As a professional locksmith technician every now and then, I would run into jobs where I would have to improvised in order to get it done. Normally, I would always keep in my service vehicle some old locks and other misc stuff I removed from previous jobs as I know I could probably find use for them in the future for other jobs. Time and time again having misc old locking parts in my van turned to be helpful. Even though I won't recommend using old parts when doing locksmith work for a customer, but sometimes there aren't many choices and they can be used as a backup plan.
I recently got a call from a company I worked with to install a panic bar on wooden doors which had no astragal. Knowing it could be a big job with a big pay, I decided to accept and was headed to the company's address. Once I got to the company's location, I ran a quick inspection to evaluate what needed to be done in order to do the job and I realized I did not have the correct door strike with me in the van. I didn't want to look unprofessional in front of the customer, so I called a fellow Portland locksmith of mine for advice. When I got him on the phone, he mentioned that I could probably use an old Adams Rite Latch Paddle Operator and modify it a bit to use instead of the intended strike.
I used a grinder I had in my service van to modify the handle as close as I could to those of a Sargent 644 strike, installed it, and then ran a quick test. After checking its functionality, it seem that everything was working as it should be. Another reason why I was in a tight situation to resolve the job the same day was because the Fire Marshal was about to close that business if they wouldn't have resolved the situation with the doors being properly secured. However, I did order the right part the same day which later was installed. Ever since, I keep that old latch as a backup plan for future commercial jobs.