View Full Version : Document safes and guns

June 15, 2008, 09:49 AM
I have heard people on this forum discourage the use of document safes for storing handguns. I was just curious as to if that is really a problem; and if so, why. I only have 6 handguns, and won't increase that number substantially for quite a while. So one of those document safes would be ideal - provided it did not ruin my guns. Thanks.

chris in va
June 15, 2008, 10:27 AM
I simply heard it seals in moisture. Plus if it's portable, they can just pick it up and walk out with it.

June 15, 2008, 10:38 AM
I'd say what you have heard is "Hogwash". I have a document safe, in which I store several handguns. Have had this safe for about 6 or 7 years, and do not have a problem with it. Of course, they are correct about carrying it off. Mine is sitting on a shelf, and disguised with several tapes stacked in front of it, but that wouldn't prevent someone from moving them, and then carrying the safe out. At any rate, they are available from Harbor Freight, for as low as $39.95 (on sale) which is what I paid for mine, and it at least gives you peace of mind, that they are going to have to work to get access to the handgun. Just my humble opinion.

June 15, 2008, 10:40 AM
I forgot to tell you, they do provide the bolts, to bolt it down, if you so desire.

June 15, 2008, 11:14 AM
From a standpoint of fire protection, they will do just fine. From a standpoint of security, they leave allot to be desired.

Moe Howard
June 15, 2008, 12:03 PM
I have a document safe and, for now, I am keeping a couple of guns until I can get a large safe. I keep one of those moisture absorbing bags in it and have not had an ounce of trouble with any kind of rust. I do inspect it every week just to make sure though.

June 15, 2008, 12:58 PM
From what a safe tech told me the issue is this:

Many contain fire cement which holds moisture like any cement will. The tihgt sealing doors tend to lock it in.

This is an issue that can be worked around with proper care as others have mentioned; and I have seen many guns stored in these things for years with good luck. Problem is somewhere a bonehead will put a bone dry colt saa in one, hide it in a basement, and lock the door for 2 years and wonder what happened.

If we are talking the new office depot / home depot quality ones then as to security it's almost non-existant they can be moved and or breached in place very, very easily. They also break very easily and ahve ppor quality locks and crasftsmanship.

For the qulity of the floor safes that are sold they should be at msot 100 bucks not what the depots want for them. were I you I'd save my money go to surpus sales and store liquidations... every store has a safe and it's offten the cheapest and last thing sold due to the PIA it is to move... yet I ahve moved 3 one that was close to 1200 pounds with a u-haul and a hand truck --- use a come along to winch it up the uhaul ramp or own a landscape traielr .

I know this because several places I work use them as narcotics safes and every so offten they break and we have to breach them... not a challange.

June 15, 2008, 02:11 PM
sentry safes are just concrete and abs, a few good hits with a 5lb sledge and bye bye guns.

if you have a few grand in guns , Wise to get a good safe!!!

June 15, 2008, 02:47 PM
A quality safe is IMHO one of the best investments you can make.

nutty ned
June 15, 2008, 03:21 PM
Use it with care if you have to, it will fill the bill for locking up your hand gun
if you have kids in the house.

June 15, 2008, 03:36 PM
Thanks for the comments guys. My principle worry at this point is kids. I fully intend to buy a serious gun safe when the time is right. I don't really have the cash right now, and was are a bit unsettled geographically at present since I am just starting my career. The document safe (with moisture absorbing packets) may be the best I can do for now. Thanks again.

June 16, 2008, 10:32 PM
The problem with inexpensive document safes is that the insulation is down right wet. This can cause humidity in excess of 80% within the safe. If you look at the Sentry safes, you will notice the interior of the "safe" is plastic, while the outside skin is aluminum or stainless steel (depending on model). This is because the older Sentry safes that used steel would rust out.

If you want to store your guns in a small safe you should look for something of all steel construction, or a safe that uses a dry insulation.

June 18, 2008, 07:25 PM
Cobalt and Gardall make decent small fireproof safes. I would spend a minimum of $150, and you can easisy bolt them to the floor, and they weigh about 10 pounds. that is all....