M14 Forum banner
1 - 20 of 31 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone. Hope this is in the correct place to ask this.

I am trying to decide on a gun safe. I have it down to two. One is made by Summit. It is the Cascade model. The other is a American Security. Anyone have some advice for me?

Thanks.
Todd.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,143 Posts
I have no opinion on either of them but I would say to buy as much safe as you can possibly afford. I bought a 24" wide safe many years ago and it's not nearly big enough at this point, I should have spent the extra money on the 30".

Locking mechs aren't all the same either. Most use the same S&G lock and tumbler mech, but it's how they put them together...

The mech on my safe door...



...and the mech on my FIL's door...



I had to reshim the dial on his safe and grease the gears down a bit. Although his was a decent safe at a fair price, the mech quality and fit/finish isn't anywhere near mine.

I suggest going to a dealer and actually looking at the safe you are thinking about, even asking to pull the door panel and look at the mech.

But when it boils down to it... this is what you are after: They worked on this safe for 6 hours and never got in.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
94 Posts
Get a bigger one

Todd,

Get one bigger then you think you will need. Don't go by what the discription says that it will hold: 10, 15, or 20 long guns, etc. It won't.
I'm on my third safe and it is crowded trying to remove a rifle and not bang others while doing it.

Bolt the safe down securely. Two thieves can "walk" a heavy, unsecured safe right out the door.

hth,
bonnie
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,550 Posts
I use a Liberty Safe...

and have been very, very happy. Except for one thing...it's too damn small!!! I should have gone up a size or two or purchased a fat boy.

http://www.libertysafe.com/

Go to the bottom and punch in your zip. I checked Orlando and found 3 within an hour's drive.

I got the Franklin and it has been flawless for 9 years. The only add-ins were a golden rod and a lighting system. I use the old fashioned combo lock rather than the push buttons. Watch their videos; their warranty replaces the safe for fire or theft damage.

There is a safe company (can't remember which one) who puts mirrors in the back and has a great lighting system so you can see what's hiding in the nooks and crannys. There are others, but I'm happy with mine.

HTH

Bruce
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
261 Posts
Fort Know Safe

I think Fort Knox is the best. Look at their website.

KG
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,634 Posts
Electronic locks are nice, they are quicker and simpler to use. However, if they go out, you are stuck with a safe you can't get into. Which means drilling the door, and then installing a new lock.
Dial combinations will probably last forever, though you should change the combination once a year to prevent wear on the internal parts.
Ask me how I know all this.GI9

Updated:
I have one of the Costco Cannon made safes. It has worked very well for the past 8 years, until December when the LeGard electronic lock went out.
Fortunately, the lock is covered under a lifetime warranty by Cannon, and they replaced it with a manual at my request.
Safe cracker said that Cannons are decent safes, and have good fire resistance. However, LeGard locks are not good locks, His recommendation was an S&G lock(Sargeant and Green), which is what Cannon had sent me as a replacement.
I have no problems with the Cannon safe, other than it is getting too crowded, so I need to look at getting another one.
I won't get one with an electronic lock. It took 2 hours to drill, and replace the lock, and cost $370. About 2/3s the cost of the safe when it was purchased.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
136 Posts
+1 on the bigger the better idea because you may not only store your weapons in there but valuable papers, keys, etc.
Also, get an alarm system. As the poster said above, thieves worked on his safe for 6 hours. That should have been 15 minutes of work and 5:45 hours processing into jail.

Course you could always wire a shotgun at the door. (no, don't do that).GI8
 

·
Rest in Peace
Joined
·
2,058 Posts
Money is the big issue. I started with one of those $100 locking cabinets from Wally World, bolted to the wall. It was better than nothing and would stop a typical smash & grab burglar. They just want to get in and out as fast as possible. Every time I looked at a really good safe, I kept reminding myself I could get a really nice, new gun with that same money.

Finally I broke down and got a big safe, 72" tall x 48" wide x 30" deep. They claimed it would hold 32 long guns, but they'd all have to be lever guns. Start adding scopes, military guns, etc and you can't get that many in there. It takes me 10 minutes to get to one in the rear, and this is the 'easy out' version. It does hold a ton of pistols, mags, etc on the shelves though.

+1 on bolting them down. My big one weights 1200 pounds empty. A man and his kid delivered it from truck to gun room in 10 minutes. Last time I moved, two teenaged kids moved it out to the truck with no special gear.

The best IMO is something like a Browning if you're talking about being hard to crack.

I have a combination dial on mine, but as I get older and the eyes start to fade, I need my glasses and a good light to open it. The electronic keypad would be a literal lifesaver if time counted.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,519 Posts
Quality and size are the two most important factors with cost being the tempering agent in your purchase. Bigger is better. You might want to watch this when figuring out how much quality you want to purchase.

