Frequently Asked Questions

Why does TOOOL have three O’s?
Every aspect of lockpicking has to do with the three O’s!
Huh?!? The three O’s? Explain?
The three O’s stand for practising Over and Over and Over again!
Where can I find more information about lockpicking?
Google, YouTube, it isn’t hard to find (any more). A good start is the (English) ‘MIT Guide to to Lockpicking’ (no affiliation to MIT).
How many members do you have?
At this moment we are still working to found Toool Belgium vzw. We are with a small group of interested folk, and once the vzw has been founded, memberships will be possible. In the Netherlands, Toool has about 75 members. In Germany, SSDeV has more than 1000 (!) members.
What does membership cost, and how does it work?
At this moment there is no official membership possible yet, as we are still working to create Toool Belgium vzw. Once that comes into existance, membership will likely be in the ~25 euro range.
What does damage-free opening mean?
Damage-free means for us that the lock is not broken and can still be used. People think that lockpicking does not leave any traces, but nothing could be less true. The tools make scratches in the lock in places a key would never come into contact with.
These scratches can even be ascertained with the naked eye. In Germany, the SSDev has co-operated with an investigation done by the German federal forensic laboratory. Five test locks belonging to the lab were opened by the club, using various methods. After some research, the lab was able to tell exactly what technique was used and (approximately) how many times the locks had been opened. The German federal forensic laboratory even gave a workshop about its findings during the annual CCC convention in Berlin (now Hamburg).
What do the Belgian authorities actually think of this?
We have had no contact with Belgian authorities as of yet, but we do welcome contact with them. Once again, Lockpicking is legal, and anyone is allowed to have a lockpick set in his or her possession. The only mention of “false keys”, where lockpicktools also fall under as they are a “tool to open a lock without use of the proper key”, in Belgian law (as far as we are aware) is that use of them while commiting a burglary is an aggravating circumstance. We do want to stress once more: we only open our own locks, or locks we have explicit permission for to open them.
Which lock is difficult to open, or even impossible to open for you?
As 2.6 million viewers could see in the VARA programme ‘Kopspijkers’, we do not get all locks open. There are many types of locks, and every lock has its own ‘character’. Most 5- or 6-pin locks can be opened after a great deal of practice. It is not our task to recommend a particular type of lock, we would prefer to leave that to the police seal of approval.
All the same, we do want to give a few tips as to what you have to watch out for when buying a cylinder lock. Damage-free picking does not constitute a realistic threat of break-ins, and an ‘unpickable lock’ is in our opinion of only limited value. It is much more important that the lock is resistant to the most common break-in techniques: breaking and/or drilling (also called the Bulgarian method). Take care that your lock is resistant to pulling, breaking and drilling.