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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Posts
    11
    Country: Canada

    Default Pillard combo lock

    Hello to All, Looking for some advice on a Pillard combo lock please

    Hi Everyone,

    First let me say it is a pleasure to be able converse with you all, and have access to such a wealth of knowledge.
    It's a wonderful resource, and I greatly appreciate everyone's time and any assistance you may be so kind as to offer.

    I'm in Canada, and have recently come into possession of two antique safes via my deceased father. One is in a shed, in quite rough shape, and I have to learn a lot more about before I can ascertain if it's salvageable or not.

    The other is relatively clean, (although bears many coats of repaint, etc), but I cannot find a single marking on the outside (including back and bottom) to indicate the manufacturer of the safe itself.
    The Lock however, upon a gentle cleaning, reveals some fine lettering in the brass. It curves around the flat of the dial knob, as follows:
    PILLARD S., May 9 1871, No 19

    I've done some (very) rudimentary research over recent weeks, and managed to track that Oliver Pillard was a maker of locks and combination locks for a number of safe manufacturers around this time. I've even managed to track down some of his patents: (Pgs 169-173, specifically)
    (Please refer to rules regarding the posting of links:
    http://www.antique-locks.com/showthr...ique-Locks-com)

    I gather that this is a type 19 lock, and from the patent drawings, I get the gist of how the mechanism works.

    HOWEVER:

    I do have the correct combination (from my father, before he passed), but I'm having trouble getting it open. I have tried it now and again over the last few weeks, when i have a few moments, but I can't seem to get it open - again.

    Yes, Again. LOL

    I was initially experimenting weeks ago with the combination numbers he gave me, as I was unsure of the Exact process (x turns L, y turns R, z turns L - and then, turn slowly R - or spin? - but Should the lever drop? Must I jiggle and turn, - or not? How many full rotations to each number?, etc) - when I got it to open. Once.

    Unfortunately, I was running thru variations at the time, HAD to leave for an appointment, and closed it up again. Overconfidence that I would NOW be able to open it again without much trouble has shot me in the proverbial foot, I'm afraid. :)

    I've since tried to RE-open it a few hundred times - to no avail. And can't seem to remember or recreate the variation sequence that works.

    If there is anyone out there who's familiar with this type of lock, and the exact order / process to open it , I would greatly appreciate any help. We're getting down to some time-sensitive things that need to be retrieved for his estate and business, and I don't want to have to damage the lock or safe.

    I NEED to open it soon, but I Want to then clean it up, clean it out, service the mechanism, and discover what I can about this safe and the other old one. The process so far has really piqued my interest.

    Thank you in advance for any help.

    Regards
    Last edited by Huw Eastwood; 18-04-17 at 11:48 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    1,099
    Country: Wales

    Default

    Welcome odinfix, adding some clear photos of the safe and of the dial will help members establish exactly which you have.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Posts
    11
    Country: Canada

    Default Pics of lock

    Thanks for the reply. Here's the dial, where I got the lock details:
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails WP_20170418_20_37_37_Pro.jpg   WP_20170418_20_36_38_Pro.jpg  

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Posts
    11
    Country: Canada

    Default Pics of Safe Details

    Here is the bolt handle.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails WP_20170418_20_35_27_Pro.jpg  

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Posts
    11
    Country: Canada

    Default Re: Previous pic - Sorry

    Sorry, that is a decorative top corner detail. The bolt handle pic won't upload. I'll have to lower rez on my phone cam and retake some detail pics of the safe. Meantime, anyone out there fmailiar with / have hands-on experience with these Locks?

    Thanks

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Hartford CT
    Posts
    130
    Country: United States

    Default Pillard's 19 dialing sequence.

    Quote Originally Posted by odinfix View Post
    Sorry, that is a decorative top corner detail. The bolt handle pic won't upload. I'll have to lower rez on my phone cam and retake some detail pics of the safe. Meantime, anyone out there fmailiar with / have hands-on experience with these Locks?

    Thanks
    R4 times to 1st#
    L3 times to 2nd#
    R2 times to 3rd#
    L to stop.

    DH

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Posts
    11
    Country: Canada

    Unhappy RE: Pillards No 19 Dialing Sequence

    Thanks for the info David.
    I've tried that sequence a couple times this morning, but no dice so far.

