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Spin Combination lock vs Digital locking

by | Jun 16, 2020 | Advice & Tips, General News, Latest News, Resources

This is becoming quite a popular question, I will however point out I am only speaking about the quality brand safe locks available. NOT the cheap nasty digital safes found in many hardware stores. So unequivocally the answer for me is 100% YES!

Digital locks are easier & more secure.

Way back when safes were first built the only option was a keylock. These were handmade works of art, alas the keys were big & bulky. Over the next 100 years safe doors grew in thickness. This was needed to stop of criminals. Slowly the need for a new locking system arose that was more convenient and the Spin combination Lock was born. This allowed multiple people to access the safe simply and easily. The precision and relatively high degree of accuracy of these new locks eliminated “surreptitious entry” or “manipulation” as it is known in the Locksmith industry.

The spin combination safe lock market was dominated by “Sargent & Greenleaf ” also known as S & G. This American company took mechanical combination locking to a very high level over many decades. The spin combination lock stayed in pretty much the same format until 1980.

This video clearly demonstrates the difference between digital and combination.

Alas in today’s modern society we are time poor and spin combinations require a modicum of skill and patience to use. So it wasn’t long before someone perfected a way to secure a safe and allow easy access using input data from a keypad. The Digital Safe lock has now developed into a robust, reliable and secure format. This format has become the standard for just about all safe manufacturers.  One common misconception is that if the battery goes flat the code of combination will be lost forever. Not so, LaGard have developed their locks to use minimal voltage draw. They also have a “low voltage” warning that tells you to change the battery. If you ignore this warning it will eventually stop working but as soon as you change the battery (battery life is  usually 2 to 3 years) it opens normally.

Yes but is a spin combination lock as secure ?

The other concern I often hear is “are digital safe locks more or less secure than tumbler locks ?”  In short, yes digital’s are much more secure than spin combination locks.  In theory it is possible for a skillful criminal to manipulate a spin combination and gain access to the contents of the safe. Whist this is possible it is EXTREMELY unlikely. It takes a thorough knowledge and much practice before even the slightest proficiency develops to a point where a criminal could open a safe in a reasonable amount of time. I am friends with one of the best safe lock manipulators in the industry and it takes him between 1- 4 hours to open a safe lock. There are some locks that even he can’t open and has to resort to drilling it.

That said the Digital safe lock has a penalty for incorrect attempts.

Once triggered this makes opening the lock very hard as it only allows 1 attempt every 5 minutes or 12 attempts an hour. It has even been suggested that some criminals will “clean” the keypad and then return using “fingerprinting powder” to reveal the numbers. This is also folly as even with the correct numbers they still must be put in the correct order or sequence. To negate this issue all you have to do is repeat a number.

LaGard, Sargent & Greenleaf have Digital safe locks that allow for multiple users, time delay, timelock, audit trail and even a duress option. This last option  alerts the police that the safe is being opened under threat. These are options that mechanical locks simply cant offer. Servicing of safe locks has always been a source of income for locksmiths. But these days digital locks don’t require any servicing other than a battery check which anyone can do.  Mechanical safe locks should be serviced a minimum of 5 years and annually where they are being used constantly.

We are happy to quote you on changing a spin combination over to a digital safelock. Send us an email, we will be happy to chat to you about it.

Digital keypad Locks versus  Spin Combination lock

 

Digital Safe LocksSpin Combination Safe locks
  • Easy to use and change codes
  • More difficult to use and tricky to change combination
  • Minimal serving required
  • With 15 or so parts, regular cleaning & servicing needed
  • Time penalty for tampering
  • No penalty at all
  • Battery changes needed
  • No batteries
  • Time delay option
  • No time delay option
  • Audit trail showing who & when opened
  • No record keeping
  • Multiple different codes
  •  Only one user option
  • 10 -20 year life expectancy
  • 10 – 20 year life expectancy

 

 

Buy Now, Pay Later!

