Restoration and repair of antique vintage locks is a very specialist area of locksmithing, if you need a old lock restoring to its original state a locksmith who is an expert with vintage/antique locks will be able to help.
Locksmiths don’t only repair new locks, they also work with old vintage locks, especially those who are master locksmiths approved by the MLA.
Antique Locks Repair & Restoration
Most antique locks will have been handmade, so you will be unable to buy parts, or easily find donor locks so the locksmith will more often than not need to make their own parts.
Common vintage locks that can be restored include:
- Church locks
- Heritage Property locks (e.g. listed buildings)
- Old door locks
- Old Cabinet locks
- Old furniture desk and drawers
- Old safe locks
Some very valuable locks may need some specialised attention.
My Antique Lock is Broken
Things like springs that need replacing are relatively simple jobs for expert locksmiths, but if parts are broken or missing then making parts using machinery like a lathe and hand tools will be necessary.
Common repair and restoration problems that be fixed are:
- Mechanical problems
- Lock is jammed and not working anymore
- Improving cosmetic look of lock ( i.e rust )
- Cracks or breaks in the lock
- Part needs replacing
Antique Safe Locks & Keys
If you have an old safe, keys and locks can also be made for vintage safes.
Can’t open the safe? A locksmith will be able to open the safe as well and make a new key or change the lock for your safe.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How long to restore & repair an Antique Lock?
Time is a very difficult thing to judge on restoring or repairing a vintage lock, something that’s usually handmade.
These types of jobs are very labour intensive, not only working on them, but making new parts by hand that are just not available to buy “off the shelf”.
Each job is unique, it could take a day or even weeks. We recommend contacting your nearest MLA approved locksmith who can give you a quote.
2. What is the cost to restore or repair a Antique Lock?
The price of repairing or restoring antique locks is very hard to calculate as this kind of work is very labour intensive & taking significant time.
Making things by hand is also expensive, time-consuming and a very skilled job, below are some factors to consider regarding the price:
- 1. Usually the cost of the labour and parts is far outweighed by the value of the lock itself.
- 2. Many antique locks are extremely valuable, worth many many thousands of pounds.
- 3. Some vintage locks also have sentimental/historical value that can’t have a price put on them.
- 4. Also, some buildings listed status may mean that no new/modern products can be fitted.
Please see our locksmith price guide to details of costs and also a pricelist checklist.
3. Can a locksmith cut a Antique Key for my lock?
Most locksmiths can also cut antique keys to fit the old lock you are having restored or repaired.
A skilled locksmith will be able to make a key by hand, some can even make a key just from a picture.
For Antique & Vintage Locks
Below are examples of antique locks and keys some of our members have restored and repaired.