Liberty Safe Problem


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Mannlicher
November 15, 2008, 08:10 AM
I have a Liberty safe. I bought it about 5 years ago. The other day, when I went to open it, the safe suffered a major failure.
The S-G combination lock opened as it should have, but the lever that retracts the bolts failed. All it would do was spin around.

My safe company was able to open the safe. They laid it down on it's side, and hammered on it with a rubber mallet. That let the bolts drop inward, and the safe could be opened.
The problem was internal. The shaft that the lever turns is held to a plate with a collar. The collar is only friction tight, being held by a set screw that pulls the collar tight around the shaft. The set screw backed out, and would not hold the shaft tight enough to work.
The safe guys drilled the collar, and inserted an additional set screw that pushes into the shaft now.

Cost me $170 bucks to fix a poor design.

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Zebraranger
November 15, 2008, 08:26 AM
Wow, sorry you had to go through that. Honestly, I've really never given it any thought about my safe not working, untill your post. I just took it for granted that it will open every time. You said they turned the safe on its side to fix it. Was your guns in there when they did this :eek: Hope not.

Mannlicher
November 15, 2008, 08:44 AM
The only guns inside this particular safe was a S&W 39-2 9mm, and a 9mm Marlin Camp carbine in a MuzzleLite BullPup stock.
Nothing was damaged, but it sure was annoying.

jasper275
November 15, 2008, 09:36 AM
I believe Liberty Safe is made in Communist China where there is no liberty. I avoided Chinese when I bought my safe for just this reason. I figure if all other products from China are cheaply constructed, wouldn't their safes be also? Then, from an existentialist viewpoint, I could never swallow Safe names like Liberty, Patriot, and undoubtedly others that trumpet concepts unknown in that totatlitarian distopia. Aren't the Chinese manufacturing a super aircraft carrier out of the profits of their exported safes?

Sorry to hear about your problems. I'd say obsess on origin of manufacture on all items purchased henceforth.

Cohibra45
November 15, 2008, 10:00 AM
"Made in USA
All Liberty and National Security safes 23 cubic feet and larger are made in the USA."

Directly from their website!!!!!!! American made and I really like mine. If I were the OP and had that problem, I would have contacted Liberty directly. Their safes carry a lifetime warranty!!!

"Liberty Safe and Security Products Warranty
Liberty Safe and Security Products warrants each new Liberty, National Security or Centurion safe or vault door will be free from defects in material and workmanship for the lifetime of the original owner excluding the lock.

If there is a defect in either materials or workmanship of the locking mechanism during your lifetime, we will fix it *free of charge. Liberty will also repair or replace your safe *free of charge if it is damaged during a fire, a break-in or break-in attempt during the lifetime of the original purchaser. There are no hidden expenses with Liberty's limited lifetime warranty, no charge for opening the damaged safe, no charge for freight, and if the safe needs to be replaced, no charge for the replacement safe in your home. When the unthinkable happens, you want to know that your safe is backed by a reputable company, and a warranty is only as good as the company behind it.

Liberty, National Security and Centurion mechanical locks will be repaired or replaced free of charge, including labor, for the first five years of ownership. After five years and for the life of the original owner, Liberty will replace the parts *free of charge. Electronic locks are covered for five years.

Liberty Safe and Security Products warrants the painted surface of the safe with a limited lifetime warranty.

Liberty Safe and Security Products warranty is transferrable.

See written warranty for complete details."

Another quote from their website...Please don't spread 'rumors' about things you don't know!!!;)

MAKster
November 15, 2008, 10:18 AM
In this case you are lucky you hadn't bolted your safe to the floor.

a1abdj
November 15, 2008, 12:16 PM
This is not an unheard of problem, even with some of the other manufacturers.

Believe it or not, many of the Chinese safes being imported are built better than some of the US made stuff. This is mainly because the US built stuff has had many corners cut in order to drop the price.

This isn't a result of cheap Chinese competition, but rather cheap gun owners. We field countless calls from guys with $20,000 gun collections who only want to spend $500 on a safe. These companies are only building what the consumers are willing to pay for, and as a result, quality suffers.

Then again, safes are mechanical objects. Even the good ones break sometimes, that's just the way it is.

I'm glad it wasn't full of guns and/or bolted as it would have resulted in having to drill a hole in a visable area. I'm also glad they were able to open it easily. I do warranty work for Liberty, and they do stand behind their product.

mljdeckard
November 15, 2008, 01:20 PM
The Chinese build things to whatever spec we tell them to.

