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Classifieds » Anything Hollywood » Where should you learn to pick locks?

Where should you learn to pick locks?

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In this post, I will talk about a few things: what are the first picks you should get, what are some good locks to practice on, and what are good resources to use for learning?

I'd say your best bet would be to get a hold of two videos: Lockpicking for the New Mellenium and A Visual Guide to Lockpicking. After watching these two videos I was immediately hooked. I found them on r/baconbits, but if you don't have an account there I think they can be found on Demonoid. Also, the MIT Guide to Lockpicking is a pretty decent free ebook, but it can be a bit tough conceptually if you aren't yet all that familiar with lock internals.

To begin with, you're going to be learning two types of lock picking, those being Single Pin Picking (SPP) and Raking. Raking is easier, gets results quickly, and is very simple to learn. SPP is more difficult, requires patience, but will open far more locks than Raking. At a guess I'd say SPP - when mastered - will give you access to over 80% of the world's locks. Combining these two techniques will give you quick results and something to develop. Most people start here. Therefore when selecting your first set of lock picks, look for one with a selection of tension wrenches (this is the tool that you insert before the pick and is essential in the art) a selection of basic picks (there's no need to get huge sets with variations of hook, diamonds, balls and curves.

You simply won't need them yet - if ever. Personally I'd suggest you will never need a set of picks with more than 15 standard picks. Just make sure it has a few good quality picks such as a couple of hooks, a half diamond, and some reach picks. You should also look for a few rakes. I love raking and would suggest a separate set of rakes altogether. But if you're looking to buy just one set, a couple of rakes is essential - most good sets will have all three - to recap - a selection of picks, some wrenches, some rakes. Feel free to ask if you want any more specific help.

When picking out padlocks to learn picking on, you generally want a couple of each type with different keys (and, preferably, from different manufacturing batches - which means at a minimum, not bought as a set). Why? A big part of picking is getting a feel for an individual lock. Sometimes pins set from the front to back, or back to front, or they're cut high, or low, or loose, or tight, or whatever. Due to manufacturing tolerances, especially on cheap locks, they're all special and unique. Something something snowflake. You'll want to get good at a few examples of each lock before you can really say you've mastered it.

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