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Oldfast Impressions

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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

Location: Michigan

Post Tue Oct 02, 2012 4:59 pm

Oldfast Impressions

Impressioning... truly an art in and of itself.
One in which I am FAR from proficient with as of yet.
But I've certainly enjoyed the small amount I've done so
far and hope to become more skilled with this over time.

This thread will be for sharing any & all keys I've created...
be it by impressioning, decoding, or disassembling the lock.

As this thread expands and discussions develop, I'm hoping
some of you won't hesitate to speak up and school me a bit :D



My very first experience with impressioning.
I'll never forget when that key finally turned.

Image
Master #3 (4-pin) . . . . . blank: M1




And my second.....
Image
Master #17 (5-pin) . . . . . blank: M11




Image
Master #2 (4-pin) . . . . . blank: M1




Image
Masters 1, 3, 5 and a couple off-brands on the left . . . . . blanks: M1

viewtopic.php?p=58839#p58839


Image
Master 532 (5-pin) . . . . . blank: M4




Image
Master 150 (5-pin) . . . . . blank: M12




Image
American Lock Series 30 (5-pin) . . . . . blank: AM3



I've recently been trying to make American keys as you'd see them from factory.
Although these couple here turned out ok, it's rather difficult to create
the flats and angles with the files I currently have to work with.

Image
American Lock Series 5570 (5-pin) . . . . . blank: AM3




Image
American Lock Series 5300 (5-pin) . . . . . blank: AM3
" Enjoy the journey AS MUCH as the destination."
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MBI

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Post Tue Oct 02, 2012 5:42 pm

Re: Oldfast Impressions

Excellent post, as always.

I'm a bit ashamed to admit this is a skill I've never learned, although it's next on my to-do list.
I've picked up the gear, now I just need to dedicate the time to do it.
Thanks for the motivation!
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Alaphablue

The only difference between me and this crazy island is that I'm a madman!
The only difference between me and this crazy island is that I'm a madman!

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Post Tue Oct 02, 2012 7:36 pm

Re: Oldfast Impressions

I tried to impression a papaiz failed miserably I couldn't see marks even under 10x with a light . Next time I am going to mark edge with black marker to see if it helps.
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Thedonofdeath

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Post Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:34 pm

Re: Oldfast Impressions

off topic but dam oldfast you are blowing up the forum :) Doing a great job man, just wanted to say that lol
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nozza36

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Post Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:38 pm

Re: Oldfast Impressions

I would like to try this but at present , i have no blanks , i have an old Yale padlock i want to impression , i tried with a used key and failed , guess it was cut too deep already
i want to have the buzz of this lock opening with my home cut key lol !
Open Sez Me !
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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

Location: Michigan

Post Wed Oct 03, 2012 2:21 am

Re: Oldfast Impressions

MBI wrote:Excellent post, as always.

I'm a bit ashamed to admit this is a skill I've never learned, although it's next on my to-do list.
I've picked up the gear, now I just need to dedicate the time to do it.
Thanks for the motivation!

Thanks Mike. And you know, it's truly a skill that not only pays dividends, but is gratifying as well.
As a VERY patient ebay buyer, I'll usually get locks for dirt cheap. But often times they arrive in
pretty rough shape and with no key. After degreasing, polishing, and lubing, I can then make a
key for it. It's so neat to watch a lock come back to life... become stunningly beautiful again...
and sometimes working more smoothly than the day it was born! Cost effecient AND satisfying,
all at the same time!!

Alaphablue wrote:I tried to impression a papaiz failed miserably I couldn't see marks even under 10x with a light . Next time I am going to mark edge with black marker to see if it helps.

I've heard alot of people having problems with getting definitive marks. I'd imagine alot depends on which lock you're impressioning and the type of keypins it has. For example; I've not yet had this problem. In fact, I've never broke or bent a key... and I've never used or needed any magnifier of any sort. HOWEVER, as I think back on exactly what locks I've worked with so far (Schlage, Master, American)... these locks all use keypins that come to a point. Obviously these are more apt to leave distinct markings than say a Kwikset (which has flat keypins) or other locks that have rounded keypins (like the Papaiz you were working with). Not sayin' these locks cannot be impressioned (I'm sure they can), just throwing it out there that different locks can give you varying results. For the sake of getting the hang of it, you might try a laminated master? I'd be willing to bet your experience will be much different.

nozza36 wrote:I would like to try this but at present , i have no blanks , i have an old Yale padlock i want to impression , i tried with a used key and failed , guess it was cut too deep already i want to have the buzz of this lock opening with my home cut key lol !

Yeah, finding the correct blanks seems to be my biggest hurdle in all this.
Any of the major/common brands I can easily acquire at my local ACE hardware.
But beyond that, I guess I'm gonna have to start doing some searching.


