Key & Lock Glossary
A key from a key manufacturer and not from a vehicle manufacturer. It is also called a replacement key or non-original key.
A cut in the blade of the key. With a traditional key for each bit the depth and the distance to the shoulder is specified. These specifications are recorded in a bitting chart.
The bow is the wide part of the key, where it is held.
The brand mark indicates the manufacturer that is supplying the key in the market. This can either be a vehicle manufacturer or a key manufacturer. Almost always will the key bare either the name or logo of the manufacturer.
Making incisions (bits) in a key blank. When an already cut key is used then we speak of "key duplication". It is also possible to get a working key by cutting it to a key code.
A key blank is a key without incisions. A key blank needs to be cut before it can be used. Each blank has its own unique key blank number.
key blank number
The key blank number is usually - in spite of the name - a combination of numbers and letters. The key blank number is stamped onto the keyhead during production. The blank number consists of raised lettering. Not every key has a key blank number stamped onto it. Characters that are engraved, scratched or hewn in usually do not represent the blank number.
To understand the key code is good to understand how a lock is manufactured. A final step in the production process is placing the pins or wafers. The lengths of these pins/wafers determine how deep the key should be cut. These lengths contribute to the key code.
A company that produces aftermarket keys. Aftermarket vehicle keys are usually from one of these manufacturers: Börkey, Curtis, DL (Dominion Lock), Errebi, Ilco, JMA, Kis, Mr Minit, Orion, Silca or Taylor.
The keyblade is part of the key that is inserted into the keyhole.
Locks are keyed alike if they can be opened with one and the same key. The locks have the same keyhole and are coded identically.
A key supplied by a vehicle manufacturer. It is also called an OEM key (original equipement manufacturer). See also aftermarket key.
The plug is the cylindrical part of a cylinderlock, containing the keyhole. Using the right key makes it possible to rotate the plug in the shell.
Recoding modifies the lock, such that it can only be opened with a key that is cut differently. The old key no longer works. Recoding does not change which key blank is needed.
The remote control is an electrical circuit in the keyhead which allows you to open the car doors remotely. It is fully independent from the transponder chip that if often also present in the head of modern keys.
The shell is the lock's non-moving housing that contains the plug.
The shoulder is the extrusion on the blade of the key. The shoulder ensures that the key is inserted into the keyhole to the correct depth.
The tip is the part of the key that is inserted into the keyhole first.
The ignition lock and the antenna are independent and separate parts.