Key/Keyring combo is all too easy

July 9, 2009 By Paul Wagorn

This is to be filed in the “why didn’t I think of that?” folder. Sometimes an idea doesn’t have to be complicated, expensive or difficult understand to be creative and useful.

The picture says it all:

The beauty is in it’s simplicity: combine the key and keyring into one object – Designed an patented by Scott Amron, the Split Key Ring both opens your doors and holds your other keys. It comes as a key blank that fits standard KW1 and SC1 keyways and can be cut in any key cutter.

The key blanks sells for $7 for a pack of two. No offence Scott, but why did it take so long for someone to come up with this?

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Reader Comments

Well I always lose my keys, any change that is doesn't happen with this one?
Posted by frank on November 8, 2012

I love the simplicity, but it makes me wonder if it would be as practical to use - for many of the reasons people have already mentioned. Interesting idea, though.
Posted by Rita Brooks on January 3, 2012

LOL, you people are obviously just jealous you didn't come up with the idea first
Posted by TheO on October 28, 2011

Good idea! Life made simple.
Posted by Live music in Malaga on September 30, 2011

No markings?! It should be at least color coded. Put several of those keys together in a bunch and you'd go crazy looking for the right key to your door.
Posted by Fred Matteson on September 16, 2011

This would be a great present to put in a homemade Christmas cracker. The drunken discussion that would ensue would probably not be as coherent as the comments on this page but might be quite amusing. It would at least be a talking point. Provocative and elegant even if pretty useless...
Posted by Kevin Glenister on September 2, 2011


It would make life easier!!

Posted by boss snow plows on August 15, 2011

Awesome site, had a fun time reading it :D Share us some more stories mannn
Posted by hitomi tanaka downloads on August 8, 2011

Great invention. I wish I would of thought of this!!
Posted by david k on June 21, 2011

This is a brilliant idea! This key looks good. I have several keys so this would solve my problem of holding them together. Simplicity is really beautiful! I will try this out now...
Posted by Peter on June 8, 2011

I've been using this key as my house key for a while now - works great. Other keys can be slipped on and off the ring with ease. Admittedly I use it without any other keys attached (I slip it into my wallet as I use no other keys regularly). The slightly wider diameter of the ring offers greater leverage when turning, the loop is perfect for slipping your finger into and pulling the door shut; it feels very strong, as if it's been milled out of a single slab of metal (it isn't - the ring has been bonded to the key part). It just feels so good using it - An excellent design the looks unique and operates flawlessly.
Posted by Kevin P on February 7, 2011

@Johnny, Doctor Who carries only one key.
Posted by JonathanJK on June 27, 2010

Now this one is spankin'!
"How come no-one did it before"??

Just like glow-in-the-dark-keyholes. But wait, should i patent it before i click "Submit Comment"?..

But it seems someone did that already -
Posted by Guigo on July 22, 2009

You have done well, I think u should setup a busseness to look into it. becouse this this key with ring is a new invention and need to be congratulated for the good effort.
Posted by ABOAGYE on July 22, 2009

You folks are missing the point: no other key will be inserted because of the midway obstruction in the ring.
The only reason why we are able to insert a 2nd key in a regular ring is because the fist key slides. This ring has a "first key" that is stuck in the middle preventing everything else from being inserted.

So, even if you overcome the manufacturing challenges, the material resistance issue, even if you don't mind about the discomfort of eventual other keys in perpendicular position, it's geometrical impossibility precedes and overcomes everything.

However, it's very amusing.
Posted by Wagner on July 14, 2009

I don't think that the problems stated above would be something the designer would overlook. However flimsy a typical keyring is, it looks like the one in the picture is thicker and sturdier. And besides, a typical keyring isn't as pliable as you might think when lateral pressure is applied, they way it is when turning the handle of a key. There is the possibility of having a larger clump of keys due to the design, but I don't think it'd be much of a problem, since this keyring would replace one of the keys (and proabably a ring) in your pocket anyway. I hate having all my keys on one ring anyway, so I have two or three attached to one main ring; each ring organizes my keys for a specific place. I could use this key as my main ring, and keep the other smaller keyrings attached to it with their corresponding keys. This seems to be a great product, at least for my key-entry needs.

