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Locksmithing/Yale combination lock


Hi Andy,

 I have an old "safe-Cabinet" with a Yale combination lock.  I would like to change the combination.  I have done this many time before but only on safe locks that use a change key.  i have opened the lock and believe it is a hand change combo. Can you provide me with detailed instructions on how to change the combination?

Thank you


I never recommend lock disassembly as a DIY project for the same reason that I never recommend using locksmiths for safe work.   Lack of training and knowledge can result in an expensive lockout.

As you will probably decide to do this yourself regardless of my recommendations, I would be happy to give you a set of instructions, however we need to actually ID your lock so that I can narrow down the correct instructions.

Note:   the instructions do NOT give you detailed instructions on disassembly, they assume that you already have training in lock disassembly.   A basic Safe Lock Servicing course takes around a week, and does have a prerequisite of a background as a locksmith.

I do have a hold harmless form that I require you to sign, before I will provide the instructions, which basically state that you assume ALL responsibility for the use (or misuse) of the instructions.

You will need to send a request directly to me at:

If you can't ID the actual lock, I will need photos of it to try to ensure that I can provide you with the correct set of instructions for the lock that you have.   Send the photos to me along with your request, and I'll see what I can do.

Note:   If you have any problems or don't understand the instructions then I recommend that you have the lock servicing done by a trained safe technician from a local safe company.   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 might know and/or would recommend in your area.

Hope this helps.


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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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