lock re-keying kit

My roomate lost a house key so I want to rekey all outside door locks (4 of them). I went to home depot and found this:
http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-100173492/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId053&langId=-1&keyword=rekey&storeId051 (prime-line steel lockset re-keying kit for schlage 5-pin door locksets)
It comes with a bunch of pins and 3 pre-cut keys and cost only $13. Perfect, I thought, until I noticed the "valleys" on the keys have very little height variation. This means the lock would be easy to pick. I examined the other sets and they were all similarly made. My existing house key has more height variations.
The rekeying kit made by schlage cost $70 (!) and doesn't come with precut keys. How do I get the keys?
Is there a rekeying kit with pre-cut keys, strong teeth pattern, and cost less?
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While you may see thieves picking locks to gain entry on TV, from everything I've seen and heard over the years it's unusual for them to do that with a typical house. The typical urchin just doesn't have the skills or need. And if they are that determined and skilled so that they are going to pick a lock, then they are going to gain entry regardless of the depth of your typical home key.. The common ways of entering are to break a window, kick in a door, credit card in the door jamb, etc.
I examined the other

Sounds like it's made for use by a locksmith who can make the keys.

I don't know. But your other option is to call around and ask a few locksmiths how much they will charge you if you bring the cylinders to them for re-keying.
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Generally, you can get good, fast, cheap. Choose any two.
If you want cut keys, look on Ebay. If you want rekeyed, take the locks to a locksmith, and pay to have them rekeyed.
If you want security, have the locksmith come out and look at the doors, jambs, windows, etc. You might need reinforcing strikes, and some other work.
Christopher A. Young Learn more about Jesus www.lds.org .
My roomate lost a house key so I want to rekey all outside door locks (4 of them). I went to home depot and found this:
http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-100173492/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId053&langId=-1&keyword=rekey&storeId051 (prime-line steel lockset re-keying kit for schlage 5-pin door locksets)
It comes with a bunch of pins and 3 pre-cut keys and cost only $13. Perfect, I thought, until I noticed the "valleys" on the keys have very little height variation. This means the lock would be easy to pick. I examined the other sets and they were all similarly made. My existing house key has more height variations.
The rekeying kit made by schlage cost $70 (!) and doesn't come with precut keys. How do I get the keys?
Is there a rekeying kit with pre-cut keys, strong teeth pattern, and cost less?
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bob wrote:

http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-100173492/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId053&langId=-1&keyword=rekey&storeId051

Try this: http://www.ebay.com/itm/BRINKS-KWIKSET-CYLINDER-COMPATIBLE-5-pin-Rekey-Kit-/121056636083?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item1c2f89acb3
Or, if you can find one, a re-pinning kit. It comes with about 500 pins of varying lengths and other parts. With it you can easily re-key a lock. In fact you can re-key a lock to take two DIFFERENT keys (say one for the tenant and a master for the whole building).
I got mine via Ebay some time back. I think is was around $30.
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That;s a good find. If you search for Schlage rekey on Ebay there are a lot of possibilities.
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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

In my case, I converted a duplex into a single family residence. This necessitated re-keying the following locks:
Burglar bar front door - 2 locks Burglar bar back door - 2 locks Front door - 1 lock Back door - 1 lock Total: 6 locks. For 1/2 of the building. Repeat for the other side.
(There are three windows, each with one lock, on each side of the building. I haven't bothered with them inasmuch as I can't see EVER wanting to open the windows' burglar bars from the outside!)
So, getting the kit and putzing around for a half hour on each lock seemed more economical than having a locksmith work his magic...
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On 2/18/2013 2:49 AM, bob wrote:

http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-100173492/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId053&langId=-1&keyword=rekey&storeId051

You are correct that the big box kit is a waste of time for the reasons you noted.

Any locksmith can make keys cut to whatever pattern you want. We just did what you are describing last year. Friend has a bigger version of the kit you described. I wanted a master key system we determined the patterns I needed and stopped by the local locksmith.

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dont forget the electronic push button locks, I installed one a couple years ago its super convenient and works great.
temporary codes can easily be enabled too.......
best change I have made for many years:)
about a 100 bucks each although I am sure they can be bought cheaper
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wrote:

Locksmiths can do all sorts of nifty things. You can categorize your keys like we did at work. We have four levels.
A keys open everything B keys open only the office C keys open only shop doors D keys open only certain doors
Only an authorized person with signature on file can have a key made.
Applying this to your house, you can segregate the garage, make the kids (and sloppy boots) use the back door, give a neighbor access to a vestibule while you are on vacation, etc. .
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On 2/18/2013 9:47 AM, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

That is pretty much what we did. It was inexpensive to have the locksmith cut the keys we needed.
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bob wrote:

http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-100173492/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId053&langId=-1&keyword=rekey&storeId051

