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Key lock tumbler repair

Discussion in '"Stock" Alpine' started by jumpinjan, Dec 16, 2020.

  1. jumpinjan

    jumpinjan Donation Time

    Do you guys know anything about key lock repair? If I have an original ignition key how could I reprogram the tumbler to fit the original key? Also, have you noticed the tumblers are code stamped, as an example of some door lock tumblers that I have:
    I also have some original Rootes keys and some of them are stamped too.
    Here's one:

    It seems obvious these 5-digits represent a specific 5-pin cylinder lock combo. I think I can reprogram the pins and give it a go, but I haven't figured out how they come apart yet....LoL!
    Maybe they cannot be taken apart?
  2. mikephillips

    mikephillips Donation Time

    I know its possible to do that sort of thing, I've run across references to people doing that to recode cylinders to match the rest or to a specific key, but I've never done it myself. as for the letter number combinations, they should match between the ignition and doors, and between the center console and trunk lock. So the two keys would match those two sets of tumblers.
    I'd say try a locksmith to see what can be done or perhaps search online for ignition switch rekeying.

    One thing to consider too, how worn is the key?? Most are fairly "used" by now. You might want to see if you can get a new key for the number, Triple C auto has obtained original masters for many and cuts them to the as new profile. May have one to fit your code. If you're going to redo the cylinders, might be a good thing to be as new by the time they're done.
    Shannon Boal likes this.
  3. puff4

    puff4 Gold Level Sponsor

    The Rootes Archive had a cache of original keys as well... might want to contact them and see if they have your number. They had two for my car (I bought both).
  4. Tim R

    Tim R Silver Level Sponsor

  5. GlennB

    GlennB Silver Level Sponsor

    If you have any spare unmatched barrels and keys you may be lucky to have one combination takes the same key shape and that "nearly" pulls all the tumblers flush with the barrel with the key inserted. I had a seized door barrel with a broken internal spring - therefore non-repairable (at least for me). In the example in the photo I was able to get a near match which I made to work by grinding the offending tumbler down - sticking out is bad. Obviously I have weakened the theoretical combinations but the door now locks great. You can twist the barrel in the handle as you go to see how well the grinding is proceeding. I only needed to grind one of the tumblers.

    Attached Files:

    Shannon Boal likes this.
  6. DanR

    DanR Diamond Level Sponsor

    Mark DAvis (VolvoGuys) has some info on the keys and tumblers too! Suggest you make contact with him,
  7. Toyanvil

    Toyanvil Gold Level Sponsor

    I just remove the tumbles and move them around until the original ignition key fits, it helps a lot if you have extra tumblers. I did this all the time when I worked for BMW if I had to install a new door luck and make it match the car. Just keep an eye on the small springs when removing the tumblers.
  8. alpine_64

    alpine_64 Donation Time

    Jim E wrote an article maybe 15 years ago that was on the site about sizing the pins to allow you to adjust a repro tumbler to fit your original keys
    Tim R likes this.
  9. jumpinjan

    jumpinjan Donation Time

    I got some of the pins removed and apparently they can be pushed from the bottom or pulled right out the top. They can be stubborn.

    (more - After using a micrometer to gauge each of the five cuts in a sample of 7 original Rootes keys, they used only 3 sizes (0.175" / 0.200" / 0.235"). So from that, I can assume they used only "3" standard pin sizes. So, looking at the maximum possible combinations you could say..."with 3 choose 5" or 3 to the 5th power =243. But, there are some rules applied like:
    1- No more than three of the same in a sequential group (mostly paired of one)
    2- Most combinations use all three; Of course the minimum is two
    and there might be other rules..)

    Last edited: Dec 17, 2020

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