@ Thedonofdeath - LOL!! And according to your picture... good ol' Alphablue is following closely behind. lol
Last edited by Oldfast on Wed Oct 03, 2012 3:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
" Enjoy the journey AS MUCH as the destination."
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Alaphablue

The only difference between me and this crazy island is that I'm a madman!
The only difference between me and this crazy island is that I'm a madman!

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Joined: Sun Aug 26, 2012 9:08 pm

Location: Nova Scotia

Post Wed Oct 03, 2012 2:38 am

Re: Oldfast Impressions

Will do old fast the papaiz was old and extremely worn I couldn't pick it cause non of the pins will set she is super loose.
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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

Location: Michigan

Post Wed Oct 03, 2012 2:57 am

Re: Oldfast Impressions

Sounds good Justin. I think a Master will not only be far less frustrating, but you'll probably learn alot more (and alot quicker) by doing a couple of them before moving on to other locks. Let me know how it goes. If you still encounter problems, feel free to PM me anytime! And if I can't help you, I'm sure together we can find some vids/literature that will help us troubleshoot what the problem might be.
" Enjoy the journey AS MUCH as the destination."
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Alaphablue

The only difference between me and this crazy island is that I'm a madman!
The only difference between me and this crazy island is that I'm a madman!

Posts: 393

Joined: Sun Aug 26, 2012 9:08 pm

Location: Nova Scotia

Post Wed Oct 03, 2012 3:27 am

Re: Oldfast Impressions

Thanks old fast I have american & master locks with no keys so I will be getting blanks ASAP. I think I get better results this time . It's getting cold up here so I will have lots of time to get caught up on different types of manipulation . I really liked the combination lock video you did.
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mdc5150

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Post Wed Oct 03, 2012 4:25 am

Re: Oldfast Impressions

Mike you are a talented man. I've never come close to being able to impression an American Lock. I just recently was show in person the 'turn and bind' technique and for some reason this time it clicked for me. I picked it up and started running with it. But it's been a year and a half since I first impressioned a lock and I still suck at it for the most part except the cheap wafer locks.

You always make detailed quality posts and I can't wait to see more from you on this. I'm sure you'll be competing with Jos Weyer in no time.
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piotr

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Post Wed Oct 03, 2012 4:27 am

Re: Oldfast Impressions

Alaphablue wrote:I tried to impression a papaiz failed miserably I couldn't see marks even under 10x with a light . Next time I am going to mark edge with black marker to see if it helps.


Like MBI, I've got all the equipment and have read on the topic but am yet to apply myself. Diederichsen recommends preparing the key blank -- preferably brass -- with a fine cut (4-5)flat file so that it has a nice smooth surface to receive the impressions. With a smooth and uniform surface the impressions should stand out. Diederichsen recommends against applying any substance to the key surface but he does list the options and these are:

-- soot
-- UV marker (used with blacklight)
-- "touch up stick (paint)" (I think he means a paint marker like those used by taggers because the pictures show an opaque, sky blue coloured surface)
-- lead or tin

His criticism of these substances is that they will end up in the lock and the key pins will leave a line through the substance so the impressions will be within the (substance-free) line as opposed to the marked-up area so the contrast will not be a great as one would hope. The only exception to this appears to be with the UV marker where there is no apparent line from the key pins on the surface (at least not in his pictures). Diederichsen doesn't appear to recommend the use of an ordinary marker, but in any event his advice is don't use anything instead:
(a) use brass key blanks (where possible);
(b) prepare the key edge with a smooth cut flat file at 90-degrees to the key blade, producing a homogeneous, smooth surface;
(c) inspect that surface under magnification and bright light before inserting the key so that you have a clear "before" image in your head to compare with the "after". I'm only repeating Diederichson's advice and have yet to try this so I'd be interested in your result. Diederichsen does, however, come highly recommended.
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mastersmith

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Post Wed Oct 03, 2012 9:21 pm

Re: Oldfast Impressions

I don't see any mention of good light. As my eyes decline :shock: the absence of light means failure. I have found over the years that nothing beats natural sun light, the worst light for me is fluorescent. Incandescent is second choice. That is ME. Maybe different people will have a different preference. A proper file is also on the "must have" list. I use a 6" #4 pippen. These two things will make your learning curve and success rate go up. The other advice here is quite good, heed it!
"All ye who come this art to see / to handle anything must cautious be...." Benjamin Franklin
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Solomon

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Post Thu Oct 04, 2012 12:48 am

Re: Oldfast Impressions

Those look fucking great. I have to admit I actually just started looking at the pictures, but when I saw the americans I had to scroll back up to read what you said cos I thought they were the actual keys... fantastic job man. What files are you using?
Image
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jeffmoss26

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Post Thu Oct 04, 2012 12:08 pm

Re: Oldfast Impressions

Very nice stuff, one day I will have the patience to really try impressioning.
I've got lots of Corbin locks that need keys made if you want to practice lol
macgng: i just thought the cat was a real tiny bear
GWiens2001: Great video! Learned a lot about what fun can be had with a forklift and a chainsaw.
pmaxey83: but i first have to submit the proper forms for a new hobby to my wife
xeo: i root for the kernel
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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

Location: Michigan

Post Fri Oct 05, 2012 9:41 pm

Re: Oldfast Impressions

Sorry for the delayed response; I'm currently house/dog setting... no intrenet there.
FYI, I'll be headed back out there again for another couple days.

