Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post parts wanted or for sale here

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troutjohn
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Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by troutjohn » Sat Jan 09, 2021 1:37 pm

I'm looking to buy a key or get info on what lock number or key number for the Corbin Lock on the tool box of my 1912. See attached picture. Any help would be greatly appreciated. John
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Corbin Tool Box Lock.jpg


Dropacent
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Re: Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by Dropacent » Sat Jan 09, 2021 2:15 pm

John, I just sold a battery box that uses that lock. I am not a locksmith, but have made my own keys for 40+ years now. I was inspired by a local locksmith where I grew up. Charles Hanson was the last surviving WWl veteran and always proudly marched in his original uniform. He was a Dutch immigrant and very proud of his service and adopted country. He also ran a locksmith shop for about forever. In his old age, he would make keys for any kind of strange lock. Cost was $1. Some took him 5 seconds to reach up and pluck a key down that would work, others he would spend more than a day on. Cost was $1. As you might expect , the local old car boys were frequent customers. I spent a lot of time there, and tried to absorb some of his knowledge, so I can speak with just a tiny bit of knowledge. Even cheap locks like you show used several and sometimes many patterns of keys. The chance of someone telling you what key it takes is slim to none. I can get you in the ballpark. Sadly, very few “locksmiths” still practice the art. Who is going to pay the rate for such an exercise? Unless you do this stuff everyday, really the only way to do it is to get the right blank, or one in the ballpark. Take the lock apart, usually involved relieving the rivets a bit, prying it apart ,trying to keep all the springs and levers from flying around. Then file the key blank to work smoothly. NEVER lock the lock until it’s perfectly smooth. May take a couple hours to do it right, sometimes more. Good eyes and small files are needed. I’ve spent a day on more than one lock , and like the challenge for some odd reason. ( someone tells you to smoke a blank, and keep filing away is total Bullcrappy) Also,picking a lock is another thing that only works well in the movies.
Another method, much easier , is to have the lock in your pocket when you visit antique shops. Especially a common one like Eagle or Corbin. When you see piles or rings of keys, ask permission to try them. If you just do it, they may think you’re are up to funny business and shoot you. Different world than when I grew up.
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Jonah D'Avella
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Re: Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by Jonah D'Avella » Sat Jan 09, 2021 3:23 pm

What do you mean by "picking a lock only works in the movies?" I am by no means an expert, but I have had an interest in locks ever since I was a little kid. I've built multiple small skeleton key locks and have used a CAD program to create multiple others. I can pick quite a few kind of locks and I'm still learning, but I have not seen that it is useless to try to pick a lock. I picked up the tool box for the running board of a t and made a key for it and it works just fine. Please correct me if I'm wrong. Thank you!
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Dropacent
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Re: Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by Dropacent » Sat Jan 09, 2021 3:48 pm

Your interest in locks is swell, Jonah. Perhaps my comments on lock picking were a bit strong, but I will stand by “ lock picking is not like on the movies”. Unless you have tons of lock construction knowledge , it doesn’t work like that. Go pick a modern pin tumbler , or double pin tumbler lock or a simple cabinet lock with 5 or 6 levers, then I’ll eat my hat, too. Yes, using a pick on a two lever lock is not too difficult, but that still doesn’t help you replicate a key. Unless you know what the levers look like , it’s a crapshoot. Shown below is a favorite, probably a 5 or 6 lever lock for an Edison Laboratory model phonograph. Notice the branding , even down to the key teeth? If you see keys like this that spell the letter E, grab them.


Dropacent
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Re: Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by Dropacent » Sat Jan 09, 2021 3:53 pm

Edison Key ...... the dolphin head key is for the laboratory models.
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Dropacent
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Re: Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by Dropacent » Sat Jan 09, 2021 3:57 pm

Hope you keep up the interest in locks, Jonah. I’ve been at it since your age, too.
CB95DF84-1C24-46B4-984D-4670E2CA21CE.jpeg


Jonah D'Avella
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Re: Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by Jonah D'Avella » Sat Jan 09, 2021 4:10 pm

Dropacent, do you mean like a filing cabinet?
F: first F: find
O: on O: oil
R: race R: revive
D: day D: drive
Jonahdavella@gmail.com


Jonah D'Avella
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Re: Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by Jonah D'Avella » Sat Jan 09, 2021 4:42 pm

I think that picking locks is still very helpfull.
Last edited by Jonah D'Avella on Sat Jan 09, 2021 9:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
F: first F: find
O: on O: oil
R: race R: revive
D: day D: drive
Jonahdavella@gmail.com


Dropacent
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Re: Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by Dropacent » Sat Jan 09, 2021 5:43 pm

Jonah, I was trying to help the original poster with my offered info. It should go to the forum from here. My point, to John was from my long experience. Note the part where I said I’m not a locksmith, and don’t fancy myself as one. I am smart enough to know what I don’t know about locks, which is tons. If you continue interest in locks and such, get every book you can and learn the lingo, what the parts are called and types of locks. These things will be very helpful to you.


Jonah D'Avella
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Re: Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by Jonah D'Avella » Sat Jan 09, 2021 9:18 pm

Thank you!
F: first F: find
O: on O: oil
R: race R: revive
D: day D: drive
Jonahdavella@gmail.com


Jonah D'Avella
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Re: Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by Jonah D'Avella » Sat Jan 09, 2021 10:03 pm

Mr John, do you know the general shape of the key? Is it basic or does it have odd cuts in it? Also are there rivets on the back?
F: first F: find
O: on O: oil
R: race R: revive
D: day D: drive
Jonahdavella@gmail.com


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troutjohn
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Re: Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by troutjohn » Sun Jan 10, 2021 4:49 pm

Mr. Dropacent, thank you for the reply and information. This is very helpful. I will start my search. The picture of the keys will help.
Jonah, Thank you for your reply. There are rivets on the back. I do not have a key but Mr. DRopacent showed a key in his picture above.


pre15dale
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Re: Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by pre15dale » Mon Jan 11, 2021 12:12 pm

I don't try to make keys but there is a locksmith about4 houses down on my street. I took the lock from the turtle deck for my 1909 Rambler to him. I think it's what dropacent referred to as 2 lever. Anyway he made two keys for it and only charged $5. That@'s the easy way

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Re: Wanted Key or info on Corbin Tool Box Lock

Post by Susanne » Mon Jan 11, 2021 5:41 pm

The blank for that Corbin, to make today, would involve taking a steel "billet", boring the hole for the internal pin, milling or filing the wafer to fit the hole, then doing as I said above to match the internal wards...

I did this - one time - for a toolbox key for my old harley, it was a horrendous PITA... but at least now I have a key that fits my toolbox. Only took about 3 days of work....

It CAN be done, even by the "home enthusiast" like thee and me, but be ready to fight the good fight to make it happen....

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