Never Miss the Key Hole

Lost in the dark! That’s usually what happens when you get home from a long day of working, skateboarding, drinking, whatever! It’s dark outside, you wanna get into your house, but by golly if it isn’t the most difficult thing in the world to get that key aligned with the key hole in order to insert and turn! Here’s the key to this problem. The “V Lock.” It’s got a v. You put the key in the v. You open the door. Perfect.

I think you’ll understand this concept in basically 0 seconds. It’s just that obvious. Props to designer Junjie Zhang for making the world a more intuitive place, one lock at a time.

Designer: Junjie Zhang

V Lock for easy finding of the keyhole by Junjie Zhang

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182 Comments

  • André says:

    Brilliant idea. I do not know how many times I have been swearing over that keyhole..

  • André says:

    Brilliant idea. I do not know how many times I have been swearing over that keyhole..

  • Misterfox says:

    Not bad. It’s so simple, it’s one of those “This should have been there in the first place”-kinda things

  • Alexi says:

    Hope this gets on the market soon. Weiser, Schlage, Yale, Kwikset, etc… y’all getting this?

    • Dogpants says:

      this doesn’t need to be manufactured by as an entirely new lock product. instead, it could be produced as a plastic accessory that attaches to any lock. that way, it could rotate in any direction, to ward off rain. and, not being firmly attached, it would offer no additional advantages to burglars.

      i’ll be surprised if a) something like this wasn’t already available in japan, and b) we don’t see this in an infomercial in the US pretty soon.

  • Kai says:

    Great idea – not sure about external doors though? Won’t it channel rainwater into the lock?

    • CoolCow says:

      it really shouldn’t be a problem since this design can literally work upside down… the designer should try to patent this… although it doesn’t seem to be too hard to knock off though

  • Hessam says:

    Please notify me if you find it on the market. I really need it for my mother who is suffering from visual problems.

  • mif991 says:

    Good job Junjie. I hope you patented this….

  • Hessam says:

    Guys! He can not patent it. He can just protect its design.

  • Norman says:

    It’s totally patentable; both as a design patent and mechanical. I’m sure he did that before he put pics out.

    • Seth says:

      Can you patent ideas from nature?

    • cw says:

      Really? Strange, since a patent is awarded for a process. This isn’t a process, thus it isn’t eligible for a patent. There is no such thing as a “design patent”.

      Pull your head out before you post comments on the Internet for the rest of the world to read.

      • Christopher says:

        Actually, in the U.S. at least, there is such a thing as a design patent. htt_p://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Design_patent (remove underscore in htt_p).

        At a minimum, it’s best to be correct before adding that little insulting coda to your posts.

  • chris says:

    Totally sweet! Absolutely brilliant!
    (I’m going to mod my existing lock until Junjie can get these on the market)

  • Jason says:

    My problem is finding the right key 🙁

    • Seth says:

      Well, keys come in all shapes and sizes, as keyholes do too. But you’d be surprised how well some keys can fit into some keyholes that you wouldn’t think they would. It takes some forcing, and there may be damage to the hole, but if you want to get in bad enough, it’s usually worth it.

  • rodney says:

    so clever, a very minor point though, could I be so humble as to suggest it be fitted upside down, so it does not allow dirt or water ingress, (if dirt or water gets in, the internal lock works may degrade)

    Can it be screw on and replace the current lock ring and be made of a durable plastic?

  • M_Crow says:

    great design! the attachment should be as thin as possible though, otherwise we will all need new longer keys. this should be in new doors though!

  • justinjung says:

    so nice and simple solution!!!!!

  • R. Kelly says:

    put the key in the v – that’s what she said.

  • theopena says:

    what if it rains?

  • Manish Ahuja says:

    Clearly proves the point that winners don’t do different things. They just do things differently. Brilliant idea.

  • Everything genious is very simle :)))

  • Engineer says:

    If you look at the latch it is backwards, the straight side should face towards the locked side and the curved side should face towards the inside.

    • David says:

      Actually, you're wrong Engineer. The latch itself entirely depends on the handing of the door. In this case the door would be a RH (Right Hand). To add though, it would be odd to have what appears to be a mortise lock, with a cylindrical latch.

    • David says:

      Actually, you're wrong Engineer. The latch itself entirely depends on the handing of the door. In this case the door would be a RH (Right Hand). To add though, it would be odd to have what appears to be a mortise lock, with a cylindrical latch.

  • Philip GREEN says:

    I want one.
    Doesn’t matter if it rains, this is for the inside door, not the street door.

  • HAHA says:

    Worst idea ever. I’m not a criminal in the least, but seeing one of these would make me want to grab a prybar, slip it in the top, and break the lock.

    I like the premise, but the execution makes the lock meaningless.

    • Jon H says:

      This was my thought also. Ought to give excellent leverage.

      • Player_16 says:

        Good observation. 1 revision: It needs to be countersunk into the door if mounted for exterior doors. Also, at present, your key would be longer than normal.

      • David says:

        Once again, a free-floating collar would best deter this. Or potentially any Grade-1 or UL437 lock, which are all tested for prying, twisting, and punching.

      • David says:

        Once again, a free-floating collar would best deter this. Or potentially any Grade-1 or UL437 lock, which are all tested for prying, twisting, and punching.

