My own lockpicking history

A long time ago, a locksmith once told me “Locks are only to keep the honest person honest.” I was in my early teens and don’t remember who it was that said it, but that statement has always stayed with me. It applies to all manner of security, from computers to physical protections. Too much of security has always relied on people not understanding how it works. For those who know the secrets, bypassing the protections becomes easier.

As a curious person, I have always tried to learn the internals of things. I like the challenge of it as well as just the fact that I acquired new knowledge. Some might refer to it as being a lifelong learner, but I think the drive more primal. I’m just not satisfied until I know the truth of something.

In writing

As a writer, I often imagine my characters in unusual situations, trying to use skills that I might not have. This leads to spending too much time diving into the depths of the internet. Sometimes emerging hours later with a whole new list of other things I want to learn about. Deep down, I know I can’t waste as much time as I do, but it doesn’t stop the desire.

For me, locks and lockpicking have been one of those topics. I have multiple characters in different manuscripts that have picked locks. You can see people doing it all the time on television, and based on a typical portrayal, one can easily assume bypassing locks takes only seconds. Plenty examples exist that show people only locks in seconds. The LockPickingLawyer has demonstrated that in almost 1500 videos about opening locks. However, he’s spent years honing his craft and making new tools to open locks. In video 1147, Locksmith Says My Videos are BS… Loses $75 (Maybe), he mentions that many locksmiths lack the tools to open some types of locks. He also has other videos talking about have hundreds of locks that he will sit down with in the evening and pick through them (so that he doesn’t just learn a single lock’s patterns, but how to approach any lock).

While I do not aspire to achieve the skills of the LockPickingLawyer, I do want to learn more about bypassing locks and locksport. To that end, I now have a few locks and tools from Covert Instruments (not a sponsored link) as well as some picks and additional practice locks from a couple of other sites. The tools themselves are not expensive and there is a wealth of information on YouTube and other locations on how to open locks. I’m still practicing and learning, and even getting frustrated with some locks, but overall, I find enjoyment in the activity (and I’ll never represent the skill as merely inserting a bit of twisted wire into a lock and giggling it.)