View Full Version : Redhead safe broken into

February 7, 2013, 06:47 PM
Wanted to pass this one along, as I know many people think a trip to the local superstore for a cheap safe will protect their guns. This Chinese import junk yields such results:


February 7, 2013, 06:58 PM
A lot of gun safes can be fairly easy to break into if you have the time and motivation and know what you are doing. While nothing is invincible, even a Redhead is better than no safe at all.

February 7, 2013, 07:18 PM
I agree nothing is indestructable. Even a red head will stop your typical junkie breaking into homes to feed his habbit. Crews doing high end stuff forget about it. We had 3 gun stores in the Chicago area hit in the last year. The crew got into one which had a pretty good set of bars and a very tough door, got most of the guns in the store ans out in under 10 mins.

February 7, 2013, 08:19 PM
Can't see the pics without registering, so I can't see what kind of damage it was.

My safes are rather better than the cheap import jobs, but they are still hardly impervious to a determined attack. I rather highly doubt a crowbar would be sufficient to get into it, but some good hard work with a sledgehammer and maybe even a pickaxe would let somebody in the side of the thing. It would be time consuming and very noisy, but it would be possible.

February 7, 2013, 08:57 PM
A safe is your last line of defense, your most affective defense is deception!
Nothing to see here, nothing of value, I am poor and on the verge of being homeless. What little I do have I will defend!

February 7, 2013, 09:09 PM
Nothing is thief proof...but having a safe is better than not having one.

February 7, 2013, 09:15 PM
I have a gun safe and to make it just a little better, I ran a 220 electrical line from my breaker panel to the safe and run the wire through a small hole in the back. I printed a sign and taped it to the front of the safe that says this safe is equipped with a mercury switch and any movement of the safe will result in a surge of 220 volts through it. Naturally because of the liability it is not really hooked up to the breaker panel but the line dopes go in the panel. I figured it might just stop the average thief or druggy.

February 7, 2013, 09:21 PM
I'm of the opinion that a guns safe only keeps honest people out. People like friends and family who come by the house won't have access to what's inside. A couple of thieves could walk out the door in five minutes with most gun safes if they happened to bring along a crow bar. If they show up in a van with a dolly they probably won't even attract suspicion from the neighbors.

4V50 Gary
February 7, 2013, 09:43 PM
The safe was not bolted to the floor. The burglar tipped it onto its back. The locking bolts were held in by a thin piece of metal. A pry bar was used to force entry. Three out of six were canted at an angle. The top three bolts were straight.

February 7, 2013, 10:05 PM
I really dont think anyone with a crow bar can get into my safe... If they had a torch with them then I might say they will get in and even then Im going to say it will take them a long time.
I did a lot of research on safes before I bought one. And what I found wasnt good. Some were made in china with china steel which is 14 gauge steel. Thats like your frig.... Others were made in the USA with china steel and the best I found for $2000 was 10 gauge steel. That didnt impress me. So I found a USA made safe for just over $2000 with 7 gauge steel. Which I am very happy with. I did find a diffrent USA made safe with 7 gauge steel but the price started at $4000.. My safe weighs 800 lbs...

My first line of defence is my 120 lbs dog...

4V50 Gary
February 7, 2013, 10:08 PM
So tynman - got yourself a Sturdy?

BTW, in a few days I will move this thread to Gears & Accessories. I'll leave it here for now because I want as many people to be aware of it.

I hope member a1abdj responds to this thread. I'll PM him.

February 7, 2013, 11:14 PM
I can't see the photos either, but if anybody wants to borrow them and post them here I could probably be more specific.

Thin steel is the biggest weakness of gun safes. You can generate thousands of pounds of pressure if you know how to use a pry bar. Any steel measured in gauge is susceptible to a basic pry attack. Thicker steel is definately better, but I have seen B rate safes pried open, and those are usually 1/4" bodies with 1/2" doors.

Edited to add:

I was able to see the photos, and the door and door frame held up better than would have expected. That is a good sign that the boltwork in that paricular model is much too weak. Given enough pressure, any short bolts like that will twist, but that pressure should be great enough to deform the door or its frame.

February 8, 2013, 09:34 AM
I won't log in either. A local store shows a video of a safe being broken into. There are three guys working with extra long crow bars. The safe is on the ground and their time seems unlimited. Nothing is foolproof. Someday someone might even break into Fort Knox.
My safe is Chinese made, all I could afford. But it is very sturdy and I have confidence in it short of a long absence by myself and guys with cutting torches. There are lips that prevent the use of crowbars for prying, it is bolted to the wall.
That said, the day I can afford bigger and, supposedly, better, I will buy one.

February 8, 2013, 09:50 AM
Thicker steel is definately better, but I have seen B rate safes pried open, and those are usually 1/4" bodies with 1/2" doors.

