Keys locked inside the car? The Bushcraft solution

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BOD

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
My early onset Alzheimer’s led me to leave the keys inside my locked 1980’s Subaru. It was infuriating as the key was turned and draining the battery.

Not sure if I am explaining this adequately but the Subaru doesn’t have a knob on the window edge and there is a guard rail over the window so you can’t slip in a wire from above. So it was either breaking a window or calling out a locksmith. But you can slip something in from the side but the “locking rocker” lock is pretty much inaccessible.


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Parts are hard to find for this old model and I’m poor anyway so I thought, in the absence of wire that I had to fall back on bushcraft and not gadgets.

So what you need is a Mora, a wood chisel from a still incomplete carving project to use as a pry bar and a fire-hardened sapling. Wood can’t be easily bent like metal so the fire hardened sapling hardened on one side will curve and twist in a bending spiral that will have the same effect as bent metal so I can come in the side.


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Split the sapling using the standard bush craft method making sure the split runs centrally for the entire length. Smooth the surface of the spilt and bevel the edge of the split pole so the edge does not cut the rubber. Keep the shavings for lighting the BBQ later.

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Pry chisel the window open and push in the end, letting the spiral rotate the wood half pole till the tip is next to the rocker knob for the door lock. Bit fiddly but after a few tries I pushed the wood, the knob rocked to red and the door was open.



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No doubt there are better ways to do this but it was comforting using bushie tools and more fun. It was also a way of showing the kids that BC can be used in the modern world.
 
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sasquatch

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Jun 15, 2008
2,812
0
44
Northampton
Thanks for the tip. As your Subaru is on a different continent it's safe from me...the amount of times I had to break into my GMC pick up truck in Canada was ridiculous, my dog used to lock the doors on me all the time with him inside. Fortunately it didn't take any effort whatsoever to gain acess through the sliding back window. Nice to apply some lateral bushcraft thinking to every day life! Well done.
 

Harvestman

Bushcrafter through and through
May 11, 2007
8,656
4
52
Pontypool, Wales, Uk
I had a Skoda fabia, which was manual locking, and the boot release was in the driver footwell. I lost count of the number of times I released the boot, got out of the car, locked the door, opened the boot, took off my coat (into which I had just dropped my keys), put my coat in the boot, closed the boot, and then realised that I had just locked my keys in the car. :slap:

Good skills mate.

Now we can start a new thread - cars you have broken into using bushy skills (probably best only to post about when it was your own car :rolleyes:)
 

British Red

M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)
Dec 30, 2005
25,643
563
Mercia
Awesome stuff Bod. As for breaking in "bushy style", does starting a Ford Cortina with the screwdriver on a SAK count? Mind you, any screwdriver worked!
 

capt.dunc

Forager
Oct 11, 2011
100
0
dundee
a nice take on the classic across the car tool. did it go on the barbecue as well, or is it in your shed hanging around in a collection of useful sticks?
 

BeerHunter

Tenderfoot
Jul 12, 2012
78
0
England
Good work! The last time (a few years ago now) I had to "rescue" keys from inside a locked car, it was in a public car park. The car in the next bay conveniently had a bent coat hanger for an aeriel (never seem to see that these days??), which was borrowed, and did the job admirably.

Not as clever as your efforts!
 

santaman2000

M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)
Jan 15, 2011
16,849
1,061
64
Florida
Not too far different from what the tow services use; a plastic (or sometimes pneaumatic) wedge to pry the door ajar so they can reach inside with a bar.
 

Scots_Charles_River

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Dec 12, 2006
3,243
14
paddling a loch
www.flickr.com
My car automatically locks the doors.... If you open the cars with the fob, then lay the keys on the seat and shut the door, within a few secs it locks !

Did this in August after getting back to the car after Sea Kayaking, then doh !

The Greenflag were there in no time and the guy said you are not supposed to see what he did, won't repeat it here. A friend who is an Autoelectrician said it happens a lot.
 
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Wook

Settler
Jun 24, 2012
688
3
Angus, Scotland
I thought the bushcraft solution would have been to smash the door to pieces with a splitting maul. :lmao:

Yours is maybe a better idea.....:cool:
 

Harvestman

Bushcrafter through and through
May 11, 2007
8,656
4
52
Pontypool, Wales, Uk
I thought the bushcraft solution would have been to smash the door to pieces with a splitting maul. :lmao:

Nothing so sophisticated. Who carries a splitting maul? It would probably be left locked in the car.

No, the real bushy solution is to punch your knife into the bodywork, and then batten it until you have cut a hole in the door. Then you release the lock, fill the hole with a mixture of charcoal and pine resin, and away you go.

:)
 

santaman2000

M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)
Jan 15, 2011
16,849
1,061
64
Florida
If it's a newer car you could also call NavStar and give them your code so they will unlock it remotely via sattelite.
 

jacko1066

Native
May 22, 2011
1,689
0
march, cambs
You can actually buy lock out kits from some motoring stores as strange as it sounds.
I had to have 1 when I worked for green flag.
All you really need though is a wedge made of wood or nylon and a small air bag.
Pop the wedge in the top of the door and slip the air bag in the gap and pump it up slowly levering the top of the door out with enough room to get a coat hanger etc in there.

Modern car are dead locked so its very much trial and error as to what will undo them, some have a button tht can be pressed inside that will open the doors, some can be accessed via the boot release etc.
It can be challenging to say the least!!
 

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