It is really difficult to give a definitive answer as to how many generations of a key copy can be made. There are very many variables that come into play that make it nearly impossible to answer this question with any amount of accuracy.
We should start by explaining what the term “Generation” is and what it defines. Suppose that you buy a new lock and install it on your door. The lock comes with only two keys but you require three. You go to a mom and pop store or perhaps a hardware or big box store to get the key to your new lock duplicated. The duplicate key is the second generation of the original or first generation key that was supplied with your new lock set. Then, if you were to have the second generation key copied, the copy of that key would become the third generation copy of the original key supplied with your new lock. And so it carries on in that manner for each previous generation of key being used to cut the next generation key.
Getting back to the question at hand, provided that the key machine that duplicates the key is set up to be spot on, you should be able to make at least three generations of keys and still be able to have each generation operate the lock. The problem does exist however, where the store that you are having the key duplicated at is not all that accurate at the set up of their key cutting machine. Perhaps it was set up by a teenager who had a quick run through on how to set a key machine up and that person does not pay much attention to detail. Possibly the key cutting machine has not been set up in a long time and is dearly in need of an accurate set up. As We stated earlier, there are so many variables that it is difficult to provide a definitive answer to this question.
The main questions that this brings up
- When was the last time that the key machine that will duplicate the key for you set up?
- Are you providing an original key that was supplied with your lock to make a copy of the key?
- If you are supplying a non-original key then do you know how many generations the key is?
Are you aware that an originally supplied key from the lock manufacturer will make the very best possible copies of your key? You can tell an original lock manufacturer because, aside from the lock manufacturer logo, there should be a five or six digit number stamped into your key. The digits that are stamped into your key represent the cuts in the key. A five digit number will indicate five ciuts in the key and a six digit number, six cuts.
Remember, for the best possible duplicate key, always try to supply the key that came with the lock from the manufacturer.
Security Article Written by: Toronto Locksmith
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