History of Locksmithing

Locksmithing is one of the oldest and most interesting professions in the world that many also consider being genuine art. It refers to the design, manufacturing, installation, and repair of keys, locks, other security point systems, as well as a number of other similar hardware mechanisms that ensure the security of buildings, rooms, vehicles, and objects. It requires lots of preparation and training and its impressively long and rich history turns it into one of the most intriguing trades on the planet. If you want to learn more about the history of locksmithing, its origins, the necessary training and accreditation, any noteworthy inventions, fresh technologies, and what the future holds for it, read on.

Origins Of Locksmithing

The origins of locksmithing date back to Babylon and Ancient Egypt around four millennia ago, when the tradesmen were busy manufacturing devices that contain tin tumblers made of wood needed to stop the door bars from moving freely. The pins could only be engaged and moved with the help of bulky keys that were also made of wood and they resembled today's toothbrushes. These keys had to be placed into the locks and then shoved upwards in order to cause the pins inside to move and for the doors to be unlocked.

One of the most ancient keys known in history is the one that was found in the Assyrian Empire's ruin, at Khorsabad, and historians claim it was built in 704 BC.

Once advanced levels of metallurgy were adopted during the 18th century in Europe, locksmiths were given the tools and the frame to manufacture sturdier keys and locks. A great number of popular locksmiths brought their amazing contribution to the trade and the keys and locks they designed remained unchanged until after the fall of the Roman Empire. Once even more designs were introduced to the industry and the mass production of locks turned into reality, locksmithing started to change even more.

Affordable locks produced at an industrial level caused the closing of the market were locksmiths used to rule, making them reconsider their line of work. Some of them started to repair the industrial locks, replace broken lock parts, or fine tune deteriorated lock gear. Others began to create copies of keys for customers looking for additional keys to use at home or at the workplace. There were also locksmiths who began to seek employment with security companies. They were responsible for designing and manufacturing safes used by banks and governmental institutions.

Locksmith Training and Professional Accreditation

There are several general certifications that individuals who wish to become locksmiths should obtain, ranging from Certified Registered Locksmiths, Certified Professional Locksmith, or Certified Master Locksmith. In order to become a certified professional locksmith, it is necessary to first be a certified registered locksmith.  A person who owns a CRL is knowledgeable when it comes to all aspects concerning the trade, while they might not be considered specialists, they are regarded as locksmiths who are about to obtain additional specializations professionally.

People looking to embrace a locksmithing career and those who want to improve their reputation should consider trying to obtain their certification. There is a written examination that not all inexperienced locksmiths can pass unless they go through the necessary training. In order to get your certification, you will need to pass ten mandatory categories out of a total of thirty-six and two elective categories. Categories refer to one section of the written exam and locksmiths who wish to become CRLs need to pass these categories: lockset servicing, codes and code gear, the duplication of keys, the identification of blank keys, the servicing of cylinders, the functions of locksets, the professional techniques for picking locks, basic master keying, locks for cabinets, mailboxes, and furniture.

To pass the test, locksmiths must obtain at least 70 percent on all questions. The other half of the est will other two categories chosen by the locksmith taking the test, each of the categories consisting of 25 up to 40 questions. Again, locksmiths taking the exam must get a score of at least 70% in order to pass the exam for each of these other two chosen categories.

The certification is offered by the ALOA and people interested in becoming registered locksmiths will need to get in touch with a local school that has received ALOA approval to register and prepare for the test. It is also possible to do an individual study with the help of the Resource Guide offered by ALOA.

Notable Locksmithing Inventions

  • The double-acting tumbler lock was invented in 1778 by Robert Barron.

  • The hydraulic press along with the Bramah lock were invented by Joseph Bramah. His lock received its patent in 1784 and it was generally thought to be impossible to be unpickable for over six and a half decades when A.C. Hobbs managed to pick it open at the end of a trial that lasted for 50 hours.

  • The first detector lock was invented in 1818 by Jeremiah Chubb and the lock was his response to a competition organized by the Government that wanted someone to manufacture a lock that would be impossible to pick. The lock was not picked until 1851. The Chubb detector lock is considered the safest and most advanced tumbler lock models. When the incorrect key is used, the lock will automatically jam in the locked position until the right key or a regulator key is used.

The Newest Technologiessmart locks

Smart lock systems have developed at an impressive pace in recent years, and fingerprint locks such as the Tapplock and Tapplock Lite are amazing smart locks that rely on advanced fingerprint technology to function. The locks do not require the use of combo codes or physical keys. They use sensors that allow you to enter a room within a few seconds. They can also be used as chargers for smartphones and they can grant access to other persons with the help of an app.

Wireless smart locks that are controlled via smartphones and Bluetooth part of the Noke technology are also fresh locksmith technologies worth mentioning here. The Noke app will help you give anyone access to your home or building and it can be used with a key or without one.

What The Future Holds

Locksmiths are great at constantly adapting to the increasingly sophisticated needs of the industry and this profession is one with a bright future in the years to come. People are never going to give up using locks, keys, monitoring systems, security devices, and other advanced access control solutions to keep their homes, vehicles, and businesses safe. We can expect to see more smart technologies that will allow us to use wireless and Bluetooth technologies for simpler access control into our homes and commercial spaces, safer locks and alarm systems, and more advanced surveillance solutions offered by better-trained technicians. 

What Customers Say About Us

Jannie W.
W. 29th street

Dave is great! He was punctual and professional. And after installing the new locks on all of our doors, he cleaned up after himself! The same cannot be said for the last service I hired… would definitely recommend and use again!

Adrian Stanton
S Kenton Ave

We live not too far from Chicago and I spend about a hour and a half to get to my office. Mornings are always in a hurry for me and a broken door would be the worst I could expect. However, this was exactly what happened. I had no time to lose and so I called 247 Ontime Locksmiths. The expert guy from Locksmiths could fix the problem and I could go to work.

Tim Lewis
E Van Buren St

My car door didn’t open at all. Just a phone call to 24/7 Local Locksmiths and in less than 15 minutes I could drive my car again! Good job!