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AMSEC BF vs. Sturdy safe question

Discussion in 'Shooting Gear and Storage' started by TJ42, Nov 26, 2009.

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  1. rescueswimmer

    rescueswimmer Member

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    Like the guys said before, Do your research. Fort Knox safes do put out a very nice product. They definitely are one of the most customizable safes out there at their price points. Here is my .02 on the matter. If your layer your security, Any of the Upper end Safes like the Browining's, Amsecs, Summit, Liberty's, Sturdy's and Fort Knox's will defeat your typical thief. If somebody know's what you have and decide to go after it your probably screwed, because they will do their research and bring the proper tools for the job and attack the side of the safe.

    With that being Said thicker steel on the sides is a must to slow them down as much as possible. You know only have a few options on the market They would be the top of the line offerings from a couple of the above named safe MFG's. Graffunder.

    As far as customizing your order. Im not sure about the Graffunder but at that price they probably do.

    Sturdy Safes seem to be the most bang for your buck. And you can have pretty much what ever you want built into it

    Fort Knox is probably the best of the "Pretty" safes that are customizable inside and out.

    Then you have the warranty's of the companies to look at then the fire lining method, You have fire-board, Ceramic wool liners, and a concrete type fill.

    I have narrowed my choices down to 3

    The Summits, Fort knox with upgraded steel or the Sturdy. Right now leaning toward the Sturdy.
     
  2. snakyjake

    snakyjake Member

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    Here's where I'm heading with my money...

    I'd spend the extra money on a good home security system with monitoring. A system will alert the neighbors, the police, and send an SMS message to a phone. If there's a fire, the fire department is notified. The system also qualifies for a home insurance discount. My system has battery backup and uses radio instead of telephone. The alarm can serve other purposes that a safe does not.

    I'd then get a decent safe to prevent my teenagers and their friends from trying to get into the safe.

    There's always the chance there's a burglar who doesn't care about the alarm and the cops on the way (or the owner). But I doubt they'll spend the time on the safe.

    Jake
     
  3. Leaky Waders

    Leaky Waders Member

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    I'm looking at sturdy safe's before my next deployment - I want some fire protection. I already have a home surveillance system.

    My questions are:

    1) For those who own the sturdy safe, what size did you get, was it big enough? (I'm looking at the 48" ones.

    2) How hard was it to move inside? If you decide to move it later, how difficult is it? We're thinking about eventually getting wood flooring...should we get the flooring first and then buy a safe and drag it over the flooring, or would we be better off getting the flooring after the safe and just moving the safe around to accomodate laying the floor?

    3) Weight wise, how does it compare to other common home appliances...like a refrigerator or something? I'm wondering about flooring - our home is new construction with cement flooring and no basement. Can I just put it on the floor and forget about it? Does a filled coke machine weigh more than a safe?

    4) Why do you have to bolt it down? Sturdy offers many examples to bolt it down. Can they tip or something?

    5) When the sturdy says it can hold like 30 guns...is this a for real number? Or some rubics cube stacking method?

    L.W.
     
  4. JCinPA

    JCinPA Member

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    answers inside quote
     
  5. 78tsubaki

    78tsubaki Member

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    Leaky Waders
    As requested Sturdy Safe owner here.
    I would recommend that you give Terry a call at the number listed on the webpage. He is the owner operator and designer for Sturdy Safe, a fine American owned and operated manufacturing company.

    The ceramic wool is what they use in industrial ovens. Added bonus it does not wick moisture into the safe.

    I got the 32x24x72. Plenty big enough for my purposes. It actually came a little larger which made it more of a challenge to move through the house. 1/4" made a difference.

    My Wife and I rented a set of piano dollies. Worked well, kept it low (the
    72"ers are top heavy so be careful) and we are still married. We had to stop and adjust several times. Took us about 3 hours. Weight 900 lbs.

    Bolting it down is recommended but not required. Talk to Terry.

    I got the hunters rack. It works as advertised. I like scoped rifles. Talk to Terry he will shoot straight with you.

    I hope this helps and best of luck with your deployment. Stay safe out there.
     
  6. JCinPA

    JCinPA Member

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    Funny! :D
     
  7. MuzzleFlashCO

    MuzzleFlashCO Member

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    I bought a 4824 Sturdy Safe w/ fire liner about 18 months ago for my garage. It weighs over 1000 lbs. I can tell you if you're looking for beauty, look elsewhere. Security-wise, given my budget of < $3K, this worked the best for me. Sturdy safes aren't TL rated nor are they fire rated (not that the ETL fire rating is all that reliable for a gun safe. 350 deg F does a number on wood stocks and the temper of gun steel - see http://www.gunsafestore.com/fire-rating.htm).

    Sturdy Safe has been around long enough to be in some complete burn-downs and empirically, they seem to do well. They're strong, consumer-grade safes with a lot more steel than you'd find in most non commercial competitors. They'll most likely deter the brute force idiot attacks.

    I'd venture the 7 ga walls are a bit harder for to peel than the 10/11/12 ga consumer safes that are peddled at the box stores & gun shops. I'm also sure an angle grinder with a diamond/carbide blade would make quick work of the wall on any consumer safe - including the Sturdy.

