Making A Car Key From A Ratcheting Wrench

Car keys these days are remarkably complex beasts. Covered with buttons and loaded with security transceivers, they often cost hundreds of dollars to replace if you’re lucky enough to lose them. However, in the past, switches were just switches – a piece of metal in a mechanical pattern to move some lever and open a door. Thus, you can remake a wrench into a key for an old car If this is something you really want to do.

The concept is simple. Take a 12mm wrench, and shape the flat section into a profile that matches that of a wrench for an old car without any electronic safety features. The first step is to cut the shaft, before grinding it down to match the thickness and width of the original key.

The key profile is then drawn onto the surface, and a Dremel with a cutting disc is used to create the desired shape. Finally, the caliper is used to mark the channels to allow the key to slide into the keyway, before also being machined with the rotary tool.

Filling and polishing clean the end result to create a shiny, attractive ratchet wrench. Even better, it does a great job of unlocking the car, too.

Similar manufacturing techniques can be used for Duplicate a key from just an image (Something I did in 2019 to deceive my friend). Instead of that, 3D printing can be great for reproducing high-security keys. Video after the break.

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