Usually, cutaway locks are very nice to look at, they show the features of advanced locks, and they also require a lot of effort and skill to make them.
Not this one...
When I tried to pick a American Series 2000 padlock (which I originally bought because I liked the heavy construction with no boltcutter access), I became quickly frustrated with this 6 pin lock.
The keyway is wide open (unlike on most German locks), but I simply couldn't feel the shear line.
So I removed the pins just to find that they are nearly all serrated, even the bottom pins, except for the shortest ones, and (of course) that the last 4 top pins are spools (but even serrated spools):
I also tried an electric pickgun, because that's one of the few locks I found in my collection with a wide enough keyway, where the momentum-transfer-principle should at least in theory work... It didn't, probably, because I don't have enough training.
Anyway, I thought:
If I want to know what's going on on in this lock, I have to look inside, while picking it.
And then came the part that was so surprisingly easy that I really want to share it with you.
Here's the whole lock (already in the "cutaway" state):
And here is a closeup of the cylinder with a clear view on the pins:
Note that you can't see the shear line, as you can with some other cutaway locks, but I think that's actually an advantage, because the feeling of the binding pins is unchanged - it might be changed if part of the lock is cut away at the shear line.
What you can however see is the position of the pins, in the last picture they are all aligned. Now I was able to compare my 'feeling' to the actual position of the pins.
And it was SOOOOO easy to make:
1) Remove the plug and subsequently the pins and springs.
2) Use a metal file to file down the side of the lock, until you can see the positions of the pins - when the metal around the pin holes is thin enough, you will see it. However, you can't file it away properly, because it's too thin and will just bend below the file. Anyway,
3) once you can see the shape of the pin holes (rectangular, because you look at the side of them), put the uncut side of a drill bit inside the pin holes, to bend the thin metal to the outside again, then file it down a little bit more.
4) Now the metal around the pin holes should be thin enough, and you can cut it away with a knife or something similar, leaving rectangular openings that are of course thinner that the pins. If they were a wide as the pins, you would have filed too much, and the pins wouldn't hold in the lock anymore.
5) Use the drill bit (the side that's cut) to make sure the pin holes are clean inside
6) Insert the springs & pins & plug again - and:
Have fun with your new practice lock!
It helped me a lot to be able to see the pins from the side.
If I want to stop myself from cheating, I simply mount it inside the lock body again