I haven't seen the pics, but from the others on this thread it sounds like the safe was tipped over, making it infinitely easier to come to bear with your weight on a pry bar. Bolting down your safe, which is easy, is something everyone should do.

a1abdj - of the B rated safes that you have seen pried open, were they also tipped over? What kind of area were they in, and was there room to use long pry bars, etc? Any idea how long it took vs. 3 minutes on one the cheap 12-gauge safes? I'm very interested in the circumstances.

February 8, 2013, 02:19 PM
An angle grinder with an abrasive cutting disk will go through any steel fairly quickly.

A plasma cutter will get through even faster, and portable plasma cutters have gotten pretty inexpensive.

My safe exists to keep junkies, teenagers, and common burglars away from my guns. A dertermined safe-cracking gun thief would be able to get in... Everything in there is insured, and it is replaceable.

February 8, 2013, 07:06 PM
Im new here and dont want to hyjack this thread, but Im need of a safe myself. Been looking at alot of different manufacturers, but my funds dont meet what they want for them. I have about $1600 expendable for a safe. I currently have 8 long guns and 4 pistols(I know Im a rookie)with a fair amount of ammo. What would be the best bang for what I have to spend?

February 8, 2013, 08:46 PM
sting21 -

Some good vendors -


www.cesafes.com - check out the video

http://www.sturdysafe.com/ - more videos

For $1600, you should be able to do better than the standard imported 12 gauge construction easily penetrated by a fire axe. Take time to educate yourself, read the details and buy American-made. Thicker steel, heavier safes are better, and by all means bolt down to the floor (concrete slab preferred) whatever you buy so it can't be tipped over.

Prof Young
February 8, 2013, 09:02 PM

I have fairly inexpensive stack on safes. But my purpose is to keep my guns out of the hands of any family, friends and local thieves who will be far from sophisticated. Professional thief would have no problem, but that's highly unlikely where I live. Oh and every weapon has a trigger lock on it too.

Live well, be safe
Prof Young

February 8, 2013, 11:53 PM
For several years when I'd fire up the bluing tanks every now and then I would pull a hopeless junker off the salvage pile and make it look like it might be worth stealing. With the safes hidden and enough nice looking dead weight laying around in plain sight to fill a thief's arms I've only had one break-in but it worked perfectly. Now I have one safe in plain sight. Guess what's in it? Get the SOB to focus on something that's actually worthless and waste his time trying to steal it. Use his own warped mind against him. I have no conscience when it comes to counter-scamming someone who is trying to scam me. Let him deal with whoever he fences it through when they figure out what they actually have.

February 9, 2013, 05:20 AM
Here are the pics... got permission to re-post them from the owner:


February 9, 2013, 05:21 AM
Missed one:


February 9, 2013, 06:22 AM
That safe is a complete waste of money!
The bolts are mounted to tinfoil, jeepers!
Total junk!

February 9, 2013, 08:08 AM
I understand it was a $1000 safe, and the owner is working with BassPros to get credit toward a Browning or something.

Those bolts are not really what I would call bolts. They are nubs just lightly screwed into the cheap internals for gosh sakes.

4V50 Gary
February 9, 2013, 07:13 PM
CB900F is a safe vendor and servicer. He commented on those videos on pried RSCs.

CB900F said:

However, there's another aspect to consider regarding the videos and prying attacks. That's the viewer's attention span.

In other words, are you going to sit still and watch them do it for six minutes instead of under two? The point of videos such as "Security On Sale" is to point out that the bent sheet metal that the bolts lock up behind isn't giving you good protection. Protection, that if you own an RSC built that way, you certainly paid good money for. The videos should be considered as educational, not shams.


February 9, 2013, 11:25 PM
YES SIR Gary!!! I did get a sturdy.... Best money spent....

February 9, 2013, 11:40 PM
sting21 I would look at the sturdy safe's... I think they have one in your price range.. And if your willing to spend that kind of money on junk may as well get something a lot better built and USA steel and great customer service too... Good Luck in picking a safe.

February 9, 2013, 11:48 PM
You can try to fool thieves with a Pepsi vending machine gun safe

February 10, 2013, 12:28 PM
I looked for a long time and decided on a brown safe . No regrets. Buy the best and cry once.

February 10, 2013, 01:20 PM
At this point I can't afford a 1,000 safe. School to pay for, wedding to save for. I had to settle for cheaper safe. I think the first line of defense is not advertising you have guns of any kinda.

February 10, 2013, 02:27 PM
Thanks for the replies, Im goint with a Patriot Safe Co.. closet model after much thought and internet search. There are a few safes that I really like(Fort Knox), but out of price range. The Patriot is $1618 delivered to my drive way and have not found anything negative about safe or quality issue.