    My father had written it down:
    5xL - 1st #
    2xR - 2nd#
    1xL - 3rd#

    Which obviously wasn't working. I know when I DID get it to open the One time, weeks ago, I was experimenting with # of turns BOTH ways (LRL and RLR) - so it very much COULD have been RLR (as you said) that worked for me that once.

    I'm trying, as You advised:
    4xR to 1st # (Passing "0" 4x, and stopping on 1st#)
    3xL to 2nd# (Passing 1st# 3x, and stopping on 2nd#)
    2xR to 3rd# (Passing 2nd# 2x, and stopping on 3rd#)
    Slowly turning Dial back to L (Listening for click & feeling for dial stop)

    I've also tried / incorporated:
    - The above exact sequence reversed (LRLR)
    - Doing both of the above sequences while jiggling the door and/or bolt handle while giving the final (drop) dial turn, and also tried shimming the door with folded paper to put slight inward pressure to create a neutral hang, should anything be leaning outward against it from the inside.
    - Pre-rotate dial in direction opposite of 1st sequence turn, a minimum of 4 times before starting sequence

    No luck so far.

    Very frustrating, as I KNOW the numbers work - otherwise it wouldn't have opened once.
    I feel like there must be SOMEthing very simple I'm overlooking.

    Any ideas what I could be doing wrong, or something I've misread? Does anyone out there have a Pillards No 19 to try / confirm the turn sequence on, etc?

    Thank you in advance for any assistance.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Eastern United States
    Posts
    63
    Country: United States

    Default Close....

    You may a dialing wrong by the looks...

    Dial like this:
    Left 4 times to your first number.
    Right two times past your second number, stoping the third time up.
    Left one time past your third number stoping the second time up.
    Right slowly until the dial comes to a stop, around 95.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Posts
    11
    Country: Canada

    Default Pillards No 19 Combo sequence

    Thanks Yankee.

    I've just tried your sequence as well ( both L-R-L-R and R-L-R-L), but still no joy.

    I had previously tried every variation I could think of, had read about, etc (4x3x2x - turn for drop, passing 0 as first ref point, passing the first , then second, third, #'s as their own discrete reference points, both directions, etc), using every variation that I could think of - but still no joy. I'm turning super slow, medium speed, you name it. I make sure the door is hanging neutral, I jiggle the bolt handle,....I've even gotten down to listen with a stethoscope on the door, listening for noises - all to no avail.

    I can't for the life of me figure out WHICH variation / sequence I used when I opened it the One time. (And HOW many times I've kicked myself since!!! )

    I was hoping someone out there might ideally have one of these locks, and be willing to test / confirm the EXACT sequence for me, (using their own combo & lock, obviously), or have some first hand knowledge thereof.

    The lock MAY have something stuck mechanically ( although it seems unlikely that it would have somehow jammed or stuck in the last few weeks, after oh...a hundred years lol..but ..Murphy is strong against me, it seems ) and if I could KNOW the exact sequence for SURE, and HAVE the numbers..I'll be able to test repeatedly to open it...or know for sure it's just beating my head against a very old door lol.

    As it is, I'm just scratching my head and more than a bit frustrated. LoL

    Anyone out there have one of these (No 19 Pillards) to test?

    Thanks again to everyone who's responded so far. Much appreciated.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Hartford CT
    Posts
    130
    Country: United States

    Default Pillard's 19 dialing sequence.

    The normal dialing sequence is as I posted before. The lock drops in and opens to the left. With that said, and working backwards a 3 wheel lock such as yours dials accordingly; R,L,R,L.

    I'm trying, as You advised:
    4xR to 1st # (Passing "0" 4x, and stopping on 1st#)
    3xL to 2nd# (Passing 1st# 3x, and stopping on 2nd#)
    2xR to 3rd# (Passing 2nd# 2x, and stopping on 3rd#)
    Slowly turning Dial back to L (Listening for click & feeling for dial stop)

    Your above sequence (in other words) works out to be this;
    R5 times to 1st#
    L4 times to 2nd#
    R3 times to 3rd#
    L to stop.
    Which is incorrect.

    Forget about the zero it has nothing to do with the lock operation unless one of your combination numbers is zero. Forget about passing any numbers. More correctly think of just going to your numbers. The first time you go to your number it will not be a complete revolution of the dial. Understand?

    Have you seen patent 114706?

    DH

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