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Old February 1, 2020, 09:11 PM   #1
2wheelwander
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Steel security door

My safe is in an exterior walled room, perhaps 5'x10'. More of a closet. I've outgrown my safe, which I spent a few grand on. I'm thinking instead of spending another couple thousand on another safe, why note make the room secure with a quality steel door, perhaps some decent sheet steel down the road? I'm seeing steel doors in seemingly 2 classes. $600 steel doors/frames at box stores, and $2k++ steel security doors that you'd see commercially.

No windows, a quality lock. Something they'd be easier going through a wall than getting through the door. Outside wall is half limestone. I know nothing is burglar proof, but with a secure steel door I'm thinking this is a viable option to continue buying safes.

This room is accessed via my attached garage only. I'd prefer not to have a safe style door to attract even more attention. I'm looking at the push style door opening mechanism as that seems harder to defeat??

Opinions, places to look?
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Old February 2, 2020, 12:37 AM   #2
Armed_Chicagoan
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I think basically turning a closet into a "safe" is a viable option, one I'm considering too. A good heavy gauge steel security door with a high-quality deadbolt lock is very difficult to break down. You could even add heavy-duty padlocks to make it more secure, bolt the hardware all the way through the door. My exterior walls are triple layer brick, I'm thinking of making interior walls of 2x6 studs, then putting flat 2" x 3/16" bars over that spaced about 5" apart. Over that a double layer of 3/4" plywood.

Nothing, of course, is 100% burglar-proof but that would take quite a bit of time to get through IMHO.
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Old February 2, 2020, 07:38 AM   #3
2wheelwander
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Yours would be more secure than mine AC. I really like the idea of a grid of bars instead of plate steel like I was thinking. Probably cheaper and easier to do. I have a welder and could make that happen. Easier to manipulate.

I see the weak point as being the lock mechanism on the door. A knowing individual could pick it. I also do not like manual combination locks.
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Old February 2, 2020, 03:14 PM   #4
buck460XVR
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2wheelwander View Post

I see the weak point as being the lock mechanism on the door. A knowing individual could pick it. I also do not like manual combination locks.
In reality, the attachment of the door frame to the wall framing is probably the weakest point. Wood framing covered in drywall?
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Old February 2, 2020, 03:32 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2wheelwander
I see the weak point as being the lock mechanism on the door. A knowing individual could pick it.
http://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/H5IAAO...J7f/s-l300.jpg


In reality, the weak point is usually the hinges. Solution:

https://zanottiarmor.com/v1-vault-door/
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Old February 2, 2020, 05:19 PM   #6
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I can pick locks pretty effectively, but if a person is in a hurry, breaking the lock would sometimes be quicker.

My bedroom is a steel reinforced concrete bunker lol. Previous owner of my house sold guns and parts, and my room was his shop.

I have a steel tube screen door, and a steel reinforced entry door.
I have a few PTZ cameras around. I still rely on wary dogs to give me advance warning.
Dogs are always crucial.
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Old February 2, 2020, 05:44 PM   #7
2wheelwander
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I've already considered the hinges. Not buying something you can pop the pins out of.

Rickyrick, a friend of mine is an engineer for a well known truck manufacturer. He is building his own walk in safe with ballistic reinforced concrete on all 4 walls poured into a footer 2 feet deep. Built his own door with hidden escape mechanism. Its truely a steampuck work of art you'd pay 6 figures for off the shelf. Mechanical sex. Built it all himself. I don't have that kind of talent.

Rottweiler on paid staff though.

Thanks for those links Aquila Blanca. Looks like a quality door at a reasonable price. The $$ I'd save over some of the steel doors I've looked at would go a long way towards paying a mason to fortify the framing.

Last edited by 2wheelwander; February 2, 2020 at 05:51 PM.
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Old February 2, 2020, 08:02 PM   #8
reynolds357
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2wheelwander View Post
My safe is in an exterior walled room, perhaps 5'x10'. More of a closet. I've outgrown my safe, which I spent a few grand on. I'm thinking instead of spending another couple thousand on another safe, why note make the room secure with a quality steel door, perhaps some decent sheet steel down the road? I'm seeing steel doors in seemingly 2 classes. $600 steel doors/frames at box stores, and $2k++ steel security doors that you'd see commercially.

No windows, a quality lock. Something they'd be easier going through a wall than getting through the door. Outside wall is half limestone. I know nothing is burglar proof, but with a secure steel door I'm thinking this is a viable option to continue buying safes.

This room is accessed via my attached garage only. I'd prefer not to have a safe style door to attract even more attention. I'm looking at the push style door opening mechanism as that seems harder to defeat??

Opinions, places to look?
With a good alarm system, you will be fine. I am retired L E. I know I am about to get flamed, but leave a couple cheap guns out and 99% of burglars will grab them and go. They wont try to defeat the safe/strong room as long as they can get enough to get a crack rock or a bag of meth.
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Old February 3, 2020, 08:00 AM   #9
RaySendero
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Quote:
reynolds357 wrote:

With a good alarm system, you will be fine. I am retired L E. I know I am about to get flamed, but leave a couple cheap guns out and 99% of burglars will grab them and go. They wont try to defeat the safe/strong room as long as they can get enough to get a crack rock or a bag of meth.
Yep agree, but think layers of home protection!
Believe OP would be better spending $$$$ on layers:

Outer layer: Fence and 2 big dogs (I like GS but Dobermans or Rottweilers all will assume protection duty of area inside of fence.) Plus you won't be alone, they will be your buddies.

2nd: A good alarm system like 357 mentioned.

