How to Pick a Lock With a Paper Clip


by Lew Rockwell, Lew Rockwell:

So you know how to pick a lock with a tension wrench and rake. This is an incredibly useful skill, which will allow you to get in your house if you get locked out without having to call a locksmith, and will also allow you to help others who’ve become locked out. You might even need to pick the lock of a door behind which someone is incapacitated and in need of emergency help.

But, what do you do if you find yourself needing to pick a lock, but you don’t have your lock picks on you?

You use the manly art of improvisation and MacGyver yourself out of this tough spot with nothing but paper clips and pliers, of course.

Picking a lock with paper clips works pretty much the same way as picking a lock with a traditional tension wrench and rake. You just need to turn two paper clips into those two very same tools, and then pick the lock with them like you’d normally do.

Below I show you how.

What You’ll Need

2 metal paper clips — the sturdier the better. Don’t use plastic paper clips. They’ll just break.
Pair of pliers (like you’d find on a Leatherman)

How to Pick a Lock with Paper Clips

Make Your Tension Wrench

Straighten out one of your paper clips but leave one end still bent. Squeeze those two parts together. This is the part that will go in the lock. Using your pliers, bend the long, straight end of the paper clip 90 degrees to form the handle of the tension wrench.

Make Your Rake

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