Core Value: Continuous Learning – Electric Strikes with Assa Abloy

By Gina Stuelke, CEO of Kenton Brothers

In a technology company like Kenton Brothers Systems for Security, constant focus on opportunities to refine our core values is always the goal.

Assa Abloy - Electric Strike Training Assa Abloy - Electric Strike Training

Continuous Learning

Assa Abloy - Electric Strike TrainingContinuous learning is one of those core values and it’s imperative to keep us at the top of our game. As you’ll see in the pictures, some of our security specialists take their training opportunities very seriously! Our team had a blast learning the latest electric strike installation techniques at a recent training event sponsored by Assa Abloy, the largest global supplier of intelligent lock and security solutions.

An electric strike is an electrified locking device. These are cut into the jamb of a commercial door to work with a card reader and a commercial access control system to secure an opening. It’s important to know how to survey the door opening properly by evaluating the existing door and frame as well as the existing mechanical locking mechanism to determine if an electric strike is the correct product to do the job.

There is an art form to properly cutting in the strike into the metal frame of a door. It’s not for the faint of heart!

Assa Abloy - Electric Strike Training Assa Abloy - Electric Strike Training

Great job Team KB! Thank you for investing in your skills and adding value to what we can bring to our customers!

Remember when security just meant a good set of keys?

By Ryan Kaullen, Field Services Manager at Kenton Brothers

Kenton Brothers opened its commercial locksmith doors in Kansas City in 1897 by two brothers William and Leon Kenton, and is still located in the heart of Kansas City to this day.  From the beginning, the mission has been to protect people, property, and possessions but locksmithing has changed over the past 120+ years! Today, keys look very different than the skeleton keys of the past. We now have electronic machines that cut keys, and we even have software programs that will keep your master key system organized and in check.

Keying Through Time Keying Through Time

But what else has changed?

Keying Through TimeAs most people remember when growing up, it was not uncommon to see school janitors, maintenance employees, or even property managers walking around with huge rings that looked like they had 250 keys on them and weighed 50lbs. The days of someone carrying around that many keys are coming to a close as keying systems have advanced, access control is becoming ever more prevalent, and keying software has allowed keying systems to be more easily managed. Things change (and a lot of times for the better.) Leon and William Kenton even knew that back in the early 1900’s. They knew that they had to take care of the customer, innovate, offer more than their competitor, and provide remarkable service to continue to grow.

So how does this information benefit you or the company you work for?

With more advanced methods of key control, by knowing who has what keys, by knowing how to properly protect your people, property, and possessions, and by granting access to certain areas, you can cut down costs, reduce the number of keys people have and benefit from a mechanical security system that compliments your access control system. And an advanced method of key control can be its own mechanical access control system.

Even a century ago, William and Leon knew that a good master key system could be designed to incorporate security and convenience for the users. How? By gathering important information at the preliminary ‘keying meeting’ where the details to design the master key system are discussed. One tip for a successful design is to incorporate the company’s organizational layout (users of the keys) with the building layout of where the doors are located. It’s also important to gather information about future changes or potential growth anticipated. A good master key system makes it easy for those that need access to multiple rooms. It also increases security by only granting access to needed areas and not the entire floor.

We’re here to educate.

Keying Through TimeFrom the beginning, Kenton Brothers has worked to educate our customers, help understand their needs, and promote all the offerings in the market place that will properly secure their facilities.  Kenton Brothers may have started as a locksmith who also fixed umbrellas and sharpened mower blades to make ends meet. But as the decades have passed, we’ve developed into more than just a large and growing commercial locksmith in Kansas City. Our other offerings include Access Control, IP Video, Intrusion Detection, and more. These systems all work together to provide a layered approach for securing facilities.

Let the Kenton Brothers team of dedicated employees show you how we can protect your people, property, and possessions and keep you All Secure!

Mechanical Hardware Guru Bill Harris Implements Record Setting Mechanical Sale As He Approaches Retirement

Kenton Brothers Systems for Security: Bill Harris Profile Photo

Bill Harris

The Kenton Brothers headquarters is based in Kansas City, MO but we do work across the United States to take care of our customers. Some of the most rewarding jobs are those close to home.

In 2021, Kenton Brothers was awarded a job for Bartle Hall Convention Center located in Downtown Kansas City, MO. What also makes this job special are two of the gentlemen involved in this project. Bill Harris of Kenton Brothers and David Mullins with Bartle Hall. Both Bill and David have been long standing pillars with their respective companies and both are going to be retiring in the near future. The job itself is being run by Zack Holden, one of Kenton Brothers’ Project Managers.

From left to right: Zack Holden (Kenton Brothers), David Mullins (Bartle Hall) and Bill Harris (Kenton Brothers)

From left to right: Zack Holden (Kenton Brothers), David Mullins (Bartle Hall) and Bill Harris (Kenton Brothers)

The Project

The two main vendors involved in this project are Alarm Lock and Sargent Manufacturing.

The scope of the project is installing door hardware, new power supplies, Alarm Locks, coordinating new door & frame installs, new electrical work, and more across 75+ openings. This job has many tricky facets to it including coordination of sub-contractors, coordination of where we can work (different rooms are in use for events), keeping low voltage wires hidden, and even the coordination of parts being delivered. All of these variables add complexity to the project.

Bartle Hall - Door

No Exposed Cables

This is a door to an event space in Bartle Hall. They initially thought that we would have to bring wire mold down from the ceiling. For a cleaner and aesthetically pleasing install, we were able to design a solution by pulling cable in the drywall instead of having the cables exposed.

