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This review is for the heavy-duty model. A key is not necessary to change the combination. I suspect that is why you cannot lock the lock without the combination. In other words, you cannot scramble the combination until it is locked. We have this on a chain for a gate, and now if we do not lock the lock after removing it, the combination is present on the tumbler. I.E. You could not open the lock, scramble the #s because it will not lock. For another person to lock it behind them, they need the combination. The combination will not scramble until you close the lock, and the lock will not close without the combination dialed in. Other than that, this model seems more sturdy than their less expensive model, which lasted us about 2-years outdoors.
The locks is very sturdy, the number wheels are easy to read and spin, and I love the easy combination setting procedure.
However, because of the way to you set the combination, you cannot just roll the numbers while the lock is open. Our use is on a chain on a gate. If you leave the gate and lock open for any reason the actual combination has to be left on the lock; you cannot spin the numbers. So, if our gate is left unlocked, anyone who knows this can just look at the numbers and know the combination.
I hope that makes sense. Another illustration is if you leave your gate open so someone can get in then you ask them to lock the gate on the way out, they see the combination and have to jumble the numbers for you when they leave.
I bought this lock for my work locker. I’ve had bad experiences with combo locks but it would be far too easy to lock my keys in my locker. Generally speaking the hospital I work at is safe enough that I’ve been able to leave my locker unlocked with no issues for over seven months. However the Joint Commission is coming as soon as Covid numbers are low enough and there’s a rule that all personal belongings must be secured so I bought this lock because it seems easy enough to use and I like the idea of being able to reset the combo. However what the instructions on the packaging failed to mention was that you have to open the lock before you try to insert the reset key...I spent quite awhile attempting the push hard enough on the lock to get the thing to turn so I could set the combo. At 0445 this morning I decided to see if there were any answers on Amazon and somewhere in the product info it has a picture of the lock being unlocked. Needless to say it worked beautifully and I’m no longer pissed off at combination locks in general.
I opened this new from the package. Followed the directions to change the combination. Tested is several times and worked fine. Left in my car for 24 hours before I went to the gate to put the lock on. Low and behold, the lock wouldn't open again. The numbers spin so freely, it's as if they are not engaging anything. Fail.
I also noticed that this lock is not as beefy or secure feeling as another master I bought from a big box store for a similar price point. That one still works but the number dials sometimes stick and the aligning numbers on the top row instead of in the middle is not ideal when I have customers using the gate.
I may have gotten a lemon, but I was not happy with this lock. The dials all felt loose, which made it difficult to keep the proper numbers lined up when entering the combination. Also, the shackle was tight and hard to pull up when unlocking. I emailed Master Lock, and they just said to return it, which I did. That process was painless through Amazon. I ordered a different style of Master lock, which I have been happy with. Like I said, I may have just gotten a bad one, but my experience with this lock was not good. I also wasn’t impressed with the response from Master lock customer service.
Materials and just overall build on this is a cheap copy of what Masterlock's used to be. Tumblers feel cheap and don't line-up precisely, body is not a solid material, probably cast zinc. Face plate where tumblers/numbers are looks even thinner and cheaper. Overall just a Chinese copy of a Masterlock with a rubber gasket at the top so they can claim water "resistant" - I'd pass on this one, especially for the premium price they're asking. Not impressed at all!
I ordered 2 of the Heavier Duty 875d. I noticed that when you read the reviews, they are combined for the model 875D & the 175D so you don't know which one is being reviewed. The 875D is definitely heavier & sturdier. Can't speak to how long they will last but they work smoothly & seem to be well built.
The lock was easy to program the combination but the quality isn't what I expect from Master. The feel and finish just seemed cheap. Also, you can only move the dials when the lock is in the locked position. I bought this to put on a gate to our property which we leave unlocked when we are there and hang the lock on the chain in the open position. With this lock you cannot change the combination in this position so anyone can see what the combo is. You have to close the lock and then spin the dials to hide the combination. I'd recommend getting something else.