This 3D Printed Robot Can Actually Pick Locks

Lockpicking is more an art than a science: 10% is probably knowledge and 90% is feeling. Practice will teach you just how much torque to apply to the cylinder, how it feels when you push a pin far enough, or how it feels when the pin comes back. Surely a robot wouldn’t be able to repeat such a delicate process, would it?

Well, not according to [Lance] about in [Sparks and Code]who thought that Building a robot to pick up the lock will be an interesting challenge. It started with a frame to install a lock and a servo motor to apply torque. The load cell measures the amount of force applied. This helps keep the lock under a constant amount of tension as each pin is unlocked sequentially. Although slow, this method seems to work when moving the pick manually.

The hard part was automating the picking movement. [Lance] He built a clever two-motor-driven system that would keep the pick perfectly straight while moving it horizontally and vertically. This was tricky enough to work properly, but after adding some extra clamps to remove the wobble in the screw, the robot was able to start picking. A second load cell inside the pickup arm will detect the amount of force on each pin and work its way through the lock, pin by pin.

At least, that was the idea: as it turned out, just pulling the pliers through all the pins at once was enough to open the lock. A much simpler design could have accomplished that, but it doesn’t matter: designing a robot for all these complex movements was a great learning experience anyway. It’s cool too [Lance] A good platform to start working on a more advanced robot that can choose high-quality locks in which pull technology does not work.

We have never come across lock picking bots before; This is probably the closest equivalent to it 3D Printed Snap Rifle. If you are interested in all aspects of locks and how to apply them, check out Hacking the physical security of chatting with Deviant Ollam.

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