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Discussion Starter #1
I cannot turn my key to start or even turn to accessories on my 95 SE. Looking at a thread from 2005 says that its likely a worn lock cylinder. The part number that Curt recommended back then is now discontinued.

What are my options now in 2020 if that part is discontinued? IF I can find another cylinder, is it possible to use the same key so the doors, trunk, glove box, etc. do not need to be changed? If so, I assume a locksmith would need to be involved.

I'll try powdered graphite which was also recommended, but I'm not too optimistic.
 

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Turn your key over so that the teeth that are normally pointed up are pointed down, insert into ignition, try to turn it. If that works (and even if that doesn't work), you might just have a worn key. Have a new one cut by a Toyota dealer based on your VIN (not copying your existing key).

You haven't been using a titanium key, have you?

If your ignition lock cylinder is really the problem, then you can try to find a used one and have a locksmith rekey the cylinder to match your key. Or better yet, remove your existing ignition lock cylinder and take it to a locksmith to see if they can take it apart and see what's not working correctly with your key. They might just need to replace or lube the tumblers or some other internal part.
 

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It might be a pain to remove the ignition lock cylinder (I've never done it), but it would best like bitshftr said to consider having the locksmith evaluate it and maybe overhaul it.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Turn your key over so that the teeth that are normally pointed up are pointed down, insert into ignition, try to turn it. If that works (and even if that doesn't work), you might just have a worn key. Have a new one cut by a Toyota dealer based on your VIN (not copying your existing key).

You haven't been using a titanium key, have you?

If your ignition lock cylinder is really the problem, then you can try to find a used one and have a locksmith rekey the cylinder to match your key. Or better yet, remove your existing ignition lock cylinder and take it to a locksmith to see if they can take it apart and see what's not working correctly with your key. They might just need to replace or lube the tumblers or some other internal part.
Went to the dealer today for a Vin key. Still did not work. Any idea how difficult it is to remove the cylinder? From what I read on the old thread, I need to get the key to ACC and then insert something in a hole and it should pull out? Where is this hole located? If I need to remove the steering wheel, this is out of my pay grade and will need to see what a locksmith has to say.
 

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The locksmith may still be able to evaluate it while in the car. Also, did the dealership (ouch!) offer an estimate to "fix" the cylinder? You seem to be right about needing the cylinder in the ACC position from all I could research recently.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The locksmith may still be able to evaluate it while in the car. Also, did the dealership (ouch!) offer an estimate to "fix" the cylinder? You seem to be right about needing the cylinder in the ACC position from all I could research recently.
Didn't ask for a quote, yet. I was able to get this far in dismantling and was able to get the key into ACC, but do not know where to go from here. I don't see a pin I need to punch in?
 

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How did you get the key into the ACC position?
 

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Try using some graphite powder. pour a little on the key's grooves , holding it on its side, carefuly insert it into the cylinder and go in and out gently , see if it helps
 

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Discussion Starter #9
How did you get the key into the ACC position?
I had a "Sword in the Stone" moment where after sitting there for 10 minutes it actually turned to ACC, ON and START. Basically pure luck. I found the punch, and was able to pull out the lock cylinder. I am going to bring it to a locksmith and will see what they can do.

Prior to all this I tried the graphite powder and had no success.
 

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You've gotten it out which is great! I was going to say the hole in the cylinder to depress should be on the top, below and to the left of the "green" light in the third pic. Keep us updated on the fix.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
You've gotten it out which is great! I was going to say the hole in the cylinder to depress should be on the top, below and to the left of the "green" light in the third pic. Keep us updated on the fix.

Update. I took the cylinder to the locksmith and I am back in business. I tried to get an understanding what was the mechanical issue, and the locksmith's response was that those keys are not for this cylinder. I said that was impossible since they were the originals. He wasn't too engaging on the convo aside from saying that the keys now work. I wasn't going to press the issue since he charged me $28 total.

Regardless, I am able to take the car out for the first time this year.
 

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Good to hear everything's working again! And that you got a locksmith fix for only $28 is amazing.

Or better yet, remove your existing ignition lock cylinder and take it to a locksmith to see if they can take it apart and see what's not working correctly with your key. They might just need to replace or lube the tumblers or some other internal part.
Where do I claim my prize?
 
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Super good to hear Witesox! Always good to be back in the saddle.....
 

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Turn your key over so that the teeth that are normally pointed up are pointed down, insert into ignition, try to turn it. If that works (and even if that doesn't work), you might just have a worn key. Have a new one cut by a Toyota dealer based on your VIN (not copying your existing key).

You haven't been using a titanium key, have you?

If your ignition lock cylinder is really the problem, then you can try to find a used one and have a locksmith rekey the cylinder to match your key. Or better yet, remove your existing ignition lock cylinder and take it to a locksmith to see if they can take it apart and see what's not working correctly with your key. They might just need to replace or lube the tumblers or some other internal part.
Not that I have one but what's wrong with a titanium key?
 

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what's wrong with a titanium key?
Titanium is a much harder metal than whatever the lock cylinder innerds are made of (probably steel). Repeated scraping of those two metals together will cause one of them to wear. Guess which one? I'd much rather get a new key cut every 10 years (because it's worn down) than get a new (discontinued) ignition cylinder every 7 years.
 

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Titanium is a much harder metal than whatever the lock cylinder innerds are made of (probably steel). Repeated scraping of those two metals together will cause one of them to wear. Guess which one? I'd much rather get a new key cut every 10 years (because it's worn down) than get a new (discontinued) ignition cylinder every 7 years.
bitshftr,

Interesting, so what does other manufactures do for their key cylinders for OEM Titanium keys?
I've heard conflicting theorys for lube, but would Graphite help in these situations?
From what I've read up, any other metal including itself can gall under sliding contact, although I'd assume that'd probably be more of an extreme case scenario.
 

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Interesting, so what does other manufactures do for their key cylinders for OEM Titanium keys?
I dunno. Who's OEM keys are titanium?

Lube would help (that's Universal Solution #4), but there will still be some wear over time. I think in general that the innerds of lock cylinders are made out of a slightly harder metal allow than keys are.
 

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I think in general that the innerds of lock cylinders are made out of a slightly harder metal allow than keys are.
Most OEM keys are made of a nickel plated brass alloy, and some are aluminum. Nickel plate helps to reduce the wear induced by the steel pins in the cylinder but the idea is to have the key wear out instead of the cylinder.

Who's OEM keys are titanium?
The 300ZX is the only one I am aware of.
 
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