3rd: You already have safe - Keep the firearms you value most in it.
Burgulars won't stick around long enough to open safe with both dogs and alarms going off.
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Old February 3, 2020, 09:18 AM   #10
buck460XVR
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aguila Blanca View Post
[url]


In reality, the weak point is usually the hinges.
Not with inswinging doors. Being in constructuion for 45 years, I put a lot of high priced locksets on entrance doors that had standard glass lites or sidelites. Always made me laugh. Same when the house was constructed of foam sheeting and vinyl siding with drywall on the interior. Most thieves could get in with a utility knife. Nowadays, a crook interested in getting into a closet type safe will have a cordless sawzall with them capable of opening a hole in anything other than concrete. Floor best be concrete too if it is accessible from below. As reynolds357 said, most everyday crooks just need to encounter difficulty to be deterred. A burglar that knows what you got and where will not be deterred so easily. Best protection is a good insurance policy.
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Old February 3, 2020, 09:34 AM   #11
buck460XVR
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Originally Posted by 2wheelwander View Post
Rickyrick, a friend of mine is an engineer for a well known truck manufacturer. Built his own door with hidden escape mechanism. Its truely a steampuck work of art you'd pay 6 figures for off the shelf. Mechanical sex.

Don't know what "steampuck" is, but am quite familiar with Steampunk. Unless the door operates off steam, it is probably more Rube Goldberg than Steampunk.

Good luck with your venture tho, and post pics when done.
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Old February 3, 2020, 05:31 PM   #12
Bob Willman
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Check Smith Security in Northwest ohio. He has a vault door and frame listed.
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Old February 3, 2020, 07:11 PM   #13
2wheelwander
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Thanks for that Bob. The area code is 1 over from me. Has to be within a 45 minute drive.

Todd
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Old February 3, 2020, 10:22 PM   #14
JERRYS.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2wheelwander View Post
My safe is in an exterior walled room, perhaps 5'x10'. More of a closet. I've outgrown my safe, which I spent a few grand on. I'm thinking instead of spending another couple thousand on another safe, why note make the room secure with a quality steel door, perhaps some decent sheet steel down the road? I'm seeing steel doors in seemingly 2 classes. $600 steel doors/frames at box stores, and $2k++ steel security doors that you'd see commercially.

No windows, a quality lock. Something they'd be easier going through a wall than getting through the door. Outside wall is half limestone. I know nothing is burglar proof, but with a secure steel door I'm thinking this is a viable option to continue buying safes.

This room is accessed via my attached garage only. I'd prefer not to have a safe style door to attract even more attention. I'm looking at the push style door opening mechanism as that seems harder to defeat??

Opinions, places to look?
you're paying for another safe right there, but should something change you won't be able to take it with you if you move.
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Old February 4, 2020, 06:06 PM   #15
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You bring up a great point JERRYS. Barring an unforeseen event, I plan on being here a while. When that road finally does come, I'll figure it out then.
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Old February 7, 2020, 05:01 PM   #16
4V50 Gary
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The school I attended used heavy duty doors. I think they had 1/8" or 1/4" steel interior over a cement rebar structure to house their fyre-arms. When they tossed one of those heavy exterior steel door (of the same type), I snagged it.
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Old February 7, 2020, 05:33 PM   #17
mikejonestkd
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I did something similar- I managed to grab a commercial steel exterior door, and built a reinforced closet around my safes. The door panel alone weighed over 200 lbs...
Its enough to give me peace of mind when I am out of the house.
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Old February 9, 2020, 03:04 PM   #18
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Unless someone already knows you have a gun closet, most burglars are not going to tear through the walls to get into a locked closet. I would simply use hardwood jambs, solid wood door, long screws and a good deadbolt and call it a day. I would probably use a 3 foot door-devil plate to add extra strength to the area of the deadbolt.

Of course if you can add studs on 8" rather than 16".. that would be nice.
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Old February 12, 2020, 03:02 PM   #19
reynolds357
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Originally Posted by FireForged View Post
Unless someone already knows you have a gun closet, most burglars are not going to tear through the walls to get into a locked closet. I would simply use hardwood jambs, solid wood door, long screws and a good deadbolt and call it a day. I would probably use a 3 foot door-devil plate to add extra strength to the area of the deadbolt.

Of course if you can add studs on 8" rather than 16".. that would be nice.
I never worked a burglary in which thieves did not kick or pry open every locked door. I never worked a burglary where they even attempted to open a gun safe. I worked quite a few burglaries of vacation cabins on the lake. Thieves had plenty of time, they usually just wont tackle the safes.
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Old February 12, 2020, 04:18 PM   #20
URIT
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An internet search for secret room ideas might work well with a new safe or steel security door.
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Old February 12, 2020, 05:11 PM   #21
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I'll not go into details of what I have in my own home, nor of those I designed and built for clients, but with anything "security" you are better with multiple layers as opposed to one device to defeat. How you stack those layers is based on budget and use.

A door that looks like a normal door, but is not, is generally a good first step. Make sure to get hinges, jambs and hardware that can not be defeated with a few swings of a 5 pound sledge and you are off to a great start. A motion detector on both sides of that door is a good second step.
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Old February 12, 2020, 06:07 PM   #22
2wheelwander
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I appreciate that reminder MarkCO. Layers of security. I have a RING camera/light on my shop. I intend to install a few extra on the house soon. Like you mentioned, I do not want a door that screams "security, don't look in here". I'd like it to be as nondescript as possible.

Because of my homes layout I can get a water line in there very easily. I'm also gong to look into a sprinkler system on the ceiling. Can't be too hard to do.
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Old February 12, 2020, 10:05 PM   #23
MarkCO
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With PEX, you can easily loop a line in there with a sprinkler head.

I don't like to dead end metal pipes with domestic water.
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