Talk:Lock bumping

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A source for the comment about lock-bumping originating in the 1950's would be good. I have found traces and sources saying it goes back over 75 years. (Including the American Locksmiths Association website) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 12:30, November 4, 2006 (UTC)

I was certainly know in the 1950's in the UK, and I think it may have started independently in several places, one of which was the UK. I too am hunting for some good reference on this. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 03:26, November 21, 2006 (UTC)

We have to be careful about too many external links and wikipedia admin are deleting lots of them at the moment. That is why new wiki's on lock picking are spring up. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 03:30, November 21, 2006 (UTC)

What do you think about avoiding terms like "upwards" etc, so this description works both in the USA and the EU? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 03:33, November 21, 2006 (UTC)

I don't understand; what is the issue with "upwards"? --Doradus 17:37, 24 November 2006 (UTC)

The issue with "upwards" is that many European cylinders are mounted with the key being inserted into the keyway with the cuts of the key facing down unlike the US where most cylinders are mounted with the keyway facing up. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Dmlcml (talkcontribs) 12:14, January 26, 2007 (UTC)

In case anyone's curious why I did it, I removed the note stating that any lock based on a pin-and-spring design is bumpable because it really is impossible to do this to Medeco locks on account of their sidebar design. The sidebar does not allow you to put any tension on the plug until after the pins are twisted into the correct position, so bumping this kind of lock will just cause the pins to jump up and down uselessly. (Yes, as a matter of fact I am a locksmith.) :) Bkocik 20:13, 2 March 2007 (UTC)

Hi I am the admin for patterson lock which was removed. I added it simply because ours is the only site which discusses 100% Bump proof locks and not "bump resistance" "anti-bump" etc etc. Yes the site does sell locks but the information on the site I feel has been deemed by our legal team as being unbiased and fair —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:13, 28 May 2008 (UTC)

Most recent external link[edit]

I'd like to get some opinions on the external link that was just added to the article. I originally removed a link to the Bump-J site because it was added for the sole purpose of purchasing bump keys. This is commercial spam linking and not allowed. The owner of that website has left a note on my talk page explaining that he saw my removal edit summary (that it was spam) and has instead added the current deep link to instructions, a video, and specs on bump keys. The problem I have is that the video is trivial (just a demo of a bump key in action with no deep analysis), the content of this video is covered better by the other externally linked video. The explanation is somewhat technical, but nothing new (how many times can you say how a bump key works). I didn't look at the specs, but I'm not sure if a series of valley depths for different manufacturers is all that important (and the link could be deepened to just that pdf). The biggest problem I have though, is that the page currently linked still has "buy bump keys from my site" links and information...making this link feel just as spammy as the previous one, just more obfuscated by potentially useful info... Thoughts? Should we keep this link or does it still feel too much like spam to others, too? ju66l3r 06:16, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

Third opinion: Adds no new information. Remove it. Could just add every single pharmacy spam site to Medicine if things like this are kept. (Exaggerated, of course, but similar) --User:Krator (t c) 18:54, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Bump-J link has once again been added in the external links section - there are a couple in there that appear to not add any Encyclopedic content. Wikipedia is not a links database. thoughts anyone? Whitehatnetizen 23:47, 26 April 2007 (UTC)

I've once again removed the Bump-J link. I strongly believe that it doesn't add anything to the article. in addition the site is primarily commercial in nature - see points 1,3 and 4 on the page on external links: Whitehatnetizen 02:45, 30 April 2007 (UTC)

I am the owner of the bump-j website. I have gathered from the comments above, and after reviewing the material in the external links that exist in this article, and points 1,2 and 4 of the external links guide, I agree that I should not link to my site. I do however feel that the PDF document is beneficial, and is not commercial in any way. I am going to link only to the PDF document. I feel that my document should be available to anyone researching this topic, and should be available on Wiki. Please take some time and actually read the document. It is not just a list of manufacturer specifications. It gives a step by step technique for creating these keys and templates to help those that are not mechanically inclined. It took me weeks of trial and error to come up with all of the information I needed, and a set procedure for this.
If anyone does decide to take this link down again, I would appreciate an explanation, other then the items listed above, as I have address all of the solid issues that have been mentioned with my link, and at this point the only issue I have not addressed is the value of the material contained in the PDF. This issue is solely opinion. One person may find it useless, but another may find that it was exactly what they were looking for. In the spirit of Wiki, content should not be removed only because one person does not find it useful.
Thank you, -Jmac875

