This is a quick post which also contains affiliate links 🙂
I am often asked by students, friends and co-workers where I get my lock picking gear from, and that place is a UK based store called WithOutAKey. They pretty much have ever piece of lock picking gear you can think of, and most importantly they are often the best prices and they ship quickly.
They have also recently entered the world of affiliate linking, so if you are thinking of buying from WithOutAKey please consider going through the site, and the little pennies here and there go towards paying for hosting, domain renewals etc, so its always appreciated.
If you are looking at getting into lock picking one of the most important things to be aware of is that the keyway of locks vary in Europe and in the USA. The keyway is the slot you out your key into, in Europe the keyway is smaller than in the US, so keep this in mind when you buy your lock picks as a US focused set of pics may be to thick to use in a European lock. The most important thing to remember is NEVER pick a lock that is not your own or you do not have permission to pick, thats illegal and breaking the law. Also in some countries it is illegal to use and carry lock picks unless you are a qualified locksmith. The lock picking wikipedia page is a quick and handy resource to check legal issues, but always check with a local expert to be sure.
If you are looking to try out lock picking and don’t want to invest a ton of cash, then get yourself a cheap cylinder lock or better still a cutaway practice lock so you can see whats happening on the inside.
Then for the picks themselves, you can get a super cheap pack of KLOM picks for only a few pounds, they work and do the job, just don’t give a great deal of feedback and durability but for the price you cant grumble. If you have a little more to spend, check out one of the Gosso packs, something like the 32 piece set will give you a range of picks and rakes, and also has some auto picks in there as well. I like this pack as the picks are pretty durable, some can be slightly to wide for some European locks, and there tension wrenches are not great, but its a great set to get going with little investment. Lastly if you want to spent a little more and get some nice quality, with good feel then check out the SouthOrds. These are nice quality picks, with good durability and feel. Sometimes your fingers can hurt a little with these when you start out, so you might want to wrap some tape around the tops until you build up some resistance. Last but not least, and old but good little book to read to get you out of the gate is Easy Pickings.
Hope this helps, and have fun picking your own locks, its really alot easier than you think.