Hello everyone - and you, yes you!
So you've chosen your picks, you've been playing around with that old padlock you found. Maybe you've had some success. But now you want more. You want to grow, you want to speed up your lock picking journey. Here's some ways you might improve your skills:
Practice locks come in all shapes and sizes; padlocks, eurocylinders, and more. But there's basically just two types, CLEAR and CUT-AWAY, with each serving the picker well by allowing them to see what happens when they're picking the lock. They also let you see what happens when a key is inserted. Having a visual representation of the inside of a lock while you're picking it is priceless really as it will help you visualize what's happening when you're picking a 'real' lock. You can see all of our practice locks HERE.
OK so I am really biased regarding raking. If you don't know, raking is an easy to learn and execute technique for opening locks. Single Pin Picking (SPP) must remain your goal as it will give you non destructive entry to around 90% of the world's pin cylinder locks, but when you're new to lock picking, raking will give you quick results, which is always nice and great for morale. UK Bump Keys is the only lock pick shop that has an entire selection dedicated to just rakes. You can see them all HERE.
I began lock picking over a decade ago and since I am a specialist in bumping, the debate regarding using a vice has never gone away. Basically, there's a big difference between picking/raking/bumping a lock in your hand (you'll soon realise there's a very comfortable grip where you can apply tension with your index finger while holding the lock in your palm) and picking/raking/bumping a lock in a door. The restrictions and spacial limitations imposed by a lock set in a door make for a very different practice than a lock in your hand. The problem is, if you are ever required to pick a lock set in a door - it doesn't matter how good you are at picking one in your hand, not all the skills are transferable and even after years of picking in your hand, you might struggle to deal with the new problems. There is an answer - and it doesn't involve installing locks in doors or picking peoples door locks! It's a vice. Previously, lock pickers were limited to adapting conventional vices, which do not lend themselves to holding locks. The steel jawed ones damage the locks and trap the pins and springs, the rubber jawed ones would slowly spit your lock out, usually just as you were about to successfully pick it. Now, we have an incredible vice made precisely for lock picking, meaning you can learn how to practice a lock in situ - and not just in your hand. Check it out HERE.
So there you go - three ways you can improve your lock picking - practice locks, raking, and a vice. Keep going, and stay amazing.