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Lesson 12 Key making Tools.
In this lesson you will learn about the different types of key making tools.  After completing it you should be able to determine what type of tools you will need for you business.

There are mainly 3 types of tools used to make keys.  Duplicators, code machines, and files.

First lets look at files.  This is the old school way to make keys.  You will probable never find your self in the position of making a key with a file except during the test for this course. 

The file of choice for a locksmith is a "Pippin file"  You will want to her a medium and fine file.  (Be forewarned these files are not cheap.  They will run from $25 to $45) You will also use this file to impression keys.  You will also want to get a good set of small files.  Generally a 6 to 7 in needle file sit will cover most of your needs.

The next key making tool is a key duplicator.  They are also just called key machines.  The best general purpose one around is the Foley Bel-saw model 200.  You can get these new for around $310 or used for around $100.  The will duplicate cylinder and flat keys.  It is very simplistic but gets the job done.

If you decide to get a more heavy duty machine you will probable want to go with an Ilco of HPC.  These are the top brands.  If you are going to duplicate dimple, or tubular keys you will need a special machine for these.  Make sure you do the cost analysis before you buy one of the one of these machines.  Basically you need to see how much you have to spend and compare that to how long it will take you to recoup your money. 

The third type of key machine is a code cutter.  There are code cutters for all types of keys.  Basically a code cutter allows you to cut a key from a blank to factory depths and spacing.  If you have ever seen a Master padlock with numbers on it that is code.  You can take that code and put it into a code program and get the proper cuts for the key.  Then all you have to do is use your code machine to make the key.

There are different types of code machine.  Motorized and punches.  The prices vary. But one thing is consistent.  They will cost quite a bit.  If you are going to do allot of automotive work you will probably want to go with a punch .  IN particular an A-1 Pak-a- punch.

The best thing you can do to get versed in the different types of key machine is get the Foley Bel-Saw locksmith catalog.  Click here to get the catalog.

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If you are comfortable whit the material above then it is time to move on to the next lesson. Click here to go to the next lesson.