Rob Anderson
Rob Anderson
06:57 29 Jun 21
My initial communication with KGB was to get some advice and I spoke with Kel who was extremely patient and knowledgable. Kel advised the best product in order to solve my issue.James was the locksmith who came to complete installation. He was an extremely polite gentleman, punctual, very knowledgeable and informative. A great ambassador for KGB.Based on my experience, I highly recommend KGB for their service and expertise.read more
Rob Anderson
Rob Anderson
06:57 29 Jun 21
My initial communication with KGB was to get some advice and I spoke with Kel who was extremely patient and knowledgable. Kel advised the best product in order to solve my issue.James was the locksmith who came to complete installation. He was an extremely polite gentleman, punctual, very knowledgeable and informative. A great ambassador for KGB.Based on my experience, I highly recommend KGB for their service and expertise.read more
Winston Axel Jones
Winston Axel Jones
00:16 19 May 21
Wayne was able to get Paul their master locksmith to open my cash drawer within a matter of seconds, due to the cheap design and locking mechanism it was deemed an unviable repair for which they didn't charge me anything. Very professional operation and I have no hesitation in recommending them for your lock and security needs, now or in the future.read more
Winston Axel Jones
Winston Axel Jones
00:16 19 May 21
Wayne was able to get Paul their master locksmith to open my cash drawer within a matter of seconds, due to the cheap design and locking mechanism it was deemed an unviable repair for which they didn't charge me anything. Very professional operation and I have no hesitation in recommending them for your lock and security needs, now or in the future.read more
Craig Porter
Craig Porter
05:29 12 May 21
Purchased a gun safe from KGB. Wayne was very helpful. Easy to deal with, no pressure and very informative.Very happy with the purchase. Cheersread more
Craig Porter
Craig Porter
05:29 12 May 21
Purchased a gun safe from KGB. Wayne was very helpful. Easy to deal with, no pressure and very informative.Very happy with the purchase. Cheersread more
Connor Hunter
Connor Hunter
03:57 04 May 21
KGB Security have always been so easy to deal with. We use them for our document safe purchases and repairs. Would definitely recommend them. Great Service!read more
Connor Hunter
Connor Hunter
03:57 04 May 21
KGB Security have always been so easy to deal with. We use them for our document safe purchases and repairs. Would definitely recommend them. Great Service!read more
chris sonter
chris sonter
07:35 29 Apr 21
Very happy with the service. Helped me out with a difficult key to find. Would recommend them.read more
Anh Lim
Anh Lim
04:41 17 Apr 21
Cal and his team are exceptional. One of our business safes wouldn’t open over the weekend... I contacted Cal on the Saturday and he organised a specialist locksmith to arrive at the store and sort out the problem. They provided prompt, professional and reliable service. I highly recommend KGB Coopers Plain!read more
Anh Lim
Anh Lim
04:41 17 Apr 21
Cal and his team are exceptional. One of our business safes wouldn’t open over the weekend... I contacted Cal on the Saturday and he organised a specialist locksmith to arrive at the store and sort out the problem. They provided prompt, professional and reliable service. I highly recommend KGB Coopers Plain!read more
Anastasya Adair
Anastasya Adair
08:52 06 Mar 21
Everyone was super helpful and kind. They knew their stuff and were able to give us recommendations based on what we were trying to achieve. Am definitely keeping them in mind for future projects.read more
Anastasya Adair
Anastasya Adair
08:52 06 Mar 21
Everyone was super helpful and kind. They knew their stuff and were able to give us recommendations based on what we were trying to achieve. Am definitely keeping them in mind for future projects.read more
Paul Long
Paul Long
04:50 22 Feb 21
I needed a padlock keyed alike & some keys cut. Alex greeted me gave me a timeframe & provided the best lock for my circumstances. Wayne cut my keys & noticed the differences so used brass & silver blanks to differentiate them. I also had a bent key which he worked with to produce working copies. Such professional service & clever solutions. The unique lock solutions on display & the various safes available means these are the only locksmiths that I need. Thanks Team for helping me out at such short notice.read more
Paul Long
Paul Long
04:50 22 Feb 21