[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nBhOjWHbD6M[/ame]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,102 Posts
Greetings,

I'd been looking for quite a while for a real safe to augment my gun "cabinet". There are a few safe companies that were always at the local gun shows and I spent quite a bit of time checking out the products they offered. I ended up going with Liberty Safe (they have a shop relatively local to me) and when trying to decide on the specific model took advantage of a sale on the "Fat Boy", figuring larger would be better in the long run. Though it came standard with an electronic lock, I had them remove it and install a traditional dial type as I feel there is a greater failure potential with the electronic version (they credited me for the price difference).

http://www.libertysafe.com/safe_fatboy.php

It's not quite as nice as some by Fort Knox that I looked at and I'm sure there are better (for more $), but I think it will end up working out fine. It has a lifetime warranty that is pretty inclusive and came standard with many features that previously were optional (door pistol storage, de-humidifier, light kit, etc.). I'm building it into a corner in the basement on a 4" raised concrete platform, which it will be bolted into. The door opening side will be up against the corner, so as to reduce leverage if anyone attempts to pry the door off.

Good luck and buy larger than you currently need!

Regards, Jim
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,143 Posts
+1 on the bigger the better idea because you may not only store your weapons in there but valuable papers, keys, etc.
That's part of my problem... the bottom 2 shelves have papers and a fireproof doc box. Mine is supposed to be a 12-gun, I'm lucky if I can get 8 or 9 jammed in. Bolts, oprods, a scope or two... everything gets in the way.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
604 Posts
I have an Amsec and it's a very nice safe. I bought it used, or I would have gone with a Liberty.

Be careful with some of the cheaper brands of safes, I've seen a couple that have been through fires and they don't do very well, think sticking your firearms in the oven for a couple of hours @ 1000 degrees.

And the thing about getting a bigger safe is VERY true, I recently had to remove all my shelves to fit a few rifles that my beloved got tired of seeing leaning up agianst the bedroom wall.GI4
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,997 Posts
Just a Suggestion
Bolt it to the Floor Wall Bolt it
My safes are up against the foundation wall, they are bolted to the floor and the Concrete wall.And they are not going any where Ever
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,372 Posts
I like smaller safes. If someone wants all of my collection they have to break into several safes. Chances are they won't get my whole collection.

Regards

Ox
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
77 Posts
RE Safes

Ok this is something I know a little about, 10 years as a locksmith and lock instructor. Many of the above posts are 100% correct, so I may repeat some here. Here is a check list for you to look at. Rule one
; the more value your collection is the better safe you want. You didn't go cheap on your guns don't go cheap on your safe!!!!
Fire rated
Number of bolts on your door,side, top and bottom (at least 5 total)
Fixed bolts on hinge side of door
Are there any relockers (they fire when door is tampered with, only on better safes)
Hard plate behind the lock (prevents drilling)
Yes bolt her down, build it inside a closet if you can
Walls made from a heavy gauge steel, I've seen some safe you could get into with an axe
Lock: Yes-mech. combo. If it starts to give you trouble I have a 75% chance of getting into it without drilling! Elect. lock when it's dead it's dead, yes there are mech & electronic parts that go bad in electronic lock. I saw more problems with S&G than any other, they have a weak return spring
Hope some of this helps you
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
18,151 Posts
Research, still the only game in town......

Electronic locks are nice, they are quicker and simpler to use. However, if they go out, you are stuck with a safe you can't get into. Which means drilling the door, and then installing a new lock. Or just place a 9 vol. battery to the face and punch in your numbers and your in. In 12 years, my 9 vol battery has gone out once, plus I open the safe once or more times a week. Once inside you can replace the 9 vol battery.
Dial combinations will probably last forever, though you should change the combination once a year to prevent wear on the internal parts.
Ask me how I know all this.GI9
With dial combinations you need to write it on the side of the safe more times that you would like. I'm into bigger than you need today, because you will fill it up faster than you think.

Good luck on what you pick-out.DI5
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
94 Posts
Pry tools

After bolting the safe down consider where you keep your sledge and pry tools. In the basement next to the safe or in the tool shed away from the house.

Investigated a hardware store B&E and safecracking. The commercial safe was incased in 6" of concrete. The thieves had a three day holiday weekend to pound, cut, and pry the safe open. Whenever they needed a tool they went to the stores' tool section and selected what was best for the job. They went through several sledge hammers, pry bars and chisels. They also got several thousand dollars for the effort.
The owner said the alarm system had not worked for over a year.

Don't make it convenient for thieves.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
As usual with this forum. there are many different, GREAT ideas. I thank each and everyone for the help. I thought that I had narrowed my search down to two safe companies. Well today I saw a very large Browning safe. Now I am back into the think tank.

Thanks again to everyone.

Take care and be safe.
Todd.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,279 Posts
Take a look at Zanotti. They come in sections and you can put it anywhere. Another bonus, no delivery mopes trouncing through your home.
 
1 - 20 of 31 Posts
Top