I don't know about the US, but here in the UK the locksmithing trade has a huge problem with what they call drill merchants - 'locksmiths' who can't pick locks, but simply drill out the lock barrel and charge for a replacement. The trade absolutely loathes such operators, on the basis that they're destroying and replacing perfectly good locks and that they devalue the skills of locksmithing.
This anecdote has got me wondering that perhaps the drillers have more satisfied customers than real locksmiths. The driller makes a big noisy mess, gets covered in brass chips and fits a shiny new lock for only a bit more money than a professional charges to put a key in the lock and tap it with a little hammer for ten seconds.
> for only a bit more money than a professional charges to put a key in the lock and tap it with a little hammer for ten seconds.
In America, people without locksmith licenses can't legally buy bumpkeys, sadly. If I had a problem that a locksmith could solve with a bumpkey, I'd be quite annoyed that my payment to him is essentially a government subsidy coming out of my pocket.
Not true, this depends upon your jurisdiction. Anyone wondering if it is legal where they live should check their state and local laws.
I've been told by locksmiths that lockpicking tools are illegal in my state, yet no one can point out where state law says this. Thats because its not illegal here. Locksmith isn't even a licensed profession here.
Shouldn't we then also consider that payment to cover the value of the things that would have been stolen from you if any random thief could easily/cheaply get a bumpkey? Who knows how those balance out, but if we're going to count the costs we should count the benefits, too.
I have had a funny experience with a locksmith, who wanted to drill a lock "it can't be picked." I called another (as I did not want the door drilled), which resulted in an ensuing argument between the two locksmiths, the second of which (a larger company), noted "this doesn't need to be drilled." I had to ask and physically intervene (just interposing myself) to ask the first man to leave.
This was in San Francisco, which apparently (alluded to below in comments) on the issue of..pseudo licensed / "driller" locksmith's.
I hate the fact that many times in large companies, or many other professions, that doing "well" "drags down" the mediocre employee's.