In the safe cracking world it is never a dull day. From moving 2000kg safes, to cracking open a safe for a business that was hours away from opening with vital paperwork locked inside. We have done numerous jobs that will make a great book one day.
Recently we had an online inquiry to open a large vault on one of the islands off Port Moresby. Initially we thought it was either a scam or a joke. The location alone made this a unique safe cracking job, but the vault lock had also been damaged. An attempt to smash the combination lock off with a hammer added another layer of complexity to the job. It was just one hit away from being almost uncrackable. Opening a damaged safe/vault is hard enough in Brisbane but doing repairs on a small Island with virtually no supply shops within 500kg whoa !
How To Open a Vault Door;
James, who is our whiz at cracking safes, arrived at the island after 4 flights and 9 hours of travel .With 50kgs of sensitive safe cracking equipment the excess baggage fee was almost $900. Our window of only 24hrs on the island was always going to make it tight. On arrival James went to straight to the job to assess the situation and get a head start, time was going to be tight.
After the initial assessment, he also identified that the hinges were badly worn and the heavy door was dragging on the bottom of the frame. So now the job changed as they often do, open the vault and then repair the frame and hinges. This would require some extra special tricks; hammer, coal chisel and just the right amount of muscle. Possibly this is why they stopped using the vault and ultimately lost the combination.
The vault door consisted super hard plate (anti drill) armour and a re-locker system. This activates when an attempt to pry open the vault with force. As the original combination dial was irrevocably damaged, the first part of the solution was to be able to attach a new spin dial. James attached the replacement onto the stub that was left sticking out of the door. The second stage was setting up his audio amplifier so he could hear the clicking which allows him to perform the lock manipulation to open the vault. With his custom built dial, advanced audio equipment and vibration detecting tools he toiled for 90 minutes before successfully working out the numbers and thus opening the vault. All the while watched by the head of security for the island. An ex-SAS officer well travelled with worldly security experience, an intimidating looking guy, he was utterly impressed with the speed and calibre of James’ skills and efficiency.
Had the vault not been cracked using “manipulation”, the second option would have meant drilling the door open which could have reduced the integrity of the vault’s security. Drilling a door such as this one could easily take 6 to 10 hours, a very undesirable option in 38 degree heat. The cost to replace a vault door is normally around $3800 – $6800 plus the freight and installation costs which would add another $2500 to the overall bill. However this would have been almost impossible due to the remoteness. Having us come up and open the vault for them definitely worked out better for our client as they got the safe open within a 1 week turnaround from the time they contacted us. James also fixed the sagging hinges and now the door swings like a ballerina.
We have done a few safe cracking jobs work overseas in the past year, but this one had so many levels of complexity, particularly the remoteness.
What To Do if You Have a Safe Cracking Job;
Do not try to smash open the vault door with a hammer to get to the internal compartments, vaults have a secondary locking mechanism to prevent such easy access.
Keep the combination to the vault in a secure document in a Dropbox file that doesn’t have Passwords as its title.
When contacting a security company, like KGB, please provide images and key information like the model of the vault and any distinguishing features.
We have yet to meet a safe we can not crack.