft pin cuts on a key at the same pin stack to increase the differs for a large masterkey system with Medeco Biaxial and m3 locks. The two cuts in each position can be for either the same or different pin rotation. In theory you can have a 6 pin master key with up to 12 cuts. However if I remember right, doing so reduces your MACS somewhat. It's been many years since I had to do any Medeco masterkeying so I don't remember the exact specs without referring to a manual.
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GWiens2001

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Post Sat Jun 06, 2015 4:27 am

Re: Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

MBI wrote:Yes if they are the same depth, you can have both fore and aft pin cuts on a key at the same pin stack to increase the differs for a large masterkey system with Medeco Biaxial and m3 locks. The two cuts in each position can be for either the same or different pin rotation. In theory you can have a 6 pin master key with up to 12 cuts. However if I remember right, doing so reduces your MACS somewhat. It's been many years since I had to do any Medeco masterkeying so I don't remember the exact specs without referring to a manual.


:shock:

Have never seen a Medeco pin with two grooves for the sidebar. There is so much I have yet to see with locks, which is why I love this forum.

Any chance of a picture of a pin that has a groove for two different rotations?

Gordon
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MBI

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Post Sat Jun 06, 2015 4:51 am

Re: Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

GWiens2001 wrote:Have never seen a Medeco pin with two grooves for the sidebar. There is so much I have yet to see with locks, which is why I love this forum.

Any chance of a picture of a pin that has a groove for two different rotations?

Gordon

There aren't pins with two sidebar grooves that I'm aware of. I guess I wasn't clear with how I described it.

For a very large masterkey system, for example involving multiple buildings on a college campus or something, you could design a masterkey system that is very similar for two different buildings. However, in one building the first pin might have a left rotation and aft cut, in the other building, the first pin has a right rotation and a fore cut. Even if all the other parts of the bitting were identical, that change would prevent any keys from interchanging between the buildings, but on the masterkey you have BOTH fore and aft cuts on the first pin postion allowing that key to work in both buildings.

Does that make more sense?
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GWiens2001

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Post Sat Jun 06, 2015 1:25 pm

Re: Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

It does. Got the question answered in chat last night. Missed you by minutes. :( But thank you again.

Gordon
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chieflittlehorse

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Post Mon Jun 08, 2015 4:34 am

Re: Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

I made a Medeco Biaxial masterkey program that Medeco wasn't too interested in buying for training purposes. I might upload it to this sight one day.

It won't be a complete MK Program but I will keep it limited to a certain amount of change keys!

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femurat

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Post Mon Jun 08, 2015 11:08 am

Re: Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

Interesting concept. I'm not sure what tells the pin to go in the correct sidebar grove. Does the master key work smoothly or you have to use it as a rake?
Thanks
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MBI

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Post Mon Jun 08, 2015 3:15 pm

Re: Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

chieflittlehorse wrote:I made a Medeco Biaxial masterkey program that Medeco wasn't too interested in buying for training purposes.
-CLH!

If you're a Medeco dealer and you need to buy locks for a masterkey system the factory will generate it for you.
I'm guessing they declined since they already have a program to do that.

Because of fore and aft cuts Medeco Biaxial and m3 systems have varying MACS, add in masterkeys that can have more than one cut at each pin position, it can get complicated making a Medeco masterkey system. While there are plenty of competent locksmiths around the country, considering that the trade is largely unregulated there's no way to be sure a locksmith will do a masterkey system correctly, Medeco or otherwise. Doing it wrong can reflect badly on the manufacturer as well so I'm guessing that's why Medeco will design the system if you're buying the locks for it. I can't remember if there's a fee, but if there is I don't think it was very high.


femurat wrote:Interesting concept. I'm not sure what tells the pin to go in the correct sidebar grove. Does the master key work smoothly or you have to use it as a rake?
Thanks

If you look straight down at the key the cuts are not perpendicular to the length of the key, like in a regular key. They are angled, and the chisel shaped tips of the pins fits into that angled cut, turning the pins so the groove in the side of the pin lines up with the legs on the sidebar. You don't have to rake the key, it should work very smoothly. If it doesn't then the key was probably cut wrong. With the profile of the key cuts and the way the pins sit in the cuts, the pins and key can receive very heavy wear before it would ever cause a functioning problem.
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grit1

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Post Mon Jun 08, 2015 11:40 pm

Re: Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

The key works quite smoothly most of the time. Sometimes it requires a little axial jiggle on lesser-used cylinders, just to relieve the tension to let the pins fall into place.

Thanks for confirming my suspicion on this key's form/function! I consider it a similar use case to composite keyways like Sargent R/L. The only difference is that escalating your issued sub-master key into a grand master isn't as trivial as copying it onto the master section. You could still do it, it would just require some precise filing or milling with the right key machine.
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MBI

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Post Tue Jun 09, 2015 12:00 am

Re: Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

grit1 wrote:The key works quite smoothly most of the time. Sometimes it requires a little axial jiggle on lesser-used cylinders, just to relieve the tension to let the pins fall into place.

Might want to give the sticky ones a shot of lube. Medeco lube is a dry Teflon lube in a solvent carrier. The solvent flushes out the lock leaving behind a film of very fine white Teflon powder to lube the cylinder. Some bike lubes are very similar.
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femurat

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Post Tue Jun 09, 2015 7:26 am

Re: Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

MBI wrote:
femurat wrote:Interesting concept. I'm not sure what tells the pin to go in the correct sidebar grove. Does the master key work smoothly or you have to use it as a rake?
Thanks

If you look straight down at the key the cuts are not perpendicular to the length of the key, like in a regular key. They are angled, and the chisel shaped tips of the pins fits into that angled cut, turning the pins so the groove in the side of the pin lines up with the legs on the sidebar. You don't have to rake the key, it should work very smoothly. If it doesn't then the key was probably cut wrong. With the profile of the key cuts and the way the pins sit in the cuts, the pins and key can receive very heavy wear before it would ever cause a functioning problem.


Well thanks for the explanation. I usually get these things immediately... but in this case I'll have to dig out a Medeco cylinder, empty the first pin chamber and look at the key going in and out from the top. I still don't get why a pin should fall in its correct angle groove and not in the other one at the same position.

Thanks :)
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Riyame

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Post Tue Jun 09, 2015 9:38 am

Re: Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

Femurat, Medeco biaxial and M3 pins have pin tips that are either more towards the front or the rear of the key. The main angle actually sits on the side of the cut with only a little bit in the valley of the key. Since Medeco pins also have a little tab on them that prevents them from rotating 360 ° this means that if a pin is meant to go into the forward position it cannot go into the backwards position. That is why there can be 2 cuts per "space" since the fore and aft pins will have different spacing on the key.

In the picture you can see how the sloped portion is not in the middle of the pin like on most pins. The sidebars are all the same. The angle of the cut in the key determines if the pin lines up correctly with the sidebar leg. This is why the master key has different angles as well as spacing on the same "cuts"
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femurat

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Post Tue Jun 09, 2015 12:27 pm

Re: Medeco Biaxial - Extensive Master Keying?

Riyame wrote:Femurat, Medeco biaxial and M3 pins have pin tips that are either more towards the front or the rear of the key.


This clarifies everything. I was probably thinking about and looking at a Medeco classic.

Thanks :)

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