    I agree with snakyjake wholeheartedly on the security system. In any endeavor you run up against the 80/20 rule. You can spend ridiculous sums on a safe that would keep the pros at bay or you can buy a quality alarm system, probably install it yourself, and layer your security.

    I sleep better on vacation when I know my monitored security system will report a fire long before it can burn up the safe contents. I have a $10 General Electric 135 deg heat sensor in the garage above the safe. I have photoelectric smoke detectors on the security system powered with its battery backup. Normal smoke detectors will do nothing when nobody is home. The fire department comes about 10 minutes after the neighbors see flames coming out the attic vents :-(.
     
  8. leadcounsel

    leadcounsel member

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    Fellow Soldier here.

    Very happy Sturdy Safe owner here. I don't care about 'beauty' - its very bare bones. The money was spend on security and fire proofing. It's about the size of a fridge. Holds my guns and valuables nicely. I did outgrow it and bought a second one. Solid steel, great lock, and great fire proofing. Very heavy. You need a professional safe mover IMO to move it. I've moved it a few times with many strong friends and the risk of injury is too high.

    Sturdy is probably the best of any company in any business I've ever had to deal with. Professional, friendly, knowledgable, backs their product, etc.

    Buy Sturdy with confidence.
     
  9. adirondack

    adirondack member

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    Another very happy Sturdy Safe owner here as well.

    I do think the Amsec BF series safe is a nice safe too and give them higher points for 'fit and finish'. But, where it comes to security and fire protection, IMO Sturdy has the Amsec BF beat.

    As others have mentioned, the Sturdy safe is pretty 'industrial' in look and construction and for me that's not such a bad thing. Yes if my gun 'safe' was in my family room as a peice of furnature I might feel different but I do try my best to keep it out of view and as in-conspicuous as possible.

    The heavy guage steel on the Sturdy safe is more than you'd expect in this category (RSC) as also are the: strong welds, commercial lock, and solid overall construction, minimized locking bolt linkages etc; the inner frame that reinforces the door around the door parameter and provides the supporting channel for the locking mechanism is really something to be seen. And the tight tolerances around the door when it is closed are impressive as well; I could not get a crow bar into the gap but to be honest I almost would want a would be robber to waste time trying to pry my safe open (and especially after the video Sturdy posted demonstrating the doors strength against a crow bar attack). The fire lining material is really first rate also and designed specifically for insulating against high temperatures (furnaces); the option really is a good deal when considering the cost of the ceramic wool. All in all, I think the gun 'safes' that Sturdy Safes make are a case where the sum of the parts are getter than the whole.

    I've had a chance to look over a Amsec BF series safe and it does look like a nice safe as well. I like the 1/2" steel plate door and again the very refined finish. I don't however like the thin sheet steel on the body like others have mentioned. In fact, someone recently posted a picture of a BF series safe that had been damaged during shipping that showed the sheet metal pealed away exposing the Drylight underneath; I have to admit that photo really dropped my opinion on Amsec's design for the BF series. Now I hear that they reduced the sheet metal thickness on their BF safes from 10ga down to 11 ga and increased the density of their Drylight to compensate for the loss strength; wouldn't a denser mix of concrete just transfer heat better though? I guess on Amsec now, I think the minimum for me is their HS series which look like VERY nice gun safes.

    It's funny how much this subject gets debated on these forums and how passionate folks can be about their gun safes (RSC.)
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2010
  10. a1abdj

    a1abdj Member

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    Although the Sturdy is a decent gun safe, based on my years of experience as a safe tech, the AMSEC BF has the Sturdy beat in both categories. You can search around for many of the discussions we've had here if you want specifics on why this is the case.

    With that said, I wouldn't have a problem selling somebody a Sturdy Safe either. Some of this comes down to an individual's specific circumstances.

    The local Bass Pro recently dropped a standard 12 gauge safe off of a forklift at their loading dock. The steel bollard (probably 8" around) punctured completely through the safe, and punched the door open.

    This has a lot to do with physics. If you drop a 1,000 pound safe on to something hard or sharp, or hit it with something heavier like a forklift, there will be damage. Run a ship weighing several hundred tons with a 2" plate hull onto rock, and it will probably puncture.

    No. Your local banks use vaults with very dense concrete. They don't burn (usually). High security composite safes (like the other AMSEC you like) also use a much more dense fill, and ironically, have a longer fire rating at a much higher temperature.

    The AMSEC HS gun safes are a huge jump up from either the BF or the Sturdy. If you wanted to step up from the BF or Sturdy, you should be looking at a B or C rated Graffunder (or similar).
     
  11. sandboxdoc1

    sandboxdoc1 Member

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    I am in the market for a safe to store valuables including a few but not a lot of firearms. I'd store mostly documents and jewerlery. I currently own a MESA SAFE UL rated safe that's probably a RSC more than a safe. I am leaning on buying a amsec or sturdy. I like the fact that sturdy has heavier steel than amsec. I know the sturdy is primarily a gunsafe but would it suffice for jewerly and document storage too?

    My budget is <$2000.

