How to Build Your Own Pin Tumbler Lock

What You'll Need
Lock making Kit: lock mechanism, pins, springs, key and cylinder
Small screwdriver

If you want to make your own pin tumbler lock, then you will first need to gather all of the assembled parts together. The pin tumbler lock functions by having a key turn a series of pins, which then operate a locking mechanism. The mechanism itself is very complicated, and would take a long time to master, but you can also purchase lock-building kits, which contain all you need to make your own pin tumbler, or Yale, lock, by installing the pins and the parts. In order to build your own pin tumbler lock, you need to have a few home improvement tools, and an idea of what you want the finished product to look like.

Step 1 - Lay Out Your Pieces

Before you begin making the lock, lay out all of the pieces in front of you. Check that you have all of the parts required to build the lock, and also lay out the pins alongside the key. The pins should then be pushed into the key, so that you can see which parts are forced upwards, and where each pin lies in relation to the other parts. Take a picture of the positions of the pins. You should also arrange all of the other parts so that you can see the internal lay out of the lock. If you need reading glasses, put them on now.

Step 2 - Make Your Cylinder

You will next need to drill the cylinder so that the pins will move within the shell. You will have received detailed instructions on how to do this with the lock making kit, so you will know exactly where to pierce the skin of the cylinder in order to fit the pins. Place your pins into position, and then put the shell around the cylinder. This part of the lock should now be complete.

Step 3 - Attach Your Springs

Fit your springs to the lock mechanism, and then  turn them around as you fit them into position with the rest of the parts. Your springs should depress the shell, so that it moves against the cylinder while you are turning it. Fit the springs to the outer casing of the cylinder, and then put your key into the lock, and turn. The lock mechanism should turn. If it does not, remove the shell from the springs, and try refitting.

Step 4 - Fit the Lock

Put all of your pieces into the outer lock, and then place this against the door that you want to lock. Try the locking mechanism in this position, and it should work correctly. Screw in the locking plate, so that you have the barrel emerging from the front of the plate. A pre-drilled hole in the door should allow the barrel to be flush with the front of the door, and then a fob should be fitted, so that the key can be installed into the lock.