Lockpicking is as hard as it looks

Lockpicking meetings

About the event

The LockpickingTreff in the laboratory is an event to indulge in the joys of opening locks together.

Anyone who has always wanted to know how a lock actually works and how to open one if you should have forgotten your key (and who has ever had this, knows how expensive locksmiths are!), Is welcome at this meeting . No special prior knowledge is required.

There are also lectures on the topic from time to time. These will be announced separately.

Dates [edit]

The next date is:

On February 13th, the general meeting of the Labor e.V. So the appointment is canceled!


The next meetings are:

"What actually happens at the lockpicking meeting?" - The guide for newbies and first-time visitors [edit]

You come into the laboratory, look for a free place and first watch. If you have previous knowledge, you can start right away and exchange ideas with others.
There will be people pecking at their locks with concentration. There will be others who work on something. There will also be people there who talk lively about all sorts of topics.
If you have never dealt with the topic, just ask. There are usually many competent people present who can answer the most pressing questions of the inclined lockpicking novice. So nobody is expected to be an expert on anything.

...and otherwise? - FAQ [edit]

Q: "Where can I find 'Das Labor'?"
A.: Here: http://www.das-labor.org/wiki/Wegbeschreibung


Q: "Lockpicking - what does that actually mean?"
A.: Lockpicking describes the art of opening a lock without having a key for it.


Q: "Is that what you always see in a movie?"
A: Yes and no. There are various techniques for doing this, from opening by hand with the pick set to the impression technique. Every technology has its own peculiarities that have to be mastered ... and what you often see in the cinema turns out to be more difficult in reality than it looks.


Q: "Do I have to become a member somewhere to be able / allowed to come to the LP meeting?"
A.: No. You don't have to sign anything - if you still feel called to join the laboratory, membership applications are available under this link or directly in the laboratory.


Q: "What do I have to bring?"
A.: First and foremost, interest in the topic and a little time. If you have tools, you can of course bring them with you. Locks to practice on are usually available in sufficient numbers.


Q: "What tools do I need for lock picking?"
A.: If you just want to get a taste of the topic, you can borrow tools on site, as long as you treat it with care. If you then realize that you want to deepen the topic, there are ways to get cheap tools. Basic equipment can include, for example, a pick set and a small vice. What each individual needs is individual; So if you are looking for a super-universal "Everything you will ever need" tool kit, you have to put it together yourself; everyone "needs" something different - but it usually started with a simple pick set. Some people only come to the meeting with the same pick set and go to work - others haul a complete mobile workshop.
Don't let that intimidate you: everyone has a different focus on lock picking.

You have to find your own way, young lockpicker .....


Q: "How expensive is the whole thing?"
A.: It is like so often in life: there is no patent answer in the sense of "If you want to do lockpicking, it will cost you X euros". You invest as much as you want to invest. You can make your own pick set, but you can also buy a finished one. You may or may not buy power tools from manufacturer A or B. Do you see what is meant? You need certain things, but not others. You only know what you need yourself. And that depends on how expensive the whole thing will be.

Online auction houses and flea markets can be just as productive as the local hardware store. Creativity is required here ...


Q: "Okay, enough talked about. How do you get a lock open?"
A: Always slow - opening a lock is not always easy. It depends on what kind of castle you have in front of you. And it sometimes takes years before you really "can" do it.

So if you want to learn "quickly" how to open a lock, you should say goodbye to this idea quickly.


Q: "Isn't it all illegal in some way?"
A.: No. A pick set, for example, can be carried around as well as a hammer or screwdriver. The fact that you can carry out illegal activities with a screwdriver or hammer does not make them illegal either. It only becomes difficult when you tamper with someone else's door with your pick set (or screwdriver or hammer ...) on someone else's property at night. But that should make sense, right?
And one of the principles of pecking is: "Only pick locks that belong to you! For all other locks, get the express permission of the person who owns the lock!"

In addition, we only open locks and NO doors. That is a small but important difference.


Q: "Aren't you afraid that some people will come to you, learn to peck and then break in with it?"
A.: No not true. It just takes too long to learn lock picking in such a way that it can be used "effectively" to turn crooked things. Those who are out for illegal activities are more likely to turn to the "tried and tested" tools instead of going to the trouble of practicing lock picking for years.


Q: "Help, I've locked myself out! Can't you just come around and open the door for me?"
A.: No. We are not a locksmith and we do not want to be. At this point we refer to the yellow pages.

Further information [edit]

Q: "Okay, I once picked a little bit in the laboratory and had fun with it. Where do I get locks and what do they cost?"
A.: Again, there are many different sources. The hardware store is often the first port of call for the "most popular" locks. However, these markets have a limited supply. If you are looking for standard cylinders from Abus, you will quickly find it in the hardware store. There you can generally (!) Get relatively (!) Inexpensive simple lock cylinders that you can practice on first. You can get the simplest locking cylinders for 5-8 euros (or in the bulky waste).


Q: "What is the best top hat to use for practicing?"
A.: Here, too, the following applies once again: it depends ... If you have just started, it is advisable not to go straight to the limit and bite your teeth on locks with special pins (dumbbells etc.). That will only frustrate you unnecessarily and you will lose the fun of it. At the beginning you will find something in the hardware store in the rubbish box or sometimes in the bulky waste. When buying, the cheaper these cylinders are, the faster they usually open due to their construction and quality. It's good for the ego, but it doesn't really get you anywhere. In other words: if you are looking for a real challenge while practicing, you cannot avoid investing some money. One of the "standard cylinders" for competitive lock opening (yes, there is something like that!) Is, for example, the C83 cylinder from Abus. One of the more experienced lock pickers will certainly help you out with one or the other tip.


Q: "It really scares me how quickly you can unlock a so-called 'security lock'. Aren't there some that you CANNOT open?"
A.: Yes and no. Theoretically you can open almost every lock at some point if you have enough time. However, at some point it is simply no longer practical and / or you need extremely expensive accessories. If you are looking for a good castle for your own four walls, you have to invest a little (more) money. The quality of the locks is often proportional to the price; a really good lock also costs a lot of money; So you can expect to get a better lock for 200 euros than for 20 euros. At least it increases the effort that has to be made to open it many times over. Without wanting to advertise certain models or manufacturers: The lock in the entrance door to the laboratory is a good lock ....
Anti-drilling guards and pilot pins, for example, are desirable features that prevent attempting to open a hand or drilling.
But be careful: if you have installed a super great and super expensive security lock in your front door, you should note that you run the risk of not being able to open your door yourself if you ever need to ("forgot key" - see above!). And then the key service usually only helps (if at all) by removing the lock with force.
A note: even the best door lock does not help against potential burglars if the window next to it is open ..... good locks are therefore not the panacea, the rest has to be right too. It is best to get advice from competent people here.

Web links [edit]

Edit data]

When: The second Wednesday of every month
Start: 09.09.2009, 8:00 p.m.
Next meeting: May 8th, 2013, 7:30 pm
Where: The Laboratory, Alleestra├če 50
Directions: here.