- Lockout Tools for Lockout Specialists
Lockout Tools for Lockout Specialists
SPECIALTY EQUIPMENT from HPC, ProLok and more
Tools designed to open locked vehicles have evolved over the years in surprising ways. When I first became a locksmith in 1983 there were many fewer offerings than you can find today! The Slim Jim was supreme in those days because a good practitioner could open most anything with it. While it was invented primarily to lift vertical linkages, knowing how horizontal rods worked in the cars that came along in the mid-eighties made it easy to use the slim jim to slide them sideways. Using a slim jim is not always as straight forward as you might think. As with all other openers, you need to be innovative. Most people think to "slim jim a car" involves jamming the tool down into the car door cavity until something ‘pops'. All too often what ‘pops' is a broken lock linkage. Brutal techniques have no place in Locksmithing, whether we're using car door tools or lockpicking tools.
Starting in the ‘80's all car manufacturers went out of their way to protect vulnerable lock linkages and the poor slim jim lost a good deal of its usefulness. Sliding linkages became more common on vehicles, and many of those were protected with various materials to hide them from the slim jim and other similar openers. Even autos that maintained the sill mounted "lift up" buttons started protecting the linkages protected with things like nylon and plastic tubing, leaving only a tiny vulnerable spot deep in the door. Car lockout kits addressed this by adding new inventive unlock tools, some true innovations and others not so great. In our store we offer only those car tool kits that meet high standards and give the locksmith effective tools and instructions.
SOME ADVICE ON SELECTING TOOLS
Complete lockout kits can be quite expensive, especially for those with tools that are capable of servicing a wide variety of vehicles.
Inspection lights designed to illuminate the dark interiors of car doors are not only useful -- they are mandatory in this day and age where so many electronics are involved. It is imperative that the locksmith be able to guide his car opening tool to the 'sweet spot' within the door, especially if he is working on an unfamiliar vehicle. ProLok and HPC both make excellent probe lights, and one better is the illuminated car opening scope, or Lockout Scope.
We have differentiated between tools designed for car opening and those designed to do more general work on automobiles (such as removal of door panels and the tearing down of steering columns.) You'll find a separate section for auto servicing tools here.
Check our Car Opening Section for more information and to purchase tools and kits.