Bartle Hall - Door with Exit Bars

Exit Bars

We added exit bars to dozens of doors for this project. This was required to get their facility up to current life safety code standards.

Kenton Brothers loves these types of projects.

Large, complicated projects allow us to show what makes us different than our competition. Kenton Brothers, under one roof, has technicians that understand locksmith work, mechanical door hardware, commercial access control integration, commercial video surveillance and the ability to source and coordinate subcontractors. The end result is that our customers look to us as their single point of contact for large projects.

We want to thank Bartle Hall for trusting us for this project and we also want to give a farewell send off to Bill Harris who has been with Kenton Brothers 17+ years, you picked a great time to sell your largest project!

Keying Systems Part 3: Peace of Mind with Keying Systems

By Ryan Kaullen, Field Services Manager at Kenton Brothers

Keying Systems Series
Part 1: Importance of Master Key Systems and Restricted Keyways
Part 2: Restricted vs. Standard Keyways
Part 3: Peace of Mind with Keying Systems (this story)

BuildingAs a building owner, business owner or manager, you may wonder how the keys for your business are maintained. Are they being properly taken care of? How many copies are floating around? Has anyone lost one? Which of the employees have them? The list of questions goes on. The good news? The answers don’t have to be as complex as you think.

There are several checks and balances you can implement to have peace of mind with your access control systems.

The first step would be to implement a restricted keying system at your location(s).

A restricted keying system comes with many benefits. These include, but aren’t limited to, the following:

  • Keys can’t be duplicated at local hardware stores.
  • There’s a list of authorized users at your locksmith of choice who can get more keys made.
  • If a key is lost or stolen, you’ll know immediately. Why? Because the key holder will have to report it as they can no longer access the doors/areas they need to open.
  • Restricted cylinders are harder to pick/bypass than standard keyways.

Kenton Brothers has run into the first example many times. We’ve had customers come in to request keys. We ask their name, and they weren’t on the authorized user list. So we turned them away. It was later found out that the person in question had been let go earlier in the week.

The next benefit is the checks and balances portion of a restricted key system.

KeyAs mentioned above, there is an authorized user list associated with all restricted key systems.

What this does is stop employees or individuals from getting keys made, new cylinders created, etc. This is extremely beneficial for employees who’ve lost a key or have bad intentions at the facility.

Understanding how a key system can work to your benefit is also important.

A properly planned master key system can be set up that allows employees specific access to certain areas. This is an important component of securing your facility.

Kenton Brothers has many customers who implement a master key system.

A great example of how this works is for one of our customers that owns a 10 floor building. Each floor has a different tenant, and each tenant should only have access to their floor. We created an overall master key system, created floor masters, and keyed the cylinders to flow traffic properly.

The result? Tenants knew they had secure spaces.

Kenton Brothers has been designing key systems since 1897.
Let us help you find peace of mind with your keying and security needs.

National Account with 600 Sites in 15 Weeks? Check.

By Ryan Kaullen, Field Services Manager at Kenton Brothers

Kenton Brothers Systems for Security, in its 124th year of existence, has seen projects of every size across most industries. We really thrive taking on the unusual, the time sensitive, and challenging projects across regions/states. This is a common situation when we’re working with some of our national accounts.

One such project that covered all of these aspects was a recent install at over 600 sites for a major utility company in the Midwest.

The scope of the project was to install locking hardware and specialty electronic hardware (eCylinders/ePadlocks) across the customer’s list of sites. This was a complex project involving lots of variables. These included timeframe, hardware needed, and the geographical locations of these sites. A lot of planning went into this project to evaluate requirements and determine the best course of action with limited information.

CLIQ Connect CLIQ Connect


Medeco | Assa AbloyThe timeline for this project was a total of 15 weeks. This meant we would be doing installations at roughly 43 sites per week. One of the requirements of this project was to meet a federally mandated deadline. This required us to plan the best routes possible to ensure our technicians were as efficient as possible.

We accomplished this using route planning software based on addresses and GPS coordinates. This was a crucial step to ensuring we would hit our deadlines.

The result? Kenton Brothers completed this project over a week early.

CLIQ Connect


The tricky part about material for this project is that we couldn’t easily plan ahead for the amount of hardware that would be needed at each location.

Before the start of the project, we visited 7 sites and created hardware lists to cover the different scenarios we found. The goal was to make sure our technicians didn’t have to make return trips for materials.

We were also installing security cylinders known as eCylinders or ePadlocks. They provide access just like an access control system. If you have the correct key, you’re allowed access. If you don’t, the cylinder or padlock stays locked. This is for auditing capabilities of who went into the site and at what time. This product and solution met the industry specified regulatory requirements for remote sites.


Project LocationsThe locations ranged from being in major cities to farmer’s cow pastures.

We provided our technicians aerial views of all of the sites. This helped them verify they were at the right place and what to expect getting into the area. This played a vital role in our completion date. We were able to plan routes based on those views and we could see the access points.

This complex project was a fast-paced, time sensitive, and complex project that required an attention to detail. Every site required work detail reports with specific information, specific billing was required to meet our customer’s needs, and technicians with outstanding craftsmanship were needed to accomplish the project goals.

We are proud that we were able to provide one of our national accounts customers this commercial security solution. And it was a big win to deliver a week ahead of schedule. Do you have large commercial security projects that require attention to detail, multiple sites, and a team who can get the work done? If so, give Kenton Brothers a call. We’ll make your life easier!