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Old July 7, 2013, 05:10 PM   #1
Machineguntony
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Protecting and securing your machine guns from theft

So I am planning to buy a significant amount of NFA machine guns.

I don't want to keep the safe downstairs bc it would be pretty easy to put the safe on a dolly and make off with it. I imagine this would be easy to do. Thinking like a thief, if I saw a big safe, I would immediately make a plan to come get it. If its on the first floor, someone could bring a dolly, and make off with it in less than five minutes, and then crack it at their home (which with a drill, mallet, and chisel is pretty easy). Upstairs, at least they would have a battle, and most burglars want to get in and out quick.

And since I don't plan on being a hermit about my guns, I am going to take my girlfriend and friends shooting. While I trust my girlfriend and friends as much as possible, I am sure they will say stuff like, 'wow yesterday I shot some of my friends machine guns', and an undesirable person may hear and think bad thoughts.

Essentially, I am going to have some very valuable and compact (ie, very stealable) items in my house. This makes me a bigger target for theft and burglaries. I am sure this is true for all of us who own or will own machine guns.

So I am going to buy one of those big 800-1000 pound safes and put it in my second floor.

Questions...

What do you guys do to secure your NFA items?

How about if you have multiple NFA items? I am sure having one gun at $30,000 is way less of a risk than having 20 guns at $30,000 each.

Check out this video of this guy moving a large safe upstairs

http://www.deansafe.com/samodeandexi.html

What kind of dolly is he using? I think I will be needing that dolly.

Btw, I had a friend who had a $150,000 Rolex stolen from his house. I asked him what he does now for his valuables, and he says he keeps certain things in a bank safe deposit box, or he just doesn't buy small and hyper expensive items anymore. I don't think a bank vault is an option for multiple guns. And it makes it highly inconvenient, and not as enjoyable to use a bank vault. I mean, what if I get a last minute hankering to go shooting on a friends farm at midnight or on Sunday? Sorry, bank is closed.

Last edited by Machineguntony; July 7, 2013 at 05:25 PM.
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Old July 7, 2013, 06:02 PM   #2
balyon85
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Re: Protecting and securing your machine guns from theft

Pretty awesome method they used there, might be worth it to pay movers with a dolly like that.
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Old July 7, 2013, 06:09 PM   #3
Buffalo444
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Have a safe room build into your house. Something with rebar and concrete, something that will cause it to take approximately 10 times as long as the expected law enforcement delay should be in your area as far as response times go (obviously you need a home security system). I would not want anything anyone could remotely consider removing if I had over 25k in guns in my house.
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Old July 7, 2013, 07:08 PM   #4
Brian Pfleuger
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No one is going to put a gun safe "on a dolly" and run off with it. A gun cabinet, yes, a gun safe, no way. Certainly not one large enough to hold multiple machine guns.


A guy who's going to spend 6 figures on NFA items is certainly going to be spending 5 figures on a safe, I would hope.

Put the safe against the wall, which is where is usually is anyway. Bolt it to the wall and the floor with large, long lag bolts. Obviously, inside the safe.

Between that and an alarm system, which should in itself have movement and opening sensors on the safe, where's it going to go?
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Old July 7, 2013, 07:29 PM   #5
Nickel Plated
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Quote:
Thinking like a thief, if I SAW a big safe, I would immediately make a plan to come get it.
Maybe that's a place to start. If a thief sees a safe, that's the first thing they'll focus on. Safes generally have valuable stuff inside.

However you don't need to worry about them taking and breaking the safe if they don't know it's there in the first place.

Sometimes a good hiding spot is as good as a safe. Not t say that you shouldn't get one. But focus on hiding it.
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Old July 7, 2013, 07:40 PM   #6
Machineguntony
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Brian, the bolts to the ground, that's a good idea.

But without the bolts, someone could absolutely make off with the safe. Did you see the video with the guy, moving the 800 pound safe all by himself upstairs?

As far as hiding it, I'm not concerned about hiding the safe. I'm. Ot going to share the combo. I'm more concerned about someone knowing that I have machine guns in the house (because a friend of a friend, who I took to the range heard about it), they come in, see the safe, and take the whole dam safe.

Maybe I'm being paranoid, yes. But better safe than sorry.

This is all new territory to me, and I'm sure other people have thought of these concerns previously.

Btw, I haven't seen a five figure safe for home use. I went to cabelas and the biggest safe I saw was like $3000. I intend to buy a big safe, yes.
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Old July 7, 2013, 07:47 PM   #7
Old Stony
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I sold safes for some years and I still stand by the bolt to the wall method of securing one. Bolts into a floor are good, but a person can use the leverage of the safe to break them off or pull them out of the floor. A nice assortment of about 3" lag bolts into the studs of the wall, and it will really make it tougher to get the safe loose and they couldn't rock it.
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Old July 7, 2013, 08:18 PM   #8
Machineguntony
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Ah Stoney, the man I've been looking for. If I may ask a question.

