DISCLAIMER: I cannot stress enough that what works for me may not be what works best for everyone. This is a “take it or leave it” thing!
Admittedly, I love working in the garage but I do not enjoy nor do much work around the house. I love working with cold-hearted metal but do not quite enjoy working with the warmth of wood. Very rarely does mechanic work find its way into handyman work but I believe I found something that does: deadbolt latches.
I went on my usual security round around the house when one of my many deadbolt key locks failed. It did unlock the door but afterwards my key was rotating 360 degrees. The knob was not working either. Argh, it was past closing time for the hardware stores and I could not leave a door unlocked! I had no prior experience with locks but what the hell, rather than boarding up the door or using a deadly booby-trap, I’ve decided to remove it to see if I could repair whatever was wrong. Forgive me if I don’t use the correct words as I am evidently not an expert on locks.
Upon removing the screws and separating the knob from the handle, there was five loose parts laying inside the door hole, seemingly broken. After a few minutes of staring at the damn thing I still couldn’t figure it out what went where. So, using my old trick of disassembling to learn how something works (oh Wabi~Sabi, how good of a teacher you were), I think I got it…
There was two of the little round broken things with what looked liked zipper tabs which seemed broken too. Only one is showing in the pic, I had the other elsewhere, since taking pics of this was an afterthought. Anyhow, the tabs seemed to go in the broken rings, as evidence of breaking was present on both pairs. However, the diameter didn’t match so I figured it that the rings were enlarged by the tumbler turning upon the breakage. I simply used a plier to fix that. Then… how can I repair this shit? Fab new parts? That could have been a viable option but what the hell, let’s see if the magnet sticks to the parts. It did. Heh, maybe I can weld them then!
I’ve had lots of experience welding thin bodywork sheet-metal thanks to Wabi~Sabi so hell, the big welder it is. I used .023″ wire with the lowest possible settings. I was certain that the part would shatter like a burnt fuse. I was very careful so it did not!
I used a small file to match the original shapes. Both went without incident. Then, it was only a matter of putting all of it back together.
Retainer spring back into place and locking tabs re-bent:
Tumbler, slider, and pin re-installed:
Oiled up the whole thing, reinstalled it in the door, and bingo it worked flawlessly without effort!
Don’t be afraid, try stuff, even if it’s unusual or X would (should) work better. Some people may shun the methods when all that is truly important is the end result. The latter always justifies the means for me. Like cutting a car in two not just once but three – errr I meant two times! (damn, I almost spoiled the secret there! /wink) Sure, repairing a deadlock latch was not as challenging as my engine rebuild but it was still fun. As longs as it’s metal, fiberglass, or some sort of polymer, I can find pride in doing things even if it’s not for a car. Similar to when I’ve fabbed metal brackets for shelving in our bedroom. I mean, who the fuck brings a welder for housework? This guy! Haha! I still wouldn’t call myself a true handyman but you could say that I’m a potty-trained and a slipper-wearing mechanic at times…