Locksmithing/Cary Safe


I have an old combination lock Cary Safe which is locked and I do not have the combination.  It looks  pretty bad esthetically.  The paint is peeling everywhere but it has no dents or dings. I would like to restore it but before I do that I would like to open it.  It is 53" tall, 25-1/8" wide and 20-3/4" deep.  The serial number on then handle is 169747.

Can give me any information about it like the type of lock and the sequence which would be useful to me or to a Safe Man?


Manufacturers never publish any info concerning serial numbers or combinations for obvious security and liability reasons.   As this company has been out of business since about 1929, this limits your options for opening the safe.

Based on your serial number of 169747, I would expect this safe to have a Yale M-16 lock, which is the later version of the Yale Y6, 4 wheel lock.   The Yale M-16 is a three wheel lock with an internal relock trigger.   With a 100 number dial and 3 wheels, you have the potential of 1,000,000 possible combinations available.
If you set up a spread sheet and tested 500 per day, every day, it would only take you about 5.5 years to test them all.

Your second option would include contacting a safe technician from a local safe company to open your safe.   I never recommend using locksmiths for safe work, as they generally don't have the training, knowledge or tools to work on safes, without causing excessive damage or charging exhorbant fees.

The dialing sequence for your lock should be:

4 times left to the first number,
3 times right to the second number,
2 times left to the third number,
1 time right until the dial stops (around 80) - turn the handle to open.

Note:   Left is counter clockwise, right is clockwise.   Do not count the revolutions of the dial, count the individual number as it arrives at the 12 o'clock index mark.

If you don't have a local safe company let me know where you and/or the safe are located (zipcode) and I'll see who I know in your area, though there are NOT a lot of real safe companies in Georgia.   Possibly the nearest would be in North Carolina, or Florida.  

Hope this info helps you out.


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Terry V. Andreasen (Andy)


Safe and Vault related Questions; Antique Safe Repair and Restoration; With over 40 years in the Safe & Vault industry, if I can't answer your question I know where to get the answer. Current Project: Restoration of two Tilton & McFarland safes from the 1860's. Will answer Safe & Vault related questions concerning age, value, restoration, moving, opening & repairing, parts, operation and history. Note: It is not my intention to teach you to open safes or to provide information which may aid in the unlawful opening of a safe. I will not give out drill points or information which I deem inappropriate.


40 years in the Safe & Vault Industry. Service Manager for one of the largest Safe & Vault companies on the West Coast. Graduate of Lockmasters Safe Lock Servicing, Safe lock Manipulation and Safe Deposit Lock Courses. Graduate of Locksmith Institute. Certified Instructor for the California Locksmith Association teaching Basic and Advanced Lock Servicing, Basic Safe opening and Repairing. Factory Trained by AMSEC, LORD Safes, LeFebure, Mosler, KabaMas, LaGard and Sargent & Greenleaf

SafeCrackers International and the National Antique Safe Association

Graduate of Locksmith Institute 1972 Graduate Lockmasters Safe Lock Servicing 1974 Graduate Lockmasters Safe Lock Manipulation 1975 Graduate Lockmasters Safe Deposit Lock Servicing 1985 Instructor Certified - California Locksmith Association - 1985 Factory trained by AMSEC, MAJOR, STAR, Johnson-Pacific, Kaba-MAS, Allied-Gary, ISM, Lord, Brown Safe, EXL, Mosler, Diebold.

Awards and Honors
2009 - 2014 - Listed in AllExperts Top 50 Experts. All Expert Categories - Safes & Security Containers, Locksmithing, Antique Safes. Retired US Army Chief Warrant Officer (CW4), with 39 years of total service. With numerous awards from Vietnam, Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom. US Navy - 1971-1981 US Army Reserve 1984-2013 US Army Retired

Past/Present Clients
US Secret Service, FBI, BATF, Local Law enforcment agencies, Diebold, Hamilton Pacific, Red Hawk Int., Chubb International, Bank of America, Wells Fargo Bank, Mechanics Bank, El Dorado Savings Bank, many Credit unions and smaller banks. McDonalds, Togos, BurgerKing, TacoBell, Carls Jr. FoodMaxx, SaveMart, Lucky's, Albertson's, Raley's, Safeway, NobHill, Bell Markets, PW Markets. Great America, Century Theatres, Cinemark Theatres, UA Cinemas, and many homeowners and small businesses. Provide warranty service for lock and safe manufactures. Service Area is Northern California (Fresno to Oregon and Western Nevada)

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