what is the best way to store a firearm?


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wolverine_173
July 18, 2011, 12:44 AM
I was discussing this with a friends. He thought it shouldn't be stored in a case. His reasoning was that it traps the moisture in with the gun and can cause rust. He prefers a locked wooden cabinet where the guns can be stored without cases both Pistols and rifles

I always thought it was best stored in cases in a cool dry place. I just keep them in the case they come in and put them in the closet or under the bed or where ever in the house.

So which is best?

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kingpin008
July 18, 2011, 01:24 AM
Well, first you'd have to define "storage". To some that means months or years - to others, a week or less. For the latter, such a thing is hardly a worry as the case is opened and the gun used/cleaned often enough that moisture buildup isn't an issue.

For longer term, even a wooden cabinet can be a moisture trap. Probably less so than metal or something foam-lined, but either way moisture will build up in a humid environment. Properly storing a firearm for long-term storage (coated with gun oil or paste wax) will go a long way towards preventing moisture from building up in the first place. In all others, some type of dessicant - either packets or a golden-rod type device will take care of any ambient moisture.

CWL
July 18, 2011, 02:07 AM
Don't forget that wood will let-in the same amount of moisture as it will let out.

If you want corrosion control, use desiccants in your cases and add a golden-rod to your safe. Ultimately you have personal responsibility to regularly inspect and care for your firearms.

shiftyer1
July 18, 2011, 02:19 AM
I kept my 870 in a guncase for a couple months, I won't do it again. Although i've have an old h & r single shot thats been in a case for the last 20 years and it's never been a problem.

RyanAnchors
July 18, 2011, 07:29 AM
My M1 Garand in the worn spots, my AK charging handle, and two Mosin-Nagant bolts have all rusted from leaving them in the case overnight!
I'll never even put them in the cases again at this point without removing the foam lining and using something better like old rags or paper towel to pad the case.

Keep in mind this wasn't some humid, swampy place. This was Arizona and southern California. Two of those were from an overnight drive from Arizona to California in which I kept my dehumidifier with the rifles and they still did that.

The foam/plastic case is bad news for extended storage. You should have a heavy safe, bolted down anyway in case someone breaks in. Guns are expensive and criminals like to steal them.

Davek1977
July 18, 2011, 07:42 AM
Soft cases and and will allow a gun to rust. I keep my firearms in a steel cabinet, and routinely wipe them down with a CLP-treated rag. I also have a Remington "shotgun shell" device thats supposed to combat humidity on the top shelf of my cabinet. I own and use soft cases, but they are strictly a short term solution while traveling, and not something I'd store a gun in indefinitely

RyanAnchors
July 18, 2011, 07:50 AM
Hard cases will cause rust too. Best to just keep them well oiled in the safe with a dehumidifier/desiccant.

Davek1977
July 18, 2011, 07:58 AM
True enough regarding hard cases as well....long story short, cases, whether hard or soft, are designed for firearm TRANSPORTATION, not STORAGE. A locked safe, with a dehumidifer of some sort is a small price to pay for protecting one's collection. If one MUST for whatever reason store guns in soft or hard carrying cases, do yourself a favor, and inspect them often and make sure they are adequately oiled. Don't just throw a gun in a case and tuck it away under the bed hoping for the best. You may open it later to a very rude surprise.

12131
July 18, 2011, 09:23 AM
Hard cases will cause rust too. Best to just keep them well oiled in the safe with a dehumidifier/desiccant.
Yup, that's how I do mine.

AlexanderA
July 18, 2011, 09:26 AM
The ideal solution would be an airtight plastic or metal container, from which all the air (and moisture) could be pumped out. Such containers are made for cameras, but I don't know if any are large enough for long guns. The presupposition would be that the guns would be well-greased before being placed in the container. Then of course you still have to address the problem of theft.

