4. Tools

Tool design is a direct result of the function it will be required to perform. and falls into one of three major categories: The hook tool, used when the adjacent bottom pin lengths are significantly different (i.e., 72618). This tool is advantageous for this type of situation, as it allows you to get behind the larger pins in order to properly reach the smaller ones and manipulate them open.


Other individual styles of picks are usually just a modification of one of these groups.

The other tool used in the act of picking is the tension wrench. or more properly. the turning tool. This tool is as or more important than the pick itself, but is often overlooked. Too much pressure has defeated more would-be pickers than the wrong type of pick. The main thing to remember is to use only the lightest amount of pressure necessary to turn the lock. Any more, and you bind the pins so tightly that you make them work against you instead of for you.

Turning tools come in basically 6 groups: light, medium, and heavy duty material and narrow, medium, and wide widths to suit any type of lockpicking situation. Before you use your tension tool, try raking with the pick a few times. While inserting the pick all the way in the keyway with the tip in contact with the pins, remove the pick with a quick motion keeping an upward pressure on the pins. Repeat this operation again, in slowly and out with a slight snap. Now you are ready to use the tension tool. There are many tension tools to choose from. To start with, I suggest you choose a tool of medium weight and length.