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November 25, 2009

Master Key Explained

As a blog author and locksmith, as a business owner and statistician, I keenly watch the results using Google Analytics, of the search terms people use while attempting to gather knowledge that may help them to be more aware when purchasing products or services.

I am noticing a significant number of searches recently about master keying although, it may be due to a cardinal lack of understanding about the principle.

It seems that many searches recently are from people who assume that all deadbolts are master keyed. This is simply not true. It is a fallacy.

A deadbolt, or any other lock for that matter, must be purposely master keyed.

There are no pre-fabricated master keys for residential or commercial deadbolt locks.

In bygone years, manufacturers of some bit-key type mortise deadlocks, did produce some of their ranges with a purposely designed flaw allowing for a "skeleton" key to operate. This skeleton key was often referred to as a Master Key.

There are some manufacturers of coin machine locks or cam locks, that routinely produce their locks to be master keyed. The primary benefit in using master keyed coin or cam locks is for commercial situations like an office complex that uses on-site maintenance to minimize the quantity of keys a janitor or other service person can be required to carry.

November 22, 2009

Tri-Flow Superior Lubricant

Having worked in the locksmith trade over a quarter century, I have worked with many lubricants over the years. My favorite lubricant and the one I recommend to all my customers is Tri-Flow.

Many tasks I perform for customers often involve repairing locks due to the wrong product having been used, in attempt by an unknowing homeowner or handyman to DIY (do it yourself).

While the DIY industry is one of the biggest, often the advice given may not be correct or may be given by someone with no real experience.

The most common lubricant (and I use the term loosely, here) found in most hardware stores is WD-40.

WD stands for Water Displacement and 40 is the fourtieth formula that achieved it's purpose.
When you displace water, you effectively dry out the application (remove any lubrication).

WD-40 was designed to dry the points on wet motors. It is designed to "dry out" wet metals. It is a penetrating fluid that can temporarily lubricate metal parts, but will dry out (and gum up) as it is designed to do.

I strongly recommend that customers think twice before using WD40. I cannot tell you the number of times I have seen or see it used in locks. Whenever I ask a client, "did you use something to lubricate this lock?" and they answer with "WD40", my standard reaction is "Uh Huh!". This often has them asking what they should use and I always recommend Tri-Flow.


Opening Cars, Cars and More Cars

It really does seem that there are fewer and fewer companies (who advertise 24 hour/7 day services), not answering the phone as they advertise.

Pictured here is a Ford Contour, similar to one I opened last night.

I open a great many cars and houses for people unlucky enough to lock themselves out. There is a fairly resolute market for automotive locksmithing if that is where you like to focus your skills.

I am happy to unlock any door for a customer however I draw the line at making new original or duplicate keys for the more modern chip key type vehicles. Why? I am glad you asked.

I worked on cars and trucks for many of my first 20 years in the locksmithing trade. I definitely burnt myself out on cars. They do not provide any interest for me any longer. I decided, when I researched my current business, that I would focus on true locksmithing as opposed to automotive services. Was this a wise decision?

The obtrusive cost of the required tools and programming hardware, to enable a complete automotive service is unrealistically high and unaffordable. Unless customers are happy to spend more than the average monthly car payment, it can be a fruitless exercise.

I know many locksmiths who specialize in cars, that spend in excess of $25,000 annually just to keep their tools and equipment up to date. They are required to charge significantly expensive prices to their customers, to be able to continue offering auto services.

Not where I focus. I prefer to offer residential and commercial solutions that provide security with aesthetic appeal and form and function. Specializing like this, enables me to offer very competitive pricing.

I will still open cars for those in an emergency and I do not advertize 24 hour service, but if i answer the phone, I will come out and help you if you are nice.

November 20, 2009

We Are Back!

Vacation Over

I arrived home late last night after my combined business/vacation trip to Australia.

The opportunity to catch up with friends and family provided a much needed recharge.

I am delighted to have also visited some select manufacturers and distributors during my brief stay in multiple cities in Australia.

