Emergency locksmith

Locksmithing Terminologies to Get Started With

Locksmithing Terminologies to Get Started With

Locksmithing Terminologies to Get Started With

Locksmithing is nothing like you see in the movies or in video games. There are plenty of tools and terminologies involved, coupled with different techniques for different locks that make it difficult to traverse. This is an art that can be done by anyone with the proper training and practice and is an amazing skill to have when it comes to locksmith emergencies.


Whether it is installing locks, unlocking doors, unlocking a car where the keys were left inside, or other kinds of locksmith jobs, practice makes perfect. The thing is, where does one start when it comes to this craft?


At Locksmith Emergencies, it is suggested to take a glance at this guide of terminologies before anything else:




These are the most basic kinds of locks that are used for a variety of applications. They are operated through the use of keys to lock and unlock an internal mechanism to provide security for a key holder’s valuables or property.


Key Blade


This is the part of the key that sports the serrated edge and is inserted into a keyhole. The serrations on a key are what allows the mechanism inside to unlock and lock.


Key Bow


When holding on to a key, you are holding on to what is called the “bow,” which is the large part that is easily graspable, allowing the holder to turn the key. This does not insert into the lock, and often contains information printed on it—such as the manufacturer of the lock or a door code.


This code number can be written down and saved in the event of a key being lost, which will serve as the proof of ownership to make a new copy of the key.


Combination Locks


These are locks that you normally see in safe-cracker movies or even those you see in gym lockers and travel locks. This uses an assigned sequence of numbers that replace the use of a key. It can be entered through a number keypad or a dial that can be rotated in both clockwise and counterclockwise directions to unlock.




Tumblers are the small parts in the internals of a lock that requires alignment in order for the mechanism to open and close. Key locks have their tumblers aligned using the serrations on the key blade, while the combination locks have their tumblers aligned through a correct combination pattern.




The serrated edge that contains grooves and millings on the side part of a key is called the keyway. This is what needs to be compatible in order to turn the tumblers of a key lock.


Master Key


The master key is a key that unlocks a series of locks that are still operated by individual keys. The classic example of this is a TSA master key, wherein they can open any luggage if any contraband or illegal items are found on x-ray scanners.




Keyed-alike is wherein a group of locks can be opened by a single key.




Keyed-different is when different locks in a group of locks are operated by different sets of keys.




This is the process of replacing tumblers inside a lock to ones of different sizes, which means a new set of keys will be required. Rekeying is normally done when a set of keys are lost or have fallen into the wrong hands.


Lost Keys


When you lose a key, it is a lost key, meaning you will need spares to access the lock, then have to have locks rekeyed to avoid theft.




These are simple locksmithing terms that can help a novice locksmith get started with the craft. Remember that locksmithing is a craft that is honesty based and should not be used to conduct malicious activities. Pick responsibly!

Emergency locksmith in london

Locksmith Emergencies are the best emergency locksmiths in the UK. We can assist with all lock emergencies, whether it’s for unlocking car doors when keys are left inside, unlocking doors to your home, after burglary repair, key extraction, and more! Contact us today and have a professional locksmith help you out.


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