The serial numbers you see on your keys have an actual meaning. They might seem like a random code, but when it comes to your key, there’s more going on here. It’s time to find out what that meaning is.
The Four Types
First of all, it is important to note that there are four different types of key numbers. What are they? Let’s take a closer look:
- The bitting numbers
- Key numbers for blanks
- Key numbers for a master key system
- Key numbers for an identification code
The Parts of a Key
Next, it’s essential that you understand each piece of the key. Without that knowledge, the concept behind key numbers still won’t make much sense. Each key typically features five parts, which are:
- The bow or head: Known as either the bow or the head, this is the part of the key that you turn. More often than not, you’ll find the key numbers engraved on the key itself here.
- The key stop: The key stop does exactly what it’s name says it does – it stops the key. With a key stop in place, the key will go far enough to lock or unlock the door, but it won’t go so deep in that it will get stuck.
- The key blade: The blade is long, thin, and flat part of the key that slides into the associated lock. Here is where you will find the cuts that have to do with the key bitting.
- The cuts: Key cuts may seem mundane, but they are actually all unique. The reason for this is because every key needs to be a certain special length, even duplicate keys.
- The tip: The edge of a key, you’ll find it farthest away from the bow. With a tip, you can distinguish what way the bitting numbers are arranged.
The Bitting Numbers
Now that the bitting numbers have come up several times, you’re probably curious what that term is supposed to mean. You’ll find a five digit number near the bottom of the key. This number is the bitting number. Higher digits indicate a deeper cut; although this might sound confusing, this the typical method for arranging a bitting number on your keys.
Looking at the Keyway
One last part of your key to take a closer look at is known as the keyway. You might see the letter “C” stamped on the key stop, depending on the brand of the key you have in your hand. That indicates the keyway. The keyway, in short, determines if the key will fit into the lock you are attempting to open through its keyhole.
Village Lock & Key is the Key to Your Success!
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