Ladies and gentlemen:
Let us turn our attention to the lowly, unloved handcuffs. Actually, let us turn our attention to where our handcuffs live for 98% of the time -- some form of leather or (more recently) ballistic cloth.
See that fuzzy kind of stuff lurking around in those handcuff carriers? That, my confused yet earnest apprentices, is lint. Yes, just like the stuff that breeds in your pockets.
Now, you may not know this, but when your 'cuffs are riding in the carriers, all of that lint is busily having conjugal relations with the ever-present dust -- and they're doing this inside of your handcuff mechanism.
I was going to say "ever-present dust-bunnies", but I've seen some of y'all's gear -- and "ever-present dust buffaloes" just doesn't have the cute mental image I was going for.
Now, just what do you think happens to all of that mung when you squirt a jumbo-sized dose of 3-in-1 oil off into the handcuff mechanism?
Maybe nothing -- at first. But, as things go along, as more and more dust and lint builds up, and as more oil gets coinked in there, sooner or later the inside of your handcuff mechanism is going to look remarkably like the Demon Hairball of Azgeroth exploded in there.
And (sooner or later) you're going to be standing there with a bemused, yet apprehensive look on your face; a broken handcuff key in one paw; and an increasingly concerned -- and still handcuffed -- prisoner in the other.
Which means that someone -- probably not you -- is going to have to go find a set of bolt-cutters, chop your inmate loose; and further followed by someone else -- probably with more rank than brains -- in my department issuing a silly-arsed memo restricting our officers to the short, dinky, short, tiny and altogether too-bloody-short official Smith-and-Wesson issue key.
Ladies and gentlemen, if the official Smith-and-Wesson key was truly the bees knees, there wouldn't be a booming business in after-market improved handcuff keys.
So. When you do lubricate your handcuffs, kindly use dry graphite powder, or some other variety of dry -- non-Demon-Hairball-forming -- lubricant.
Thanks ever so.