Resettable locks fall into two categories: locks that have resettable levers, and locks that have resettable fences. Let’s take a brief look at an example of each type of lock.
LeFebure 7700 Series Resettable Lever Lock: The LeFebure 7700 series is a cost effective lock for banks and locksmiths. The lock is normally reliable, but if you are not careful when you reset it, you can easily run into trouble. Some very early 7700 series locks used nylon parts, but the high failure rate soon forced LeFebure to switch to diecast metal.
In addition to resettable levers, this lock features levers that face in opposite directions. The levers on the guard side face the fence on the guard side and the levers on the renter’s side face the fence on the renter’s side. Once again, the lock bolt can only be withdrawn when all of the gates are properly aligned with both of the fences. This lock is also symmetrical, so it is non-handed. The same lock can be used on a right-hand door or a left-door just by flipping it over.
The settings of the levers are controlled by a toothed shaft that runs through the center of the lock. The shaft can be turned with the change tool from either the top or the bottom of the lock, so it is not necessary to take the lock off the door to reset it. To reset the lock, begin with the lock in the unlocked position, with both keys in place and turned. Then turn the shaft with a change tool to release the levers. Once the levers are released, the keys can be turned to the second key-pull position and removed. The new keys are inserted and turned, and then the shaft is turned back to the locked position with the change tool, which completes the resetting operation.
The trick to changing these locks is to wiggle the change tool back and forth as you lock the levers back in place. If you simply turn the tool to the locked position and stop, one or more levers may not be securely locked into place. If that happens, the lock will work a few times until the levers slip one tooth over and lock in. This will result in a lock that is either very hard to work, or will not work at all. In addition, the cheaply made change tool that is supplied with the locks is made of diecast metal and it is easy to break off one of the tips. After-market change tools such as the LKM7700 or the LKM3111 are more durable and easier to use.
When it comes to opening a box that is equipped with a LeFebure 7700 series lock, you have little choice other than pulling the door. As you can see in the photo, pulling the nose on the renter’s side will not allow the levers to drop far enough for the fence to pass. Even after pulling the nose on the renter’s side, you will not have enough room to insert the puller bolt. The fix for that is a little bit of brute force with a large screwdriver, and sometimes a hammer, to deform the levers far enough to get the puller bolt inserted and seated. This is not really a problem since pulling the door is going to totally destroy the lock anyway; it just makes the job a little harder.
Diebold 175-70 Resettable Fence Lock: This lock is handed like the S&G 4400 series and the lock uses resettable fences on both sides of the lock. When resetting the lock, you can choose to reset one or both keys since there are two separate resetting mechanisms, one for each key. Normally, you will not be changing the guard side of the lock, unless you are installing a brand new lock.
The resettable fences consist of a group of seven “L” shaped fence components sandwiched together. Each fence component is free to float up and down between two pins on the bolt. The change mechanism consists of a plate on top of the fence components that is held in place by the change screw. When the change screw is tightened, the plate is clamped down onto the fence components locking them into place. When the change screw is loosened, the fence components are free to move.
Bullseye S.D. Locks realized the need for replacement safe deposit locks and now offers an economical line of locks which have the same ‘footprint’ as the original products.
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