Just a couple of years ago, the automotive locksmith world was revolutionized by the introduction of the Lishi 2-in-1 tools. These tools have proven so effective that many of us have begun to wonder how we ever got by without them! And, as so often happens in our industry, the very effectiveness...
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Just a couple of years ago, the automotive locksmith world was revolutionized by the introduction of the Lishi 2-in-1 tools. These tools have proven so effective that many of us have begun to wonder how we ever got by without them! And, as so often happens in our industry, the very effectiveness of these tools has spawned a legion of copycats and outright imitations. The “Original Lishi Tools” are only sold through a network of legitimate distributors. If you see them advertised somewhere else, they are probably trying to sell you fake goods. In this article, the only tools that I will be discussing are the legitimate “Original Lishi Tools.”
When I was first learning locksmithing back in the early 1970s, an older locksmith used the term “pick & read” for his method of decoding some locks that couldn’t be taken apart easily. This method involved first picking the lock and then using a magnifying glass and flashlight to look into the keyway to determine the approximate positions of the tumblers in the picked position. I was never very good at this method, but it did work. The problem was that if you had a deep cut near the front of the lock, that tumbler would block your view of the rest of the tumblers. The Lishi 2-in-1 picks work in essentially the same way, but with all of the problems eliminated.
“Original Lishi 2-in-1 tools” are specific for various applications, and allow you to pick the tumblers in the lock individually until the lock turns. Once the lock has turned, the same lever(s) that you used to pick the lock can then be used to decode the tumblers one at a time. Once you understand how to use the tool and get in a little practice, you can pick and decode many automotive locks faster than you can call and get a key code.
But, it’s important to understand that the 2-in-1 picks are not the only tools that Lishi makes. In addition, they produce specialized tools for picking many different high-security lock systems and decoder tools that decode specific locks, without picking them. New tools include a 2-in-1 pick set and a “Direct Read” decoder for certain sidebar ignitions used by GM. A “direct read” decoder takes advantage of the construction method of specific locks to let you decode individual tumblers without having to disassemble the lock, or even remove it.
TOY43R 2-in-1 Pick (B108 / B110 / Isuzu)
This 2-in-1 pick allows you to pick and decode the door locks on the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon Pick-ups, the Hummer H3, and some Isuzu trucks such as the D-Max that are sold outside of North America. The Colorado and Canyon were introduced in the U.S. in 2004 and the Hummer H3 went on sale in the 2006 model year. All of these vehicles use a variation of the Toyota 10-cut system, but only cuts 3 - 10 can be determined from the door lock alone. (If the vehicle is equipped with a tailgate lock, you can determine cuts 5 – 10 from it.) The key blank used on these vehicles is the Ilco B110-P (Strattec 692365), which is the reverse of the Toyota TR-47.
Before the introduction of the Lishi TOY43R 2-in-1 pick, the procedure for generating a key usually involved removing the tailgate lock (if equipped), disassembling it and the decoding it. Then cuts 3 and 4 could then be determined in the door by progression. After a working door key was made, cuts 1 and 2 could be determined by progression in the ignition. Even though all of the tumblers in both the door and tailgate locks are stamped with the depths, the decoding process was complicated by the fact that the numbers are stamped in the reverse order from most locks. A tumbler with a number four depth is stamped “1” and the tumblers with the number one depth are stamped “4.”
With the Lishi TOY43R, you can decode the door lock without having to remove it from the door, and then progress the remaining two cuts in the ignition. If you use a code program with a “fill” function, you can usually narrow the possibilities down to three to five possibilities that can normally be cut on two key blanks or less.