I can’t count the times that I’ve found myself needing a lock pick and not having one. Today, I carry a lock pick set on my keyring but that wasn’t always the case. My go-to improvised lock pick has been the largest paper clips I could find in the nearest desk drawer. hopefully, a set of pliers was also nearby but I’ve made lock picks by using improvised tools for bending too.
As I mentioned before, I spent many years working in the field of facilities management. I was to guy who was on-site when construction and renovation projects were being completed. I spent several years working in the trades including locksmithing and It was common knowledge that I was the guy who could get people into places when keys were misplaced.
Many times, I was already on-site for another project and would be asked to open a filing cabinet or desk drawer. Depending on the day’s projects, I sometimes traveled without my lock tools. When that was the case, I was always willing to make an attempt with a couple of paperclip lock picks.
The fact is that paperclips work quite well as lock picks for the easy to pick disk tumbler locks. These are the most common locks to find on office furniture. I’ve tried paperclip lock picks on higher quality locks with much less success, although I have managed to open a few deadbolts or key in knob locks.
Paperclips will never replace a real set of lock picks but if you enjoy lock picking for the challenge, I challenge you to spend some time working with a set of improvised paperclip lock picks.