How To Pick A Tubular Lock With A Ballpoint Pen

How To Pick A Tubular Lock With A Ballpoint Pen


The process of unlocking a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen is not widely known. By applying some basic techniques, however, anyone can open this type of lock quickly and easily. With some practice and patience, even an amateur can pick a tubular lock using only a ballpoint pen or other similar tools.

When attempting to pick a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen, it is first important to understand how the pin-tumbler system inside the lock functions. Each pin in the system consists of two parts: the driver pin and the key pin. To successfully open the lock, both pins must be aligned with their corresponding shear line position.

One useful tip for successfully picking a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen is to first identify which direction each set of pins should be rotated in order to align them with their appropriate shear lines. Going too fast or applying too much force can risk damaging either the pen or damaging the entire locking mechanism.

Pro Tip: Remember that it takes time and practice to master this technique successfully. So, if you’re having trouble getting through your first attempt or so then it’s alright – just keep practicing.

Unlocking a tubular lock is like solving a Rubik’s cube, except you only have one color and a ballpoint pen.

Understanding Tubular Locks

To understand tubular locks and pick them with a ballpoint pen, you need to know the vital parts of a tubular lock and how it works. This knowledge will help you pick them easily with items at your disposal, such as a ballpoint pen. Let’s further explore these two sub-sections that will aid you in picking a tubular lock.

Parts of a Tubular Lock

To comprehend tubular locks, it is essential to understand each component that comprises the complete locking system. The different aspects create a functional and robust locking mechanism, making it challenging to pick or tamper with.

The following table showcases the various distinct sections of a tubular lock along with their actual data:

ShellExterior casing
Lock BodyInner housing containing the pins and springs
PinsMetallic cylindrical rods that prevent unauthorized access
SpringsSmall metal components that support the pins
KeyUnique set of teeth that align with pins and enables lock action

Apart from these components, some tubular locks may also feature additional mechanisms like check pins or anti-pick pins for enhanced security.

To make sure your tubular lock works efficiently over time, it’s imperative to keep it free of debris, regularly lubricate the internal components and avoid exposure to extreme temperatures. By following these measures, your lock will continue functioning optimally and safeguarding your valuables.

Get ready for a crash course in lock anatomy – and no, we’re not talking about a skeleton key.

How a Tubular Lock Works

Tubular Locks – The Inner Workings Unveiled

The mechanism behind Tubular Locks operates differently from the conventional locks. A unique design characteristic is located on its core that allows it to be opened by using a specialized device with the correct number of pins.

Below is a table describing the detailed working of Tubular Locks –

Key PinsDriver PinsPin SpringShear Line

Unlike other locks, Tubular Locks open because of two things: setting pin mechanisms and controlling gaps created by those pins. The cylindrical shape also adds to its security levels, ensuring lock picking requires specialized devices.

For enhanced security measures, it is best practice to use a combination of different types of locks; for example, a mortise or deadbolt lock along with a tubular deadbolt lock combo. Also, regular maintenance like ensuring cleanliness and proper lubrication increases the locks’ lifespan.

Why bother picking a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen when you can just smash it with a hammer?

How to Pick a Tubular Lock with a Ballpoint Pen

To pick a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen, you need to follow a few straightforward steps. Start by preparing the ballpoint pen. Then, insert the pen into the lock and turn it to unlock it. Let’s explore each of these sub-sections in detail to pick a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen easily and effectively.

Preparing the Ballpoint Pen

To prepare the ballpoint pen for picking a tubular lock, specific steps are required. These steps entail more than merely taking out the ink cartridge and leaving the outer shell. It involves applying modifications to the pen’s structure to make it work as a picking tool.

  1. Step 1: Remove Ink Cartridge – Start by removing the ink cartridge from the pen. This step is necessary because the ink cartridge makes it impossible to pick a lock by obstructing its space.
  2. Step 2: Cut Pen Shell – Once you’ve removed the ink cartridge, cut off both sides of the outer shell of the pen. The objective is to have an open-ended tube that you will use to pick your lock.
  3. Step 3: Flatten Tube Sides – With both sides of your newly-minted tube cut open, flatten them out equally. This dulls them so that they can slide into your tubular lock with minimal friction smoothly.

It’s crucial to note that not all pens are suitable for this task and choosing one requires careful attention. Be sure to select a pen made with hardened steel or strong metal material like brass or stainless steel. These materials will hold up better against wear and tear during the process.

For optimal results, ensure that your improvised instrument is smooth all-around without any jagged edges as they may hinder how efficiently it picks your tubular lock.

