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Gun safes/storage for an apartment with no elevator...

Discussion in 'Shooting Gear and Storage' started by avalys, Mar 25, 2013.

  1. avalys

    avalys Member

    I live in a 2nd-floor apartment with no elevator. At the moment I have 3 pistols and a 16-inch AR. I have no plans to at the moment, but it is not inconceivable that I might pick up another pistol or two and another rifle in the next year.

    I would like a secure place to store these that can also be humidity-controlled, etc. I am not tremendously concerned about burglary, etc., and I don't have kids, but I would like to do the responsible thing and keep them locked up.

    I do not mind paying $1,000 for a safe, and I do have room for one if needed, but I might be moving soon, and a 400-pound metal beast is not a practical option at this time.

    I know there are some pretty nice, small safes for handguns. Not sure what to do about the AR, though.
  2. Ehtereon11B

    Ehtereon11B internet infantryman

    I am in a similar situation with having to move to another town in the next 3 months or so and would have issue moving my 600 pound RSC. So I did some looking around and found a RSC that you build in parts, might be something to fit your needs

  3. mrvco

    mrvco Well-Known Member

    I think this would probably be categorized under "better than nothing", but you may want to look at one of the Stack-On products.
  4. Torian

    Torian Well-Known Member

    I live on the second floor of an apartment, and I ended up going with a medium sized Mesa brand safe (500 lbs). Forget that stack on / sentry junk. Get a real safe not a weapons locker.

    You can easily spend under 1000 if you buy through Costcos or Sams Club since their delivery charges are discounted vs. you buying through a local safe supplier.
  5. rayatphonix

    rayatphonix Well-Known Member

    Here's a very good choice for someone that moves or has problems getting a heavy safe into their home/apartment.

  6. Big Boy

    Big Boy Well-Known Member

    I was living in a house when I first bought my 24 gun safe. It's a heavy bugger.

    I have ended up moving three times in the last year. I let my dad convince me that him, me, and my friend could pick it up, carry it out of the house, down three steps, and across the driveway into the truck. We did it. But BARELY. It was so slick, pretty much dropped it when we got into the truck.

    After that I rented an appliance dolly for $15. Me and one other friend moved my safe up two flights of stairs with the dolly. It has straps on the front to keep the safe secure. And it had oval tank like treads on the back. These treads would make contact with the next stair you were about to go up and roll as you pulled it up. That way you were never really fighting any friction or anything.

    Worked pretty well going down them too when I moved out.

    Anyhow, if you want one, I would go ahead and just buy a real safe. I spent $699 on mine, found a pretty good deal. I'll have it forever, and with an appliance dolly, it's not too much of a pain to move.
  7. zerofournine

    zerofournine Active Member

    My wife's job required us to move three times a year for the past few years. Buying a safe was not at all an option for me. I bought these stack-on lockers, and I have been pretty happy with them. I have all my guns insured against theft, and I don't have any antiques or anything that can't be replaced pretty easily new. Someday, if and when we settle down someplace I will probably get a nice safe, but until then these suit me just fine.




  8. Tirod

    Tirod Well-Known Member

    Stack On isn't a safe, but it's not junk either. Keeping weapons secure is first an exercise in not letting the otherwise good people in life from being tempted. A simple locked cabinet does that - most were wooden glass fronts in the day.

    Theft is something else entirely. There are a lot more aspects to that. The perp has to know that you have them, and it's been the downfall of many a proud owner to show off his collection to all and sundry, only to discover that last friend of a friend was actually casing the joint. Next, he needed opportunity - the household schedule was repetitive and reliable about being unoccupied. He needs ingress - homes are easier to get into, apartments above the ground floor can be more difficult as the portals are limited. Worry about the construction of the building, what good is any safe if the perp can jimmy a glass slider and take all weekend with a portable torch? Be selective about the design, the import digital locked safes have a spring loaded mechanism the knowledgeable can open in seconds. They just hit it hard enough and it trips open.

    Do a risk assessment and buy the level of protection you need - don't let the fears and demands of others skew your choice. Having some form of protective container is better than going without. At a $1 a pound, a safe is a serious expense, and moving it more so. It can injure or even kill someone if it tips over - just like a pop machine. Being under anything weighing 500 pounds is no place to be. That alone is one strike against a large safe in temporary housing - the point of an apartment is that you don't have to move appliances and furniture when you leave.
  9. scaatylobo

    scaatylobo Well-Known Member


    IF you go with a cheaper model of a safe [ as shown ] then PLEASE buy one that has locking bolts and not the swing arm lever locks.