also, what's with TheEgo claiming that it the design would inhibit the addition of other keys? That would completely defeat the purpose of this product; can you not look at the picture and see how the designer could get around this problem? I think there's an online tendency towards immediate skepticism for the sake of appearing discerning, but you must be skeptical only to the point that it makes sense to criticize. Don't be a naysayer just to be a naysayer.
Posted by Chris on July 11, 2009

hmm.....nice idea, how would you tell the keys apart?
Posted by Waqas Lone on July 10, 2009

It's a brilliant idea! I read some of the posts and thought about it: I took out the bunch of keys, I have in my pocket, and tried to bend the keyring... Well you can try it yourself to see how strong it is. Secondly the keyring, if attached to other keyrings won't necessarily stay 90° out of line. It has quite a lot of play. Also the key and keyring can still be of the same material. The shape of the ring makes the material more flexible. Manufacturing it is a simple task of moulds and then cutting the necessary shape in the steel ring to allow for attaching other rings/keyrings.
The only complaint that I have, of this concept, is how stupid it makes the rest of us look.
Posted by Drakus Zar on July 10, 2009

Love/hate all the people calling bullshit on this idea. It would make a cool powerpoint clipart.
Posted by Steve on July 10, 2009

What exactly is the problem that this solves?
Posted by fredb on July 10, 2009

I love how everyone above just *knows* that the ring will bend, that it will be uncomfortable, too hard to turn, etc.

Just how much force does it take to turn a typical key-lock? Not nearly as much as everyone is presuming. Seriously, get off ur ass, go to your front door, and try it. This is an insightful idea, and definitely warrants more open-mindedness. Empiricism is when you actually hold stuff in your hand and try it. Remember that.
Posted by jack on July 10, 2009

Dumb. Brutally dumb.

It stops the rest of your keys from lying flat. It's going to get twisted because it's structurally weak.

And how do you take this one key off to give to someone else?
Posted by Snarkosaurus on July 10, 2009

Should work great. With the addition of a key ring.
Posted by darter22 on July 10, 2009

i sorta kinda maybe like the idea.

but then like others have said, it'll be harder to determine what key is for what unless the key itself is entirely a different color.. plus when you go to actually use the key you'll have to make sure your thumb is on the border of the key and doesnt go right through it which could be annoying.

so after a few minutes of thinking.. ill pass on this idea.
Posted by glenn on July 10, 2009

Try bending a normal keyring, it's harder than you think. Look at the picture it's not thin and flat, so it is strong.
Posted by hugmenot on July 10, 2009

Are you guys who think the keyring will break in a lock serious? When was the last time you snapped a keyring in half? If your locks are so crappy that it requires enough turning force to snap a keyring, then you're already bending and breaking keys in those locks.
Posted by Bobsyouruncle on July 10, 2009

The only thing this key will do is snap.
Posted by brim on July 10, 2009

this is the dumb idea....its not that no one thought of it......todays design are to make key more this what u 'd do if the ring breaks? the key is useless
Posted by jombo on July 10, 2009

So instead of my keys lying parallel to each other in my pocket, exactly one will be stuck perpendicular to the others?

I really don't think the "need a keyring" problem outweighs the obvious drawback.

That's why I never thought of it: it solves a non-problem by creating a new problem. :-)
Posted by Tim on July 10, 2009

It would also be un-comfortable to use without the large surface area to apply pressure to while turning the key
Posted by Conor on July 10, 2009

You didn't think of this because it's an awful idea. Aside from the fact that, if you need to detach that one key from the ring it's going to cause issues, there is the problem of applying torque in a sticky lock possibly breaking the key because there is no flat surface to twist.
Posted by Ben on July 10, 2009

There is no market need for this item. It doesn't really solve any problems. The fact that it is a key ring means that you can only have one, then your other keys will go on to it. So now you still have a bunch of keys on a key ring, except now one of them doesn't lie in plane with the others. So having this key doesn't really change anything. If this gets marketed, anyone who buys it will soon discover that it's not really as great of an idea as it orginally may seem. The best thing you can do with it is show it to your friends and hope they don't realize how useless it is and they will think its cool.
Posted by Bob on July 10, 2009

It's a flimsy key and cramped keyring.

It would be very dysfunctional as a key if you actually used it as a keyring because the other attached keys would get in the way.

And the ring would probably snap off the first time the key was used in a lock that was a little hard to turn.

