Specialized installation jigs and templates are designed to make the complicated installation simple. Pre-drilled guide holes allow the installer to clamp a jig on a door at the proper height and immediately begin drilling. In normal knob/lever/deadbolt prep this tool will save a little time and make sure every hole in the right place.
In the more complex installation of a lock requiring multiple edge-bore and cross-bore actions, a template will save more time and eliminate misaligned holes.
Chisels should be industrial grade heavy-duty models that will last a long time. Learn how to keep them sharp for the best results. Hammers will include small, medium and large ball peen, tack, and claw hammers. Rubber, raw hide or a plastic mallet can be used to make alignments and slight adjustments to a door or piece of hardware without damage.
Unusual items such as an old tube of lipstick, white-out, colored wood filler, scratch removers, goof rings, magic markers, etc. will assist you in marking doors and latches or bolts for proper alignment or covering up an ‘oops’ moment. Toothpicks and white glue can fill an oversized hole in wood to keep screw in place. Lipstick can be applied to a latch or bolt and used to locate the strike opening
Finally, a flexible folded tarp will help to protect the floor or carpeting and assist in a quick cleanup after installation is complete. It is a way to show your customer you care about their property. A broom and dustpan should remind you to always clean up after yourself, even on a construction jobsite. It’s the professional way to leave a job.
Aluminum door TOOLBOX
Storefront aluminum doors require a little different approach with unique tools being required for proper installation and service.
Many dedicated jigs and templates for aluminum doors work in conjunction with a router and router bits. These templates allow a quick, accurate installation of new door hardware or in the case of re-drilling an existing set of holes to a new configuration.
A battery-operated drill motor and drill bits will also be needed, including and assortment of masonry bits. Numbered drills bits are a sure way to get an exact size hole. Taps will thread the aluminum to accept the proper screw size.
A good quality pop-rivet gun and rivets of various sizes comes in handy. The use of rivet/nuts (Rivnuts) is a way to rivet a special insert that is threaded like a nut into the door or frame. The use is intended to give a stronger attachment point than that of tapping the aluminum door or frame. This is especially helpful in exit device, door closer and magnetic lock installations.
Hardened cylinder rings require little or no install labor. An assortment of repair parts including levers, paddles, lock bodies, flush bolts and thumb turns can mean saving a trip to go for parts.
Specialty hole fillers, threaded mounting tabs, bridges and adaptors are designed to allow for proper placement and alignment of lock and electric strike bodies in the hollow aluminum frames.
Again, include a tarp to protect the floor and clean up after the drilling job is complete.
For normal safe service and combination changing, a good set of change keys and some safe lubricant can fit in your toolbox with your safe servicing manuals and hand tools. A quality inspection scope and a good hands-free flashlight assist in working in confined dark spaces.
For opening a locked safe, an automatic dialer is preferred for some applications while a specialized drill rig can be used to overcome stubborn hard plate. The dialer attempts to use a series of computer-aided motions to find a lost combination. Each set of numbers is tried until a working combination is found.
Depending on the case of a lost combination or burglarized unit, different approaches with different tools may be required to get the safe open.
Drilling rigs may attach to the safe body with an electro-magnet or by strapping. Intense pressure is generated on the drill bit, far exceeding the amount you can put on a drill by leaning into it. Special safe-drilling drill bits are designed to allow maximum penetration of the steel body and internal hard plate. Special templates guide you to drill in the proper location to attack bolts, re-lockers, and drop points.
Hammers and screwdrivers are necessary tools for locksmiths.
Steve Young shares his top 10 tools in three categories: automotive, residential/commercial and safe and vault servicing.