As for them building a 'supercarrier', there's a big difference between having a huge flat top, and having the aircraft, technology, and support to use it to project globally. (Not to mention prevent us from broadsiding it with four torpedoes anytime we feel like it.)

I would have called Liberty, if they do indeed have a lifetime warranty.

Mannlicher
November 15, 2008, 02:53 PM
a1abdj This is not an unheard of problem, even with some of the other manufacturers.

Believe it or not, many of the Chinese safes being imported are built better than some of the US made stuff. This is mainly because the US built stuff has had many corners cut in order to drop the price.

This isn't a result of cheap Chinese competition, but rather cheap gun owners. We field countless calls from guys with $20,000 gun collections who only want to spend $500 on a safe. These companies are only building what the consumers are willing to pay for, and as a result, quality suffers.

Then again, safes are mechanical objects. Even the good ones break sometimes, that's just the way it is.

I'm glad it wasn't full of guns and/or bolted as it would have resulted in having to drill a hole in a visable area. I'm also glad they were able to open it easily. I do warranty work for Liberty, and they do stand behind their product.



the only 'stand behind' they demonstrated to my locksmith, (who also does warranty work for Liberty), was an emailed set of photographs that show the interior behind the panel. They demurred in absorbing the cost of the repair.
As a further note, their photographs show a rod going from the pivot plate up to the top locking bolt, and being threaded into that bolt.
In my safe, that was absent and instead, a piece of flat scrap metal was WELDED to the top bolt, and then welded to the pivot plate.
I am selling the safe for what I can get out of it, and buying another Canon or Ft Knox.

MAKster
November 15, 2008, 03:25 PM
If you look behind the door panel, the locking mechanism of most gun safes is a real letdown. I think most people are expecting to see an elaborate series of giant gears and full length bolts like you see in bank vaults.

a1abdj
November 15, 2008, 03:46 PM
I think you should push the issue with them. Just like a number of other industries, the first response is often a no, hoping that you will just go away. I have had calls that required less than 2 minutes of my attention, where the safe owner could have corrected the issue themselves. By complaining loudly enough, the manufacturer paid me to go out.

A quick funny story about Liberty. I got a call from them for a lock failure on a display safe at Cabela's. It was their top of the line safe, equal to the Presidential, with ball bearing hardplate. The Liberty rep said he would fax me the information I needed in order to drill.

The fax was a copy of a page out of a book written by an independant safe tech. Apparently us safe guys know more about Libery safes than the guys at Liberty.

Although I'm not impressed with much of what Cannon sells, Fort Knox does make some nice safes.

I took a older Fort Knox in on trade a few years ago. Somebody attempted to break into the safe by turning the handle too hard, and similar to your Liberty, the handle would no longer open the door. Another safe tech had already drilled the safe to get it open.

All I had to do was replace a 20 cent roll pin which was designed to sheer if the handle was forced. Sounds simple, right? Everything inside of that door was welded in. Nothing came out through normal disassembly. It took me about 2 hours to grind out the welds on the parts I needed to remove, 30 seconds to replace the 20 cent roll pin, and another 2 hours to weld and grind everything back together.

If I had been working on your Liberty, I would have repaired it slightly differently. I would have drilled a hole through the collar and the spindle, and inserted one of those roll pins. It is stout enough to operate the boltwork, but will sheer under too much pressure.

Sawyer Bar
October 14, 2009, 01:45 PM
Bought high end safe and it wouldn'y open. Opening day of buck season came and went and no customer help. The season is almost over and no help. I live out in the sticks so they won't help.

Don't purchase their safes because their customer service is horrible. A gey from Sacrmaneto said he was coming up and would call so I took a few days off work and he didn't show. Imagine that!

GoWolfpack
October 14, 2009, 02:04 PM
Stuff breaks. Call, complain, repeat until warranty is honored.

The way some people think, if something breaks, it's a bad design. Lots of things break, especially stuff we don't ever think about, like the mechanism behind the door panel of our safe.


As for them building a 'supercarrier', there's a big difference between having a huge flat top, and having the aircraft, technology, and support to use it to project globally. (Not to mention prevent us from broadsiding it with four torpedoes anytime we feel like it.)


Reading that could just be the highlight of my day.

damien
October 14, 2009, 02:05 PM
Thinking of buying a safe. Willing to spend a good deal, need a big one. If not Liberty, then who?

Edit: Think I will read this: http://www.thehighroad.us/showthread.php?t=408858 first. Couldn't find it and then I realized it might be on the "mirrorish" site. :)

RainDodger
October 14, 2009, 03:35 PM
What about American Security (AmSec) safes? Anybody have experience with them?

