Simplex L1000, Part 1: Series Overview

This is the first in a 4-part series covering the Simplex L1000 series. This article will provide a series overview, the remaining articles will cover changing and resetting combinations, installation, and servicing, respectively. 


For nearly 50 years the Simplex line has represented the most popular combination locks in the North American market. Found in a widespread of settings and situations, the L1000 is the shining star of the Simplex line. Figure 1 shows the newest version of the L1000, less core. You can find the L1000 in commercial buildings, retail stores, community pool and tennis gates, banks, hospitals, government facilities and many more places. I’ve long noticed that, perhaps due to its ubiquity in the same, common situations, a good number of locksmiths aren’t fully aware of all features and functions of the L1000. This article will go over all features and functions of the L1000 series to fully educate locksmiths, new and old.

Figure 1

Figure 1

Series Overview

The L1000 is a fully mechanical combination lock in a cylindrical lockset format. The L1000 carries a 3-hour UL/ULC fire rating and features ADA-compliant lever trim. It is also D.O.D. 5220.22M compliant. The L1000 is weather-resistant which allows for exterior use, such as the previously mentioned community pool and tennis gates. It comes with a 3-year warranty and I can attest to Kaba’s commitment to honoring this warranty through my own experience. I serviced an L1000 last fall that exhibited signs of a defective clutch. I simply provided the lock’s serial number to a Kaba tech support representative via phone and Kaba shipped replacement parts, free of charge.  Just make sure that you register each L1000 you install with Kaba via their website: 
The L1000 is pre-assembled to accommodate 1 5/8” to 1 7/8” thick doors but it can be re-configured right out of the box to handle doors as thin as 1 3/8” and as thick as 2 1/4” through the removal or inclusion of spacers (Figure 2).

Figure 2

Figure 2

It’s available for doors and gates in 2 3/4” and 2 3/8” backsets and can be retrofit into an existing 160 or 161 prep. Don-Jo makes a wrap-around (part no. 15 CW) for the L1000 series to fit other existing preps, such as for mortise locks, as well (Figure 3).
Figure 3

Figure 3

The L1000 comes with a standard 1/2” throw latch but 3/4” throw latches are available for fire-rated assemblies requiring their use (Figure 4).
Figure 4

Figure 4

Both latches can be used in conjunction with the included standard and ANSI strikes (Figure 5).  
Figure 5

Figure 5

Satin Chrome (US26D/626) and Antique Brass (US5/609) are standard finishes for the L1000 but Bright Brass (US3/605) and Bright Chrome (US26/625) finishes are available. Key override options are available in SFIC (B Option), LFIC, and FSIC formats. Supported LFIC formats include Medeco (M), ASSA (M), Yale (M), and Abloy (M) 5 or 6 pin cores, Corbin Russwin (C) 6 pin cores, and Sargent (R) cores. Schlage (S) FSIC is also available. 
L1000 series locks are factory handed and are not field reversible. It is important to verify the doors handing prior to placing an order for or surveying for the installation of an L1000.  


There are 5 models for the L1000, each with different features and/or functions: 
Model 101x utilizes just a combination entry. Model 102x builds on to the 101x by offering combination entry with a key override option. These two models are by far the most popular and can be used in a variety of situations. Model 103x offers a passage function. The passage function allows the user(s) to place the lock into “passage mode”, or allowing access without using the code, by utilizing a thumbturn or key (DF5) on the inside trim. Model 104x offers a passage function with a key override option. 
Model 1076 is the privacy (lockout) function. This model allows a user to disable outside codes temporarily by pressing a thumbturn on the insider lever (Figure 6).

Figure 6

Figure 6

The key override function on the outside trim will still operate, however, to allow for emergency access. The privacy function is popular bathrooms restricted to staff or personnel use only. Unlike other models, Model 1076 can only be ordered with a “6” lock device option, which is a 3/4″ throw latch.  

Selling, Surveying, and Ordering 

The L1000 has several excellent features that can help you market and sell them effectively. The entire Simplex line centers around the ability to allow access without providing physical credentials, such as a keys or cards/fobs. This is done, obviously, through a combination. The L1000 therefore allows access without the added cost, time, and planning of issuing the physical credentials. In the event of a termination or loss of privilege, changing the combination is more cost effective for the customer than rekeying and, in some cases, reprogramming cards/software. This is a great source of recurring revenue.  
Familiarity is another great selling point. Most customers will have already seen, and perhaps used, an L1000 or its sister model: the Simplex 1000 (knob trim version). This makes usage quite simple and requires very little, if any, customer training. Customers love simplicity after all. 
Due to its popularity, the L1000 is readily available through distribution. This availability makes turnaround times for quoted jobs quick and painless which bodes well for both you and your customer. There are no batteries or wires, so maintenance is limited. The locks can be installed, either brand new or retrofit, easily on a large majority of doors. Ordering and product selection is made simple via Kaba’s Simplex Catalog. I have made minor edits to fit the entire Simplex L1000 model/option order page onto a single page. Scan this and keep a copy, or copies, on your truck to make quoting/ordering as simple as possible until fully committed to memory. 

By |2020-04-20T09:00:11+00:00April 20th, 2020|All, Combination Locks, Mechanical Combination|0 Comments

Combination Lock Instructions Tool Coming Soon!

Later this month, we will launch our “Combination Lock Instructions” Tool. This tool will allow locksmiths to locate the programming instructions for mechanical and electronic combination locks. It will be optimized for both mobile and desktop platforms and sort combination locks into the following categories:

  • Combination Cam Locks
  • Combination Padlocks
  • Electronic Combination Safe Locks
  • Mechanical Combination Safe Locks
  • Electronic Combination Door Locks
  • Mechanical Combination Door Locks

Each category will be launched separately, starting in two weeks with mechanical combination door locks. Each combination lock, regardless of the category, will be sorted by manufacturer. Furthermore, a manufacturer’s photograph of each respective lock will be included along it’s part/series name. This will allow locksmiths to locate known combination locks as well as unknown combination locks (sometimes the only information we have in front of us is the lock itself!).
Best of all, this tool will allow a locksmith, either in the shop or out in the field, to find the programming instructions for any combination lock, past or present, in 2 clicks or less. Talk about efficiency!

By |2019-01-17T13:00:01+00:00January 17th, 2019|All, Combination Locks|0 Comments
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