In your years in the safe business, did you ever hear of someone having their entire safe, along with the contents stolen? Of is that just my paranoia?

Also, I was looking at safes, and I didn't see any holes in the safe that would allow for attachment of bolts. Where do you attach these bolts to the safe? Is it a custom job, or do the safes come with predrilled holes? And wouldn't having a hole, for the bolts, running into the safe, compromise the performance of the safe, either from a theft or fire rating standpoint?
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Old July 7, 2013, 08:33 PM   #9
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A well to do friend has a large walk-in safe behind their elevator. To get to the safe, the elevator has to be on the second floor and then you have to 'magically' have the ground floor elevator door open, but the safe is not obvious. Then you get to and deal with the combo and safe, which is cloaked in reinforced concrete.

The only way the safe is coming out of the house is with a D10 dozer or pounds of C-4.

First rule of Steganography (undetectable messaging) applies to safes as well:
You can't attack what you don't see or don't know about.
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Old July 7, 2013, 08:49 PM   #10
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Bolt it to something, I am an old guy but move my fire rated gun safe about the reloading room by lifting with a flat bar and rolling on 3/4 PVC. Throwing it on a pick up bed may offer other challenges.
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Old July 7, 2013, 09:21 PM   #11
1Hobie
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I'm curious. How is it Machineguntony, who joined less than a month ago, is buying 10's of thousands of dollars on multiple NFA guns, comes to a public forum to inquire how to secure them?
No disrespect intended, Machineguntony, but it seems ...odd.

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Old July 7, 2013, 09:22 PM   #12
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With that kind of stuff it makes more sense to build a nice vault room.
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Old July 7, 2013, 09:23 PM   #13
Brian Pfleuger
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The safes you buy at box stores are not "real" safes. If you're putting big money NFA its in it, you need a REAL safe. If its big enough for a whole bunch of guns and its a really high-end safe, it's going to be 5 figures.

Take, for example, a Fort Knox Legend. (This is not necessarily a recommendation, only an example.). It's EASY to configure on that's over $16,000.

For that money, it may well make sense to convert an extra room or walk-in closet to a vault.
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Old July 7, 2013, 10:52 PM   #14
Theohazard
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Quote:
1Hobie posted
I'm curious. How is it Machineguntony, who joined less than a month ago, is buying 10's of thousands of dollars on multiple NFA guns, comes to a public forum to inquire how to secure them?
No disrespect intended, Machineguntony, but it seems ...odd.
I don't understand, how is that odd? So because he probably has more money than the average TFL poster means he shouldn't be asking people here (many who have lots of experience) how they store their firearms?

If you read some of his other threads, he recently started back into the gun thing and bought a bunch of NFA firearms. Now he wants to hear from TFL members about how they suggest keeping them safe. How in the world is that odd?
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Old July 7, 2013, 11:07 PM   #15
Machineguntony
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Thank you, Theo.

I don't see how that is odd, either. I think that I am being prudent and responsible.

I am currently waiting on my stamps, and in the meantime, I am prepping by buying accessories, stocking on reloading components, and getting a safe. Heck my Dilln 650 is sitting in my room in pieces. I'm still waiting for Sears to deliver my bench.

I am sure these are other questions that other members or readers may have. I did a search and nothing came up. And if you read all my posts, you'll see that I freely admit to being out of date on my info. Forums like this are a great source of knowledge.

Hey Brian, are you in Pflugerville, Texas? If so, we should meet up at Best of West and shoot our machine guns when mine come in!

And those safes at Cabelas look just like the liberty safes. I'm going to do some more research.

Last edited by Machineguntony; July 8, 2013 at 08:16 AM.
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Old July 8, 2013, 05:32 AM   #16
Old Stony
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Machineguntony....If you just do a little locating of studs in your walls, and drill 3/8 holes through the back of the safe to correspond, you can put 3/8 lag bolts into the studs. Half a dozen of these and any bad guy will need some serious power to pull it away. Combine it with some expansion shields into a concrete floorl and it's pretty much there to stay.
Of course if you have one lined with firebrick this could be more of a problem because of the depth of the safe walls, but there are always ways around this. I doubt there would be any loss of integrety to the safe.
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Old July 8, 2013, 01:54 PM   #17
weblance
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Stony
I sold safes for some years and I still stand by the bolt to the wall method of securing one. Bolts into a floor are good, but a person can use the leverage of the safe to break them off or pull them out of the floor. A nice assortment of about 3" lag bolts into the studs of the wall, and it will really make it tougher to get the safe loose and they couldn't rock it.
3 minutes with a reciprocating saw and that method of mounting a safe to wooden wall studs is defeated.
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Old July 8, 2013, 04:43 PM   #18
JTMcC
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machineguntony says:

"As far as hiding it, I'm not concerned about hiding the safe".





I say:
you really, really should be. If security is the bottom line. Safes have been cracked and wheeled off for many decades now.
I can build safes with 2" AR500 plate all day long, anchor them to concrete floors and walls with epoxy or wedge anchors. Put them in rediculously reinforced concrete rooms, but the biggest and best security for a firearm safe is unlocatability period.
Can't find it, can't steal it.

