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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
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    2
    Country: United States

    Lightbulb Best Universal / Best Lock / Best Access History Help

    Hello all ---

    I've been fascinated with Best Interchangeable Core Padlocks since, well, as long as I can remember. I have been scouring the web trying to find as complete of a history on them as I can find. There are bits and pieces here and there, patents, the occasional picture, but not a concise history and historical product catalog, which I'd like to help compile.



    I'd like to get more information on the advancements over they last 100 years from the initial Best removable core padlock patent, the to the split of MBS family members, all the way up to the sale to dormakaba. I've gathered what I can find, but I'd love to talk to those that have more experience with them and perhaps can help fill in some gaps in product lines, timelines, old B series catalogs, etc.


    If this is you, or someone you know of, please get in touch either here or send an email to padlock at beergeek dot com. I'm compiling what I have found here: https://padlockcore.com.


    Many thanks,
    Jeff

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Tonawanda, NY, USA
    Posts
    891
    Country: United States

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Scott View Post
    Hello all ---

    I've been fascinated with Best Interchangeable Core Padlocks since, well, as long as I can remember. I have been scouring the web trying to find as complete of a history on them as I can find. There are bits and pieces here and there, patents, the occasional picture, but not a concise history and historical product catalog, which I'd like to help compile.

    If this is you, or someone you know of, please get in touch either here or send an email to padlock at beergeek dot com. I'm compiling what I have found here: https://padlockcore.com.
    Many thanks,
    Jeff
    I am taking the liberty of submitting this brief quote from pg. 21 The Core of The Matter (c) 2008 by the late A.J. Hoffman and Billy B. Edwards, Jr. (BBE). While not specifically addressing padlocks, it is a brief and concise history of the company and invention and may be of interest:

    The original interchangeable core was invented by Mr. Frank Ellison Best. The patent application dates from August 28, 1919. It was issued as 1,384,022 on July 4, 1921. This original core was not figure-8 shaped. If the operating key was backed out one pin space, it acted a a control key.

    Mr. Best was a prolific inventor with many parents to his credit. When he died in July of 1966, his son, Walter E. Best, became president and CEO of the company. Walt's son, Russell, took over the company in 1994. In January 1998 the company changed its name to Best Access Systems to reflect its concentration on electronics. On October 23, 2002 the company was sold to and became part of Stanley Security Solutions.


    Here is another excerpt from pg. 85 of Locks and Lockmakers of America (c) 1997 by the late Thomas F. Hennessey:

    Frank E. Best invented the Best removable core cylinder in 1921. This cylinder allowed the building owner to change the core only with a control key. A new core can then be inserted in this cylinder to a new key in case of a lost or stolen key or turnover of personnel. Best founded the Best Universal Lock Co. in 1925 in Seattle, Washington. This company moved to Indianapolis, Indiana is 1938. Best died in 1966 at the age of 83.

    Pete Schifferli

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Tonawanda, NY, USA
    Posts
    891
    Country: United States

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Scott View Post
    Hello all ---
    If this is you, or someone you know of, please get in touch either here or send an email to padlock at beergeek dot com.
    Many thanks,
    Jeff
    Here is a pdf with chronological history of the Best Lock Company from 1921-1994 taken from Pg. 12-13 of The Builders Hardware Industry (c)1996 edited by Walter H. McAninch. I note that like myself, Mr. Best had formerly been an Industrial Arts teacher!
    BestLockCompanyPg1-2.pdf

    Pete Schifferli

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Posts
    2
    Country: United States

    Default

    Pete -- many thanks -- these are some great citations. Much appreciated.

    Cheers,
    Jeff

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