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Old 07-10-2006, 04:54 PM   #1
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While carefully inspecting our new '05 36MDDS I was kind of surprised at the "lightweight" locks on all the storage and other outside compartment doors. As a matter of fact, the person who gave us our delivery walk-thru showed me how some rather generic keys of the same type unlocked the compartment locks on our coach! Kind of scary when you think of the value of the things one ends up storing in those compartments. Upon my looking at them closely, and having my son check them out (he spent his summer college years working for a locksmith) we question whether the lock cylinders can be replaced with something better, or whether or not they are at all replaceable. Does anyone know differently? Any suggestions for stronger/better locks?

Thanks, Rick Coleman
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Old 07-10-2006, 04:54 PM   #2
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While carefully inspecting our new '05 36MDDS I was kind of surprised at the "lightweight" locks on all the storage and other outside compartment doors. As a matter of fact, the person who gave us our delivery walk-thru showed me how some rather generic keys of the same type unlocked the compartment locks on our coach! Kind of scary when you think of the value of the things one ends up storing in those compartments. Upon my looking at them closely, and having my son check them out (he spent his summer college years working for a locksmith) we question whether the lock cylinders can be replaced with something better, or whether or not they are at all replaceable. Does anyone know differently? Any suggestions for stronger/better locks?

Thanks, Rick Coleman
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Old 07-10-2006, 05:17 PM   #3
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At a FMCA rally in Creede Co. discovered that keys from a 93 allegro pusher fit my locks.
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Old 07-10-2006, 05:45 PM   #4
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Hmmm, let me guess. Is the number on your key "CH 751"?
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Old 07-10-2006, 07:59 PM   #5
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BINGO
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Old 07-10-2006, 08:45 PM   #6
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You won't get into mine . But then again ours is older.

We were told at a rally that almost all the entry door latch locks are keyed the same. The dead bolts are different.

When we are at an Alpine affair and we leave our dog inside it's either unlocked or just the latch is locked. Any Alpiner can then rescue our dog if need be or vice versa.
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Old 07-11-2006, 10:13 AM   #7
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I suspect that the basement latches are made by Southco. See this link for some details on the latch: Southco Compression Latches

For alternative Trimark latches that might be somewhat better look at this link: Trimark latches

However, it appears that any of these types of latches have at most 50 key codes. For the Southco latch, it appears to have 4 key codes.

Something you might do to improve security is have a locksmith re-key your existing latches. Or, if you are ambitious, you can remove the tumbler and re-key it yourself by exchanging one of the pins in the tumbler to a different length and adjusting the key accordingly.

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Old 07-11-2006, 12:45 PM   #8
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For those w/overly loose or tight Southco latches, I have found they are "adjustable." The problem is in the offset distance from the grip element on the outside part of the latch to the clasp part of the body of the latch. One of my brand new latches was near impossible to operate because that distance was too large & once the grip grabbed the clasp, it wouldn't let go.
Remove the device from the compartment door & using a hammer & punch, lightly tap the clasp part on the body closer (tap on back of body for easier opening) or further away (tap on inside of body for more grab) from the pivoting grip. Too light a tap won't do anything. Too heavy a smack may crack the body. You are warping the body a small amount to effect the adjustment. So start light & go heavier till you achieve the desired result. I placed the latch on the anvil of my bench vise on a piece of leather to avoid cosmetic damage.
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