If you desire to show off your groovy full auto's to every girlfriend, then it's all on you.

Hide it and it's exponentially safer than out in plain view no matter what you build it out of. That's the plain truth.

Advertise it to every cute chic you meet, and eventually it'll attract unwanted attention.

I can breach or take, anybody's safe in short order with the common tools we use in our everyday work. And without creating unwanted attention.

Most folks have a safe to slow down a casual thief, a serious thief will be a whole nuther animal to deal with.

J

on edit, off site storage and a serious insurance policy is the only other option than being a target, iff'n you feel the need to show off your stuff.

Advertising very expensive items to the "babe of the week" makes you, and your home a serious target for theft and personal harm.
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Old July 8, 2013, 05:01 PM   #19
Old Stony
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Almost anything you can do to secure a safe can theoretically be defeated, but making it as secure as possible under normal conditions is the object. Most thiefs do not come equipped with a variety of power tools, but I guess there can always be exceptions.
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Old July 8, 2013, 05:16 PM   #20
JTMcC
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Right, the OP's first words were:

"So I am planning to buy a significant amount of NFA machine guns".

A "significant amount" will easily reach into multiple millions. if he's exagerating, it's still several 100k's.

He than says that he is going to advertise those significantly high dollar firearms to the world.

Paint a target on the old forehead tactic.

Most folks don't need to worry about it, just common thievery. Machineguntony has bigger issues.

The common firearm owner also needs to put his/her firearm storage out of sight tho imo. Even more so. Run of the mill house burglers can't take it if they don't see it. Even homeowners with poor to medium amateur carpentry skills can easily hid the "safe" over a weekend for not much money.

My take on it.

J

The OP isn't talking about "normal conditions" as you say.
Theoretically, your security only has to survive until cops show up. Where I live (the last 21 years) cops don't come out unless an injury accident or a fatality has occured. On a really slow night you "might" get a sheriffs deputy out here after calling but can't count on it.
My security is all mine. An alarm system isn't any use to some of us, really good for other circumstances.
You just have to evaluate the situation at hand, and what's on the line in a residential burglary.

Last edited by JTMcC; July 8, 2013 at 05:21 PM.
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Old July 8, 2013, 05:20 PM   #21
Brian Pfleuger
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Protecting and securing your machine guns from theft

Very, very few thieves are going to go through ANY trouble to move a safe.

They might try to tip it over. They might try to tip it onto a dolly. Most won't touch it if it appears strong/solid. Some will try pry bars, hammers and similar.

Few thieves will defeat even the most basic alarm system. A half decent home alarm with a door switch on the safe and maybe a magnetic sensor on the wall would be extremely difficult to defeat, coupled with a quality safe.

We could go down any road... XYZ could easily be defeated with a stick of dynamite, a backhoe and 3 days time..." Yeah... but who's going to do it?
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Old July 8, 2013, 05:28 PM   #22
JTMcC
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Maybe you're basing that on antecdodal evidence or just what seems right to you.

I've seen quite a few safes hauled away. Usually when there was evidence of decent valuables inside. They usually end up empty, in a body of water.

A safe isn't hard to move for anybody with a shred of knowledge/ability. Some crooks have a little of both.

May not apply in your case, as I said police coverage is nonexistent in my part of the desert mountains till after the fact. Your mileage may vary quite a bit in NY state.
No cell service, poor phone service ( ), lot's of power outages but a great view. Plus I have a range in the back yard. Just don't count on anybody else to protect your property.

J

It doesn't take "dynamite, a backhoe and three days" to breach any safe. That's just over the top silly. A cat that's been to welding school in the penetentiary can spend $500 or less in tooling and be in a safe within minutes without causing undue alarm.
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Old July 8, 2013, 05:44 PM   #23
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To be clear I'm not suggesting every gun owner needs a vault. Couldn't hurt tho : ) huh?

But this guy is asking about an abnormal situation of a lot of high dollar firearms that he intends to make known. Firearms that unusual criminals might be interested in.

That's an out of the ordinary security conundrum and might need to addressed as such.

I've seen commercial safes worked on with hand tools for hours overnight, for a measly $2000 cash. Criminals might not be so smart but some are very determined.

J

My Mom's house could be overrun by Gengis Khan, or ransacked by a hoard of crack head tweekers and they would never find the firearms. No locks and no safe but invisible unless you know. Somebody already mentioned it, but if you can't find it you can't pawn it. Dad thought it out well and it works.

Last edited by JTMcC; July 8, 2013 at 05:53 PM.
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Old July 8, 2013, 06:02 PM   #24
Machineguntony
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Seriously now, JTM. Do you never share your guns at the range with anyone else? You never go shooting with your friends? Some people are so judgmental. Go play with your guns in your own dark closet.
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Old July 8, 2013, 06:21 PM   #25
Brian Pfleuger
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Ease up, gentlemen. What someone else does with their firearms is nobodies business but theirs.
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