We have many years experience of dealing with the restoration and sale of old door locks,and sell only genuine original reclaimed old door locks, we carry no reproductions.
Our old door locks are mainly of original British manufacture,whether hand made in the Georgian era or mass produced from the Victorian period onwards.
You can be sure of genuine antique old door locks to suit and fit in with your period restoration.
These old door locks are now scarce but we scour the country for the best examples to restore.
Dealing in all antique periods,mainly from the Georgian period right through to the 1930's,The Victorian Ironmonger
is one of the very few UK sites with a range of genuine reclaimed old door locks
available to buy online.
Unfortunately original reclaimed old door locks
can not be got,or made to order,although we usually have a good range of restored antique locks
in stock,from the simple Georgian or Victorian rim latch
to the larger front door and church type oak cased ones.
There are two basic types,the 'mortice lock' (which fits into a pocket in the door edge with only the faceplate visible) or the 'rim' (surface mounted to the door face,the whole lock being visible,this is usually on the side of the door opening towards you)
These old door locks can be further sub-divided as follows:-
- with key operated bolt only - no latch to hold the door closed when not locked.
2. Rim Latches
- a sprung return latch operated by a pair of door knobs
- door is held closed but not locked.
2a. As 2 above but with the addition of a sliding privacy bolt - the door can be locked from inside - usually found on bedroom and bathroom doors.
3a. As 3 above but with the addition of a sliding privacy bolt - the door can be locked from inside without the key.
4. Night Rim Latch
or Front Door Lock
- with an internal slide or turn knob to operate a combined latch/bolt - access from outside by key only - bolt/latch can be held
in the open or closed position by a sliding snib (the action of a modern Yale type lock).
We tend to specialise in surface mounted rim type old door locks,these can be cased in either wrought iron (earlier examples),cast iron,steel,brass or wood (usually oak).
Iron cased versions would always be found in the working class terraces and later cottages.The better class of house often had a large iron lock for the front door, smaller good quality lockable rim latches
for the main ground floor rooms and small rim latches with privacy bolts
for the first floor.
This order of "show" for old door locks
was particulary emphasized in the grander Georgian or Victorian properties with brass cased locks
to the ground floor,lockable rim latches
to the first floor and the most basic rim or plate latch
for the servants quarters.
Old door locks of the Georgian period are our favourites,being entirely hand made with superb workmanship hidden away in the case.These old door locks rarely,if ever,carry any clue as to their maker (probally one of hundreds of small backyard workshops around Wolverhampton).The one thing they do carry is the pride and craftsmanship of the hand that made them - the only signature necessary!
Old door locks saw the advent of mass production during the Victorian era.Many of them now carrying makers labels with names such as:-
Carpenter,Chubb,Bissell,Bramah,Tonks,Wing & Webb amongst others,and boasting innovations like 'cradle action','palace motion','improved steel case' as well as numerous patents applied for.
Most of these later old door locks will have brass fittings for quietness and ease of operation.
All of the old door locks we supply are stripped,inspected and restored by us with replacement parts made or adapted as necessary.
We also try to supply original keys to suit the period of the lock as far as possible,for this reason usually just one key per lock is supplied.
Our old door locks are therefore supplied fully working and complete with keeps ready to fit.