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How to Identify HU66 Gen 1, 2 and 3 Locks

By Martin Pink

We are going to look at how to tell the difference between the HU66 generation 1, 2 and 3 locks and how to deal with them:

Here is a picture of all 6 keyways – this will help you identify the difference between the new gen 3 lock and the other locks, visually.

HU66 Gen 1
hu66 gen 1

HU66 Gen 2
hu66 gen 2

HU66 Gen 3
hu66 gen 3

HU162 VAG 2015 8 Cut
vag 8 cut

HU162 VAG 2015 9 Cut
vag 9 cut

HU162 VAG 2015 10 Cut
vag 10 cut

You can see the face cap of the gen 3 lock is sunken and flush with the body of the lock, the gen 3 lock is also much bigger and a totally different shape to the gen 1 and 2 locks next to it.

This makes it instantly identifiable visually – it is the only one of the VAG HU66 locks that can be simply identified by appearance.

VAG locks follow 2 different wafer configurations:

  • Gen 1 lock follows a 1 up 1 down configuration
  • Gen 2 and 3 locks follow a 2 up 2 down configuration

As we can easily identify the generation 3 lock visually, we only need to understand how to ID the difference between the gen 1 and 2 lock.

To do this we must:

  1. Fully insert the 2in1 pick into the lock
  2. Move the lifter to position 1 and find the spring
  3. Assuming the spring wafer is felt on the bottom grid
  4. Move the indicator to position 2
  5. If the spring wafer is also felt on the bottom grid then it has 2 wafers on same side of lock in a 2 up 2 down format, so it is a gen 2 or 3 lock. If the spring wafer had been felt on the top grid then this would signify a 1 up 1 down configuration – so would be a generation 1 lock

(So, the gen 3 lock can be identified visually, but to tell the difference between the gen 1 and gen 2 lock you must feel using the tool.)

This is an almost instant confirmation of which lock we have in front of us.

Why do we manufacture a single lifter and a twin lifter HU66 2in1 pick and decoder?

2 different Lishi 2in1 picks exist – a single lifter version and a twin lifter version.

  • Single lifter tool: this is the best tool for generation 1 and 2 locks. It will pick the gen 3 lock but on many will struggle to decode it
  • Twin lifter tool: this tool was designed for gen 3 locks to ensure an accurate decode of the lock, it will also pick and decode all gen 1 and 2 locks

The newer twin lifter 2in1 was introduced in 2011 for new VAG locks, and as an added bonus would also pick all gen 1 and 2 locks as well.

The need for the new tool was a design alteration in the wafer in late 2010. The manufacturers decided to introduce cuts, grooves or ridges to the inside top and inside bottom of the wafers, so as the single lifter relied on the top inside and bottom inside of the wafer for its decode reading, this hampered the decode function for the single lifter tool on gen 3 VAG locks as shown in pictures below:

image 1       image 2

To defeat the decode interference change made by the manufacturer, Lishi simply changed the tool design, so all picking and decoding is carried out using the key snib on the centre of the wafer as shown below:

image 3

This produced an instant fix and continued defeat for the VAG lock into gen 3 and beyond.