In future posts, I hope to provide some new product information and summaries of some of the companies I was lucky enough to visit.

To all my friends and family, thank you for your warm hospitality and kindness. My home is your home when you come my direction.

To all my loyal customers, thank you for your patience and continued support. I apologize for any inconvenience caused and assure you I'm back on the job!

Home Advisor (formerly Service Magic) Testimonials And Sites That Recommend Us

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Danny was very professional and friendly at the same time. He not only gave me the quote and fixed the exterior door and explained his work. He was prompt and upfront about the work and did the work. He came in time took care of it on the same day. (Sasheethn K St Louis MO) June 2018d out problems but assured not urgent. Please feel free to have Danny pass out my number for my total experience review 314-351-5553

Charlie M. (St Louis, MO) November 2015

Danny was pleasure to meet and was very knowledgable. He explained several lock replacement options but I decided none of them were a good fit for a storm door, however, I did replace a lock on my entry door with a type of lock I had never seen before. I would highly recommend this company.
Patricia J (Bridgeton, MO) March 2014
They were prompt and showed up when he said he would show up. He knew his stuff. I had ordered new handles and he was honest enough to say that we don't need them that he can fix the doors and he did. Made me lock and unlock my doors to his satisfaction so that I knew what to do. Am very, very pleased with the service and cost.
Joyce K (Glencoe, MO) May 2015

Showed up on time for appointment. Was very knowledgeable about the project and offered a solution beyond what I asked to be done.
Stephen G (Chesterfield, MO) May 2015

Daniel was right on time, assessed the problems I had with two doors, made the repairs, and explained what caused the problems to begin with .... He is a "door expert" and a true professional. I highly recommend him.

Vince V (St. Louis MO) May, 2015

Danny was fabulous! He went over my concerns and he provided me with more than a fair quote. He was there when he said he was going to be there. I would highly recommend Danny. Cheers!
Denise S (Imperial, MO) May 8, 2014

Hired Danny to re-key locks on "new" house purchase. He advised to replace with new deadbolts & door knobs on 3 entry doors instead which I agreed with. All doors have 1 matching key & the safety of excellent quality product & workmanship. He also added new strike plate to door frame to complete project.. I recommend as your 1st & only call to a Locksmith.

Denise F (St. Louis, MO) April 3, 2014

Danny was very helpful in solving a pretty complex problem involving many lock.
Scott C (Eureka, MO) March 27, 2014

Needed patio door track to run smoothly. Arrived early, fixed door and explained what he was doing during repair. Quick and easy. Door works great, my wife will now speak to me, and I've become a better dancer.

Mike W. (Arnold/Oakville MO) July 2013

The owner spent a longtime with me on the phone helping diagnosis the problem. He was on-time, friendly and helped resolve my issue. I will definitely use him again!

Chris C (Lake St Louis, MO) July 2013

I had a very pleasant experience with Master Key Systems. They came out, did the job (which took longer than expected) and they did not change the price they quoted me. Now, I am not certain that it was a great value for the money because I don't have a comparison, but they did what they said, when they said, for the price they said. Enough said!!!

Antonio B (Saint Louis, Missouri) March 2013

Professional.. Upfront about charges. Fixed the sticky door within 20 minutes. I will recommend Master Key for exterior door issues.
Muthu R (Ballwin, MO) July 2012

Danny was a master craftsman, knowledgable and professional. I will be calling on him again in the future as well as passing on his services to friends and family.

Marsha L (Saint Louis, MO) July 2012

Danny was excellent! I called him on a Monday to fix a sliding glass door. He happened to have the exact part we needed (and it was not an easy find - we had looked everywhere) and he came over Tuesday evening. He stayed until 8:00 until the job was done, and cleaned up afterwards. He was courteous, professional, and efficient! I could not be happier!

Rachel P Maryland Heights, MO (July 2012)

He did an excellent job. Got there on time and quickly solved the issue. Was very pleasant and explained the situation and how to keep the door from sticking in the future. Would definitely use Master Key LLC again!

