The Back Page, April 2012

April 2, 2012


Ginny Merrifield explained how to compete with retail hardware outlets for business. Charles Cole looked at the Medeco Patriot key control program. A bit of humor was furnished by Dr. Shimstock. U.S. Lock described a locksmith store floor designed for profit. Michael Hoopis, Kwikset president, described the Kwikset formula for growth. Jerry Levine printed a list of the 1992 vehicles equipped with air bags. No need to list them today; all cars use air bags. Charles Cole debunked lists of must-used VATS keys. He found that all values were used equally. Locksmith Ledger described how to open the safe lock mounted in an Invincible filing cabinet. Milt Wolferseder opened a Mosler rotary hopper safe. Fred Steingold noted legal headaches associated with renovating your store. Steven Sharpe showed how to unlock Mercury Grand Marquis, Subaru SVX and Buick Skylark models. Where is he now? Ledger furnished information on a simple tryout key system for Toyota vehicles. A crosskey list of Hudson versus Ilco key blanks was printed. Still important information. Toyota code series 10001-15000 was printed.      


Jerry Levine described the most popular tools available for lock installing. Tim O'Leary described the How and Why of Access Control. Tom Gillespie suggested how to make sure your customers are getting the access control system they need. Tom Gillespie also reported on wireless CCTV systems. Jerry Levine outlined various types of electric strikes and when to use them. Dick Zunkel offered various electronic access solutions for retail stores. Jerry Levine described a new single cylinder Sargent classroom lock. A Ford transponder article listed the Ford key changes from Pats I to Pats II to Pats III and I-Pats. Gale Johnson looked at the profit possibilities in repairing antique auto locks. Richard Formica serviced the locks on an antiquated Austin American and a Ducati cycle. Tony Vigil, High Tech Tools, showed how to unlock a Ford Explorer. Tom Gillespie offered tips on dealing with employees. Still good reading today. Jim Glazier looked at the future of locksmithing. Was he right? Tiny fit keys to a monster Hummer.


This reporter always looks forward to the annual auto show with anticipation. The show this year was not quite as exciting as normal.  Although the auto industry reportedly rebounded with solid sales in 2011, it was hard to find signs of where Detroit has used that money to develop many new models.

Probably the most interesting new model was the 2013 Dodge Dart. This car is a product of the Fiat/Chrysler merger and is built on an Alfa Romeo chassis. It will be interesting to see what lock cylinder type will be used when it goes on sale this summer.

There were very few other surprises in the lock department. All of the larger car introductions had no lock cylinders showing and have moved towards keyless operation. Small cars are in vogue and if they have mechanical key systems, they are primarily using sidewinders. Fiat 500 and the Ford Fiesta fit into this category. 

A 1953 Corvette was on display and its rounded design made it as up-to-date as any 2012 car on display.  Hopefully next year there will be a larger variety of new and different car models to see.