A tin foil locksmith tool is a relatively simple locking device that has been in use for 15 years. It works by imprinting the pins in the lock in a certain position by wrapping them in a piece of heavy gauge aluminum. To open a lock, a locksmith inserts the foil into a lock on a tool that resembles a key blank. The cylinder will be turned when the tool is jiggled.
When applying a tin foil locksmith tool for unlocking a lock, the process begins by cleaning the locking mechanism. First, the source key must be removed. This must be done carefully, as wiggling can cause the negative image to deform, making it impossible for the locksmith to insert the key. Once the source key has been removed, the duplicate key will have to be filed down to align the components. The alignment process may involve using a micrometer, or by making minor movements after pressing the key.
After the foil impressioning tool has been applied to a door lock, it will leave a set of marks on the keyway, the tumblers, and the driver. If the tool does not work correctly, the marks will remain, as the foil fragment will jam the cylinder and damage it. The foil will also leave marks in the lock’s cylinder and on the tailpiece plate. Ultimately, when a reliable locksmith will use a tin foil locksmith tool, it will save customers money by eliminating the need to replace expensive locks.
The study’s authors presented an innovative lock opening method and the tool marks that were left behind. This discovery is important for forensics because the fingerprints left by a burglar may be linked to the foil fragments. The foil fragments may contain DNA evidence and help police identify burglars more easily. In the future, foil locksmith tools may also be used to prevent burglary in the future. There are other benefits, but they are not as widespread as many would believe.
Researchers studied 105 locks to find out how the foil fragments in cylinders were able to unlock a lock. In 2012, foil fragments were found in 3-12% of the cylinders. In 2014, this figure increased to thirty-six percent of dissections. DNA profiles were also found in a similar number of foils in both types of locks. For those curious, what does the process mean?
For forensics, these findings can reveal whether a burglar opened a lock with a tin foil locksmith tool. The tool’s unique fingerprints can be matched with the victim’s DNA, a new type of evidence. Researchers can also use the foil fragments in the bottom of the lock as evidence. The foil fragments can even carry a victim’s DNA profile. The results of these studies may help solve murder cases.