Interesting. I had never heard about or thought about the idea of buying one's own lock rekeying kit.
In case it helps, there is also an alt.locksmithing Usenet newsgroup, so you may be able to get more information there. However, it is not a very active group.
Also, I noticed at a Lowes store near me (in New Jersey) recently that they had a sign saying they rekey locks for $5 each. You have to bring in the lock and I think it mention 2 or 3 major brands that they do -- I think Schlage, Kwikset, and maybe one more. I haven't tried it, but that's what their sign said they do.
I have 3 modern-looking new Schlage locks that came with a house that I recently bought for which I received no keys from the former owner (duh). They are on doors on an inside foyer, so it is not a big deal right now but I need to get keys for them. I asked while I was at a locksmith's store recently and he said if I bring them in he would charge $15 each -- which he said was more than normal but it's because I don't have keys to the locks, which involves a little more work. I am mentioning that to give you an idea of cost for rekeying by a locksmith, but also because maybe the rekeying kits that one buys require an original key to be able to rekey the lock -- I don't know.
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As a self employed locksmith, I don't provide a lot of DIY information on the lists. I apprenticed and trained to get the wisdom, and why give it away for free?
Yes, it's more work to rekey locks that don't have a key to start with. But, still much less expensive than buying new locks. I think Schlage messed up, the newer designs are just terrible quality. The older ones were good.
Christopher A. Young Learn more about Jesus www.lds.org .
In case it helps, there is also an alt.locksmithing Usenet newsgroup, so you may be able to get more information there. However, it is not a very active group.
Also, I noticed at a Lowes store near me (in New Jersey) recently that they had a sign saying they rekey locks for $5 each. You have to bring in the lock and I think it mention 2 or 3 major brands that they do -- I think Schlage, Kwikset, and maybe one more. I haven't tried it, but that's what their sign said they do.
I have 3 modern-looking new Schlage locks that came with a house that I recently bought for which I received no keys from the former owner (duh). They are on doors on an inside foyer, so it is not a big deal right now but I need to get keys for them. I asked while I was at a locksmith's store recently and he said if I bring them in he would charge $15 each -- which he said was more than normal but it's because I don't have keys to the locks, which involves a little more work. I am mentioning that to give you an idea of cost for rekeying by a locksmith, but also because maybe the rekeying kits that one buys require an original key to be able to rekey the lock -- I don't know.
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TomR wrote:

Without a key, the classic way to get a lock open (to re-key it with the original key) is by using a shim. http://www.lockpicks.com/cylindershims.aspx
The shim, a very thin bit of brass, is inserted into the rear of the lock, above the cylinder. Then, using a pick, you manipulate the pins until the shim moves forward one pin position. Repeat until all the pins are processed.
Next, push out the cylinder with a 1/2" dowell. The cylinder now contains the pins necessary to unlock the lock. File a blank key such that the new key causes the pins to line up evenly with the surface of the lock cylinder.
Reinsert the cylinder by pushing against the 1/2" dowell you left in place.
Done.
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On Sunday, February 17, 2013 11:49:34 PM UTC-8, bob wrote:

This is what you need to make your own “valleys”:
http://www.lockpicks.com/browseproducts/Fine-Cut-Round-Impressioning-File.H TML
The more keys that a lock opens with the easier it is to pick it.
I recommend that you return everything you bought, get back your money and buy one of these:
https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&safe=off&site=imghp&tbm=isch&so urce=hp&biw66&bih`2&q=lock+file&oq=lock+file&gs_l=img.12.. 0j0i24l9.2982.4562.0.6687.9.9.0.0.0.0.81.652.9.9.0...0.0...1ac.1.4.img.vqjB hw9VlYs#hl=en&safe=off&site=imghp&tbm=isch&sa=1&q=wifi+door+loc k&oq=wifi+door+lock&gs_l=img.12..0j0i24l5.22038.22893.4.25687.5.5.0.0.0 .0.125.416.4j1.5.0...0.0...1c.1.4.img.kMTP6_eu41o&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r _cp.r_qf.&fp3d53e35f4e0ecf&biw66&bih`2
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It's called your local locksmith. They can usually do it for less than the cost of the kit. I've had a "rekey" done where they just changed one pin and recut one notch on the key. The old keys won't work any more and I didn't need to replace the remaining good keys.. Something like $10 for one lock and 6 keys!!! (that was over 10 years ago)
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On 2/18/2013 11:51 AM, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

probably to a friend of one of my kids. BTW, I had just replace the handle lock and the dead bolt locks on the door, so I hated to do it again. I took the lock out and examined the pins. I found that in one position I could put in a long pin. I got it from the local locksmith ... he didn't even charge me. Once the longer pin was in the lock, the old keys no longer worked. I then set out with a mototool and file on one of the keys. Actually, a file is really all you need as brass keys are pretty soft. And, I made the old key work with the new pin arrangement. I then did this to all the keys. Pretty simple.
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http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-100173492/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId053&langId=-1&keyword=rekey&storeId051

Some things are best DIY. Locksmith work and brain surgery are not on the list. If you want it done right take the locks to a locksmith in the long run it will be cheaper and a hell of a lot less trouble.
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NotMe wrote:

Agreed on the less-trouble aspect.
But it IS cheaper (most of the time) to DIY. Plus, it's sorta fun AND a learning experience.
For example, if all you want to do is protect against a lost key, simply disassembling the lock and exchanging two pins costs nothing.
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