Locksmithing/schwab safe


The Safe is a Schwab model number 1215 serial nu:-) mber 1389 the safe was given to me by one of my residents combination was also given to me I have tried it several different ways. At this point I am still unable to open the safe the combination given to me was 14 left twice right 72 left 3 right 92 open. Any help would be greatly appreciated. dial on the lot States that it is a yale

Hi Bill,

There are ONLY three reasons that a safe lock will not work, in order they are:

1.  Incorrect dialing sequence, operator errors,
2.  Incorrect combination, wrong numbers,
3.  Mechanical problems.

Unfortunately this is a common problem.   People tend to pass on combinations the way that THEY understand them, and NOT necessarily the way that it works.   Also the numbers that were given to you don't work correctly for a Yale lock).

In general the proper dialing sequence for a Yale lock is going to be:

4 times right to the first number,
3 times left to the second number,
2 times right to the third number,
1 time left until the dial stops - around 10.

The dialing sequence given to you is similar to an S&G type lock, or:

4 times left to the first number, 14
3 times right to the second number, 72
2 times left to the third number, 3
1 time right until the dial stops (around 92).

Note:   LEFT is counter clockwise, right is clockwise.    It is very possible that the person giving you the combination does not understand their right turns from their left turns when it comes to this lock.

Do not count the revolutions of the dial, count the INDIVIDUAL number as it arrives at the 12 o'clock index mark on the dial ring.    For instance for your first number, you would turn it counter clockwise (left), stopping the fourth time the number 14 arrives at the index mark.

If you still can't get it to open, then I would recommend that you have it checked out by a safe technician from a local safe company - not a locksmith, to determine if the dialing sequence is correct, and or if it will open with these numbers.

If the former tenant is still around, you may want to verify the dialing sequence with them, as it is NOT correct for a Yale lock, as you have presented it.

Hope this helps.  


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Terry V. Andreasen (Andy)


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.


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".

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

The Coffee Table Guide to Antique Safes AllExperts.com

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

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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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