Medeco was founded as "Mechanical Development Company," a small tool and die shop in Salem, Virginia with the invention of a unique locking principal using angled key cuts and the elevation and rotation of special pin tumblers to provide millions of different key combinations. Concieved and initially produced in his basement workshop, Roy Spain created a cylinder that was highly resistant to virtually all forms of attack and created an unrivaled level of security. The angled cuts on the key and the cylinder design were so unique that a utility patent was issued. That patented protected the Medeco cylinder and key so no other manufacture could reproduce them. The principle of exclusive manufacturing rights over key blanks was successfully defended in court many times over, setting the basis for an entirely new kind of key control.
In 1985, Medeco introduced a new design of high security lock with the invention of the Biaxial® Locking System. Like the original, the Biaxial system uses a patent on the key and the cylinder to provide proven protection against the unauthorized manufacture and duplication of key blanks. Additionally, the Biaxial system is able to provide proven even greater master keying capability and utilizes hardened steel inserts to defend against virtually any form of physical attack.
In 1995, KeyMark® was introduced for installations requiring strong patented key control without the need for additional drill and pick resistant features. KeyMark became the ideal product for institutions because its interchangeable core directly retrofit Small Format Interchangeable Cores (SFIC) such as Best® and other styles. KeyMark was then followed by its succesor, patented KeyMark x4, renamed Medeco x4, which could enable large numbers of key combinations, 4 times that of traditional key systems.
Medeco entered the electronic arena with eCylinder electromechanical products. ASSA ABLOY's CLIQ technology combined wiht the high security Medeco mechanical key introduced the simplicity of a single credential for both electronic and mechanical access control that satisfied a need in the high security market. Medeco CLIQ and XT are the newest Medeco "Intelligent Key" technologies providing the features of traditional access control, including audit and scheduling, in simple retrofit options for most applications.
In 2003, Medeco introduced the new Medeco3 locking system. Building on the success of the original and Biaxial® design, Medeco3 offered a new patented system, and an increased level of security through the use of three distinct locking points. This design provides a heightened resistance to physical attack and raises the number of unique codes available for master key systems. The Medeoc3 key design also allows for a thicker, stronger key while still offering the highest level of protection against unauthorized duplication.
Medeco continues to be one of the world's leading producers of high security locks. The future development of more retrofit versatility and new product innovations will allow Medeco to continue its leadership in the high security and electromechanical retrofit cylinder marketplace.