I needed a padlock keyed alike & some keys cut. Alex greeted me gave me a timeframe & provided the best lock for my circumstances. Wayne cut my keys & noticed the differences so used brass & silver blanks to differentiate them. I also had a bent key which he worked with to produce working copies. Such professional service & clever solutions. The unique lock solutions on display & the various safes available means these are the only locksmiths that I need. Thanks Team for helping me out at such short notice.read more
Amy Barnes
Amy Barnes
04:49 20 Feb 21
I was experiencing an issue with a safe lock and a wonderful man named Kell was able to assist me over the phone and I was able to solve the issue right away. I was very happy with the service I received over the phone and would definitely recommend this business.read more
Amy Barnes
Amy Barnes
04:49 20 Feb 21
I was experiencing an issue with a safe lock and a wonderful man named Kell was able to assist me over the phone and I was able to solve the issue right away. I was very happy with the service I received over the phone and would definitely recommend this business.read more
Audrey Pearson
Audrey Pearson
03:58 17 Feb 21
Thank you Wayne and Allison for your assistance in efficiently providing the safe that suited my requirements. Very much appreciated.read more
Paul Mannion
Paul Mannion
07:36 03 Feb 21
Kell and Wayne did an awesome job. As per normal with them, keys fit first time.Thanks very much,Asset Towingread more
Paul Mannion
Paul Mannion
07:36 03 Feb 21
Kell and Wayne did an awesome job. As per normal with them, keys fit first time.Thanks very much,Asset Towingread more
Bcmda1 —-
Bcmda1 —-
03:04 28 Jan 21
I had lost a small screw when installing a electronic security door lock. These guys were so helpful in finding the exact screw and providing one for me i have to give them 10 out of 10.They went further than that and advised me of all the accessories that would make my door lock even betterread more
Lofty Visions
Lofty Visions
02:35 18 Jan 21
Great service! Ordered a fireproof chest and was delivered by hand the very next day by their WA supplier. Can't ask more than that! Thank you!By the way, check their YouTube channel out for very interesting advice on cheap safes. Quite scary how bad cheap safes are. You get what you pay for!read more
Susan Mcintyre
Susan Mcintyre
11:10 07 Jan 21
We rang and left messages at half a dozen 24hour locksmiths, and they were the only ones who answered the phone and KGB were able to help us within 30 min. Friendly and professional service!! Highly recommend.read more
Susan Mcintyre
Susan Mcintyre
11:10 07 Jan 21
We rang and left messages at half a dozen 24hour locksmiths, and they were the only ones who answered the phone and KGB were able to help us within 30 min. Friendly and professional service!! Highly recommend.read more
David Stephens
David Stephens
21:00 30 Dec 20
Several months ago I purchased a Yale front door lock and dead bolt from a hardware store, unfortunately it only came with 3 keys. So I asked the store if they could cut a few more for me , which they did, however they didn't work and their machine couldn't cut the security notch in the back. I tried a few other local places with no luck. I had dealt with KGB a few times before and was always satisfied, so while in Brisbane on business I called in with the deadbolt and an original key plus an attempted copy. They identified the problem and cut some spares for me. Excellent work as always, thanks again .read more
David Stephens
David Stephens
21:00 30 Dec 20
Several months ago I purchased a Yale front door lock and dead bolt from a hardware store, unfortunately it only came with 3 keys. So I asked the store if they could cut a few more for me , which they did, however they didn't work and their machine couldn't cut the security notch in the back. I tried a few other local places with no luck. I had dealt with KGB a few times before and was always satisfied, so while in Brisbane on business I called in with the deadbolt and an original key plus an attempted copy. They identified the problem and cut some spares for me. Excellent work as always, thanks again .read more
Andrew Shine
Andrew Shine
03:20 05 Dec 20
My entry phone system died and we had many issues trying to get it repaired. Had a few hiccups but KGB were great. Polite and professional and fixed it to perfection. I would recommend 100%read more
Andrew Shine
Andrew Shine
03:20 05 Dec 20
My entry phone system died and we had many issues trying to get it repaired. Had a few hiccups but KGB were great. Polite and professional and fixed it to perfection. I would recommend 100%read more
B Rock
B Rock
03:02 31 Oct 20