  • yiyomendez says:

    Perfect for alcoholic people like me.! xD

    • adam says:

      yeah if only i could get this for my car ignition! Perfect to ease the stress of drunk driving

  • Tom says:

    What’s the strength of the lock?
    Because it’s not flush with the door, that looks mighty tempting to put a screwdriver/piece of metal in that slot, then attach a wrench, and twist.
    The picture seems to show it’s part of the lock cylinder. So presumably you could also guess the pin positions for part of the lock too if you just wanted to pick it.

    • silifi says:

      It's not part of the lock cylinder. There's just a slot at the end of the V that leads into the lock mechanism, so you wouldn't be able to guess the pin positions any better than anything else.

    • silifi says:

      It's not part of the lock cylinder. There's just a slot at the end of the V that leads into the lock mechanism, so you wouldn't be able to guess the pin positions any better than anything else.

  • Ivan says:

    This design is not new. A similar trick was used by medieval designers since there was no artificial light indoors.

    • pb says:

      I saw a very large version of this idea, carved into a large wooden door in a medieval monastery in Germany. The monks would use it when they were a bit drunk!

  • memo says:

    Cool and neat.
    Every lock should be like this!

  • Greg Skluzacek says:

    Why not get rid of the physical key and just have an electronic key that works by holding it up too where the key goes?

    • David says:

      That would require power. This is large argument in the Access Control world. You either have A) a dedicated power source, or B) Power source easily replaceable.

      This creates two problems: If 'A' then how does one run a dedicated power source to the lock itself. If 'B', then what does one do if the lock loses power? Fail-safe (in the event of power loss, the door unlocks) or fail-secure (in the event of power loss, the lock remains locked).

      This in turn, relies on why every serious access control device has a mechanical override, i.e. a key.

    • David says:

      That would require power. This is large argument in the Access Control world. You either have A) a dedicated power source, or B) Power source easily replaceable.

      This creates two problems: If 'A' then how does one run a dedicated power source to the lock itself. If 'B', then what does one do if the lock loses power? Fail-safe (in the event of power loss, the door unlocks) or fail-secure (in the event of power loss, the lock remains locked).

      This in turn, relies on why every serious access control device has a mechanical override, i.e. a key.

  • Dave says:

    You want the V on the bottom, not the top, otherwise dirt and water end up in the lock mechanism and jam it.

  • Jagath says:

    Great design. Perfect example of usability oriented re-design of common household devices.

  • Second the idea of turning it upside down.

    Pollen, dust and other airborne items will pack into the bottom of the V even indoors, and rainwater will make it worse outside.

    Besides, the key is probably travelling upwards (from a pocket or a bag) so the direction could be more natural.

  • Mark says:

    Really nice indeed. I’d buy this.

  • Toby says:

    Genius

  • rashomon says:

    The channel doesn’t have to be inverted for this to work for an outside lock; you could simply add an additional downward sloping taper to the bottom of the “V”. Also, there is an obvious analog in a cone-shaped channel for a cylindrical key.

  • Phil McThomas says:

    Solution looking for a problem?

    Would you pay a locksmith $200 to switch out your existing lock for this? Over the course of a year, this might save you 30 seconds or so.

    Think bigger my friend. What is the real problem you’re trying to solve?

  • Maneesh says:

    It should be upside down for use in places where it may be exposed to dust storms and rain. Otherwise, water and dust will clog the keyhole. Beautiful design otherwise. Thanks.

  • Andy says:

    Like it, but it likely cuts down teh structural integrity of the lock by some amount, could be slightly easier to break/kick in.

    In the end of the day they’re just gonna knock the door down anyway, so it may as well be a pretty/more functional door. hehe

  • Tim says:

    Nice idea! people said the water and dirt would be an issue, and if outside, I would agree.

    Perhaps make it into an hour glass shape, so that it may be accessed by both the bottom and the top, and would prevent water from clogging up the key hole. On the flipside you would loose the end U shape that signifies that the key has arrived at the hole. Perhaps you could have the shape sort of cone into the center?

  • Chuba says:

    Brilliant idea. But somehow, when you're drunk and stumbling, it'll still be impossible to find that damn key hole.

  • Chuba says:

    Brilliant idea. But somehow, when you're drunk and stumbling, it'll still be impossible to find that damn key hole.

  • Just...no says:

    Okay, come on guys. I can't be the only person here who thinks this thing makes the lock look like a freaking vagina.

  • Just...no says:

    Okay, come on guys. I can't be the only person here who thinks this thing makes the lock look like a freaking vagina.

  • Habibies says:

    my favorite one i like it

  • Habibies says:

    my favorite one i like it

  • stitch says:

    jesus christ just make something around the lock yourself. you have the idea now, just do it. could be as simple as a piece of wire and two drilled holes.

  • stitch says:

    jesus christ just make something around the lock yourself. you have the idea now, just do it. could be as simple as a piece of wire and two drilled holes.

  • Matt says:

    I don't get it.

  • Matt says:

    I don't get it.

  • the man says:

    this should be on all cars… approaching my car at night i can never find it… resulting in a few paint scratches…

    • Logan says:

      You know they make little LED flashlights that fit easily on a keychain for about $3, right?

  • the man says:

    this should be on all cars… approaching my car at night i can never find it… resulting in a few paint scratches…

    • Logan says:

      You know they make little LED flashlights that fit easily on a keychain for about $3, right?

Comments are closed.