Locksmithing/X-09 Lightning bolt


I have an X-09 that when the dial is initially turned to the left, the lightning bolt appears alone.  (No numbers)  The dial is turned for up to FIVE minutes and the lightning bolt stays ALONE with no numbers.  Finally numbers will come on the display and lightning bolt will go out.  The correct combination is dialed and upon turning right to open the lightning bolt reappears and the lock will not open.  I can not find troubleshooting information for this unusual condition.


The lighting bolt is an indication that an incorrect combination has been dialed.   The numbers that appear afterwards are the number of unsuccessful attempts.   This count will ONLY be displayed after at least three unsuccessful attempts.

The fact that the lighting bolt is appearing AFTER you dial your combination is an indication that either YOU are not dialing the combination correctly, the combination IS incorrect, or the lock does not recognize the combination (malfunction).

If in fact you were dialing the combination correctly, and/or the combination is correct, AND the lock recognizes both the combination and the correct dialing sequence, then you WOULD get the "OPR" signal to "Open Right", or turn right to open.    If you are NOT getting the "OPR" signal, then the lock is not recognizing either the combination or the dialing sequence.

Sorry, but there is no trouble shooting information, and this is NOT an unusual condition.

The lock will continue to provide the information shown on the screen - lighting bolt & number of unsuccessful attempts - until either a correct combination has been dialed, OR you dial the combination correctly.

You didn't mention whether or not you are a government or DOD agency which is required to use this lock for security reasons.   Assuming that you are, you need to contact your security manager to discuss the issue.   They should have a plan which deals with this problem.   If you are a DOD agency, you can contact the US NAVY Lock Program in Pt. Huenueme, CA to have service set up.

If you are not part of a government or DOD agency, then you may need to have it checked out by an X09 certified lock technician.   You can get a listing of certified technicians in your area by going to:


Note:   This list is not a complete listing as certification classes are done several times each year, and it does take Kaba time to update this listing.   It is usually about 1 year out of date.   It will however give you a place to start.

If you still cannot get the lock to dial up correctly and open up, it may have to be drilled and replaced.   Kaba-Mas is no longer accepting orders for X09 locks as it has been replaced by the newer X-10 version.    Any replacement locks that are still available, may not have a warranty on them depending upon the date of manufacturer.

Sorry, that I can't be of more help, but as mentioned - this is NOT an unusual condition.   When dialing the combination, make sure that you wait at least several seconds between each number (not more than 40 seconds or it will go blank) - I recommend completely taking your hand off the dial, before turning the dial in the opposite direction to the next number.    It is very easy to dial this lock incorrectly, even if you are using the correct combination, which WILL result in the lighting bolt display.    Also note that you WILL get a 3 minute penalty period after 10 incorrect tries.   Each wrong try afterwards will reinitiate the penalty period until it reaches 15 at which time the penalty period will increase to 4 minutes.

This penalty period is only timed out, WHILE the lock is powered up, so you need to stay with the lock and repower it until the penalty period is completed.   Then you can attempt to open it correctly.

Hope that 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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