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Removing a bent ignition key


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I unfortunately left a slightly bent ignition key in the key box and my better half tried to use it to start the engine (see photo). It worked fine but because of the slight bent at the shoulder of the key it is now stuck in the barrel. I’ve been reluctant to force it as it may snap off on the barrel and I will then be unable to start the engine. I’ve tried WD40 with no joy. 
 

any ideas?

3428C9B0-05F3-45B3-928F-F7CE8BFAD315.jpeg

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Does leaving it there do any harm? Our ignition key rarely leaves its slot, or barrel. As long as it starts the engine, there is surely no problem.

I guess that if your boat has a cruiser stern you might be concerned about an unauthorised person starting the engine; if you have a trad, then you hav eno such concerns.

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There’s no trick to removing it. Wiggle it, pull it etc. Oil won’t help because it’s mechanically held, not through corrosion. 
 

If you truly feel that it’s likely to break then buy a new barrel before attempting to remove it. If it doesn’t break then you have a spare, if it does break then well, you have a spare :)

 

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Looking at the photo it appears that the key is a simple 'tractor' type. This suggests to me that the barrel is basic budget type widely available on the internet. Any decent chandlers would also stock them.  

 

As WotEver said when you have a new one just pull the old one out (imagine yourself a dentist). You may wind up with a spare. 

Edited by Slim
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Looks like a Calcutt panel, probably attached to a BMC B series endine.

 

As stated, it is just the standard "one key fits all" tractor type, so easily replaced if the worst happens,

 

I'd get hold of it with decent pliers and try a straight pull, I think if you are lucky you could exert quite lot of force with nothing breaking, but I'd push firmly against the panel near the switch with my other hand whilst pulling, as the panels are quite a fragile material, and I imagine you could break it away from the four screw heads where it is retained only at its corners.

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 01/03/2020 at 10:09, Strettonman said:

Thanks all, looks like I’m off to get a spare just in case and then try A bit of hood old brute force with my fingers crossed.

 

cheers 

What happened?

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On 01/03/2020 at 10:15, Tracy D'arth said:

Known as a plant key, tool hire shops will have them for the mini diggers etc.  A bit pointless really, just about any bit of metal that will go in the hole will turn the barrel.

They often get stuck even if not bent, a straight pull required. 

I used to be able to start my old Mini with a screwdriver. It wasvery worn.

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11 minutes ago, dor said:

I used to be able to start my old Mini with a screwdriver. It wasvery worn.

When I were nobbut a lad, me mum used to go out to our Standard (with the leaky roof) and pull out a hair grip to get it started. Meanwhile, on a cold day, all the posh folk with their shiny new Humbers and proper ignition keys would be flattening their already tired batteries, trying in vain to get their engines going. 

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Many of the old pre war and just postwar Standards had a simple plain little flat ended key, like a screwdriver tip. Early 1950's Standard Utility 8's just had a little black knob switch that switched a quarter tun on and off, no key at all.

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In a previous life, as a contractors plant mechanic, I found the first thing to go missing on the fleet of road compressors, was the spade ignition key.  The operators soon found out the engine dipstick doubled as a great ignition key.  Then, when the switch no longer operated, due to the stresses put upon it, they found the same dipstick could be used jump straight across the solenoid terminals.  Then, when the end of the dipstick finally burned away, too much oil was poured into the oil filler.

Then.........

 

 

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1 hour ago, bizzard said:

Many of the old pre war and just postwar Standards had a simple plain little flat ended key, like a screwdriver tip. Early 1950's Standard Utility 8's just had a little black knob switch that switched a quarter tun on and off, no key at all.

Gosh, it wasn’t that modern... ;)

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1 hour ago, NB Esk said:

 

In a previous life, as a contractors plant mechanic, I found the first thing to go missing on the fleet of road compressors, was the spade ignition key.  The operators soon found out the engine dipstick doubled as a great ignition key.  Then, when the switch no longer operated, due to the stresses put upon it, they found the same dipstick could be used jump straight across the solenoid terminals.  Then, when the end of the dipstick finally burned away, too much oil was poured into the oil filler.

Then.........

 

 

You obviously had a very good maintenace routien then

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4 hours ago, ditchcrawler said:

You obviously had a very good maintenace routien then

 

Kind of you to say....

 

I looked after between 90 to 100 items of plant, just me.  Repaired everything from tracked excavators to compressed air demolition picks.

Getting operators to report faults relied on assuming a modicum of intelligence, here's an example.  Received an internal phone call from Huddersfield ICI fire brigade, one of " my " compressors had been on fire, could I get it sorted?  On arrival I couldn't help noticing a mass of burnt and congealed rubber, at the side.  This turned out to be an old sofa cushion that a labourer was using to make his dumper seat more comfortable.  As it came on to rain, he'd put the cushion inside the compressor cowling, " to keep it dry ".

 

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5 hours ago, NB Esk said:

 

In a previous life, as a contractors plant mechanic, I found the first thing to go missing on the fleet of road compressors, was the spade ignition key.  The operators soon found out the engine dipstick doubled as a great ignition key.  Then, when the switch no longer operated, due to the stresses put upon it, they found the same dipstick could be used jump straight across the solenoid terminals.  Then, when the end of the dipstick finally burned away, too much oil was poured into the oil filler.

Then.........

 

 

 

Lemmeguess....

 

Ten years' wear and tear compressed into five minutes?

 

 

 

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