Interchangeable core

Interchangeable Core Overview and Benefits
– Interchangeable cores rely on a control key for insertion and extraction of combinating components.
– Small format interchangeable cores (SFIC) have a figure-eight shape standardized among lock manufacturers.
– Large format interchangeable cores (LFIC) come in varying sizes.
– Interchangeable cores can be easily extracted and installed into different lock types without disassembly.
– They are adaptable for master keying systems and can be quickly replaced when security is compromised.

History of Interchangeable Cores
– The modern interchangeable core has its roots in a bulkier, pedestal-shaped removable configuration developed in 1919 by Frank Best.
– The classic interchangeable core with an A keyway was introduced by Best Universal Lock Company.
– Over time, interchangeable cores have evolved into a de facto standard for keying interoperability in the commercial door hardware industry.
– Best Universal Lock and Falcon Lock were the original competing companies offering interchangeable cores.
– Now, many OEM and aftermarket door hardware brands produce their own interchangeable cores or offer product options to accommodate them.

Mechanism and Advantages of Interchangeable Cores
– Interchangeable cores require a notch at the tip of each key to align with the combinating pins in the mechanism.
– Conventional cylinders and removable cores use a shoulder near the bow of each key for alignment.
– Interchangeable cores can be machined to fit smaller system configurations, allowing integration and different levels of access control.
– Conventional cylinder and removable core systems have limitations in integrating different pin systems.
– Interchangeable cores offer more flexibility in keying configurations.

Small Format (SFIC) and Large Format (LFIC) Cores
– Interchangeable cores have become a standard for keying interoperability in the commercial door hardware industry.
– SFIC and LFIC cores can be specified from various brands in North America.
– Large format removable cores are not interchangeable with any other make or model.
– Each brand’s interchangeable core has unique features and functions.
– SFIC and LFIC cores have different installation and control mechanisms.

Electronic Lock Cores
– The electronic lock core is a modification of the mechanical lock core.
– It integrates a miniature electronic single-chip microcomputer and does not have a mechanical keyhole.
– The electronic key is used to unlock the lock, with unlocking authority set through software.
Electronic lock cores provide controllability and traceability, solving the issues of picking mechanical lock cores and frequent replacement.
– They are increasingly applied in various security fields.Sources: