Locksmithing/safe wheel pack

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Question
Hi, We have an OLD safe and just found out that it's missing a piece of the wheel pack.  It's a Stiffel & Freeman, Phil'a, PA.  There are dates on it like 1871,73, 74 and 1880. We'd like to know where we can purchase a wheel pack so we can change the combination on it.  It's HUGE and weighs about 1,000 lbs.  A locksmith charged us $75 just to come out to our home and tell us that it's missing part of the wheel pack so if you could help us we'd really appreciate it.  Thank You.

Answer
Jo,

I did look through my parts boxes this morning, and I think I have a lock that might work for you, however after looking through photos of old Stiffel & Freeman safes, there are some differences that whould have to be addressed to ensure its operation.

#1 - I will need to see photos of the lock that is currently installed on your safe to determine WHAT lock you actually have.
#2 - If the lock I have will work, I may have to pull pieces from both locks to get one working lock for your safe.    I would need your lock off of your safe to ensure the compatiblity of the two locks.
#3 - IF the lock you have is not what I'm expecting it to be, then we are back to square one - looking for parts.

Bottom line, I will need photos of your safe, and the dial, and the lock and bolt work.

Send these photos to me at:    andy@securitysafeusa.com

Andy


Jo,

Sorry but there are no aftermarket sources for safe parts for antique safes.   The Stiffel & Freeman Safe Company was in business from around 1870 until about 1920.   Based on the information you've provided I would expect your safe to have a Yale 026 or 027 series roller bolt lock with a wheel pack of 4 combination wheels and a geared drive wheel.

I would need to see photos of the safe and the lock to determine WHAT lock you actually have.

As this lock has probably not been made since the early 1900's, your chances of finding one is going to be slim at best.   As for the $75, I would have had you send me a photo before coming out to determine what you had.   Generally I never recommend using locksmiths for safe work as they don't have the training, knowledge or tools to work on safes.

As far as replacement parts go - while safe companies and locksmiths do remove good parts off of damaged safes, generally these parts are either for THEIR collection or use.   There is no listing of what parts are available - anywhere!   Also as this is a fairly small market, most safemen and locksmiths are NOT going to search through their parts bins unless you are a dedicated, serious buyer.   They are also not going to "part out" locks.   If you find one, you can plan on buying the complete item - at premium pricing!

What does this mean for you?   Simply you will need to start knocking on doors of every safe company you can locate to see if you can find an old Yale 026 or 027 series lock.   As I haven't seen your safe or lock, I can't narrow down which model yours possibly is.

I'll look through my boxes tomorrow to see if I possibly have anything, but right now, I'm going to say probably not!

If you can't find the lock, all is not lost, the safe would still make a nice display item, and if cleaned up and restored, a really nice conversation piece.    Hopefully you didn't plan on using it as an actual safe!!!

What other info were you looking for?

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Terry V. Andreasen (Andy)

Expertise

Safe and Vault related Questions; Antique Safe Repair and Restoration; With over 42 years in the Safe & Vault industry, if I can't answer your question I know where to get the answer. Current Project: Restoration of an Ely Norris Cannonball Safe from the early 1900'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.

Experience

44 years in the Safe & Vault Industry. Owner and 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 Author of "The Coffee Table Guide to Antique Safes".

Organizations
SafeCrackers International and the National Antique Safe Association Safe & Vault Technicians Association (SAVTA)

Publications
The Coffee Table Guide to Antique Safes AllExperts.com

Education/Credentials
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 - 2015 - 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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