How to Pin a Schlage LFIC Core: Developing Your Locksmithing Skills


We’re glad you’re here to learn how to pin a Schlage LFIC (Large Format Interchangeable Core) lock in its entirety. You’ve reached the right site if you’re interested in locksmithing or just want to learn how to work with and rekey a Schlage LFIC core. We will go into the details of this procedure in this article, giving you detailed directions, professional pointers, and insightful information. By the conclusion, you’ll have the information and self-assurance needed to approach this assignment with the expertise of an experienced expert. So let’s get started!


How to Pin a Schlage LFIC Core


What is a Schlage LFIC Core?

An interchangeable lock core of the Schlage LFIC variety is frequently used in business settings. Without removing the lock mechanism altogether, LFIC cores enable quick removal and replacement of the lock core. They are incredibly practical in circumstances where key changes or rekeying are regularly necessary because of this feature. You can effectively modify and rekey these locks if you know how to pin a Schlage LFIC core.


Tools Required for Pinning a Schlage LFIC Core

Let’s make sure you have the tools you need to finish the assignment properly before we get started. These are the key devices you’ll require:


  • Plug Follower
  • Key Decoder
  • Pinning Tweezers
  • Pinning Kit
  • Plug Retaining Clip Remover
  • Small Screwdriver
  • C-Clip Remover
  • Key Cutting Machine (optional, for duplicating keys)
  • Having these tools readily available will streamline the pinning process and make your job much easier.


How to Pin a Schlage LFIC Core


Knowledge of the Pinning System

Understanding the pinning mechanism employed in these locks is vital if you want to pin a Schlage LFIC core correctly. The two-step pinning procedure used by LFIC cores consists of bottom pins and master pins. The master pins enable multiple keys to open the lock, while the bottom pins sit between the key and the driver pins.

Because they may be altered to correspond with various key combinations, master pins are what make the LFIC core interchangeable. You can rekey the lock to accept a new key or establish a master key system by adjusting the bottom pins and master pins.


Removing the Core

The LFIC core must first be taken out of the lock. The control key must be inserted into the core and turned clockwise to the 90-degree position. This unique key often has a bigger head. By doing so, the sidebar will be lined up with the sidebar recess in the lock body.

Next, press the retaining pin while carefully removing the core from the lock body by inserting a small screwdriver into the opening on the rear of the core. Be careful not to use too much force or risk damaging the core.


Disassembling the Core

You’ll need to disassemble it after the core has been taken out in order to get to the pins. Push the plug out of the core housing with a plug follower. You can do this to expose the pins and detach the plug from the core.


Decoding the Existing Pins

The current keying combination must be ascertained by decoding the existing pins before you can begin pinning the core. Utilize a key decoder, a particular instrument made to read the incisions on key pins. Read the corresponding pin height by inserting the decoder into each chamber of the plug.

As you decipher each chamber, note the pin heights and where they are located. The desired pinning combination can be determined using this information.


How to Pin a Schlage LFIC Core


Determining the Desired Pinning Combination

You can choose the desired pinning configuration now that you are aware of the present pinning setup. Understanding the appropriate pinning combination is essential whether you’re changing the lock’s key or making a master key system.

Determine the cuts required for each chamber to create the desired combination by using the decoded pin heights. Don’t forget to take the master pins into account.


Pinning the Core

Carefully place the bottom pins and master pins into their appropriate chambers according to the specified pinning combination using pinning tweezers and a pinning kit. Spend some time making sure that every pin is positioned correctly and at the proper height.

Double-check your work as you pin each chamber to be sure it is accurate. Any misaligned pins can cause the lock to malfunction or improperly accept the key.


Reassembling the Core

Reassembling the core is necessary after every pin has been inserted. Slide the plug back in by lining it up with the core housing. Make that the top pins are in line with the housing’s pin chambers.

Guide the plug back into the core housing using the plug follower until it is completely seated. The core ought to be finished assembling and prepared for reinsertion into the lock at this stage.


Expert Tips for Successful Pinning 


Practice on spare cores: It’s a good idea to practice on spare cores before working on client locks if you’re new to pinning Schlage LFIC cores. You will become more comfortable with the procedure and confident in your abilities as a result.

Keep spare pins on hand: Always keeping extra pins on hand is a good idea. Having extra pins will help you save time and ensure that you can finish the pinning process without interruptions in case you make any errors or need to make corrections.

Pay attention to key alignment: Assemble the core again, paying attention to how the keyway is positioned. The key may not turn smoothly or operate the lock properly due to misalignment.

Verify functionality: Test the lock with the new key to make sure it works properly after the core has been put back together and inside the lock. Verify that the pins are in working order, the key rotates easily, and the lock engages and disengages correctly.

You’ll have a better chance of properly pinning a Schlage LFIC core and getting the outcomes you want if you adhere to this professional advice.


How to Pin a Schlage LFIC Core


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


Can I rekey a Schlage LFIC core without special tools?

Typically, rekeying a Schlage LFIC core requires specialist equipment made just for locksmithing jobs. It is technically possible to make do or use different tools, but it is strongly advised to use the right tools to ensure precision and avoid harming the lock.

How long does it take to pin a Schlage LFIC core?

Several variables, including your level of experience, the intricacy of the keying system, and the number of chambers to be pinned, can affect how long it takes to pin a Schlage LFIC core. A professional locksmith may often finish the procedure in 10 to 20 minutes for each core.

Are there any risks involved in pinning a Schlage LFIC core?

There are several inherent hazards when pinning a Schlage LFIC core, particularly if you are a novice or unaccustomed to the procedure. Lock breakdowns or damage can result from improper pin handling or poor pinning practices. It’s crucial to proceed with caution, test your ideas on extra cores, and, if you’re unsure, think about consulting a specialist.

Can I reuse the existing pins when rekeying a Schlage LFIC core?

Rekeying a Schlage LFIC core often does not recommend using the original pins. This is due to the possibility that the current pins are worn out or do not line up with the required pinning arrangement. In order to maintain good operation and security, it is best to use brand-new pins from a pinning kit.

Is it possible to master pin a Schlage LFIC core?

A Schlage LFIC core can be master-pinned, hence the answer is yes. You can design a system where a single key can open several locks by using master pinning. You can make a hierarchy of keys that provide access at various levels by altering the master pins.

What other locks can be rekeyed using similar techniques?

Other locks with interchangeable cores, such as Best, Arrow, or Sargent locks, can also be picked using the same methods used to pick a Schlage LFIC core. Although there could be a few minor differences, the fundamental ideas are the same.



Congratulations! Now that you know how to pin a Schlage LFIC core like a pro, you may call yourself a locksmith. You have gained the knowledge and abilities necessary to successfully operate and rekey Schlage LFIC cores by carefully following the step-by-step instructions, bearing in mind professional advice, and comprehending the pinning system.

Keep in mind that perfecting the technique of pinning involves patience and practice. You’ll become more adept and effective at this locksmithing approach as you gain experience.

Explore the countless possibilities of Schlage LFIC core pinning to unlock your locksmithing potential. You may master this fascinating subject with time, effort, and enthusiasm for the work.