Late Sunday afternoon sat chilling in the garden and the phone rang. It was Toby Skailes from Castaways Wine Bar on the waterfront at Mylor Harbour near Falmouth. He explained that the key for the wine cellar lock had broken and could we attend as his customers were without wine.
We dropped everything and chased off to Mylor and arrived in 40 minutes. After assessing the problem we found the lock had seized so it was decided to drill the lock to gain access.
When there is a fault and you have the correct key which fails to open the lock, there is generally no point trying to pick the lock as this just replicates the action of the correct key, so the only other option it to drill and then pick the lock. Under normal circumstances we would drill 1 hole to a maximum of 6mm diameter. By doing this we cause damage but the overall aim is to minimise the damage and keep it under the handles plate and then repair the damage afterwards if large enough to be a potential security risk.
Our first problem we encountered was that we were unable to remove the handle spindle as it had rusted into the lock and this was the start of the problems.
The next issue was that we could not free the bolt and retract it with a small (normal size 6mm) hole, so we had no choice but to enlarge the work area. We then had to drill another 2 holes because the lock was so jammed up a single hole would not give the scope to actually free the internal parts as we needed to do. Obviously because we do not wish to give too much out to non-locksmiths reading this, let us just say that it was a trial but eventually the score was definitely
Owl Locksmiths and Security 1 – Chubb Mortice Sash Lock 0.
Mr Skailes was relieved as were his customers that they could eventually partake in a nice glass of refreshing wine and we were rewarded with a very nice coffee.
Although we do get a lot of seized and faulty mortice locks, it must be pointed out that this is a rare case and they are not normally this difficult or stubborn to open.