    THEN - big secret,put it in a closet and BOLT it to the wall & floor with 1/4" bolts.

    If done with a modicum of thought,you will see that there is no way in hell to use any tools short of a cutting torch [ most burglars do NOT have one ] to enter the safe.

    Place the safe so the door has to swing into the closet,and the back of the safe is against the side wall of closet,NO way to swing a mallet & use a chisel [ IF they have one + the time ].
  10. au01st

    au01st Well-Known Member

    Get an appliance mover hand truck. They have them with rubber skids on the back side for going up and down stairs. When I moved for work last year I made sure to get a bottom floor apartment. Strapped the safe to the hand truck as the last thing to go from my old place, first thing in my new place. I wouldn't say it was easy, but I would definitely do it again (and I will be in a few months when I move again). My safe is a Cannon, came from Academy on Black Friday one year, and weighs about 350lbs.
  11. c4v3man

    c4v3man Well-Known Member

  12. Savage99

    Savage99 Well-Known Member

    I was going to mention safes that can be assembled and carried there in pieces.

    The Zannoti safe mentioned is one, Snap Safes is another and there is a third company making them also.


    Zannoti above.

    Walmart said they carry one also!
  13. Bubbles

    Bubbles Well-Known Member

    Dakota also makes a modular safe that can be assembled in place, then taken apart later for moving.
  14. rodinal220

    rodinal220 Well-Known Member

    +1 on Zanotti.Good choice for those who move around.Also good for places where the safe is bigger than the stairway/hallway and once put together,would not fit through said passage way.

  15. <*(((><

    <*(((>< Well-Known Member

    Hauled a 550# browning safe up to the second floor of my home with the help of an appliance dolly (the one with the rubber track on back) and my two brothers, wasn't that bad really.
  16. wrc

    wrc Well-Known Member

    I have extended personal experience with a Zanotti Armor product. It is a solid RSC. It also assembles well in a large closet. After a few moves, it still comes together tight. It is one of the mid-size containers they sell. The door weighs 135lbs, and is the heaviest part of the 545lb RSC.

    If anyone reading ever decides to assemble one of these in a closet, keep a few things in mind:

    1. Be prepared to level the floor it is on with shims. The modular safes will need a lot of banging on pins if the floor is a little sloped. It isn't a problem, it just may take more time than anticipated pulling pins and readjusting.

    2. Before anchoring the safe to the floor/joists in the closet, get the door on. In a closet, the hardest part was getting the door on the hinge pins. It took three people half an hour. It helps if you can move the body of the safe around to facilitate this.

    3. Anchor the safe to the floor. If you can screw it into a joist, even better. Even if the RSC can't be removed from the closet, anchoring it in place makes it harder to get leverage on the vulnerable parts.

    A RSC in a closet is great. It increases the time to gain access dramatically. It is hard to get in there with a power tool without hacking away at the closet structure, which increases exposure time, etc. It also keeps it out of sight and out of mind.

    If you are worried about fire (who isn't?) you can fit fire suppression systems in the closet to protect the RSC better than the layer of sheetrock most RSCs call "fireproofing".
  17. Solo

    Solo Well-Known Member

    A few pistols and an AR?

    Hide your guns under a large pile of dirty laundry. No one is going to dig through your dirty laundry looking for guns.
  18. avalys

    avalys Member

    Thank you for the information, everyone. I had no idea anyone made modular safes - that sounds like a perfect solution. I agree it is somewhat overkill for my meager collection, but I'd hate to get burglarized and have one of my own guns being used to help some jackass commit crimes. Also, I have a few other things that are probably worth storing in a safe too.

    All that said - I called Zanotti and talked with the rep for a while. After about 10 minutes of discussion, I was just about to pull out my credit card, when he happened to mention they currently had a 1-year order backlog. Ouch.

    Have not heard back from Dakota or the other company but I assume they are in a similar situation.

    I think I will just buy a $150 Stack-On cabinet and call it a day for now. That will at least keep out the maintenance guys who come in to service the HVAC system occasionally.
  19. slumlord44

    slumlord44 Well-Known Member

    I have used the Stack On cabinets for many years because the number of safes I would need are cost prohibitive. They will definately not stop a pro but then most burgulars are not pros and are in and out in a short period of time. The new ones meet the California gun storage requirements. Sort of like the idea that the gun you have with you is a lot better than not having one. Not ideal but much better than nothing.
  20. Teachu2

    Teachu2 Well-Known Member

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