New Horizons in Padlocks

June 2, 2020
The introduction of technology has made this protection solution no longer just a mechanical outlier.

Despite advances in technology, there always will be a demand for padlocks.

Actually, thanks to advances in technology, the applications for padlocks have increased dramatically, because they now have cutting-edge features, such as keyless Bluetooth connectivity and mobile apps to unlock and manage them. This makes padlocks a good physical-security product but also now a security-management system component and not simply a mechanical outlier.

Traditional key-operated padlocks still have an important role in security, but they also have been upgraded to be amazingly robust and weather-resistant and also to operate with the latest in electronic and mechanical keys.

The following are examples of padlocks that have been reimagined for today’s security environment.

Medeco All Weather Padlock

The All Weather Padlock (AWP) is Medeco’s newest padlock and is the most weather-resistant product it has produced.

The AWP has a solid 303 stainless steel body with either stainless steel or hardened boron alloy shackles. A weatherproof cylinder cap seals cylinders from harsh environments.

The AWP not only is tough, but it also can be smart. It can be fitted with either CLIQ or XT Intelligent Key electronic cylinders. Intelligent Key cylinders are perfect for providing access control and audit-trail capability in remote locations, such as a perimeter gate, because no wiring or hardware modifications are required. User keys are programmed to operate specific locks on a specific schedule.

Medeco Intelligent Keys are Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) enabled, so access rights can be pushed to a user through an app on their mobile device. Users can receive access and scheduling updates on the move. Administrators also can audit keys or locks to see which locks were opened when and by who.


  • 5/16- and 7/16-in. diameter shackles
  • 1-7/8-, 2-, 2-3/8- and 2-1/2-in. shackle lengths
  • 2-yr. warranty

More info:


The new ABLOY BEAT locking solution includes a digital key, mobile app and an IP68-rated Super Weather Proof Bluetooth padlock.

The futureproof solution is designed to boost operational efficiency while securing critical infrastructure, commercial institutions and industry sites in sectors such as telecom and data centers, transportation and logistics, utilities (water, electricity, gas) and mining.

The BEAT system is managed through the ABLOY OS user interface on a mobile app. It’s encrypted with the most advanced Seos credential technology, developed by HID Global.

The padlock is designed to perform in harsh environments and remote areas. The padlock has a case-hardened steel body and LED indications for lock status. It complements the current Super Weather Proof range of padlocks, which includes electromechanical (PROTEC2 CLIQ) and mechanical (PROTEC2) options.

The BEAT can be integrated with security workflow solutions in use, but it also can be implemented as a standalone locking solution.


  • BLE 4.2 connectivity range up to 50 meters
  • 5-yr. or 5,000 access cycle battery

More info:

Master Lock Bluetooth padlocks

The new Master Lock Vault Enterprise software, designed for commercial use, and Master Lock’s indoor and outdoor padlocks provide the most convenient way to control access, manage assets and improve accountability.

The integrated software platform enables you to grant access to individuals, multiple users and user groups — temporarily or on an ongoing basis.

Its real-time access control optimizes scheduling and enhances security through 256-bit, military-grade encryption.

You can manage access to ensure the right users have the right access and simplify security setup with bulk user and lock uploads. The software allows users to map lock and door locations via their mobile device and to monitor access and access history easily through robust audit trails.

A manual, directional or numeric code provides backup access entry.


  • Easy-to-replace CR2450 battery indoor, CR2 outdoor
  • Battery jump allows for temporary access if battery dies while locked
  •  9/32-in. diam. shackle indoor, 11/32-in. outdoor

More info:

BOLT Padlock

The BOLT (Breakthrough One-Key Lock Technology) Padlock provides convenient one-key security for a wide range of applications and eliminates the hassle of carrying countless extra keys. Featuring BOLT’s patented one-key lock technology, the weatherproof, durable padlock is designed to be programmed permanently to lock and unlock using a vehicle’s ignition key.

“Our padlock is ideal for both recreational activities and work use, because it can be used to secure multiple gates, outbuildings and enclosed trailers all with one key,” says BOLT Sales Account Manager Jason Buckles. “Because the padlock uses a vehicle’s ignition key, it saves users valuable time by ensuring they’ll never get to their destination and not be able to unlock and use their gear.”

BOLT’s padlock doesn’t come equipped with its own key; rather, it’s programmed during the first use. When users insert their ignition key into the padlock cylinder, spring-loaded plate tumblers move up and down until they’re matched to that key. The first time the key is rotated, the cylinder is coded uniquely to that key. When the key is removed, the cylinder moves into the locked position, and when the key is turned again, it will rotate to the unlocked position. 

Featuring a sleek design and double ball-bearing locking mechanism, the padlock has a spring-loaded, chrome-plated five-sixteenths-inch diameter hardened steel shackle inside a crush-resistant body shell. The padlock includes an automotive-grade, stainless steel lock shutter to keep out weather and debris, as well as a six-plate tumbler sidebar that prevents picking and bumping.

More info:

FJM High Security padlocks

FJM’s durable High Security padlocks deliver high security at an affordable price. All padlocks have a solid brass body and a hardened chrome-plated body and shackle. There are no internal spring-loaded components to wear out or rust over time.

The padlocks’ European style keyway is practically impossible to pick and requires the key to turn 90 degrees before it engages with the internal disks. High Security padlocks come with four keys, and the keys are self-retaining, which means the padlock must be locked before you can remove the key.

High Security padlocks come in two styles: Shrouded Shackle and Jimmy Proof D-Shape. The Shrouded Shackle padlocks prevent sawing/cutting and have heel/toe double locking. The solid brass shrouded padlocks are excellent for marine use and come in two finishes: triple-plated chrome and a durable scratchproof ABS plastic that has a protective sliding keyway cover. Both styles are available keyed alike or different.

The Jimmy Proof D-Shape locks feature a freely rotating shackle, which resists cutting, and are available in 60mm and 80mm sizes.

More info:

ABUS Marine padlocks

ABUS Marine padlocks are designed for outdoor use and work even in saltwater environments, such as marinas and harbors. Outdoor padlocks are made of rust-resistant materials, such as stainless steel or brass. To further protect against the elements, plastic covers protect the lock body and the cylinder from water and dirt.

The 83WPIB brass padlock is ideal for outdoor use or use on boats and ships. Thanks to the plastic-coated lock body made of solid brass and the rust-free shackle made of hardened stainless steel, the lock is extremely resistant to corrosion and weathering. The cylinder protection is equipped with a drainage channel, which removes moisture that has penetrated the lock.

The 70IB Aqua Safe marine padlock not only reliably protects valuables from theft, but it also protects sensitive surfaces from scratches. It’s made from a solid brass lock body coated in plastic to protect sensitive surfaces. The hardened steel shackle also has an impact-resistant plastic coating. In addition, a special protective cap ensures that water spray and dirt can’t penetrate into the locking mechanism.

More info:

Tim O’Leary is an experienced security consultant and a regular contributor to Locksmith Ledger.

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.