I went to open a wooden shed door with my usual collection of picks. However, whereas most sheds have a simple two- or three-lever lock at best, this shed door was secured with a five-lever British Standard mortice deadlock. (It’s not linear, it’s logarithmic: a five-lever lock is ten times better than a three-lever lock and hundreds of times better than a two-lever lock. Add in a BS rating and you’re looking at a serious picking challenge. I recognized the lock through the keyhole (which is as much of a challenge for locksmiths as opening the things). And I although I have a dedicated pick, it’s in rather a big tin which isn’t in the regular bag.

However, rather than go back for the pick, I had a go with a general-purpose approach; more what you might call “proper” lock picking. This kind of thing gets more and more difficult as you get older and hearing and touch both dull and the hands aren’t as steady as they were (even before “lunch”).

But, Yay! I opened it.

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