hey there again! The main reason why I removed the link was because it had been removed by other editors and re-added without any discussion. I've come accross commercial sites spamming links before and was afraid that you were another. I'm grateful that you seem to be genuinely trying to improve, however I guess I'm still concerned that it's hosted on a site that you're affiliated with. this is generally against wikipedia external link policy. Not sure what other people think? Whitehatnetizen 23:19, 10 May 2007 (UTC)

security hazzard?[edit]

I'm a little disturbed at how easy it would be for anyone of criminal mind to obtain precise information about how to manufacture a bump key and/or how a bump key works from wikipedia.

Sure, the info is out there on the net, but why make it all the easier? WP is almost the first hit on any google search. I think Wikipedia has a responsibility to restrict potentially harmful information. 00:00, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

Is there a precedent for restricting harmful information on Wikipedia? --Doradus 05:26, 3 April 2007 (UTC)
My god are you KIDDING ME?? Look at the "Lock Picking" entry if you want to be frightened, right here on WP. There are many, many sites out there giving explicit instructions on how to break into your house/workplace/bank/secured area which should concern you far more than here. Did you pay for dinner tonight with a credit/debit card? Can you trust the "server" which you gave your credit/debit card number to? You shouldn't! First remove the log from your eye! Middlenamefrank 05:12, 6 May 2007 (UTC)
Was that meant to be an answer to my question? I don't understand. --Doradus 17:30, 1 September 2007 (UTC)
One might argue that keeping this information out of the hands of people who would read wikipedia leaves the general public less aware of the actual dangers of lock bumping, and less aware of effective countermeasures. Thus, the general public is more likely to be victimized without widespread dissemination of this info. Of course, if the general public is kept ignorant, then lock manufacturers never have to make better locks, so I suppose that's one group that could be harmed by this article. --Thomas B 00:08, 17 September 2007 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by User6985 (talkcontribs)
Also keep in mind, those with criminal intents are fairly likely to already know someone who can bump locks, and even if they don't, it doesn't seem likely that they'd look on WP for information on how to commit a crime. There's no reason not to, but still, I wouldn't do it.
Now, weigh that against an average homeowner who looks up 'bump key' on WP and gets this article. I would be fairly dubious as to the reliability of such a claim, and I might want to try it myself. (I was, and spent hours looking for instructions. It never occured to me to look on WP, leading me to my first conclusion.) The easier it is to have as many people as possible know this, the better. We need cheap, unbumpable locks, and we wont get that if people don't say they want it, and they won't want it if they don't know about it. Hence, I say keep the link to the instructions, and keep everthing else, too. (talk) 22:35, 21 November 2007 (UTC)

History - bump key[edit]

I've come across evidence that bump keys have existed since at least as early as 1926, I checked the patent number and it checks out. Here is a scan [1] Mithotyn 10:58, 9 June 2007 (UTC)

The basic idea of bump keys and pick guns is described in the MIT Lockpicking Guide, referenced in the main lockpicking entry here, and dated 1991. That's after the Danish lockpickers of the 1970s, but before the big European publicity. It's section 9.12, Vibration Lockpicking. In essence, it's the Mechanics section of this wiki page. (talk) 15:23, 28 November 2014 (UTC)

Bad Cite[edit]

Marc Tobias of has demonstrated that most, if not all, Medeco locks can be compromised in seconds with a strip of metal and a thin screw driver.[13] - links to "" which produces a 404 error. If the cite is deleted, should the unsourced comment be deleted as well? --Thomas B 00:03, 17 September 2007 (UTC)

How big of a security risk is it?[edit]

Can someone expand on the article and give some perspective of how bad the issue really is? eg, compared to lock picking, etc. Is it really that kids can do it? bump keys can be obtained easily over the internet? Thanks. Sn50 04:24, 18 September 2007 (UTC)sn50

