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A Phoenix Locksmith Blog

The Life of a Locksmith, this blog follows the owner and locksmith of Andrews Lock and Key around the Phoenix metro area servicing Mesa, Scottsdale, Tempe, Gilbert, and Chandler 24 hour a day 7 days a week with scheduled calls and emergency calls.Check us out every Sunday on Independent Talk 1100 KFNX at 11:00 AM on 1100 AM radio.  

I met a scammer locksmith today

So today was kind of an irritating day but very informative. From day to day I basicly just disassemble and reassemble locks as well as rekey them and work on picking the locks. I am getting pretty decent at rebuilding residential locks but picking them is another story. I still haven’t been able to pick locks as fast as Andrew, if I am even able to pick them at all. He keeps telling me it will come and I know he has been doing this a lot longer than me but I still beat my self up about not picking locks very well.

So today I am in the van at the shop working on a few locks and a colleague of Andrew's showed up to the shop. We will call him Mark for anonymities sake. He was kind of stand offish toward me but he and Andrew started talking about locksmithing stuff. I didn’t pay super close attention; I mostly wanted to finish building these locks and start trying to pick them. After a few minutes they both came outside and we all started chatting about different jobs we all had been on and seen. Mostly Andrew and "Mark" were chatting; I was mostly just nodding, agreeing, and laughing when appropriate.  After a few minutes I realized "Mark" didn’t really have a lot of experience locksmithing, barely more than me.

Andrew was talking to him about working for the scammers and how they did things. After a few more minutes "Mark" got a call he had to run on. He bragged about how he was going to scam a few hundred dollars out of this little old lady and then took off. After he left and seeing how pissed off I appeared Andrew sat me down and filled me in on who this kid was and why he brought him around. Basically this kid was interested in becoming a locksmith, found an ad saying he could make over $100k a year as a locksmith and went in. They gave him a phone, some tools, and a stocked truck and said good luck.

So in all actuality he didn’t really have much more experience than I did. Andrew was trying to pick his brain to figure out how the scammers have such a high call volume and also wants to try and help "Mark" learn this industry the right way... like he has been showing me. I was still pretty mad but it made a lot more sense to me now. On the one hand this guy has no more experience than I do and is making a lot more money than I am right now. The downfall is that he has no real respect for the trade and doesn’t know how to take care of the customers. I guess the old saying "slow and steady wins the race" is something I will have to remember.


500 key pickup

Ryan 500 Key PickupOne thing the other techs are always talking about is "locksmith bootcamp" and how lucky I am to not have to go through the training they did. They always talk about locking each other in bathrooms with difficult locks to pick. Another thing they always talk about is "500 key pick up". Basically it’s a good way to help with key identification which I guess is pretty important for a locksmith. I got my first taste of that game today. Andrew decided to "accidently" knock over the key rack this morning. A few hundred keys dumped all over the floor. His response? "Well good thing I wanted to ring those up and put them in the new truck." awesome... So guess who got to sit in the warehouse sorting keys for two days? You guessed it, this guy right here. But it did pay off. A customer came by the shop to get a duplicate key made for his truck. I got handed the key and knew exactly which key blank we needed. I have been having a much easier time with finding keys for different locks and ignitions.

Allow me to introduce myself...

Hello blogging world. My name is Ryan. I am 31 years old and I live in Mesa, AZ. I recently decided to take on an apprenticeship with Andrews Lock and Key as a locksmith apprentice. So a quick(ish) background on me. I worked in the corporate environment for most of my life in a few different positions. Before that I went to school part time and worked for my mom as a dispatcher for one of the larger plumbing companies in town. I was always pretty unhappy in the corporate world. About three years ago I decided to leave that life and go back to school. I have been going to school full time and part time as money allows for the past three years and been driving a cab to pay the bills. In April of this year (2015) I was given the opportunity to take on a unique apprenticeship with Andrews Lock and Key as a locksmith apprentice. I have known the owner for several years and helped out around the recording studio he owns Underdog Studios as well. So this blog is going to be mainly focused around what I learn as an apprentice and hopefully help educate others about this industry and maybe you will see some posts about other aspects of my life. I am an avid gamer, motorsports enthusiast, and enjoy playing bass. So sit back and enjoy the show lol.

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Locksmith Reviews & Testimonials

At My Place In Less Than 20 Minutes

5-starsout of 5 stars

I misplaced my key - had to get my business opened on time - I called Andrew and he was at my place in less then 20 minutes. He re-keyed my lock, and I was able to open my business ontime. He gave me a FB discount as well as a Military Discount! Great Job! Professional. I recommend this company to everyone!

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