I have served as the Camp Locksmith on a military post in the Middle East for three years. A few years ago, some theft incidents occurred in employee housing on the camp, and I was in charge of finding a solution to upgrade our locks and, hopefully, eliminate the problem.

  • I started digging around and doing my research. My main priorities were as follows:
  • We needed a reliable deadbolt system (all of our doors are reverse bevel and any Key In Knob solution could still be easily bypassed)
  • Since we have hundreds of housing units, our solution had to be cost effective
  • The solution had to be convenient for employees’ lifestyles here and provide an easy, hassle-free way to rekey locks (as we come and go from the camp, it is common to lose keys, misplace them, etc.)
  • We had to have a cohesive masterkey solution to satisfy our billeting (lodging), fire, and security departments

Additionally, as the Camp Locksmith, my personal big concern is always the possibility of our masterkey being compromised — I have a very small crew and don’t relish the idea of repinning hundreds of locks!


In researching possible solutions I came across the SmartKey Key Control Deadbolt system. I knew I had found the winner, as it effectively satisfied all of my requirements. After we decided to move ahead with Kwikset’s SmartKey Key Control Deadbolt technology, it only took about three months to install the system throughout the entire Camp. Since we installed SmartKey Key Control locks almost two years ago now, we have had zero complaints or theft reports.I want to applaud the designers of SmartKey for their forward-thinking enhancements. Our location averages 120 degrees in the summer with over 90% humidity — a true torture test for any lock. But SmartKey locks have been remarkably reliable: Less than 1% of our calls are regarding one of these deadbolts, and with high humidity and dirt issues, our climate often accounts for the sheer difficulty of inserting keys sometimes. When that happens, a simple shot of WD40 takes care of that!


Another thing I really like about the SmartKey system is that if a key should fail for any reason, we can still get in with our management key, which uses a somewhat restricted blank. And if one of our management keys should ever turn up missing, I’m confident we could rekey all of those cylinders in one day. I’d like to see my fellow ‘smiths do that with a conventional system.



Names have been withheld to protect the identity of the customers.