The Army experimented with such a system for long-term storage of Garands back inthe 50's. These were metal canisters, each containing about a dozen Garands along with their accessories. Interestingly, the guns were stored dry, without grease or Cosmoline. The system worked well, but was expensive. Such a canister was on exhibit at the Springfield Armory Museum (I don't know if it still is).

chhodge69
July 18, 2011, 10:41 AM
Where access to them is easy for you, difficult for a criminal and impossible for a child.

ball3006
July 18, 2011, 10:55 AM
I have them in safes, except HD guns. Some are in socks, some in soft cases and most bare. I use LPS2 as my wipedown fluid and I have never had any problems with rust. However, my house is air conditioned which cuts down on moisture. chris3

Mike1234567
July 18, 2011, 11:11 AM
I'm looking for some of those 12"x12"x48" steel MilSurp cases with rubber seals and pressure relief valves. They can hold several long arms and, with some dessicant and moisture absorbtion they should be ideal. If one has a safe large enough these can be placed inside for theft deterence. However, I'm having trouble finding any that aren't way overpriced or badly rusted.

303tom
July 18, 2011, 11:24 AM
I keep mine hanging in the Arms Room !

wgsigs
July 18, 2011, 11:51 AM
Wiped down with an oily rag, in a Bore-Stores sleeve and in a gun safe/cabinet with a Golden-Rod dehumidifier.

Zach S
July 18, 2011, 12:04 PM
I use silicone gun socks for ones that rarely come out of the safe for a "whenever" once-over and wipedown.

Soft cases are only used for transpo, although I have been known to leave them in a vehicle for a week or more. However they were parkerized and well oiled (ARs) or painted (AK) so rust was a non-issue.

For long term storage in hard cases with egg crate foam, one thing I've found that helps is spraying break free in the foam. Not the aerosol, but use a small spray bottle you can find in most stores for a buck or two. It doesn't have to be dripping wet, but wet enough so that when you take the firearm out, you can see the transfer of oil on the finish, similar to a silicone gun sock.

o Unforgiven o
July 18, 2011, 12:20 PM
My M1 Garand in the worn spots, my AK charging handle, and two Mosin-Nagant bolts have all rusted from leaving them in the case overnight!
I'll never even put them in the cases again at this point without removing the foam lining and using something better like old rags or paper towel to pad the case.

Keep in mind this wasn't some humid, swampy place. This was Arizona and southern California. Two of those were from an overnight drive from Arizona to California in which I kept my dehumidifier with the rifles and they still did that.

The foam/plastic case is bad news for extended storage. You should have a heavy safe, bolted down anyway in case someone breaks in. Guns are expensive and criminals like to steal them.
You think it is a coincidence that your AK charging handle and Mosin bolt both rusted? Sounds like in your case it was the oils left by your hand.

Bubbles
July 18, 2011, 12:32 PM
Do not store it in the case. It will rust even if you thought the gun was dry when you put it away.

PSA: If you take the gun out shooting in the rain, do not put it away in an airtight case (like a Storm or Pelican) for several months without cleaning it. Yes, it's possible for even stainless steel to rust.

RyanAnchors
July 19, 2011, 12:47 AM
The Army experimented with such a system for long-term storage of Garands back inthe 50's. These were metal canisters, each containing about a dozen Garands along with their accessories. Interestingly, the guns were stored dry, without grease or Cosmoline. The system worked well, but was expensive. Such a canister was on exhibit at the Springfield Armory Museum (I don't know if it still is).
I'll take it! Haha. I want a canister of 12 Garands...

You think it is a coincidence that your AK charging handle and Mosin bolt both rusted? Sounds like in your case it was the oils left by your hand.

Very possible. I was a novice gun owner at the time.

hq
July 19, 2011, 06:43 AM
Gun case can be ok, but only if the gun is clean, dry and oiled; a bag of silica gel inside the case will do wonders, humidity/moisture/water is the arch enemy of all guns. I have a habit of saving silica gel bags whenever I buy electronics, they're amazingly effective in reducing humidity in small, confined spaces like gun cases.

Still I'd recommend a decent quality gun safe and a dry ball inside to trap the moisture.

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