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Hidden magnetic closet lock

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#1 seymoor



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Posted 21 July 2008 - 03:43 PM

I guess most of us needs to lock a closet or cabinet but the lock itself can be suspicious.

This lock can be made from scratch, can not be seen from the outside, but still can be opened and closed from the outside.

The main ingredients are

-two strong magnets (magnets from hard drive works well, see HERE how to get it)
-a latch type lock or a tube with a fitting rod
-some wood for easier installation, screws for fitting, drill to drill a hole, some string.

This is the lock itself. The latch had to be modified so the rod can move freely. What basically left is a rod in a tube, fixed to the door.
Notice that the magnet is fixed only at one point with a screw, so it can only move around that point.

This is how it looks when taken apart.

The other stuff you see like the spongy stuff on the tube is there to keep the light inside.

Since the magnet is attached to the rod with a piece of fishing line, it can open and close the latch, by pulling it up, or by let it to fall.



When closed, the latch falls into a hole inside the cabinet.

One of the holes was wrong positioned, that's why there are 2 of them.
When the latch falls into the hole it keeps the door in place.

The latch can even be parked on the top:

All of these things can be done from the outside by placing an other magnet to the right place on the other side of the door and moving it to the right direction.

The magnet outside will stick to the magnet inside (depending on the thickness of the door between them, how strong are the magnets, and the shape of the magnet also) and can easily move the inner magnet so it can

-pull up the latch to open,
-let it fall to close
-park the latch by pulling it way up.

With the magnets I have (scavenged from hard drives) and door thickness(1.7cm (0.67 inch)) the outer magnet sticks on the door so the parking function is not needed.

An other shot from a side view

If something is not clear or in case of any questions, please feel free to ask here or by PM.

Hope this will be usefull for someone.
It saved my life once, hope it will save your's as well.
Good luck!


-Make and try your setup on a piece of cardboard first, so when you have the right sized string and a proper magnet position you can move the whole thing to the door, fix it there, then simply tear away the cardboard.

-Not every magnet behaves the same way, even if their shape is similar it is possible that one will open the lock but the other will not. You will have to look for a similar shaped magnet but with opposite magnetic poles.

-Slightly modified setup can overcome this easily, for example by fixing the ("keyhole")magnet to the (non magnetic)rod you can transfer more power even with smaller magnets, and the inner magnet will not have to be fixed with a screw to the door.

-Maybe a magnetic , or even an iron rod would work with a given door thickness and the right positioning.

-Do not leave the key magnet inside the closet. (tested:weedpoke:)

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#2 seymoor



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Posted 21 July 2008 - 03:46 PM

Please let me know if it's not understande-able.
Posted here to fashion it first, but it seems that I cannot move this to anywhere else, easily.

#3 Ben Dover

Ben Dover

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Posted 21 July 2008 - 04:52 PM


Nice work.

I'm looking into doing something like that. I just need to
find magnets to move a piece of thick metal conduit thats
a weights pound or two.

#4 spacecake



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Posted 21 July 2008 - 05:19 PM

..Moved it for yah... :rasta:

#5 hungryjim



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Posted 21 July 2008 - 11:22 PM

...this isn't spam, it's not a plug and I have no affiliation with this company. BUT, if you know ANY woodworking skills, have some time, and some loot, check out Helluva lotta good ideas for clandestine stash spots...(but they wanna send their own contractors, and they charge an arm and two f**kin' legs).

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