Squatch87
December 22, 2015, 11:36 PM
I've have a Liberty Centurion Safe with an Amsec digital lock. I went to unlock and it would not engage (the keypad was fully functional ...red lights and beeps). I assumed that this ruled out any battery issues. I shook the safe, pounded the door, rocked the safe for hours with no luck. Decided to try replacing the batteries. I used some off-brand ones that I have as smoke detector spares- that didn't fix it. Finally, I replaced those cheaper batteries with Duracell batteries and it opened right up!

Tommygunn
December 23, 2015, 12:15 PM
I believe Liberty Safe is made in Communist China where there is no liberty. I avoided Chinese when I bought my safe for just this reason. I figure if all other products from China are cheaply constructed, wouldn't their safes be also? Then, from an existentialist viewpoint, I could never swallow Safe names like Liberty, Patriot, and undoubtedly others that trumpet concepts unknown in that totatlitarian distopia. Aren't the Chinese manufacturing a super aircraft carrier out of the profits of their exported safes?
Sorry to hear about your problems. I'd say obsess on origin of manufacture on all items purchased henceforth.

From other profit sources as well.
Perhaps the carrier will have to be turned on its side and whacked with a mallet to make it work, too. :evil:

Steve H
December 23, 2015, 12:25 PM
I have two safes. Liberty, 25 cu.ft. bought in 1996 and a American Security 25 cu.ft. bought around 1992. Both have functioned perfectly.

old lady new shooter
December 23, 2015, 05:56 PM
What about American Security (AmSec) safes? Anybody have experience with them?
AmSec (the small ones) were specifically mentioned as not good in the youtube analysis video by Mark Tobias. I just watched the whole thing again yesterday in addition to the one from DefCon, to finally make a decision. I went with Ft. Knox. Very sad that FAS 1 is not California DOJ approved, I don't understand how DOJ even make their list but what can I do. :(

Sulaco
December 23, 2015, 07:42 PM
I spent a lot of time researcbing safes and bought a Sturdy safe. I couldn't be happier and strongly recommend them every chance I get.

ShooterMcGavin
December 23, 2015, 07:58 PM
I spent a lot of time researcbing safes and bought a Sturdy safe. I couldn't be happier and strongly recommend them every chance I get.
I don't know if I can support that recommendation... I mean, it says "turd" right in the title ;) :scrutiny:

Sulaco
December 23, 2015, 08:20 PM
So you don't think Sturdy makes a good safe? Compared to what?

200Apples
December 23, 2015, 08:32 PM
.
That was a turd joke, son.


I was looking at Sturdy Safes but found a great price on a demonstrator American Security.


:-)

JTHunter
December 23, 2015, 10:27 PM
One of the things that nobody has mentioned (unless I missed it) was the plastic dials/keypads on the electronic safes. I have personally heard of 6 cases where the owners had a house fire and the dial melted off, leaving a very large "anchor"! The safe had to be cut/torched to get it open, destroying them. In the larger two, the contents were still in fair to good condition, but the other 4 were less than 15 cu. ft. in volume and had major damage to the contents.

I bought a non-gun safe from a used safe company in St. Louis (a1abdj - I'm sure you know the one - "B") that has a mechanical mechanism and is a steel & cement laminate. Its weight makes bolting down unnecessary as well. The bolt handle is held on the outside with a single Allen bolt that makes it easily removed and hidden if I'm gone for any length of time. :D

paradox998
December 23, 2015, 10:57 PM
If you want "bulletproof" boltwork, go with a Sturdy safe. I purchased one after looking carefully at how the bolts were attached and supported. Shiny bolts often are attached with one screw in many RSC "safes".

Zach S
December 23, 2015, 11:07 PM
I don't know if I can support that recommendation... I mean, it says "turd" right in the title ;) :scrutiny:
Yeah, I know it was a joke, but the few Sturdys I've seen seemed to be built much better than the more popular brands I see mentioned at THR.

I don't even claim to be knowledgeable abut safes, I couldn't even think of their name until I saw it mentioned. However I have worked in steel fabrication for most of my life, so I know quality work when I see it.

Jim K
December 23, 2015, 11:23 PM
I don't have a dog in this fight, but the comment that "All Liberty and National Security safes 23 cubic feet and larger are made in the USA" is interesting, since 23 cu. ft. is a pretty good size safe. Odd that they don't say where the rest are made while they tout the American-made idea. I wonder if they tell the truth but hope the customer doesn't notice the little detail.

