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Dead Man's Chest has Jack Sparrow carrying out the following plan, in precisely that order:

  1. Steal the drawing of the key to Davy Jones' chest
  2. Locate and steal said key
  3. Retrieve and open the chest

Now if for some reason the key cannot be forged again, that makes a lot of sense. But for a complete ignorant of blacksmithing like I am, it doesn't look that complicated a metal shape to reproduce:

drawing of the key

It would seem much less risky to steal the drawing, retrieve the chest, and then settle down somewhere and try to re-create the key. Holding fort is easier if it's on land, since Jones can't come ashore. I can see two obstacles, but also an attempt at overcoming them:

  • the drawing isn't a 1:1 scale. Fiddling with sticks of various lengths could give you a better idea of the key's actual length.
  • no forge/blacksmith available. I don't know if Tortuga has a forge, but it doesn't seem that much of a reach. And if it boils down to blacksmith's skill, Jack gets a pretty talented one quite soon, when William Turner meets him again.

Out-of-universe it wouldn't be very thrilling to watch pirates elsewhere than sea, trying out different metal molds, but in-universe it sounds way safer. Why wouldn't they do so?

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    Lockpicking would be even easier, there would be no need for a key in the first place. Presumably magical items are not that susceptible to cheating. – Eike Pierstorff Jun 2 '20 at 12:42
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    @EikePierstorff ... then I'm going to take the pick that Bootstrap Bill and I made... – OrangeDog Jun 2 '20 at 13:23
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    @EikePierstoff, yes, I guess that's what the question boils down to: the heart certainly has a layer of magic on it, but what about the key and chest? – Jenayah Jun 3 '20 at 6:58

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