I don't see it as being all that useful. It's just another novelty that would be discarded quickly.
Posted by Richard on July 10, 2009

It doesn't solve or improve a situation. The design forces your keys to be at right angles to one another. It's novel, but NOT a good design idea for anyone who has more than ONE key. And who carries ONE key?
Posted by Johnny on July 10, 2009

Even if it doesn't work I think it would be a great valentines day novelty item. Maybe ringbox or some cheesey card that says "will you move in with me"
Posted by Joesmo on July 10, 2009

Fun design concept, but not actually useful.

1. All 'regular' keys on this keyring would be perpendicular to the ring-key, so they wouldn't lie flat against each other. The ring-key would always be jutting out at a weird angle.

2. As keys shift around, the ring-key would impede their movement. They wouldn't be able to shift around and settle, they'd get all jammed up and awkward.

3. If you had multiple ring-keys, you'd have a daisy-chain of rings rather than multiple keys on one ring.

Sorry guys...this is a useless impulse-buy at its best.
Posted by Sean Mulholland on July 10, 2009

This was never invented before because of the fact that the key ring will bend when you turn the key.
Posted by Hooty on July 10, 2009

I actually don't like the current design, but simple mod could make it work.

The problem is that added keys will lie perpendicular to the ring key such that the "pack" of keys is oddly shaped. The fix should be obvious
Posted by chris on July 10, 2009

I would respect it more (sort of) as an artistic statement than a useful object. I mean, have we really been plagued by keyring usability/ergonomics?
Posted by Justin Thyme on July 10, 2009

Great idea, love it...

...but the ring and key are typically made of differing metal alloys, doesn't the ring need more "spring" to be able to bend to open/ close properly?

Maybe the key could be made of the same alloy?
Posted by Will on July 10, 2009

What problem does it solve exactly?
Posted by Matt on July 10, 2009

I've always wondered why they don't make key blanks for swiss army knives.
Posted by Joel on July 10, 2009

The most curious thing about this widget {INO} is the almost instantaneous voice in your head that says "Man that's a good idea" followed by a rapid decline in enthusiasm as your brain works out the failed utility of it. Fascinating study in the perceptual value of intellectual property. Not including the obvious subfunction of there being a vast consumer base that would not see the fail until after purchase and even those stubborn consumers who would buy it BECAUSE their immediate reaction told them to despite the obvious flaws. Either way you could still tap it for money......IP is analogous to catching a lighting bolt and slowly drawing off the energy in a controlled way. There is no doubt that this product has a substantial difference of potential.
Posted by Terry in Sullivan on July 10, 2009

If you attach other keys to that ring it will feel lumpy and irritating in your pocket. Cute though.
Posted by Brad on July 10, 2009

great idea until you look at it from a manufacturing point of view.
Posted by Sal on July 10, 2009

Now you're putting the key ring industry out of business. Good one.
Posted by Jim Bob on July 10, 2009

Anyone else notice that the ring looks photoshopped?
Posted by sicarius on July 10, 2009

I'll wait till there is a ring I can fit on my finger to hold my key.
Posted by Hans Granqvist on July 10, 2009

It has a bigger hole in the center than most keys. Don't you get it? You're stupid, this is the most bestest thing I've ever seen.
Posted by Marco on July 10, 2009

yup I think it's a bad idea as well
Posted by Jack on July 10, 2009

You guys are missing the point: if the key didn't work, and broke when you used it, the guy wouldn't have gone through the patenting process. And yes, I'm sure it has been tested, and works fine.
Posted by genius on July 10, 2009

Also, the key will be 90 degrees out of line from the other keys that are on the ring, so they won't nest and it will take up more space in your pocket!
Posted by Krebbinator on July 10, 2009

This is a dumb idea. How will you turn the key without a sturdy place to hold it? That ring will bend the very instant somebody tries that in a lock.
Posted by Leonardo da Vinci on July 10, 2009

Actually, that is a terrible idea. It would be incredibly weak, thus very likely to break off in your lock, and the key part would interfere with items goind on and off the ring part. The general idea of "key + ring" is a wonderful concept, but I think it could be done much better than the example given.
Posted by TheEgo on July 10, 2009

It's been a while since I heard of a well deserved patent. To all software patent holders, this is what a real patent looks like.
Posted by Allen on July 10, 2009 idea but i couldn't imagine having 5 of these. how would you tell the keys apart? Powder and color coded ones maybe?
Posted by Fred on July 10, 2009

Brilliant, simple and pure genius,
Posted by JOE on July 9, 2009

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