Guns In the Safe


September 23, 2007, 10:25 PM
I have a couple of CCW guns depending on the clothes I am wearing. Some days I might carry one during the day and the other one at night. When I put gun #1 in the safe, sometimes I empty the mag and clear the gun. Other times, if I suspect I will change back later, I leave it loaded. What is your 2 cents....keep em loaded or empty every time? Let's not go to the "carry one gun" tangent please. Cheers

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September 23, 2007, 10:29 PM
There will be no issues if you make sure you check the chamber(s) when you pull one out and always handle them safely.

September 23, 2007, 10:30 PM
I keep the 1911 and S&W642 loaded. Oh, the Seecamp .32 stays loaded too.

September 23, 2007, 10:40 PM
I prefer the full mag but empty chamber condition when I put the gun in the safe. Thats pretty much the state my gun stays in when its not on my hip, only because it seems like a lot of ND's happen when handling.

I am no expert, just my 2cents.

September 23, 2007, 10:44 PM
My swap out carry pistol when stored in an alternate (not main) quick access safe is kept loaded.

September 24, 2007, 12:36 AM
I prefer the full mag but empty chamber condition when I put the gun in the safe. Thats pretty much the state my gun stays in when its not on my hip, only because it seems like a lot of ND's happen when handling.

+1 me too

September 24, 2007, 01:27 AM
Since my ND last month, I've been storing all of my firearms unchambered with magazine/shells/whatever removed, whereas before I had every single gun in the house loaded.

The one exception are my two concealed carry guns, which I always know are loaded (the semi has a round chambered). Oh, and the bedside sotgun is loaded, but nothing in the breech because I've heard of some mechanical failures due to drops w/ a lot of shotties.

September 24, 2007, 02:23 AM
I only have 1 handgun at the moment. It is always loaded, chambered, and within reach. I don't even own a safe (I do have a lockbox).

When I finally get another handgun and a safe, I am quite sure I will keep the gun in the safe with a full mag and loaded chamber. Yes, it is ALWAYS loaded.

September 24, 2007, 03:03 AM
1/2 loaded at various times. I always assume the one I pick up is loaded until proven otherwise.

September 24, 2007, 03:39 AM
The more you fiddle with the gun the more opportunity you have to make a mistake. If the gun was safe enough to carry it will be just as safe sitting in the safe.

September 24, 2007, 07:01 AM
I keep all my working guns loaded minus a round in the chamber. (I have a couple that I don't ever shoot that are packed with cosmoline)

I never have to worry about whether my guns are loaded or not, they are.;)

September 24, 2007, 11:15 AM
I keep mine loaded with a round in the chamber, but I also keep them holstered. If I want to switch carry guns I open the safe, take one holstered gun off, reach in the safe for another holstered gun, and put that holster on.

When I'm moving loaded guns around, I figure the less time the trigger is accessible and the less I "fiddle" with them the better.

I only have 2 carry guns, and one of them is usually on my hip or within arm's reach and the other is usually holstered in the safe. All other guns in the safe are unloaded.

September 24, 2007, 11:16 AM
If you’re not comfortable with leaving it loaded in the safe, leave it loaded inside the holster and then put it in the safe. A modern handgun inside a proper holster will not discharge; think of the holster as an additional layer of safety.

30 cal slob
September 24, 2007, 11:18 AM
for CCW guns that get rotated, i will often leave them loaded.

1) wheelgun - hammer down on an empty chamber. that's how i carry it.

2) pistol - condition 3 - loaded mag in the pistol but no round in the chamber.

and make 2x sure the muzzles are pointed in a safe direction while stored.

September 24, 2007, 11:20 AM
Doesn't really matter as long as you are consistent. In your case of swapping carry guns, I'd leave it loaded in its holster as Mainsail described, perfectly safe. As it is, the guns in my safe are stored. The guns out are loaded.

September 24, 2007, 11:24 AM
I would at least be careful unchambering and rechambering the same round repeatedly... Not reccomended.

Harley Quinn
September 24, 2007, 11:32 AM
If you are puting them in and out "back and forth", I'd leave um loaded all the time.

I never have one in the chamber around the house so it would not work for me, but if you are carrying all the time "out and about" locked and loaded is the way for 1911's


Claude Clay
September 24, 2007, 11:34 AM
ALL guns are ALWAYS loaded.....KISS.
Personally, top shelf front & laying flat guns ARE loaded. Any thing else in the safe isn't-but ALL require verification.
Also, PT-145 ( one of many which is custom) mounted on the inside of the door at my wrist height is ALWAYS loaded.

September 24, 2007, 11:41 AM
Wouldn't a holstered gun in the safe invite rust?

September 24, 2007, 11:41 AM
Here's the scheme I use, I have two safes...

Bedroom has a small pistol safe. It holds either my carry gun (g26) or my nightstand gun (xd 45acp 5"). Pistol safe guns are always loaded and chambered.

Primary safe in basement with the rest of the guns... my 6" 357 and my Beretta 92fs are loaded and chambered. The tactical AR and the AK, same. Everything else is unloaded.

