BD Laser™: Computerized High Security Key Machine

The use of high-security lock mechanisms for vehicles has been rapidly increasing over the last few years. Prior to the late 1990s, the majority of vehicles equipped with high security lock mechanisms were luxury cars from BMW, Lexus, Mercedes Benz, Saab, and Volvo. Over the last few years, mainstream vehicle manufacturers including Honda and Kia are installing high-security lock mechanisms in their vehicles. In addition, Chrysler, Hyundai and Toyota are in the process of considering introducing high security lock mechanisms on selected vehicle models.

To satisfy this growing opportunity, Barnes Distribution, formerly Curtis Industries, has introduced the BD Laser™, a fully automatic, computerized code cutter and duplicator for high-security keys. This password-protected, microprocessor-controlled high security key machine originates keys by code, decodes and originates keys to factory specifications, plus duplicates keys with minimal instruction.

The BD Laser is safe and secure. There are no pinch-points on this machine and the cutter guard is designed not to permit hands or fingers near the rotating cutter. An emergency stop button is conveniently located on the side of the machine to immediately stop the cutter.

It is comprised of two components, the machine and the console. The machine requires no up or down movement in order to cut the keys. It is a fixed height cutter, which eliminates the concern for the cutter coming in contact with the jaw surface or anything else, except the key blank.

The console is operated by using the 3-1/2" by 4-1/4" two-color touch screen display mounted into the console. All of the machines' operations are entered through the console using picture icons. To operate the touch screen, use any non-metallic stylus (pointing tool) to contact the picture icons on the display. The recommended stylus is the plastic tip of a pen or similar tool.

To cut a key by code:

Step 1. Turn on the BD Laser and enter a correct password.

Step 2. The touch screen displays six picture icons: Key Search, Setup Test, Machine Data, Password Manager, Software Update and Exit.

Step 3. Touch Key Search. The touch screen now displays five picture icons: Car Model Selection, Key System Selection, Record Number, Search By Code and Back to Main Menu.

Step 4. Touch Search by Code. The touch screen displays a keyboard picture icon.

Step 5. Enter the desired key code. Touch ENTER to continue.

Step 6. The touch screen displays list of vehicles. Use the down arrow to view additional vehicles with similar key codes. Touch the Desired Make/Model, then touch ENTER.

Step 7. A picture of the key blade matching the key code appears. Touch ENTER to continue.

Step 8. The key blank reference list includes the different original equipment and aftermarket key blank numbers from which the key can be originated. Touch ENTER to continue.

Step 9. A picture of the jaw and the key blank appear with jaw letter. Insert the correct jaw into the machine and press down the locking lever that clamps the jaw unit into position. Insert the key blank into the jaw, locating the key where indicated in the picture. Press down on the key blank while tightening the jaw knob. Touch YES to start cutting.

Note: As a key is being cut, the optional run clean vacuum collects shavings during the cutting process.

Step 10. Follow screen prompts to reverse key blank and repeat the cutting procedure for the other side.

Every key that is cut by the BD Laser becomes part of the on-board computer's database. This enables the BD Laser to cut additional keys at any time. For this reason, and the ability to control access to the BD Laser, the key machine is password protected. A single master password has access to all functions of the key machine. User passwords provide access only to the key cutting areas.

The BD Laser is programmed with key code series to originate keys for Audi, BMW, Chrysler (Crossfire), Honda, Kia (Amanti), Lexus, Mazda (Millenia), Mercedes Benz, Pontiac (GTO), Porsche, Saab, Subaru (Canadian), Toyota (Avalon LTD),Volkswagen, and Volvo.

The BD Laser is equipped with two cutters for originating and duplicating all vehicle makes and models. One cutter is specially designed to cut Honda keys only. The second cutter is for all other makes and models.

This computerized key machine is fully automatic. Each time a vise jaw is mounted, the BD Laser confirms that the correct jaw is in the machine before the cutting the key. This reduces the possibility of error. Once the BD Laser has been adjusted, switching between cutters does not require re-calibration and takes less than one minute. The BD Laser is capable of cutting keys made of brass, nickel-silver or steel.

Because of the variation in the shape, thickness, and the cutting procedure of the high-security keys, four vise jaws are available. Each vise jaw is designed to provide the best clamping configuration for cutting the different shapes of side-milled keys.

Jaw A (red) is designed for cutting Acura, Pontiac, Honda, and specific code series of Land Rover, Mercedes, Saab, and Volvo key blanks.

Jaw B (gray) is designed for cutting specific code series of BMW and Volvo key blanks.

Jaw C (green) is designed for cutting Audi, Kia, Lexus, Mazda, Porsche, Volkswagen, and specific code series of BMW and Saab key blanks.

Jaw D (Blue) is designed for cutting Chrysler, and specific code series of Mercedes key blanks.

Another feature of the BD Laser electronic key origination machine is the worn cutter indicator. This indicator notifies the operator when the cutter needs sharpening or replacement to ensure that keys are properly cut. Each cutter usage is maintained in memory.

To keep current with new key code series and spacing and depth introductions, the BD Laser key machine is equipped a Smart Media Card™ reader, phone line port, Ethernet port, USB port, and an internal modem. Initial software updates will be available as smart media cards. Future updates will be available as Smart Cards or through down loading from the internet. Software updates, as they become available, are included at no cost while the BD Laser is under warranty.

The BD Laser's price varies depending upon the number of vise jaws and the optional vacuum system included with the machine. Purchasing a BD Laser includes a three-year warranty on parts, labor, and software updates (excluding cutters and tracer). A one-year warranty extension is available.

The BD Laser can also be leased. Leasing a BD Laser includes a warranty on parts, labor and software updates (excluding cutters and tracer) for the life of the lease. At the end of a lease period, the lease can either be extended, the BD Laser can be purchased, or the unit returned.

For technical assistance, call 866-267-6776 and push Option #2. Hours of operation are 7 a.m-5:30 p.m. Central time. For more information, contact Barnes Distribution, 1301 East 9th Street, Suite 700, Cleveland, OH 44114. Telephone: 800-555-KEYS. Log on to the Barnes Distribution website,, to watch a video demo of the unit in action.

Thanks to Ladd-E Urbas, manager of quality/engineering for Barnes Distribution.