Glossary of Locksmith Terms

Thank you to the Lock Industry Standards and Training (LIST) Council for the following terms:

adjustable mortise cylinder

n. any mortise cylinder whose length can be adjusted for a better fit in doors of varying thickness

alarm system

n. a system of electrical and/or electronic components which detect and report dangers, such as fire or intrusion

aligning tube

n. 1. a lock component which orients and joins the latch and knob spindles of certain bored locksets,

2. in some combination locks, a tube which houses the spindle, located between the dial ring and the lock

alignment pin

n. the perpendicular projection from a master lever in a master keyed lever tumbler lock, which engages a group of combination levers and moves their gates to align with the fence

all-section key blank

n. the key section which enters all keyways of a multiplex key system


n. the threaded end of a safe door handle

armored face plate

n. a face plate that conceals all lock and/or cylinder mounting screws

associated change key

n. a change key which is related directly to particular master key(s) through the use of constant cuts

associated master key

n. a master key which has particular change keys related directly to its combination through the use of constant cuts

attendant’s key

n. a selective master key used in a hospital keying system

automatic deadbolt

n. a deadbolt designed to extend itself fully when the door is closed

automatic flush bolt

n. a flush bolt designed to extend itself when both leaves of the pair of doors are in the closed position

automatic key machine

n. a machine capable of cutting keys with manual operations limited to loading and unloading keys

auxiliary lock

n. any lock installed in addition to the primary lockset