    Thanks in advance for any help.
     
  12. heeler

    heeler Member

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    Depending on safe size both can be purchased at said price or very near.
    On the Amsec you will probably have to check out multiple dealers for the best deal.
     
  13. Guns and more

    Guns and more member

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    The company that delivered my safe was worth every penny. Here's how it went. The truck delivered the safe on a pallet in the street. They laid steel plates over the patio stones to the porch and a ramp in the door (one step up). We have hardwood floors, so they had these strips of wood, 4' x 1" x 4". They were covered on one side with rubber, and the other side with Teflon. Rubber side down, they made two tracks like a train would run on and the safe slid on the teflon like butter. To get it into the final room, they had to take the door off the room, and the dial off the safe, it then left 1/2".
    They leveled it and checked the door for swing. They have the tools to do it right.
    I'd shop for a used safe. At $2000, you'll get a gun safe with minimal fire protection. For jewlery, and papers, I'd want a lot of fire protection. (Although everyone keeps valuables in their gun safe.)
    Remember, people sell safes used because they're so hard to move. Check local dealers.
     
  14. sandboxdoc1

    sandboxdoc1 Member

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    I'm located in Northern California, can anyone point me towards a good dealer for the amsec? What does one think of a safe within a safe idea?
     
  15. a1abdj

    a1abdj Member

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    I tend to come off as a smart ass when I say this, but that's not what I'm trying to do.

    Gun safes are called gun safes for a reason. They are built for guns.

    There are document safes, and burglary rated "jeweler" safes out there for documents and jewelry.

    You definately want to speak to a true safe professional (not just somebody who claims they are) that will explain the differences and show you some examples. Safes are tools, and you will be disappointed in the event of a disaster if you were not using the right tool for the job.
     
  16. heeler

    heeler Member

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    The safe in a safe works great.
    I am currently using two Sentry 1150 fire boxes inside my Amsec BF 66X36.
    At one point I almost ordered an imported Amsec ES 149 fire safe to put inside my BF.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2010
  17. sandboxdoc1

    sandboxdoc1 Member

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    I'm thinking of picking up some sentry document files H4100 and placing them in whatever safe I get. I'm considering the sturdy first but also thinking maybe the amsec. I like what I've seen so far with Sturdy as far as brute force attach resistance.
     
  18. heeler

    heeler Member

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    Fwiw I own the Sentry 4100 and it is just slightly too wide to fit in the side of the Amsec BF 66X36 as it is pressing up against the center divider partition.
    They do make those fire boxes that are slightly less wide.
    Because of the way Sturdy arranges the interior it might work better with that particular fire document file box.
     
  19. sandboxdoc1

    sandboxdoc1 Member

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    heeler, thanks for the insight.
     
  20. kuyawil

    kuyawil Member

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    SandBox,

    Check this place out, Security Safes, in Hayward, and ask for the owner, Gary Hane. This is where I got my BF6030 about a month or so ago. Of all the places I called in the Bay Area, he had the best deal. My safe is a 2010 model in two-tone color (Textured Black body/Onyx Gloss Door) and it came with the Premium Door Organizer (PDO), the light kit with power strip, and chrome hardware. Even I almost bought a Sturdy but decided on the AmSec because I couldn't come to grips with Sturdy's industrial look.. Bottom line, the AmSec or Sturdy is a good choice...

    Good luck!
     
  21. sandboxdoc1

    sandboxdoc1 Member

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    If you don't mind could you PM me the price you paid so i could possibly get a good price?
     
  22. sandboxdoc1

    sandboxdoc1 Member

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    Thanks! I'm looking between a Sturdy and the Amsec. I might go for a sturdy and probably want to find a local safe mover that would take delivery of the safe dropped by sturdy and bring it to my house and move it to it's final location (second floor) for me. Anyone know any safe movers in the bay area - northern california?
     
  23. sandboxdoc1

    sandboxdoc1 Member

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    to those that have a sturdy safe or a amsec safe bolted to the floor.

    I would like to know how many holes are provided there at the bottom of the safe?

    Any ideas as to how to fasten them to a wood floor on the 2nd floor? I have access to the floor beneath the room where the safe is located, I am thinking of opening up that under area to add joist hangers, more wood and maybe install some structural straps-hold downs to clap the new safe down like u-bolts.
     
  24. Keizer

    Keizer Member

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    My AMSEC has four holes in the bottom to bolt it to the floor. They will have plastic caps that you will need to remove to get to them.

    I wanted my AMSEC right over the main support beam, so the holes did not line up right over the joists. What I did was drill some holes through the 3/4" sub floor, and used LARGE washers on the other side of the sub floor. I built this home so I know that the sub floor is glued and screwed to the joists.

    Be careful when you drill if you have carpet. A drill bit can grab your carpet and unravel it, and it can take off across the floor. I would use some kind of a cutting punch to remove the small pieces of carpet in the area of the holes before drilling.
     
  25. 78tsubaki

    78tsubaki Member

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    Sturdy has four holes. All Sturdy Safes are built with the tubes installed then Terry asks if you want them punched out and how many you want to use when you order.
     
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