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Who Were the Most Famous Security Innovators of All Times?

Most of us take the security of our homes for granted until someone manages to violate it by breaking into our homes, taking off with something valuable, and leaving us feeling more vulnerable than ever. These are the times when we truly appreciate the power and importance of a quality lock that could have made the difference between a safe home and one that was so apparently easy to break into.  Today we are going to reveal to you the amazing skills, talent, and dedication of the skilled innovators that will forever remain high up on the pedestals of the locksmithing and security industry. Most of the locksmithing innovators we will enumerate in the lines below will continue to live through their valuable work that is still a constant in our lives even today.

Here are some of the most prominent top security innovators of all times that we have all at least heard of, but probably never truly knew what had made them so popular.

Linus Yale Jr. & Linus Yale Sr. - Fathers Of The Combination Lock

Linus Yale Jr. was born in Salisbury, New York and he was the son of famous inventor Linus Yale Sr., best known for having spent thousands of hours tinkering and inventing:

  • the first bank locks
  • sawmill head blocks
  • a millstone procedure
  • the pioneer modern lock that relied on the pin tumbler mechanism.

Yale Sr. patented the tumbler lock and continued to work on high-security locks for banking institutions. He began selling these locks via the Yale Lock Shop in Newport.

Linus Yale Jr. - Artistic Creativity vs Problem-Solving Inclinationslocksmith inventions

Linus Jr. spent his early years as an adult expressing his love for art. He started painting and his dream was to become a popular portraitist. However, when his father passed away in 1850, he decided to get directly involved in the family business. He started by tending the lock shop that his father had opened three years earlier, then decided to open up his own shop in Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts.

While he didn't entirely give up his artistic inclinations, he was also showing a very powerful impulse triggered by the left side of his brain responsible for solving issues. He eventually decided to dedicate all his time and attention to traditional locks and the way they could be picked open. He was particularly concerned about the vulnerability of keyholes were showing, and he eventually managed to invent a new design for them just one year later, in 1851.

The Yale Infallible Bank Lock 

The new and sturdier lock was named the "Yale Infallible Bank Lock" and it was used on bank vaults and safes. The lock was a combination model that was created by the owner and a keyhole embedded into the door, protected behind a plate made of steel.  His incredible work did not stop there, as Yale Jr. kept designing new and safer locks that opened by key. Eventually, he created the combination lock by relying on the old design invented by his father, which he then improved by incorporating a flat key small in size, featuring edges that were jagged. When the key was introduced into the keyhole, it would cause two different pin sets to move and get into the correct position so that would open the lock once the key was turned.  In 1865, his lock was patented, and he eventually invented the Yale cylinder lock as we all know it today, an irrefutable milestone of the locksmithing industry.

Jeremiah Chubb's Detector Lock

The so-called Chubb detector lock was a lever tumbler model that featured a relocker that could prevent unauthorized persons from gaining access to a room or building. The same detector would also tell the owner of the lock whenever someone had tried to pick the lock or use the incorrect key in an attempt un unlock it. Chubb's lock was manufactured in such a way so it would jam when locked until the rightful regulator key was used, or until the original key was introduced into the keyway and effectively turned. The owner would once again know that someone has tried to tamper with his or her lock.

Joseph Braham's H-Cut Lever

Joseph Bramah brought the definition of the word “inventor” to a whole different level. He made remarkable contributions towards the creation of the hydraulic press, and he also improved the “water closet” designs. The lever lock that Robert Barron had designed before him inspired him to create an improved version of this lock. He decided to cut the letter H alongside the lever so it would strengthen the sturdiness of the lock and make it withstand break-in attempts.

Robert Barron Invented The Double-Acting Lever Lock

This lock first introduced the idea of using just a single key to manage access and it helped ease people's concerns regarding how insecure locks were considered. Up to the point when Barron patented his lock, people believed that anyone was able to pick a lock, as long as they possessed a minimum understanding of the way the lock worked. Robert's patent introduced people to the concept of using a key that would lift the lock's lever while gripping the bolt and pulling it backwards, so the lock would open.

Marc Weber Tobias Studied Flaws In Locks

Like many of today's professional locksmiths, Marc Weber took an interest in searching for flaws in locks and various security systems, identifying their weaknesses and helping improve their specific testing parameters. He managed to bring serious improvements to the Medeco brand of locks and continued to let lock and security companies know how critical it was to use better testing parameters.  

These are just a few of the most important locksmithing inventors and influencers of all times that have served as inspirations for the current top security locks and protection system we all use today to keep our homes and businesses safe. For more information on the most famous security innovations or emergency security solutions, contact us today.