Reason why I keep some of the handguns in the main safe loaded is if I am downstairs, and need to grab something in a hurry, and a rifle wouldn't be appropriate for whatever reason.

September 24, 2007, 01:29 PM
Handguns within immediate reach inside either of my safes are always loaded and ready to go.

Big bores are always within immediate reach.

In time of need, we don't want to have to ask ourselves which ones are loaded and which ones are not, so really it comes down to which one our fingers touch first.

During those times when there is no immediate need, my bride and I operate under the well known principals that ALL guns are loaded, that we need to keep our fingers off of the trigger until the sights are on the target, and that we never point them at anythin.......well, you get the idea.

September 24, 2007, 01:33 PM
Guns out of the safe are loaded. If I had one of those little boxes for 'locked/quick access' to a pistol, then I guess I'd leave that gun loaded. Otherwise, the one's in the safe are unloaded until recovered and loaded as I see fit.


September 24, 2007, 01:34 PM
Wouldn't a holstered gun in the safe invite rust?

I've never had a problem with it, but it probably depends greatly on local conditions, rust preventative measures, and holster material.

September 24, 2007, 01:38 PM
I didn't read everyone's response so I hope it already hasn't been said.

I don't think loaded or unloaded is to big of a deal as long as the guns can't be bumped or accidently fired. What is important is doing the same thing all the time. Either load them or unload them not both. Always check when pulling them out also.

That said. I keep mine unloaded except the ones in my quick access safe for HD. I always check when I pull any gun out to verify if it's unloaded.

Jeff F
September 24, 2007, 11:03 PM
I keep all my side arms loaded. Never a question if one is loaded or not. My three HD shotguns are loaded. None of my rifles are kept loaded but are always treated as if they are.

Ala Dan
September 25, 2007, 09:23 AM
As I rotate "carry guns" often, sometimes I leave 'em loaded; while at other
times I unload 'em before placing them in the safe. On handguns, I keep a
lot of 'em in their original boxes; and others in a pistol rug. Always, when
I retain a loaded handgun in a safe; I enclosed a "Sticky Note" with it-
informing anyone who happens to handle that particular weapon that they
are fully aware that they are handling a HOT and very dangerous weapon.
Also, I recheck all weapons before I handle them~! ;):D

"Safe gun handling techniques are everybodys business"~!

September 25, 2007, 09:57 AM
I keep a couple loaded in the safe, and I always check everything when I pick it up. That said, I carry semi auto handguns and the loading and unloading in the house is enough of a worry to me that I have a homemade one of these next to the safe....

Mine isn't as pretty but a welder friend built it and we've tested it up to .44 Mag

The commercial version is under 200 bucks IIRC.

September 25, 2007, 01:29 PM
whitetiger7654: What is important is doing the same thing all the time.
I understand the sentiment, and it's not a bad practice, but I fully disagree. I think the idea that "I know the condition because I do the same thing every time" is what leads to sloppy handling and greater risks.

What is important is confirming, without question, what you think you "know" - that the gun you are handling [is/is not] loaded.

September 25, 2007, 02:29 PM
I have two guns that are loaded all the time, and neither of them are ever in the safe... If there's any chance of inconsistancy, I'd just always check everytime you pick it up.

September 25, 2007, 02:42 PM
Keep in mind, a loaded gun in a house fire (not in a safe) is an open invation to killing or wounding a fireman who responds to the fire.

A cook-off from a chambered round will have the same power as if you pulled the trigger!
It may kill someone inside, outside, or on the roof of your house trying to put the fire out!

If you have to keep it loaded, at least keep it pointed in a safe direction.
Like down at the floor!

30 cal slob said:
1) wheelgun - hammer down on an empty chamber. that's how i carry it.Why? That's a left-over practice from Colt SA days.
Modern DA revolvers are completely safe fully loaded as long as you don't pull the trigger. Then the next round in the cylinder is the one that's going to fire.

September 25, 2007, 04:22 PM
My normal carry guns stay loaded and ready. My rifles and the handguns I will never carry stay cleared. Loaded mags for 2 rifles are on the shelf along with spare loaded mags for the CWs.

September 25, 2007, 08:03 PM
I have a small 2 shelf pistol safe. Carry guns not in use stay loaded on the bottom shelf. Recreational guns stay unloaded on the top shelf, even if they would make good self-defense guns.

While I believe it would be marginally safer to store guns unloaded, this tiny advantage is overwhelmed by the increased danger in extra handling and potential for bullet setback.

September 25, 2007, 08:19 PM
All of my carry guns stay loaded. All the time, except cleaning, period. Other than that, the guns in the safe are unloaded.

Keep in mind that [B]ALL[B] guns are loaded until checked and checked again. I always check as soon as I remove it from the safe. So if by chance I put away a loaded gun that is not normally used for carry, I will catch it as soon as I remove it from the safe.

RCMODEL brings up a good point about fire and loaded rounds in the chamber, but since the safe is supposed to be fire proof.....

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