Jim

ShooterMcGavin
December 24, 2015, 04:37 AM
So you don't think Sturdy makes a good safe? Compared to what?
I'm sorry. It was a complete joke and nothing more. I was hoping that the idea of "turd" would stick in your mind and be something that made you snicker each time you saw the label on the front "Sturdy" :) No offense meant.

Actually, I have read through their information in the past and I think they are probably one of the better designs out there.

Sulaco
December 24, 2015, 08:11 AM
Totally understand. I wasn't offended in the least.

I just wondered what you thought would be better. I like to know what other people think and respect the opinions of folks on this forum.

When I bought my safe I spent about a year doing research. I looked at a ton of specs online , talked to retailers, manufacturers and thankfully was able to look at a lot in person.

I'm also blessed to have a fantastic local locksmith who is highly knowledgeable about safes, the locking mechanisms and the ways he has to get in to thm. They sell a lot of used commercial safes and vaults so I could look at them also.

Nothing on the market comes close to giving me what I got in the Sturdy for anywhere close to the price. Sure the interiors are not finished as nice as most other gun safe brands but they put the money in a different place and to me that's what matters.

pintler
December 24, 2015, 10:27 AM
No expert, but FWIW: I think the friction only connection between shaft and handle might be a feature rather than a bug. The couple of safes I've examined all worked that way. I think it's designed to limit the torque a burglar can apply to the internals by using a pipe wrench or whatever on the lever.

Of course, it sounds like the feature wasn't done quite to spec in your case.

Sulaco
December 24, 2015, 10:47 AM
I like how Sturdy addresses that problem.

http://youtu.be/VRwbgNHkJ8Y

Ibmikey
December 24, 2015, 10:48 AM
If my big safe does not open I will just have it buried next to me, with over 100 rifles and pistols in It no one is going to lay it on it's side and beat on it with a rubber hammer.:)

steelerdude99
December 24, 2015, 11:03 AM
The bigger battery companies are less likely to sell batteries that leak and sometimes have warranties to cover direct damage from leakage. It may cover the damaged item, not the fact that you could not get your gun out and thieves made off with everything.

Batteries that sit for years and with little drain (like safes) are prime candidates for a quality and "less likely" to leak battery.

chuck

I've have a Liberty Centurion Safe with an Amsec digital lock. I went to unlock and it would not engage (the keypad was fully functional ...red lights and beeps). I assumed that this ruled out any battery issues. I shook the safe, pounded the door, rocked the safe for hours with no luck. Decided to try replacing the batteries. I used some off-brand ones that I have as smoke detector spares- that didn't fix it. Finally, I replaced those cheaper batteries with Duracell batteries and it opened right up!

CB900F
December 24, 2015, 03:17 PM
Fella's;

Liberty, Cannon, Sturdy, etc., are not true safes, they're Residential Security Containers. As with any product made by various manufacturer's, quality among them will vary. Sometimes quite widely regardless of stickers on the edge of the door claiming that the product has met or passed an industry qualification.

As far as I know there are only three sources making true safes these days for the consumer market. They are: AMSEC, and then only the very top of their broad assortment of offerings, Brown, and Graffunder. I'm a retired locksmith & used to sell AMSEC and Graffunder. To my mind, Graffunder offers the best cost/performance ratio of the batch. But, regardless of who makes it, purchasing a true safe is not a pocket change transaction for most people. You get what you pay for.

It may be possible to find a used commercial high-quality safe for sale at a resonable price. However, it's also likely that you will want to modify the interior to suit your needs. It's also very likely that the cosmetics of the unit will not be something you want seen in your home without a good deal of work being applied. Furthermore, it's entirely possible that the cost of moving and installation will be more than you might imagine. Most local "safe movers" want nothing to do with a unit that weighs over a ton. If you knew what the workman's comp premiums were for safe movers, you'd probably getcher jaw dropped. It's not fun no-risk work.

900F

Da Yooper
December 24, 2015, 11:45 PM
a1abdj


the only 'stand behind' they demonstrated to my locksmith, (who also does warranty work for Liberty), was an emailed set of photographs that show the interior behind the panel. They demurred in absorbing the cost of the repair.
As a further note, their photographs show a rod going from the pivot plate up to the top locking bolt, and being threaded into that bolt.
In my safe, that was absent and instead, a piece of flat scrap metal was WELDED to the top bolt, and then welded to the pivot plate.
I am selling the safe for what I can get out of it, and buying another Canon or Ft Knox.

Thank you for this information. I dont need this grief.

340PD
December 25, 2015, 11:19 AM
I have owned a American Security (dial) for thirty years. It is opened and closed at least three times a day. So far, it has worked flawlessly.

Side note: the same goldenrod over all those years also.

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