The Locksmith-Distributor Partnership in 2023

April 3, 2023
Distributors can be a great source for product information

Distributors are a great source for training, sponsoring events ranging from large-scale trade shows to educational weekends to counter days featuring manufacturer representatives. Many also host webinars and post extensive reference information and how-to videos on their websites. Here are some distributors and their current offerings.

American Key Supply

The American Key Supply Trade Show, Locksmith Swap Meet and Luau Lunch will be held at American Key Supply's headquarters and distribution center in Las Vegas on Saturday, April 1, at 10 a.m. 

The event will bring locksmith suppliers and customers together and include products and representatives from more than 25 manufacturers. There will be special event pricing, hands-on demonstrations and product giveaways. Training classes will include Introduction to Automotive Locksmithing and Hands-on Lishi Training. Attendees can also buy and sell used tools and supplies at the first-ever Las Vegas locksmith swap meet.

"We are excited to finally hold our very own vendor show here. If you're within driving distance of Las Vegas, I highly encourage you to come see our facility, meet the manufacturers and our AKS staff, get some great deals, learn some cool stuff, and eat some great food!" said Cary Stevens, owner of American Key Supply.

For readers who missed the April 1 event, American Key Supply’s Las Vegas Locksmith University offers an extensive lineup of training classes year-round. The popular Hands-On Lishi training class is scheduled May 2, June 1, July 13, Sept. 14 and Oct. 19.

Other courses on the schedule at American Key Supply headquarters include:

  • IM608, G2 Turbo, & VVDI Key Tool, May 5-6
  • Mercedes Keymaking, June 2-3
  • BMW Keymaking, July 14-15
  • Motorcycle Keymaking, Oct. 20-21

For more details, visit

Banner Solutions

Banner Solutions is a nationwide distributor with multiple locations throughout the U.S.A. offering products from over 262 manufacturers in more than 25 categories. We contacted Travis Howell, Banner Solutions’ content marketing manager, for information on their training.

“Banner Solutions sees training as an essential element for locksmiths working in any area of the trade. We partner with manufacturers and peer instructors to bring education opportunities to our customers,” Howell said.

The 2023 Banner Solutions Training and Trade Expo, held March 23-25 in Houston, included more than 40 classes covering automotive, access control, commercial door hardware, safe servicing and general locksmithing.

Banner also offers manufacturer webinar training on various topics throughout the year and posts an extensive list of whitepapers and YouTube videos.

“Many distributors have developed reputations as industry sources for all the vital technology training locksmiths require and built up their roster of loyal customers in the process. Banner Solutions will continue to offer the extensive training expo in Houston every March and look for other events to be planned in additional locations,” Howell added.

IML Security Supply

IML Security Supply’s Expo series is well-known and well-liked by the locksmith community, for the educational opportunities, the tradeshow and even the food!

Pre-registration is open for the IML Utah Expo, scheduled April 12-14 in Salt Lake City. Locksmiths can sign up for 35 of the most requested training courses in the industry.

Courses include:

  • 2GIG EDGE Home Security and Management
  • Access Control 101: Hardware and Installation
  • Access Control 102: How to Maximize Profits And Win More Bids
  • Advanced Breaking and Entering
  • Advanced Electronic System Wiring and Basic Troubleshooting
  • Advanced Troubleshooting for Low Voltage Locking Devices
  • ASSA Inc. Certification           
  • Basic Low Voltage Electricity For Installers
  • Cylindrical And Mortise Locks: Things You Must Know To Install And Service
  • Decoding And Lock Pick Opening With Original Lishi
  • Electric Circuits, Wiring Diagrams and System Design
  • Electric Strike Overview, Maintenance and Install
  • Electromechanical Hardware - Retrofit Installation
  • Fire Door Inspection: 13 Things You Must Know
  • How To Keep Your Door Hardware Code Compliant
  • ICT Sales And Technical Training
  • Intro Into Automotive Locksmithing
  • Lock Picking Tips and Tricks
  • Low Energy Automatic Operators and Exit Alarms
  • Low Energy/ADA Door Integration and Safety
  • Master Keying Solutions
  • NGP Fire Door Accessories
  • Proxess Access Control Made Simple
  • Schlage ALX And ND Mechanical Locks
  • SDC LR100 Hands-On Installation and Certification
  • Servicing And Troubleshooting Mechanical Safe Locks
  • Servicing Hollow Metal Doors and Frames
  • Storefront Door Servicing and Repair
  • Transponder Keys, Key Machines and Programming
  • Von Duprin Mechanical and Electrified Exit Devices

Pre-registration will open later this month for the next IML Expo, June 21 to 23 in Kansas City,

Visit to check for upcoming Expos and training events.

KDL Hardware Supply

Seattle-based KDL Hardware Supply will hold its spring trade show May 17-19 at the Tukwilla Community Center, Tukwilla, Wash. Enroll online at Classes include:

  • Alarm Lock Trilogy Locks: T2 to AirAccess
  • Detex Door Alarms & Operators
  • dormakaba Access Solutions
  • Fire Door Inspection
  • Fire, ADA and Accessibility Codes
  • Fundamental Locksmith Skills
  • Ilco and Advanced Diagnostics Key Machines
  • LCN and Von Duprin door closers
  • Lock Impressioning
  • Lock Picking
  • Masterkeying
  • Norton Automatic Door Operators
  • STRATTEC 2023 Automotive Update

AKG Academy

AKG Academy (presented by Automotive Keys Group) plans a series of quarterly training events where locksmiths can network with other locksmiths, meet with the company's sales staff, and most importantly, learn from industry-leading instructors.

The first installment, held in March, included the following classes: Intro to Domestic J2534 with GM Techline Connect, Ford IDS/FJDS/FDRS, FCA WiTech2 and Masterkeying. Professional Lock Picking and Euro Immo Systems Through the Years.  Stay tuned for a similar lineup in the second quarter of 2023.

These are just a few of the opportunities out there through your distributor partners. Check with your local distributors to see if they offer in-house training sessions and online reference libraries.

About the Author

Tim O'Leary

Tim O'Leary is a security consultant, trainer and technician who has also been writing articles on all areas of locksmithing & physical security for many years.