Electric keypad seems to be working. However, the handle is broken and won't pull the bolts back. Handle spins. How do I get in the safe without damaging it too bad where it can be fixed.
Hi. I've been a locksmith for 36 years. First ten years in the USAF, 3 years working for a local locksmith shop and the remainder at the local University.
If your safe is small enough, try laying it on it's back, thereby relieving most of the effects of gravity on the bolt work. If the handle is simply installed too loosely to engage the mechanism, this should help.
"Punch in" the combo, listen for verification of acceptance, (if electronic) or stopping of the dial at the correct position (if mechanical), then with the safe on it's back, slowly, quickly, pulling, pushing, whatever motion works, try retracting the bolts.
If you run out of faith that this is going to work, the second method is to drill down the middle of the handle directly into the safe mechanism. You should be able to do this with a simple electric drill and a 1/4 inch bit (or so). The material you will be drilling into is not hardened.
Drill until the tip of the bit is within the safe door (but still inside the handle's center). Stop and check with a flashlight to see if you have an empty hole or can make out other pieces of metal attached to the handle inside the safe. If empty, try drilling in increments until you can see a roll pin or something like it passing through the handle's spindle. At this point, try gently (or not too gently) turning with a flat-bladed screwdriver or other tool as appropriate to the task.
What you are trying to accomplish is to grab hold of whatever mechanism the handle is supposed to be attached firmly and turning it, bypassing the use of the handle. The ruined handle can be replaced fairly cheaply, or just tightened and capped to look like it was always that way. (note: if you get it open, tighten everything and make it work without replacing the handle, don't worry, the locking mechanism is the thing that still works just fine and will still keep your safe safe. The handle is just for turning bolts and will be just as secure with a hole in it as it would be if it were new.
Opening these things are not easy and patience is one of your most useful tools.
If push comes to shove, tearing the thing to shreds is the only remaining option. (Of course, your local Locksmith Shop may be of help, too.
The Old Man
By the way, Be safe! Us eye protection and watch out for heat build-up while drilling.
Jan 27, 2016 |