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Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    41
    Country: United States

    Default Pipe key for older safe??

    I have a key very similar to one shown on the Lock Collectors Europe Key collection webpage:

    http://www.lockcollectors.eu/members/keys/_index.htm

    It is described as a pipe key for older safe. What do they mean by pipe key?

    Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    1,199
    Country: Wales

    Default

    gman, if you look again at the photos in your link the captions are above the photos, so it's actually the intricately engraved key below that's described as the pipe key, the one like yours is the caption above it.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Pipe keys (in UK) are those where the stem terminates at the bit end with a female hole or pipe,as opposed to a solid pin like your one has.
    Pipe keys are more commonly called 'barrel' keys in USA.

    Your key is very interesting, the cruciform section to the pin and the large bits almost forming a tunnel, also makes a change to see something with proper patina that hasn't been cleaned up! Very nice.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    41
    Country: United States

    Default

    Thanx How, for the clarification. Any idea what my key might have been used for?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Edinburgh
    Posts
    200
    Country: UK

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by gmanphotog View Post
    Thanx How, for the clarification. Any idea what my key might have been used for?
    my key might have been used for a strongbox chest with latching lock. Such as an 'armada chest', i.e. strong German coffer/Flemish kiste.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    41
    Country: United States

    Default

    Wow! Very cool. So is this essentially a key for a warded lock mechanism, or is this some other type of mechanism.

    Thank you for your response.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Edinburgh
    Posts
    200
    Country: UK

    Default warded lock key

    It is a bit key for a warded lock. And it is all there and complete it is not a skeleton key.

    And before anyone thinks disparagingly of wards, they are still useful. For example, wards in the keyway of Yale's pin tumbler lock locate the key more precisely, and stop it slopping up and down, as the original feather key could. They can also hamper picking of pin tumbler locks (if the [bullet] wards are constricting enough) and other locks with movable detainers.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    41
    Country: United States

    Default

    Enlightening!

    Thank you once again ChubbBrama

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    1,199
    Country: Wales

    Default

    What baffles me is the overall general arrangement of it- it has an odd asymmetrical cut on one end of the bit (which the Lock Collectors Europe example doesn't have), but apart from that both examples seem more akin to a door key than that of a safe or chest.
    Both are pin and not pipe, and the overall length and proportion of the middle stem to the cruciformed end are more like a door key than for a safe or chest.

    Also, the big question for me- why on earth has it got a collar ? It's almost as if it doesn't know what it's supposed to fit !
    Last edited by Huw Eastwood; 16-08-17 at 06:18 PM. Reason: Hopefully now makes more sense

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Posts
    31
    Country: Australia

    Default

    What a work of art. It's good to see that your key hasn't been messed with or polished :-)

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