Impressioning is the art of making a working key for a lock without having to dismantle any part of it.
In my opinion, it is a “must have” skill to any working locksmith, and also a great fun for the hobbyist.
I was first introduced to this method by Barry Wels from Toool Holland. It was in his hotel room at 2 am when he made a working key to a Corbin within 3 minutes or so. I then got a nice kit from UKBK and started practicing by myself. My first key took almost an hour, so I decided to practice at least 3 locks a day and the results came – I was finally able to impression a key in a few minutes.
In order to use this method, all you need is a blank key and a good hand file.
Here is an example of how it works:
This set was bought from ukbk and it is very good one:
After some practicing I moved on to more high-security locks
Kaba 12 pins lock
A Tubular key
I then moved to vehicle locks. Car locks are a different game, as you will need to get 8 different wafer but only 4 at each side. This means that you can only use the key in one direction. Most of the car locks will have 8 wafers with only 4 heights, the exception were Fiat lock with 9 wafers and a Hyundai lock with 5 heights
This is a Mazda key
After the key opens the lock, you will need to cut a new one on a cutting machine, cutting both sides on each side of the key to make it work in both direction
This is a good impression aid I got from Hong-Kong lock picking site
This is a plug I made for marking the pins positions
And finally, a short video with a different approach to impressioning
Fantastic to watch mate, and a lot of ideas and information there !! Very well done on a great site !
May 17, 2011 at 6:12 pm
Great job! On your whole site!
I have done a bit of impressioning lever- and cylinder-locks, but I am now looking at car-locks. Could you please give us the address for your Hong kong supplier? I have already ordered a fair amount of car-tools from keymam, apollo and lockpick-me.
May 21, 2011 at 11:34 am
Hello there Ed from Norway and thank you for your comments.
I got the car roller from HKLOCK Which is the best lock tools distributor in HK
Here is a direct link to the tool
I find lever locks impressioning to be quite difficult as the key tends to brake.
May 21, 2011 at 1:44 pm
Thank you, for the information!
I have looked on their website previously, but missed this one c;) Will maybe send you an email later on, with some other questions and info.
May 25, 2011 at 10:24 am
You’re welcome! and speaking of which. I’ve just meet 2 of your locksmiths association members in the ELF convention and next year it will be in Norway so maybe I could see you there
May 27, 2011 at 11:18 pm
Yes, I am planning to go to Lillehammer! This year I was away on vacation.
I was looking for your email address, but maybe you can see mine? If you send me a line, I will send you some pictures of my recent car-opening tools and impressioning aid.
May 28, 2011 at 7:36 pm
Hello Ed, just emailed you
my e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org
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November 21, 2017 at 11:44 am
where did you find this aid i need one of these and cant find it anywhere
June 7, 2019 at 5:31 pm