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Antique Safes/Antique Italian safe


QUESTION: I am trying to open an antique safe that we bought in Italy. On the front there is a slide that raises to expose two keyholes. The safe comes with two keys and a pick. Both keys turn the locks but the safe still doesn't open, not sure how to use the pick. To complicate matters, the slide to expose the keyholes is now stuck in the closed position. So I have to get that open first. Any thoughts?

I've tried to send this several times with photos but the no spam test failed message popped up. If this gets through, maybe then I can send photo?

ANSWER: Ricky, this type of safe was not uncommon in Italy.  There are usually multiple keys as well as multiple keyholes.  Also the use of a pick is seen to either reveal a keyhole or to allow a key to perfom multiple functions.  Email me some good clear pictures of the safe door and of the keys.  Doug    macslocks at gmail dot com   

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I've tried to send photos, but the email keeps coming back as deliverable. Can you send it to me again...

Italian safe
Italian safe  
Then we will try another tack.  Do a search for theantiquesafecollector.  That's Guy Zani's website and he has or did have an Italian safe using multiple keys.  On the left side of the home page, go to the section about safes in wooden cabinets and it will be the first one that shows up.  He has both a phone number and email listed.  I make locks and keys for him and we are in regular contact.  He can describe the method of opening his safe, which may be the same as yours.  If not, then we can explore other possibilities.  Doug  

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Doug MacQueen


This unusual and highly innovative safe from the later 1800's is a Corliss. William, the much younger brother of George Corliss of steam engine fame, spent several years perfecting this design and it was first displayed at the 1876 Philadelphia U.S. Centennial Exhibition. I do extensive patent research helping me in the study of antique U.S. safes and safe locks. Repairs and part making for antique U.S. safes of the early to mid 1800's, both key and combination. Also the study of early round door chest designs up to and including cannonball safes of the early 1900's.


40 years in the lock and safe trade with a stint in bank service work. Openings, repairs and moving of safes of all types.

Charter member Safe and Vault Technicians Association SAVTA, National Safemans Association NSO, National Antique Safe Association NASA. No longer current.

SAVTA monthly magazine

CMS (Certified Master Safecracker- NSO) and CPS (Certified Professional Safe Technician - SAVTA)

Awards and Honors
2nd place national combination manipulation contest 1986 and now in 2016 1st place

Past/Present Clients

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