Excellent service from start to finish. A suitable safe was sourced from available stock over the phone and via email, and delivery organised quickly, efficiently, and for a time that suited me. Will look forward to my next purchase. Keep up the great work KGB.read more
B Rock
B Rock
03:02 31 Oct 20
Excellent service from start to finish. A suitable safe was sourced from available stock over the phone and via email, and delivery organised quickly, efficiently, and for a time that suited me. Will look forward to my next purchase. Keep up the great work KGB.read more
Aamo Solomon
Aamo Solomon
02:10 20 Oct 20
These guys are amazing... I needed a specialized locksmith late Friday afternoon. The Tech was about to go on holidays and the team came to my rescue within 40mins. Mighty impressed and most grateful. Thank you... 🙂read more
Peter Griffin
Peter Griffin
01:02 17 Oct 20
I bought a good quality second hand fire proof filing cabinet from KGB at a reasonable price and their sales and delivery were very friendly and professional. Since then they have been very helpful with some extras for the cabinet. Highly recommended. Peter Griffin, PMG Law.read more
Peter Griffin
Peter Griffin
01:02 17 Oct 20
I bought a good quality second hand fire proof filing cabinet from KGB at a reasonable price and their sales and delivery were very friendly and professional. Since then they have been very helpful with some extras for the cabinet. Highly recommended. Peter Griffin, PMG Law.read more
Carla Griffith
Carla Griffith
00:08 12 Oct 20
Fantastic Service! Could not recommend KGB more. Kel helped me out of a pickle with our safe !read more
Ken Pitts
Ken Pitts
06:57 06 Oct 20
Arranged a pick up and delivery of a heavy safe. This is the right company to use for this kind of moving. The team made the move very easy and stress free.read more
David Nance
David Nance
00:29 18 Sep 20
Just had Tom out here, very professional and happy to answer all my questions.
David Nance
David Nance
00:29 18 Sep 20
Just had Tom out here, very professional and happy to answer all my questions.
Jack Wilson
Jack Wilson
05:04 17 Sep 20
Called into KGB today to ask some technical advice on an internal door lock. Both Wayne and Brock were very helpful.read more
Jack Wilson
Jack Wilson
05:04 17 Sep 20
Called into KGB today to ask some technical advice on an internal door lock. Both Wayne and Brock were very helpful.read more
Sandi Harrold
Sandi Harrold
01:30 17 Sep 20
Good service and great customer service. Thank you KGB Southside
Sandi Harrold
Sandi Harrold
01:30 17 Sep 20
Good service and great customer service. Thank you KGB Southside
Len Conrad
Len Conrad
10:52 05 Sep 20
I'm an interstate customer - very satisfied with KGB's website, their customer service, competitive pricing and delivery. Product exactly as ordered. Kel and his team are the real deal. Highly recommended.read more
Linda Leader
Linda Leader
05:31 03 Sep 20
I would HIGHLY recommend KGB Security. We have used them twice (so far) and BOTH times have been a pleasure. They are extremely helpful, very professional and went above and beyond to ensure our matters were dealt with promptly. They are super friendly, easy to talk to and easily talk through steps over the phone. Their expertise was greatly appreciated!read more
Benjamin Lothian
Benjamin Lothian
05:31 16 Aug 20
The service and advice I received from the staff at KGB was fantastic, they always go the extra effort in explaining and ensuring that what they are supplying is exactly what you need. I couldn't be happier with my new safe and can now sleep at night knowing my precious valueables are secure. Thanks a million!!read more
Mei Shiang Lee
Mei Shiang Lee
02:42 12 Aug 20
Called KGB security about my heavy timber pivot door, to install a door damper to stop it from slamming. Kel asked me to send photos of the door mechanism. He called back shortly thereafter to advise me that we have a door damper already, so no need to waste money for one. He taught me how to adjust the damper - 'tramsom closer'. It worked! My door doesn't slam any more. It only took me a few minutes and a screwdriver. He saved me lots of money. They are the most ethical and professional locksmith. I'm very grateful.read more
Simon
Simon
02:07 30 Jul 20
I cannot speak highly enough about this company!I have an old fireproof cabinet that I was concerned about and gave KGB a call for some professional advice.Not only did I get information on the issue at hand, but I even got the contact number for someone that worked at the now long deceased company who could give me more detailed information.I would recommend them for anything to do with safes, cabinets or anything to do with security!read more
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