Neil F. (Saint Louis, MO) April 2012

Danny was very friendly and knowledgeable, although his apprentice seemed to do most of the work, Danny kept an eye on him to make sure it was done right. He had very reasonable pricing for re-keying.
Greg D (St Louis, MO) October 2011

He was extrememly fabulous and helpful and did a wonderful job. He was very professional.
Shannon M. (Arnold, MO) October 2011

Growing up spending so much of my time in Italy, the uniqueness of the Nova Classico left quite an impression on me. To be able to have and enjoy them in my own home here in the states is a nostalgic indulgence I'm enjoying beyond words. Thank you Danny for coordinating this transaction.

Joseph M (Chicago, IL) September 2011

great job. hired on the spot and he did job right then at great price

Ron B (Arnold, MO) July 2011

I searched the internet and found your services. I received three phone calls within several days. A service call was scheduled. Two gentlemen arrived promptly, analyzed the problem and fixed it.
James & Florenc M Saint Louis, MO July 2011

The repairman was on time and did an excellent job of fixing a very stubborn door lock. He was persistent and cleaned up the work area afterwards. I would use this service again.

Brenda F (Saint Peters, MO) June 2011

Danny at Master Key Systems has succeeded in making the purchasing of our Meroni door locks, from Italy, an absolute breeze. Even though I live in Australia with a 16hr time difference and was ordering door knobs from Italy that weren't in stock, the whole process was faultless. Danny was prompt and efficient with all his emails and made sure we had covered every possible variable so that the product I received was exactly as required. I would have no hesitation in recommending Danny for your next purchase.
Patrick Carr (Canberra, Australia)

Your product really helped because I needed to secure a nurse's station adjacent to a waiting room and needed a pocket door. Unfortunately, no real options were available to lock a pocket door effectively that would keep me compliant with HIPAA and secure an area that stores medical supplies. This was vitally important as this particular waiting room was for "waiting detox patients". Thank you very much.
Randall R The Fritz Clinic (Birmingham, Al) March 2011

Danny was very polite and knew what the problem was and how to fix it. He also gave me some information about other issues that could arise with my door and locks. Will hire again if I ever need that type of work done.
Jason M Imperial, MO March 2011

I had an exterior basement door that dragged when opening and closing. The hinges were not fitting properly and the door frame had shifted, probably due to the age of the house.The screwswould not go far enough into the wall without hitting stone...even using a special drill bit. Dan worked a long time drilling and sanding to shore up the door as best as possible. I know it will never be perfect. He could have easily sold me a new door and the same issue would happen. He was honest, thorough, and did an excellent job without charging me a fortune. I'm satisfied with the door now. If you want an honest, experienced man, Then Dan is the man

Roger M Saint Louis, MO March 2011

I purchased the Cowdroy P697 Pocket door lock with key over the internet. I emailed questions before my purchase and was provided with the answers quickly by return email. The purchase was quick and easy and the lock was shipped immediatly. Installation is quick and easy. But you do need to convert millimeters to inches (use the internet) in the installation instructions. And the lock looks great and works great. I will do business with them again. THANK YOU

Ed D (February, 2011)

Who Are We?

Welcome to Locks210.com.
This site is to inform about historical and modern approaches to Keys and Physical Security products and services.
Locks210.com, established in 2006, offers residents and businesses of St Louis Locksmith premium quality products and services. As the Premier Bilock Extreme Security Dealer in The Mid-West,
Our conveniently located workshop and service vehicles are uniquely designed to offer trade qualified, bonded, insured tradespeople with knowledge and experience spanning multiple countries and product lines.

Shipping and Returns

All products are sent in manufacturers condition.
All products are subject to sales tax where applicable.
All products are dispatched within 10 business days of remittance.
All products are subject to manufacturers warranties.
All products returned within 30 days, will be 95% refunded less shipping.
Prices are subject to change without notice.
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