This issue is exactly what it is. How does one warn another loudly enough that thier life, property, and valuables are in grave jeopardy? The standard security 4,5,6 and 7 pin, Pin Tumbler Lock, has been made useless for protection of valuables, or for stopping entry into homes, buildings, etc. You ask how easy is it to obtain the keys? Search the internet, or better yet, just read the information available and then go to your local hardware store and buy a few blanks and make them yourself. Simply put, anyone can obtain or make a bump key. You ask to compare this to lock picking, it will be harder to make picks and learn the use of a pick because of the materials needed to make a pick and tension wrench, and then the actual experience in how the proceedure works. Bump keys are easy to make, requires no real skill to use them, and can be learned quickly by just watching the You Tube videos.

Within this world there are two major categories of thieves, those who break in and steal everything they can in one haul, and those who steal over time. Notice the difference of my choice of words. Those who break in and haul, and the less noticable stolen over time. In the one scenario, the thief is not worried about taking the time to pick or bump a lock. His/her method leaves evidence of a break-in, and a noticable dissapearance of valuables within the protected home or building. Those who steal over time, bleed their victims by removing one diamond earring from the wife's jewelry box, causing her to believe she simply misplaced the earring and that she will find it later. No police report is filed, no crime is committed on record. But the thief continually returns and removes more and more. This is the type of thief that uses bump keys, picks, pick guns, credit cards on locks where no deadbolts are used, or who copies down the stamped code on your keys and then goes to another town to have your key made by code. I am a professional locksmith, and have seen every thing I have explained, occur. If you can not bring yourself to believe the printed warning you read now, then you will eventually become a victim of key bumping either directly or indirectly. I suggest to all that you obtain High Security locks meeting a minimum of the UL437 Standard, for your home, office, or business. Then this threat can be stymied, and hopefully put to rest. Make your protected property secure. Alarms are useless, they only detect and report a break-in if not tampered with. They do not stop a break-in. If you do nothing else, at least increase your insurance protection on your valuables and posessions. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:35, 14 October 2007 (UTC)

Where's the ad for your website where you sell UL437 Standard locks? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:44, 29 March 2012 (UTC)

Locking the door?[edit]

Stupid question :Can a bump key also lock the door? (talk) 21:24, 14 April 2009 (UTC)

Yes, you can both lock and unlock doors with bumping. Though, on most locks bumping one direction or the other will be easier and thus preferential. Subverted (talkcontribs) 09:37, 16 April 2009 (UTC)

Another image[edit]

Here's another image if one is needed. Bumpkey2.jpg —Preceding unsigned comment added by Headlessplatter (talkcontribs) 14:30, 7 July 2009 (UTC)

You don't really need keys like that, I can do this method with two paperclips bent with my hands and teeth into a proper shape (talk) 17:10, 30 November 2009 (UTC)

80's Video GMes / RPG's[edit]

the history section of this article makes it sound like the dude who brought it 'to the attention' of the world was the first to really bring it up. Knocking a lock was a method of accessing locked doors or chests in all AD&D role playing games on Commodore 64's and later systems. Players could use various picking techniques, including a knock ring that in principal was designed to resonate vibration from tapping the lock greater than other knocking tools. I'm just kind of shocked at how POV and narrow scope this article is, this isn't a new thing, and media sensationalism in the 2000's doesn't negate it's inclusion in nearly every RPG ever. (talk) 09:49, 3 September 2011 (UTC)

Bad physics[edit]

The comparison to Newton's cradle is wrong and should be removed. Newton's cradle only works if the balls are of equal mass, including the moving ball that hits the row of balls and if the collision is (nearly) perfectly elastic. Also, the emphasis lies on the first ball "hitting" the row of balls, i.e. it not being pushed by some external force which would cause the entire row to move (instead of just the last ball). This is definitely not the case for the bumper key. Maybe some links to youtube videos would be helpful, which clearly show that the key pins do not stay in place when using bumper devices such as bumper keys or vibrating pick guns. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:00, 18 February 2012 (UTC)