Thanks so much everyone for taking the time to chime in.
At this point, I can use any & all tips you're willing to offer!

mdchurchill wrote:Mike you are a talented man. I've never come close to being able to impression an American Lock. I just recently was show in person the 'turn and bind' technique and for some reason this time it clicked for me. I picked it up and started running with it. But it's been a year and a half since I first impressioned a lock and I still suck at it for the most part except the cheap wafer locks.

You always make detailed quality posts and I can't wait to see more from you on this. I'm sure you'll be competing with Jos Weyer in no time.
I've watched you learn. There's not a doubt in my mind you'll become skilled with this (hopefully with time, I will too).
Dunno if I'm comfortable with my name even being in the same sentence with Jos... HaHA!... but thank you.


@Piotr; Thanks. I've yet to do much reading on the subject, but look foward to delving in a bit more. What book is that?
Seems to make sense avoiding the use of substances needlessly. It's nice to have a plan B if I happen to lose my way
halfway through though... and it's good to know what some of the other options are.


mastersmith wrote:I don't see any mention of good light. As my eyes decline :shock: the absence of light means failure. I have found over the years that nothing beats natural sun light, the worst light for me is fluorescent. Incandescent is second choice. That is ME. Maybe different people will have a different preference. A proper file is also on the "must have" list. I use a 6" #4 pippen. These two things will make your learning curve and success rate go up. The other advice here is quite good, heed it!
Good point! Seems to make all the difference in the world. Another thing I've noticed in regards to light is the angle in which you place the key in relation to the light source. By looking very closely while slowly rolling the key, impressions will pop out at me that I previously thought weren't there. This has helped me recover several times when I thought I'd reached a stand still. And though I've not needed magnification yet, I think it will become necessary as I progress to other locks.

Solomon wrote:Those look fucking great. I have to admit I actually just started looking at the pictures, but when I saw the americans I had to scroll back up to read what you said cos I thought they were the actual keys... fantastic job man. What files are you using?
For creating the "factory looking" American keys, the right files will make all the difference... currently, I DO NOT have the right files! lol. I've been using a hobby set with various shapes & sizes (triangular, square, flat, etc.). They're very small & difficult to work with. I've mainly used the flat file for creating the flats & angles. Problem with this file is the edges are perforated as well as the flat cutting surface (and the sides have a knife edge shape to them). So when attempting to cut an angle in between bittings, you can imagine how easy it is to accidently cut into the bitting itself. A REAL bitch and a game of timing if you will. I must get the angle correct JUST prior to hitting the bitting one last time... AND arrive at the correct depth :/

I flat file with smooth and slightly angled edges would be insanely ideal for this.
But until I can either purchase something like this, or modify one... holy shit man! (shakes his head) lol

jeffmoss26 wrote:Very nice stuff, one day I will have the patience to really try impressioning.
I've got lots of Corbin locks that need keys made if you want to practice lol

Jeff, I would absolutely love the opportunity for some experience while at the same time helpin' you out!
However, I wasn't even sure if I'd be able to do your locks any justice, lol. So you prompted me to try one.

A few things though:

Although ACE had Corbin blanks, they didn't have one in the particular profile I needed.
The next best thing was this S1 (Sargent?) blank. Also, nearly all the keys they carry are
plated. This shine looks nice with some locks... but I'd really prefer a simple brass color
look to go with most locks. Not to mention, I pay a dollar a blank there, when I could be
finding blanks for around 30 cents! I'm REALLY gonna have to start searching and see if I
can't build up a nice variety of blanks at a decent price! (hint hint.. PM's welcomed).

Also, impressioning this Corbin was unlike any of the other locks I've done up to this point.
I really had to fight for this one. The process was just not as distinct and straight foward
like I'm use to. There was a couple times I came to a standstill and had to use the
pull-out method in order to give me some kind of direction in which to proceed.
All-in-all, I did win though.. lol.. but it was certainly a bit different.

Image
Image

So Jeff, I've a couple more Corbins of my own I'd like to tinker with... see if I can't get a bit more
efficient with em' before committing to someone else's locks. But IF you decide you'd like to send
some my way, I'd be happy to cover the cost of getting them back to you. Also keep in mind, I can't
guarantee results LOL, nor can I give you a time frame. It might all be done within a couple days of
receiving them... or it could be a couple weeks. I'm an obsessive lunatic that can usually be found
headed in any number of directions (and it's possible I may not be headed in your direction when I
receive your package
) LOL, just being honest. Anyway, if you're good with all that, then it sounds
to me like a good time. Thanks for the offer!
" Enjoy the journey AS MUCH as the destination."
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