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First Impression

PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 6:54 pm
by Papa Gleb
I have always been so fascinated by impressioning. By the entire idea, process and of course the result so naturally I had to try it.

After a failed attempted using regular Home Depot needle files and vice grips, realized I needed to make some improvements in my tools. I upgraded to a Swiss 4 cut around file and may I say WOW. The file is such great high quality that it blew me away. I also made my own key holder. Not the best design but I already learned the flaws and if I wont buy the commercial holder then Ill make a better one (forgot to take pics of the key holder so Ill upload that tomorrow).

During the time waiting for the file to arrive, I read and read and watched all the youtube videos which were all helpful. The file finally arrive and I tried to make a key for an old old WB padlock 4 pin but could not see any markings at all on the 2nd pass. 6 blanks down and still the same which killed my confidence until I read what Oldfast and a guy named "Site Admin" (lol) had to say. The key points Oldfast added were such great confidence boosts that I ran home and tried it again on a master copy 4 pin lock and the results are below. Let me say I feel this is more rewarding to me than picking a lock probably because it takes more work and at the end you have physical results. I cant wait to work on the next lock.

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 7:00 pm
by jeffmoss26
Nice job!!
Let's see pictures of your key holder.

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 7:21 pm
by MrAnybody
Nice one, Papa. Big congrats on that.

Also love to see your key holder/grip.

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 7:28 pm
by Oldfast
Wonderfully exciting stuff! And great display of persistence & patience. You viewed your
initial attempts with the other lock not as failures but a learning curve. And now... success!

My very first impressioning attempt was also with a Master.
Took me over 4 hrs I think including smoke breaks. Geez! lol

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 8:11 pm
by Papa Gleb
Thanks gents. This took about 3 hours as I was very carefully removing material but at the same time I was also watching a movie, taking smoke/pick breaks and checking up on my sick kid :( so I would say if I sit down without any interruptions I would have been done in about an hour.

I am actually going to make a video of the key holder tool and all of the other tools I have made so Ill post the link as I am done.

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 8:14 pm
by Papa Gleb
Does anyone have pictures of a key impressioned using a pippin file? I want to see the difference in the cuts that tear shape makes.

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 8:48 pm
by jharveee
Nice Job!
Its a great skill to have and develop.
As far as Pippin vs round file........I think it must be mostly skill.
I do have a pippin, But my keys still come out looking like the teeth of an :twisted: evil Jack-O-Lantern.

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 10:00 pm
by Papa Gleb
Harvey, if you have some pics of keys cut using a pippin, please post. Or anyone that has pics, please do post.

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2014 11:08 pm
by jharveee
pippin keys.JPG

I have a handful of locks that I have impression ed. I carry them with me and give them away to friends that need a lock.
Only cost me little time and pennies for the blanks.

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2014 12:31 am
by MrWizard
The file you have is the one to use you just have to learn to shape the sides of the cuts with the wider part of the file as you go. If you look at the shallow cut on your key you will see a slight hook look to the top of the angle of the cut making the angle more vertical than should be. You want to not have that happen as if it is too much you will insert the key and it will be stuck in the lock. Same thing will happen with a pippin file if you don't shape the angles. I have used both and don't like the pippin file it is too expensive and doesn't improve the speed or the final look of the key for me. Good job on the key just watch out for those side angles getting a hook to them. You can rake the file sideways back and forth from shoulder to tip both ways to remove that hook fast and easy. Take a factory cut key rest the file into the bottom of a deep cut see what part of the tip of the file is the widest part that fits then move it to the top of the cut to see where the widest part of the file is at this will give you and idea the part of the file you should be using on what part of the cut so you can shape the bottom of the cut to not be really rounded wider than it needs to be and the top of the cut ends up to be the proper width so you end up with a key that looks like it isn't impressioned as best you can.

Richard

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2014 1:44 am
by jeffmoss26
Here's one that Oldfast did with a pippin:
viewtopic.php?f=34&t=7137&start=90#p67927

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2014 2:14 am
by Doogs
Good work Papa. I can see this thread growing much longer in the near future.

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2014 2:30 am
by flywheel
My first impression, good job!

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2014 2:36 pm
by Farmerfreak
Whatever file you learn with is the one you are probably going to like to use.

I know a lot of locksmiths that like a pippin and a lot that like the round files. I'm in the pippin file group, I love my pippin file.

Generally when I see someone using a round file they will also use a smooth flat file to prep the blank. I prep the blank with the flatter side of my pippin file, it's easier to use the flat file and the flat file preps the blank better. But hey, one file, or two files?

Sometimes you may run into a scenario where you need a longer key and can accomplish it by filing the shoulder of the key back. Again, you would need to resort to a flat file, or you can use the back side of a pippin file. Yes it's easier with the flat file.

As far as not making the points in between the cuts too pointy. As MrWizard pointed out you can always run whichever file you are using across the tops of them. When I'm filing my cuts I roll the pippin file in a clockwise motion to control the slope of the cut. That way the peaks aren't much of an issue.

One very important thing is that when a pippin file is brand new. They suck!! They are too rough and need to be worn in to work well. So go file on some steel or something, or just practice impressioning a lot. That way the file will get better as you get better. Now that mine has aged nicely, I file my finger nails with it.

Re: First Impression

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2014 5:48 pm
by Papa Gleb
Thanks for the words gents.

So the journey continues. Here is the 2nd lock I impressioned last night and boy am I glad I didn't decide to pick this one out of the two. This took almost twice as long and I had the white towel in hand several times but nope, I didnt give up and here is the result. You can see how desperate I got that I added twisting power cracking the blank. I felt that the blank was about to snap at any moment so I eased on the power which stopped marking the it. It was a very nice experience but I stand in front of you a victor :pimpmofo:

As for the tool, I made a video which I am editing now so Ill post a link to it once its up.