Looks like my high school hobby of picking locks with ballpoint pens is finally paying off.

Inserting the Ballpoint Pen into the Lock

The process of entering a ballpoint pen into a tubular lock is an essential step to unlocking it. Here’s how to properly perform this crucial process:

  1. First, find a ballpoint pen that has a removable cap and take off the cap.
  2. Next, remove the ink cartridge from the pen. This should leave you with just the plastic exterior of the pen.
  3. Hold onto the end of the empty pen while using your other hand to manipulate the medium-sized plastic piece at the end of it. This piece should snap off after applying enough pressure.
  4. Insert this piece (the tail end) carefully into the tubular lock. Slide it in and push it as deep as possible.

It’s important to note that each lock system has different requirements and may require unique approaches beyond what we’ve shared above. If you’re struggling with this process, don’t be afraid to seek additional advice or guidance from an expert in locks and security systems.

While there are plenty of tutorials available online for picking locks with various instruments, it’s essential for individuals always to use proper legal methods to avoid legal repercussions. Many people have used similar techniques to pick locks without access keys or tools. As such, alternative methods like this have gained prominence over time. Who knew a Bic could be mightier than a key?

Turning the Ballpoint Pen to Unlock the Lock

Using a Ballpoint Pen as a Turning Tool for Tubular Locks

Unlocking a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen is an alternative method that proves to be effective and efficient. The process requires precision and skill to successfully turn the lock, but with this article’s guidance, you will learn how to do it like a pro.

Here are the three steps to follow when using a ballpoint pen as a turning tool for tubular locks:

  1. Insert the pen into the lock’s keyhole.
  2. Apply pressure by pushing down slightly on the pen.
  3. Turn the pen slowly in both directions until you hear or feel the lock click open.

It is vital to exercise caution when performing this technique. Take your time to avoid damaging both the lock and your chosen turning tool.

If attempting this technique fails, ensure that other attempts do not cause further damage before resorting to calling in professional locksmiths.

Pro Tip: Keep spare ballpoint pens within reach since they may break while attempting to unlock tubular locks.

Unlocking a tubular lock with a pen may seem impossible, but with these tips and tricks, you’ll feel like a regular MacGyver.

Tips and Tricks for Picking Tubular Locks with a Ballpoint Pen

Tubular locks can be picked with a ballpoint pen using some simple tricks. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Disassemble the pen: Remove the ink cartridge and any excess plastic from the pen so that you have only the metal tube left.
  2. Insert the pen into the lock: Insert the metal tube of the ballpoint pen into the lock, ensuring it sits above all of the pins inside.
  3. Apply pressure: Apply slight pressure on the metal tube as you rotate it clockwise or counterclockwise. You should feel a slight give in the lock as you apply pressure.
  4. Turn and unlock: Keep applying gentle force while spinning and turning until you feel each pin loosen, and then turn until all pins clear completely from their chambers.

It’s crucial to remember that picking locks without authorization or permission is illegal. It’s also wise to consider purchasing a stronger locking mechanism for your doors since tubular locks are relatively easy targets for intruders.

Remember: if you ever get locked out, skip the locksmith and grab a ballpoint pen instead.

Lock picking has a long, colorful history, with tales of burglars and rogue spies using their skills to gain access to secure areas. But what if we told you that you could pick a tubular lock using just a ballpoint pen? Yes, you heard it right. With a little bit of skill and patience, you can easily open a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen. Though it may sound too good to be true, this technique has been tried and tested by many lock-picking enthusiasts. So, let’s dive deep and see how you can become a master of tubular lock picking with the humble ballpoint pen.

I. Introduction

A. Explanation of tubular locks and their uses

Tubular locks are commonly found on bike locks and lockers. These locks are notoriously difficult to pick without their key. They are unique in design, consisting of a circular pin tumbler lock with a key that has a round cross-section. The key is shaped like a cylindrical tube and is inserted into the lock, rotating the pins to unlock it. Tubular locks offer many advantages such as durability and resistance to picking tools and drills. They come in many different sizes, shapes, and variations, making them an ideal choice for various applications such as securing luggage, toolboxes, mailboxes, and cabinets. Despite the high security, picking a tubular lock is possible with the right tools and techniques. One such technique involves using a ballpoint pen to pick the lock, which is discussed in detail in this article. [1][2]

B. Brief overview of picking tubular locks with a ballpoint pen

P a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen can be an easy and cost-effective solution if you lose or break your key. By following the proper steps, you can learn how to open a tubular lock in just a few seconds. Here’s a brief overview of the process:

– Cut the end of the ballpoint pen and remove the ink tube.
– Make four vertical notches at the back of the pen.
– Insert the pen inside the lock and shake until it opens.

