How to Open A Combo Lock With A Shim

How To Open A Combo Lock (With A Shim) Step-by-Step

Intro/Disclaimer

Before I teach you this technique, there are a few things you must know. This is absolutely illegal if you aren't a locksmith or if you are doing this to other peoples locks without their permission. DO NOT USE THIS TECHNIQUE TO STEAL STUFF FROM OTHER PEOPLE!!! It could potentially land you in jail if someone catches you. Use this only if you need to open locks that you have forgotten the combination to.

Another thing, the tools/materials that you are working with are very sharp, so you should probably wear gloves if you are worried about cutting yourself.

Again, I am not responsible for anything you do before/during/after this project. If you get hurt or caught stealing stuff from other people, it is YOUR FAULT.


The things you will need
The things you will need

Cutting the Can

Have you ever locked something up, then come back to open whatever you locked up and realized that you forgot the combination. There are a few things that you could do at this point. You could:

1) Buy a pair of bolt cutters ($8.00)

2) If you have a master lock, you can send them the lock, and they will send you the combo (Shipping fees)

3) Just forget about what you locked up (?????)

4) Buy a can of soda ($1.00)

The 4th one may seem totally irrelevant to opening the lock, but you can open a lock with a can. All that you need is some scissors, some gloves (so you don't get cut), a can, and a combo lock that is yours.

What you are about to make is called a shim, a flat piece of metal that can move the piece of metal that keeps the lock open. This shim is disposable, meaning you will probably only get one use before it is to wrinkled or bent to be able to use correctly.

At this point, take your scissors, and put a hole right below the tapered part of the can (If there isn't one, just put a hole as far up as you can).


Putting the hole in the can
Putting the hole in the can
This is what it should look like after you have removed the bottom and the top of the can.
This is what it should look like after you have removed the bottom and the top of the can.

When you have successfully put a hole in it, cut all the way around the can so that the top of the can comes completely off. You should then be able to cut a line straight down the can. Then you can cut the bottom of the can right off, so that you have the top and the bottom of the can removed, and a long sheet of aluminum left.

At this point, you can discard the top and the bottom of the can. You also may want to remove and sharp pieces of metal hanging out from the side of the can (Which you can see in the picture).

Now you need to cut the long strip of metal (down the width) into 1-1 1/2 strips, then take those and cut them into squares. (Exactness is nice, but it doesn't really matter)

What it should look like after cutting out the squares.
What it should look like after cutting out the squares.
Cutting one V out...
Cutting one V out...
... And then the other
... And then the other

Making the Shim

Take one of the squares, then cut a V out of the side so that it looks like the picture. Repeat with the other side as well. (You should leave a little flat area between the outside of the square and the V)

You should have a flat area in the middle of the two V's. Take your scissors and round that area out, so that it looks sort of like a tooth.

After you do this, you can fold the two outside edges up so that they touch the top of the square. Then fold the top part in half so that it forms two tabs that extend outwards.

Once you have completed this last step, you have finished making the shim!


Fold the top part in half so that you have something to hold the shim by. Your shim should look like this when you are finished.
Fold the top part in half so that you have something to hold the shim by. Your shim should look like this when you are finished.
This is what it should look like after rounding it out and folding the outside edges up.
This is what it should look like after rounding it out and folding the outside edges up.

Using the Shim

Take the shim and insert it into the lock on the outside part of it. This should not be to difficult, if it is, you may have the wrong side or the lock may have anti-shimming technology in it. If you have it inserted it all the way, then take the two ends of the shim and rotate it so that it is now on the inside of the lock. Now, pull the lock like you normally would, and it should come apart.

If you have put it in correctly, the tabs should face away from you.
If you have put it in correctly, the tabs should face away from you.
After you have rotated it, the tabs should face toward you
After you have rotated it, the tabs should face toward you
After pulling the lock, it should come apart so you can take it off.
After pulling the lock, it should come apart so you can take it off.

Final Notes

I have noticed that it is more difficult to open some master locks, however, it is very possible. Again, please use this only on your own locks. Thank you and have a nice day!

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