Unlocking: Steps On The Path Of The Lock Pick Genius

October 05, 2019 2 min read

Unlocking: Steps On The Path Of The Lock Pick Genius

“This idea of, there's a locked door; how do you open it? You don't necessarily care what's behind it; you're just more excited about opening the lock... It's not about finding the treasure; it's more about defeating the puzzle.”

-Harper Reed


Lock Picking isn’t just something used in spy movies. It’s an art, a skill, and in some parts of the world, it’s a sport. All you need to become a lock pick genius is a lock picking set and your own skill. It’s an intricate challenge, and one taken up by people of all ages and backgrounds. And it could be a life-changing, fascinating hobby. Lose your car keys? Lose your house keys? Want to impress people at a party? Take your lock pick set wherever you go!


In general, leaving out tools like the lock pick gun, there are generally two pieces to any great lock picking set: the lock picks themselves, and the tension wrench. All mechanical mechanisms operate on the idea that you need to exert force in at least one direction to make any mechanism work (this is also true in the tying of knots, and even something as simple as folding paper airplanes.) In lock picking, this is where the tension wrench comes in. It’s used to exert pressure on the lock. (Pro tip: All you need is a little bit! You’re not breaking into Fort Knox… besides, that’s a combination lock.)

Many beginners tend to put too much tension on the tension wrench. The same force that one exerts for turning a key is pretty much all you need; remember, you’re trying to replicate that key, or basically make the lock think that you have the right key.


Now, these are not always the techniques used by locksmiths; they can be, but sometimes locksmiths will just disassemble the lock rather than picking it. But they have different motivations than many lock pick enthusiasts; they need to tackle (and often replace) many locks in a day, and frequently are simply going to remove one lock and put a new one in, which is a very different proposition from, for example, opening a lock and getting through without actually damaging the lock itself.


There’s no such thing as an unpickable lock. Always keep that in mind as you practice the art and skill of lockpicking. Get the right tools; be sure to have as varied a toolkit as possible, both mentally and physically. Soon, you’ll be a lock expert, able to open just about anything! And don’t forget: practice makes perfect. And the more tools you learn how to use, the more skills you’ll have (literally) available at your fingertips.


You might also find that picking locks improves your hand-eye coordination, your dexterity, and your general agility. That’s because the focus you need to match up your fingers with that satisfying lock “click” is the same focus you use for just about anything involving intricate actions of your hands. So when you get out your lockpick toolkit, you’re not just exercising your lockbreaking skills, you’re also teaching your hands how to be smarter and “better”.


Today is the day to start on your journey towards being a Lock Pick Genius!




Joel Nguyen
Joel Nguyen


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