It’s important to use a ballpoint pen with an exterior that matches the size of the lock’s opening. The pen must also be flexible enough to move inside the lock without getting stuck. If you encounter any problems while trying to open the lock, try lengthening the notches or cleaning any dirt or rust inside the lock. If all else fails, consider using alternative methods or contacting a locksmith for assistance. [3][4]

II. Materials Needed

A. Explanation of ballpoint pen and its requirements

A ballpoint pen is a commonly used writing instrument, but it can also be used to pick tubular locks under specific conditions. In order to pick a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen, there are certain requirements for the pen. Here are some things you need to consider:

– Diameter: The exterior of the ballpoint pen should have the same diameter or be slightly smaller than the opening of the lock
– Flexibility: The exterior of the pen should be flexible enough to fit all the pins and open the lock, but strong enough to withstand the force that will be exerted
– Material: The pen should be made of a strong and durable material, such as plastic
– Scissors: Industrial scissors or standard scissors can be used to cut the end of the pen and create vertical notches at the back

By meeting these requirements, you can easily turn a ballpoint pen into a makeshift tubular lock pick and open a tubular lock without the need for a key or a locksmith. [5][6]

B. Types of scissors and their usage

When it comes to picking a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen, having the right tools is crucial. This includes a pair of scissors, which can be used to cut the tip of the pen and create notches for better flexibility. There are different types of scissors that can be used for this purpose, and each has its own unique features and benefits.
1. Industrial scissors – These scissors are equipped with larger blades that can reach up to seven inches. They are commonly used for cutting thick fabrics and upholstery, making them ideal for those with arthritis or hand problems.

2. Standard scissors – These are more commonly found in households and are used for cutting papers, cardboard, and cards. Their plastic handles make them easy to grip and handle.

When selecting a pair of scissors for this task, it’s important to choose ones that are sharp enough to cut through the exterior of the ballpoint pen. With the right tools and techniques, picking a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen can be done quickly and efficiently. [7][8]

III. Steps to Pick a Tubular Lock with a Ballpoint Pen

A. Step 1: Cutting the tip of the ballpoint pen and removing ink tube

To pick a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen, the first step is to cut the tip of the pen and remove the ink tube. This is done with a pair of scissors, and if you’re using a recyclable pen, simply take off the cap and pull out the ink tube. The exterior of the ballpoint pen is what you’ll be using to open the lock, so make sure it has the same diameter as the lock’s opening or is slightly smaller. The exterior should also be strong enough to withstand the force you’ll be exerting but must also be flexible enough to fit all the pins and open the lock. If you don’t have a plastic ballpoint pen, a recyclable one will also work. Remember to hold the pen tightly and shake the lock continuously and forcefully until it opens. If the lock won’t budge, you’ll need to call a locksmith. [9][10]

B. Step 2: Making four vertical notches at the back of the pen

Step2 in picking a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen is making four vertical notches at the back of the pen. This is important because it allows the pen tip to be flexible enough to fit inside the lock and open it easily. Here are some tips to keep in mind while making these notches:

– Use a pair of scissors to make the notches along the sides of the pen.
– Make sure the notches are vertical and evenly spaced out.
– Be careful not to cut too deep or too close to the tip of the pen, as this may affect its ability to open the lock.
– Test the flexibility of the pen tip by bending it slightly and making sure it can move easily.

By following these steps, you can effectively make a homemade tubular lock bypass tool and pick a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen. However, if the lock cannot be opened with this method, it’s important to seek alternative methods or call a locksmith for assistance. [11][12]

C. Step 3: Inserting the pen inside the lock and shaking until it opens

To pick a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen, the next step is to insert the pen inside the lock and shake until it opens. However, it’s not as simple as just inserting the pen and wiggling it around. Here are some tips to make this step easier:

– First, make sure to insert the pen as far as possible. This will give you the best chance of hitting all the pins and unlocking the lock.
– If the pen won’t slide in, try using some pressure to force it in. You can also try lengthening the notches you made in the pen or cleaning any dirt or rust inside the lock.
– Once the pen is inserted, shake the lock from side to side. You may need to do this vigorously and repeatedly before the lock finally opens.
– Remember to keep a firm grip on the pen while you shake the lock. If the pen slips out, you’ll have to start over.

