What are Cam Locks? The fast and simple answer is a small lock that has a “Locking Cam” attached to the back. These locks come in a variety of sizes, shapes and configurations and prices from about $.80 for a small mechanical cam lock to $150.00 for an electronic cam lock. Where have you seen or used a cam lock: tool boxes, mail boxes, vehicle glove compartments, vending machines, slot machines, desks, cabinets and lockers, to name a few.
That’s a lot of information in a few sentences. Let me explain this a little further. The Locking Cam on the rear of the cam lock is usually made of steel and can be straight, offset or hook. It can really have any design so that when the key is inserted into the lock and turned the locking cam will lock or unlock whatever it’s mounted on.
Below is a list of some popular cam lock styles:
- Single Bitted – this is where the key is cut on one side
- Double Bitted – this is where the key is cut on two sides
- Tubular – this is where the key has a round or tubular design
- High Security – these are cam locks manufactured by CobraLock, Abloy or Medeco and have a lock and key design that hold a U.S. patent
- Electronic Cam Lock – the lock and key are electronic which provide a much higher level of security
- Can be made of steel, brass, zinc alloy and plastic
- Come in sizes ranging from 3/8” to over 2” in length
- Can be constructed so the lock core is removable
- Can turn either left or right, either 90 or 180 degrees
- Multiple diameters can be made (the standard is ¾”)
- Can be keyed alike, keyed different or master keyed
- Can be made in electronic versions
As you can see, the cam lock is probably one of the most versatile locks ever made. Over the years, the designs have changed and evolved, the materials have improved and the security has increased. One thing has remained the same; all cam locks operate a locking cam: this is the definition of a cam lock.
The Cam Lock really is the Lock you use every day.
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