Locks I have, keys I don't

Games affected: all

It turns out that it was necessary to lock the doors on the bingo machines to prevent your average punter from helping themselves to the contents of the coin box.

When your friendly operator took the games off route and stacked them 10 deep in a warehouse 20 years ago, I'm sure he put the keys for each game in a envelope and stored them carefully away. It's a pity that just three months before you showed up, he needed the envelopes, so the keys were equally carefully moved to a coffee can that was later used as a spittoon.

Needless to say, you now have a machine with a locked front door, back door, and backglass rails. No keys. Hopefully you didn't pay for the game yet, as who knows what may or may not be inside it.

The operator, ever helpful, pulls out a screwdriver and a crowbar and offers to open that puppy right up, but you prudently resist, realizing that the weakest thing in the area of the coin door is the wood.

You really only have two options, assuming mad slashes with a hatchet is not acceptable to you:

  1. pick the lock(s)
  2. drill out the lock(s)

We'll leave lock picking as an exercise to the reader. The locks used on bingos are easily picked by someone who knows how. If you happen to have a locked liquor cabinet and a teenager, ask your kid...they know how. We'll focus on the solution that requires power tools.

Anatomy of a lock

lock parts
how a lock locks

Here we see the lock cylinder with pins and the faceplate. When a correct key is inserted, the pins are all lowered/raised to the correct height so the cylinder can turn. Those little metal pins are plenty strong...the entire lock will twist/tear out of the wood before those pins shear off.

front door | back door | backglass rails