By following these steps and being patient, you can successfully pick a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen. [13][14]

IV. Failed Attempts and Alternatives

A. Situations where lock cannot be opened with a ballpoint pen

Although picking tubular locks with a ballpoint pen seems like a simple and easy process, there may be situations where it is not possible to open the lock using this method. Here are some scenarios where using a ballpoint pen to pick a tubular lock may not work:

– The lock is a high-end and complex security system, specifically designed to prevent lock picking.
– The lock is rusted or damaged, making it difficult to insert the pen and shake to open.
– The lock has been tampered with previously and the internal pins have been damaged or removed.
– The diameter of the lock opening is too large or too small for the size of the ballpoint pen used.

If the lock cannot be opened with a ballpoint pen, it is essential to look for alternative methods, such as using a lock pick or calling a professional locksmith. Attempting to force open the lock with tools or excessive force can result in damaging the lock or causing harm to oneself. [15][16]

B. Explanation of using alternative methods

While a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen can be an effective method, there may be situations where this technique does not work. In such cases, it is worth considering alternative methods for opening the lock. One such method is using a tubular lock pick. These picks are specifically designed to manipulate the pins inside the lock and can make the process easier and quicker. It is important to choose a pick that has the correct number of needles for the lock being picked. Additionally, drilling out the lock can be an option, but this should only be done as a last resort as it can damage the lock and surrounding area. In cases where the lock is homemade, using a DIY tubular lock pick made from a ballpoint pen may work, but it may also be worth investing in a more specialized tool. Finally, calling a professional locksmith can also be a viable option. [17][18]

C. Step-by-step guide for opening a homemade tubular lock

To a homemade tubular lock, you’ll need a homemade tubular lock pick. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to create one:

1. Cut a piece of the metal bar to approximately 10 centimeters long.

2. Use a wire cutter to cut one end of the metal bar diagonally to create a sharp edge.

3. Use a screwdriver to make a small indentation on the sharp end of the metal bar.

4. Insert the metal bar into a pencil or pen cap and secure it in place.

5. Grind down the other end of the metal bar to create an L-shaped hook.

6. Use a file to flatten the L-shaped hook until it’s sharp enough to fit into the lock’s pins.

Once you have your homemade tubular lock pick, it’s time to open the lock.

1. Insert the pick into the lock and apply light tension to the lock’s outer ring to hold the pins in place.

2. Rotate the pick clockwise and count the clicks as each pin aligns with the shear line.

3. Once all pins are aligned, rotate the pick counterclockwise to turn the lock’s outer ring and open the lock.

Remember, this technique may not work on more advanced locks and should only be used on homemade tubular locks. [19][20]


The methodology of picking tubular locks using a ballpoint pen can be executed with precision and ease. Understanding the inner workings of the lock, applying appropriate pressure while rotating the pen in a particular direction can gain entry. Remember not to force the pen too much during manipulation as it will damage the lock.

It is important to note that this skill cannot be learnt overnight, it requires practice and patience. However, with enough proficiency, one can easily defeat any tubular lock that blocks their way.

One crucial aspect to keep in mind while attempting this method is avoiding any illegal activities as it comes under serious legal ramifications. Thus, try to limit yourself in ethical and lawful practices while picking tubular locks with a ballpoint pen.

Pro Tip: Always attempt such procedures within ethical and lawful parameters. Avoid using this method for any unlawful activities or purposes that may result in severe consequences.

Frequently Asked Questions

1) What is a tubular lock?

A tubular lock is a type of lock primarily used on vending machines, gaming machines, and security locks. They are characterized by a cylinder-shaped keyhole with several small pins arranged in a circular pattern.

2) Can you pick a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen?

Yes, it is possible to pick a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen. However, it requires special skills and knowledge, and it is not legal to pick a lock that you do not own without explicit permission from the owner.

3) Why would someone want to pick a tubular lock?

Some people may want to pick a tubular lock as a hobby, to test their locksmith skills, or in case of an emergency when they are locked out of their own property. However, it is important to remember that picking locks that you don’t own is illegal without the owner’s permission.

4) How does picking a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen work?

To pick a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen, you must first remove the ink refill from the pen and straighten it out. Then, you insert the pen into the lock and apply pressure to the pins by turning the pen. By manipulating the pins in the right order, you can open the lock.

5) Is it difficult to pick a tubular lock with a ballpoint pen?

Yes, it is considered a challenging skill that requires a lot of practice and patience. It also requires knowledge of the inner workings of tubular locks, which can vary between different brands and models.

6) Are there any risks involved in picking a tubular lock?

Yes, there are risks involved in picking any lock, including tubular locks. Picking a lock without the owner’s permission is illegal, and if caught, you may face legal consequences. Additionally, if you do not have the proper skills and knowledge, you may damage the lock, which can be costly to repair or replace.

Leave a Comment