Most people think that marine locks would be locks that are used in and around boats and marinas. That would be correct; however, Marine Locks, due to their construction, can be used anywhere moisture is a problem. So what makes a lock a Maine lock? Can these locks have high security features? I will try to answer these and other questions.
Let’s start with the marine construction, these locks are made from brass, die-cast alloy, or stainless steel. Before I continue when I say locks, it could mean padlocks, cam locks, and door locks. Padlocks are usually made of brass or stainless steel. Shackles would be made of hardened steel plated for rust protection or stainless steel. The internal parts are usually made of brass or stainless steel. Any of these building materials could have high security characteristics. Abloy is a well known manufacturer specializing in high security padlocks for extreme environmental conditions.
The door locks are made of die-cast alloy or brass. Either one would also have an oxidation inhibitor coating. The internal workings would be made of brass or stainless steel. You will find that marine door locks are available in both knob style and deadbolt style. Electronic locks are beginning to make their way into the maritime security industry.
Cam locks would also be made of a plated zinc alloy or plated brass. The lining of these locks would also be available in different lining colors to match the décor. Cam Locks would come in a wide variety of security levels, depending on what you are trying to protect and secure.
If you are using these locks in or around salt water, make sure they have some resistance to salt water spray. Some manufacturers will look for UL certification which will include some type of salt water spray test. Locks in saltwater applications must have this certification.
Just by their very nature, marine locks will need a higher level of maintenance. You should follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for the type of lubricant and cleaner to use. This includes both the inside and outside of the lock. If the inside of the locks is not held, it will “freeze” quickly. This happens when moisture enters the lock, it will attract dust and dirt, eventually rendering the lock inoperable. In salt water areas, corrosion can occur due to salt spray attacking brass or metal parts.