Polishing your DIY Lock Pick Set for Durability - ITS Tactical
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Polishing your DIY Lock Pick Set for Durability

By Chris Rea

As with any metal tools, lock picks require some level of care. Polishing your picks is extremely easy to do and will result in longer lasting, more efficient tools.

This can be especially beneficial to your DIY Lock Picks I went over in my last article. You’ll be amazed at how well a properly polished pick glides over the pins of your target lock.

The simple process we’ll go over will give you the finishing touch that your lock picks need.


To complete this project, all that’s required are various grits of sandpaper, some metal polish, a small amount of WD-40, time and patience.

I recommend using sandpaper in grits up to 2000 or even 3000. How high you want to go depends on how meticulous you are. I would personally start off with a 400 grit paper and work up to about 1500 to 2000. Anything beyond that I find to be overkill. However, your preference may vary.


Begin to sand the pick, being sure to evenly cover the surface. As you progress, sand out all the marks from the previous grit papers. This does not take much effort. Be careful not to over sand the pick and make it paper-thin.

When you reach the really fine sandpaper grits your pick should look shiny. Now it’s time to break out the metal polish. This polish can burn your skin, so be careful and use protection. The polish also has a strong ammonia smell. It’s probably best to do this part outdoors. Rub the polish in, wipe it off, and repeat until you are satisfied with the finish.

After completing the metal polish, I recommend placing a small amount of WD-40 on your finger tip and wiping the pick down. This will provide some extra protection against rust. When cared for in this manner, you should rarely find rust on your pick. If you do, you should be able to simply wipe it off.

Editor’s Note

We encourage everyone reading this article to get involved with lock picking as a skill set through various lock sport groups such as  Toool  and  Lock Sport International. There’s a large community out there of people who understand the value of this skill-set and also like to have fun picking locks.

Remember, when practicing your set you should always follow the Lock Sport code of ethics.

You may only pick locks you own or those you have been given explicit permission to pick.

Lock sport is an honest, ethical, and legitimate hobby. Unfortunately, the whole world hasn’t figured that out yet (though we’re working on it!). Because the lay person has a tendency to perceive what we do as somehow nefarious, it is extra important that we commit to following a strict code of ethics. For this reason, the above credo is non-negotiable in the lock sport community. Lockpicking should never, ever be used for illegal or even questionable purposes. Please do not misuse this information. We assume no responsibility for your actions, and in no way condone immoral activity. Help keep locksport fun for all by following strictly the one rule.

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