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Escadrille Ecosse

Spitfire Mk1 Boot Lock Barrels

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As part of the project to make the Spitfire Mk1 suitable for the road again I wanted to get the locks working again and bought a matched set of locks for the ignition, drivers door and boot (there is no external passenger side lock on the Mk1).

All well until I came to sort out the boot lock and the new barrel is a different shape from the old one. Hunting through my stock of bits I found three Spitfire boot handles (none with keys) and all have the same style of lock barrel. I also found a Herald boot handle which ironically does take the new lock barrel but wont fit because the square rod for the latch is too long.

A picture of the handles and barrels is attached. Herald on the left and Spitfire on the right. As can be seen the new lock barrel has a narrow end while the old one had a wider end. Eternally the clue is that the locking pin is square on the Herald lock and round on the Spitfire lock.

Hunting the web I haven't been able to find a lock barrel that will fit my Spitfire boot handles or even any mention that were different types of lock barrel. All the suppliers quote the same 'narrow' type of lock barrel for the Mk1, 2 and 3.

Has anyone come across this before? And is there a solution other than splashing out on a new handle???

 

Spitfire Mk1 Boot Lock Barrels

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Avenues I would explore:

What actually stops the new, narrower lock working in the original handle?  Is it that the new one holds its larger diameter for longer, or (and) that the tumblers are in a different location?  If the former then it may be possible to modify?

Can the square rods be extracted and swapped?  Can't quite be sure from the pic but looks like they may be retained by a simple pin/roll pin and swapping them may allow you to use the Herald handle?

If your old lock barrel is basically intact and the key shutter is still present/working or can be freed off (they usually can), would be worth seeing if the key profile is the same and the key will slide into the lock.  If so, you may well be able to swap the tumblers from one to the other (in the same order obviously) and allow the use of the old lock barrel, retaining your original handle.  This likely the longer shot..... 

If it's just that you don't have a key stopping you using the old barrel, provided you can find a key of the right series (profile), it's easy to swap the tumblers around to give the best fit with your key and then fettle any still proud so the lock works.  Better yet, use the wider selection of tumblers from your other old locks to give a better initial match to minimise the fettling needed

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Hi Nick. Thanks for the response.

My first thought was to use the new cylinder in the old lock but it wont actually fit in. The large diameter on the new lock is longer than that of the old one and the cam on the end is a different size and position.

The new lock is one of the FS series and has the number stamped on the barrel. I wondered about getting a new key for the old lock. but without knowing what series was I didn't know where to start looking. The old one has no markings and the tumblers are slightly closer to the face of the lock although other than that they seem very similar from the outside - however while an FS key goes into the slot it, it is very loose as if the key should be deeper top to bottom.

So on your suggestion I had a go at removing the square rods. Getting the pins out was relatively straightforward after working out they only go one way. Getting the rods out less so, particularly the one from the Herald as they are steel rods in a blind hole in the the pot metal handle. However after a lot of struggle I have managed to extract them both.

20200420_154532.thumb.jpg.6db6eadac2fa7cfca9451f91ef799020.jpg

Most obvious thing is that the drilling for the retaining pin is in a different position - of course it is, although the insertion length for the rod is the same on both handles. The rods appear to be silver steel so drilling a new hole accurately is likely to be a bit of a challenge.

The other thing is that having cleaned them both up I found under the rust some faint stamp marks, presumably key numbers. The Herald is just '915'. The Spitfire one says 'SS215'.

After some searching on the internet I think the Spitfire lock is by Strebor. Key is double sided and looks a bit like the boot key for a Mk4/1500 lock. It would appear that replacement SS keys are still available but not the lock barrels.

Strebor SS key

1171591679_StreborSSkey.thumb.png.59f6b16ef8462f89c997ff81db22d1a6.png

Union FS key

804940158_UnionFSkey.png.b9f078ddcfdb69ed7ad1899d0623c9af.png

 

So plan A is to see if I can get a new key and then see if I can get the lock to work properly. If not then I will have a go a drilling a new hole to swap the rods out and if that fails then it's a new handle I suppose.

Things you learn though. Might be of use to someone else.

 

 

 

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That's interesting - and positive.  Looks like you could swap the square rods fairly easily.  I doubt it's silver steel (too bloody expensive for Triumph!) but may well be something a bit tougher than mild steel.  Good quality drill should still do it though.

Agree that the right key for the original lock is the nicer solution - unless the new lock set all uses the same key?  My Vitesse uses the double sided key for the boot lock and that is Strebor.  My Herald had single sided and it was the same as the door lock which was the same as the ignition lock.  Only the petrol cap was different.  It's possible I modified things to make then the same though - don't remember - I do hate multiple keys though.

https://www.replacementkeys.co.uk/basket/

Random link - not used them myself

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I have had several of those handles in my hands, all had the key-number stamped on the rod. I even managed to get a blank cut by asking a locksmith with the number only. He had them in the computer (in Denmark...) . I have only seen them with FS keys.

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When I restored a mk3 spit in about 1992 I bought a lock set,and I had the same issue. Spoke to Kippings (supplier) and they kindly sent me sent me a good used handle. They explained both types had been used, not a changeover but probably just different suppliers at the time. So best bet is another handle I reckon. Used to be cheap used (doubt that is still the case)

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Thanks gents.

They turn up on ebay occasionally but usually without keys so not clear which type they are and guys selling them can't/won't say. I did get one without a key a while ago for a fiver delivered. Seemed worth a punt but was yet another of the Strebor ones.

There are two on there at the moment. New one for £50 with keys which looks like it might be the right one. Another one going for auction which definitely is the wrong part!!

Rimmers have them listed for £38 but none in stock at the moment :(

We'll see. Having matching keys is very convenient. And as I have a set of these it might be as well to stump up the extra for the new handle. Although the quality of the new brightwork never seems to be as good as the 50 year old stuff.

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You're right about the brightwork quality, though fortunately most of our cars no longer have to suffer the winter months and salt on the roads - so the "flash chrome" lasts OK.

.....though I'm a fan of the used look, I'm certainly not a show car owner!

 

 

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I agree with preferring the slightly used look. :biggrin:

I have found a replacement key for the Strebor lock and it's in the post although with all that's going on the Post Office are having to do an epic job to keep up.

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4 hours ago, Escadrille Ecosse said:

Key arrived just before lunch. New old stock and works perfectly.

Sorted.

A happy ending :smile:

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Been through that on my Vitesse 6.

I recently keyed all the locks alike to a FS key I had two of.
You cannot mix and match parts between the two different types (square pin and round pin)of boot latches as the castings are different.
Luckily I had a decent supply of the various locks and handles but ended up having to cut one of the boot locks to release the barrel that I wanted.

Adrian

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