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Old 07-26-2019, 11:31 AM   #1
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Gun Safe - Pros & Cons

What should I look for in a gun safe?

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Old 07-26-2019, 11:35 AM   #2
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The very first thing to look for is bigger than you think you'll need. That's the number one purchase mistake. Beyond that... it's difficult to recommend anything without any information from you, including a budget.
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Old 07-26-2019, 11:41 AM   #3
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A mistake I made was buying one configured for long guns, not realizing how many pistols I'd eventually own, many of which have become safe queens, shot only occasionally. As Phil said, buy bigger than you think you need.
Just call me Harold, or whatever you want.
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Old 07-26-2019, 11:57 AM   #4
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I went with two smaller safes, rather than one giant safe. Made it possible to get them into the house, and allows for better storage.

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Old 07-26-2019, 12:31 PM   #5
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Oh, yeah, that mistake too...make sure it'll fit where you want it in your house and it can be gotten there, through doors, etc., without a ton of extra money for delivery guys (or beer for friends).
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Old 07-26-2019, 01:30 PM   #6
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All good points so far and I agree with them all. While I totally agree with Phil about buying a bigger size than you think you need however to be honest I bought my National Security safe about 36 years ago give or take a year or two (it was the biggest I could afford at the time) weighs almost 1000lbs empty, 90min. fire protection. Well it is just now what I call full, I have moved and made room several times. I have room remaining for maybe 3 long guns, 2 if they have scopes. I'd like to have another good safe not sure if I'll get one.
BigDog made a very good point, be certain you can get the safe you chose in the desired location in your house. I didn't know that tip and my safe ended up having to stay in a not so perfect location in my house. Two fold fault, part no planning on my part and part home built during the 1970's crappy interior design.
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Old 07-26-2019, 02:37 PM   #7
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I will add, ask yourself how long you plan to stay in the house you're in and buy a safe accordingly. If only for another couple of years, do you plan to take it with you? If not, don't invest in the highest end safe as you will be lucky to recoup half back out. If you do plan to stay a while, pick an accessible spot and invest in a really good safe. My guys fought getting mine downstairs and basically told me that it is now a permanent part of the basement as they will not be back to move it.
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Old 07-26-2019, 03:08 PM   #8
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Gun Safe - Pros & Cons

Simple rules. These are my main things when people ask these type questions. So everything others mentioned plus more.

- The most of the idiots that build and sell gun safes, still advertise them like you are putting flintlocks in them. Nay nay I say. If it says it will hold 24 rifles, (pistols is another story)... they will hold 24 Flintlocks.
If you have any rifles with scopes, side charging handles, or any other gear attach, not happening. Before I got side chargers or even bolt action rifles, you might get 10 in my 24 gun safe.. Even then, if they are parked close together and you want to pull out one 3 back or just say, ‘not in front of your collection’, plan on a lot of entanglement, clunking, swearing and so on.

- To me, fire safe is good for paperwork, maybe. (remember Fahrenheit 451 )? Thats the temperature which paper burns and a book and a couple movies...
Modern day rifles like ARs will melt. Wood stocks will warp, splinter and char. Barrels will warp depending how long its in the fire. Will the FD soak the home so bad, water gets into safe. Chances are if its a wood structure you parked it on and an upper floor, it very well could fall through and it may offset the door and wrench the metal.
Also, if inside the safe is sealed well, it could become a pressure cooker.
What I am saying, fire rating is ok if all happens swiftly and the fire is put out, your stuff may survive. Oh, one last thing. If the FD finds out there are guns and/or ammo, they may not try so hard to get close unless life is in peril. They’ll just get donuts and coffee and watch.

- Size, weight, location. That depends on you. Get white glove treatment or rent a stair climbing hand truck. They are motorized and climb stairs and turn corners. Lot of places rent them. Very cool gadgets. Or, get the biggest lugs you know, buy pizza and beer (no beer before move), and just watch... Doors are heavy. They say take them off. Some people do. It lightens the safe. Most of the weight is in the door. Bolts, etc. But beware, without help and even when you do, they are a bitch to get back on.

- There are a lot of good safe comps out there. Liberty, Pendleton, (very unique), etc.
There is even one that comes in separate parts that you bring the pieces to its resting place and build it with a helper.

My suggestion is read up on SAAMI. They cover a lot. Look on there for ammo testing when in fires, etc. Great stuff! Good luck!

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Old 07-26-2019, 05:07 PM   #9
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Two things to remember, thiefís donít mess with the doors on safes too much trouble. They use a battery powered or electric grinder to cut through the thin sheet metal sides. So, itís a waste of money for a solid plate door (Unless thatís what you want) also if possible put it in a closet. They will have to tear down walls to get to the sides. Last, get one big enough to start with and a good fire rating. Chances are in a hot house fire the insides are going to be junk anyways, buddyís a fireman and I trust his opinion. So if you need fire protection put safe in basement if you have one and a couple gorillaís to put it there

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Old 07-26-2019, 05:42 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by rbswelder View Post
What should I look for in a gun safe?
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