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Chubb TL15 -Open!

PostPosted: Sun May 08, 2022 3:22 am
by Bonkers
Hi there! New member here. I want to start by thanking everyone on this forum for all the invaluable information and experiences you share here!

I’ve always been interested in mechanical mechanisms and how they work, but the only lock I can remember picking was an old cheap 4 number bike lock years ago.

We are renovating a house for a client who just bought it. There was an old (1996, I guess it’s not that old…) safe in the basement that no one knew the combination to. We suggested calling a locksmith to see how much it would cost to open it and change the combination. While waiting for their quote, I started searching and researching how it is done. Tons of cool info on how to manipulate, and some on how to drill and scope.

The manipulation immediately peaked my interest! It looked “easy” if you had enough patience, or at least it was not impossible…

The locksmith wanted $1200 to $1500 to open it, and he was going to drill it! A comparable replacement safe was $2500-$3000.

The clients declined to have it opened. Woohoo! Just what I wanted to hear!
Now I had to figure out how to get a 750lb safe out of their basement, up a narrow flight of stairs around 2 tight landings, and home. With the help of an electric stair climbing dolly, an engine hoist and some elbow grease we got it out in about 2 hours!



Now the fun begins…
After much reading and video watching, I started. First I determined it is a 3 wheel lock. Then I tried several factory combinations, 20-40-60, 50, 10-20-30, etc. No Dice.
Then graphing. AWL, AWR. Got a couple of interesting spots, but after going back and amplifying the areas, they seemed to disappear.

I moved on to graphing individual wheels, starting with wheel 3 left, then right. I had read that approaching it from different directions can be helpful.

I was finding I was getting significantly different readings when redialing the same numbers. I started to suspect something was not as it should be. I also couldn’t feel the right contact point. I could hear it, but I had to put my ear to the safe and dial back and forth, gently bumping the contact point to get it just right. This made it EXTREMELY SLOW to produce a graph. W3 by every second number takes almost an hour to graph left and right contact points!

More reading… that’s when I came across this site and a post from Oldfast about the La Gard 3330 and the wheel ‘float’ on the wave washers. This would explain EXACTLY what I was experiencing!

Chubb Safe company has been sold several times since this safe was built and I could not find any information about it online or what lock they may have been used. I called the local Chubb dealer and he was familiar with the safe. He said it probably had a S&G group 2 lock and would have to be drilled. No way. I would have had it open by now if it was an S&G, and I’m not drilling it.

I carried on graphing wheel 2 left and right. Then wheel 1 every 10 numbers to find the low spots, as per Oldfast’s post. I used the low points on wheels 1 and 2 to graph wheel 3 again left and right. Still nothing. Moved on to wheel 2, then back to wheel 1 again for a full graph left rotation. I was starting to go nuts! I wasn’t getting a damn thing! Every time I thought I had something, it vanished.

More reading. I came across a post by CPT1911 about a La Gard 3332. Oh my lord, don’t let it be a 3332. The Tomahawk was scaring me. What have I got myself into?

I went away for the weekend and tried not to think about the safe (too much). I decided I would carry on in a methodical manner and try to work the lock ‘deeper and deeper’ (as someone else stated, somewhere…) using new low points as I find them.

By last Sunday I was 40 hours and 17 graphs into it when I graphed wheel 2 left and found a possible gate signature at 57. I went back to amplify, fully expecting it to disappear… but it didn’t! Full on gate signature!!!
2 days and 4 graphs later, I found 39 on wheel 3!


It didn’t take long to brute force wheel 1 to 25 and OMG, the dial hit a hard stop at 0 when checking the left contact point. Yahoooo! OPEN!

The safe was completely empty, except for the instruction manual and a change key. Not a speck of dust, paperclip, nothing. It had never been used! Still smelled of fresh paint. I still have a grin from ear to ear.
Once opened, I noticed the lock is a La Gard! No model number. I guess it’s specifically designed for this safe, but it behaved exactly like a 3330.

Sorry this turned into a bit of an essay… if you’re still reading, good for you, and thanks again to everyone!



Re: Chubb TL15 -Open!

PostPosted: Sun May 08, 2022 3:44 am
by Alexander Mundy
Welcome, and that was some perseverance there. LG's are fun locks to manipulate. And that is quite the interesting LG lock and mechanism. There isn't much that can compare to that feeling of your first open, and no matter how many you open you will always remember this one.

Re: Chubb TL15 -Open!

PostPosted: Sun May 08, 2022 11:11 am
by MartinHewitt
Great work! Yes, patience is the key. Now you have your own special safe. Its size looks quite manageable.

This safe is officially a Canadian Chubb, but in my opinion it has a Dieboldish style. Diebold used this lock and handle in their Canadian i-series ATM safes. They had a similar handle previously with their own locks. So it could be simply a rebranded Diebold, the child of a cooperation between both companies or something else.

PS: It is not uncommon that the right CP is less pronounced than the left due it having a less steep edge.