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Moving a safe - Ideas?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by NRA4LIFE, Jul 27, 2006.

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  1. NRA4LIFE

    NRA4LIFE Member

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    I need to temporarily move my gun safe to recarpet/remodel the room it's in. I have called around (Seattle area) and the cheapest I can find is $400, to move it 15' and then back again. That seems completely unreasonable. It's a Graffunder, so it's fairly heavy, about 1600 lbs I think. Anybody out there ever tackle such a job themselves? There's no stairs or obstacles other than the door it will go through. I'm looking for ideas on how to do this. Thanks in advance for any help.

    NRA4LIFE
     
  2. Chipperman

    Chipperman Member

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    Hardware stores have castors and sliders for this purpose. You put one under each corner and move the object where you want it. The trick is to find industrial strength ones that can take the weight of a safe.
     
  3. ilbob

    ilbob Member

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    I have a 700 pound safe that was once in a closet. I was able to slide it in out on the carpet using those little plastic sliders they sell for moving furniture around on carpeting.

    If you don't have carpeting where the safe is, get a runner.
     
  4. hoghunting

    hoghunting Member

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    My safe weighs 1400 lbs empty and the easiest way I found to move it was to use metal pipes and roll the safe over them. I used the black gas line that you can get at a home center. Cut it in 3 ft lengths and roll the vault on top, slide the safe forward and move some of the pipe in front of the safe as you're pushing. You will only need 4 or 5 pieces that way.
     
  5. nbkky71

    nbkky71 Member

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  6. NRA4LIFE

    NRA4LIFE Member

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    Hoghunting,

    That's the way I was thinking of doing it. Do you know what size of black pipe you used? Also, I'm going to have to make a turn, was that easy enough?
     
  7. Roadwild17

    Roadwild17 Member

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    Buy some beer & steaks and use it as an incentive for your friends to come over and help.

    Seriously, maybe one of those pallet jack cart things
     
  8. rchernandez

    rchernandez Member

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    Golf balls! About a bucket worth...on its side.

    I can't say it will work for sure for your 1400lb safe but they work up 800lbs.


    YMMV
     
  9. leadcounsel

    leadcounsel member

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    My experience

    I've moved my 900 lb safe twice with the help of 3-4 strong friends. Here's my experiences.

    Here are your options, in order of ease for just a short move inside the house.

    Empty the safe.

    Get a piece of strong steel solid pipe and cut it into lenghts the same as your safe. Have friends help you tilt the safe back to put it on the pipe and roll it like the Egyptians moved rock blocks. Lay down old carpet for runners to protect the floor.

    If it's on carpet, get friends to help you push it across the carpet. May damage the carpet. You can have friends pulling with heavy duty straps and some friends pushing. Push/pull toward the bottom so it doesn't tumble over. Put the corners on little casters if it's possible to reduce the friction as much as possible.

    You can put it on a strong tarp or blanket and push it that way to reduce friction on tile, hardwood, other smooth services.

    Move it with a steel heavy duty handtruck and friends where you are able to. Use several heavy duty ratchet style straps wrapped around the safe and handtruck to keep it positioned when you move it.
     
  10. fineredmist

    fineredmist Member

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    First thing is to unload the safe.
    Second, rent a heavy duty hand truck to move the thing.
    Third, buy some wood shims at a lumber store.
    Use the shims to raise the front of the safe, put the hand truck shoe under, strap it on and move it.
    Rolling on pipes may not work with a carpet or rug.
     
  11. TC-TX

    TC-TX Member

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    I used to move safes for a living...

    Very simple if you know how...

    you will need:

    2 or 3 'rollers' - 1/2" solid round bar-stock - Home Depot/Lowes...

    1 3' long pry bar/crowbar

    2 to 4 small 1/2" and 1' think blocks of wood - as in a foot-long 1x4 and 2x4

    ____________________________________________

    Pry up the chest (from under the hinge) just enough to get a roller inserted about 1"

    now Pry from Under the chest (from the gap made by the roller) and insert a roller 3' back from face (or side) of chest - PERPENDICULAR to the path to be traveled. Remove temporary roller.

    Now PUSH chest in direction of travel - may need a pry bar on the back side to get it rolling.

    Once the chest gets to BREAK point (teeters from weight back to weight front) push it back JUST enough to get another roller under the front - parallel to the first - then rock the chest forward again till it picks up BOTH rollers...

    as the chest moves, it will come off of the first roller - replace it from back to front and Repeat...

    IF YOU ARE ROLLING THIS ON CARPET you will need decking down...

    The Smallest roller for the job is best - but not too small...

    Pipe rollers will work but are a bit more difficult to work with...

    One man can move a 10.000 lb. chest this way Single Handedly...

    PM or email me if you have any questions... enjoy!
     
  12. a1abdj

    a1abdj Member

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    Just about any Graffunder is going to be too heavy for a dolly.

    As stated above a few times, rolling the safe on pipe is the most logical method. Be careful, as it doesn't take but a spit second for you to be missing some fingers or toes.

    $400 might seem like a lot for a short move, but I bet it's less than what a trip to the ER might cost if you make a mistake.
     
  13. Fred Fuller

    Fred Fuller Moderator Emeritus

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    I've seen it done by a pro- TC-TX nailed it. He used approximately 1" solid stock rollers 3' long, and had three of them under the safe as long as it was moving in a straight line. He set them under the safe on an angle to turn it.

    Get some thin plywood (3/8") to go over the existing carpet (you'll need it again when you reinstall the safe on the new carpet) and cut it down to fit your rollers (3' wide plus or minus a bit depending on your door width). You will need a couple of sections of plywood, just 'step' them one ahead of the other as you move the safe along on the rollers, overlappint the edges a bit so the safe rolls off the section it's on easily to the next one.

    It works...

    lpl/nc
     
  14. TC-TX

    TC-TX Member

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    Part II

    Thanks Lee - I almost forgot that part...

    YES - if you have a WIDE arc in which to turn. set the rollers at an angle toward the turn. 15-20 degrees at most per roller and gradually increase as you get to the true path.

    IF you find yourself with the need to turn or 'spin' the chest in a small space, once you get the chest on top of two rollers, you can spin it by hand...

    REMEMBER:

    The Chest will move Easiest and Safest with NO MORE THAN TWO ROLLERS UNDER THE CHEST AT A TIME - you can get one 'high-ended' otherwise... Three IF YOU MUST for a short period...

    The DOOR Side is almost always the HEAVIEST Side - don't jack up the back too high or you can dump it on its face...

    THE BLOCKS I mentioned earlier are for using as a 'foot' for the pry bar to protect the floor and to get the pry bar to the proper height.

    THE BLOCKS are ALSO as a safety to use UNDER the chest if for any reason you need to Block up the chest OR if you need to protect fingers when placing or pulling out a roller.

    NEVER PUT YOUR FINGERS UNDER THE CHEST WITHOUT A Fail-Safe BLOCK IN PLACE!!
     
  15. TC-TX

    TC-TX Member

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    DECKING

    OK - I will get it all in here sooner or later...;)

    On the decking...

    I recommend - if you are using it to protect Carpet - I recommend minimum 1/2" plywood... anything less will crack and your rollers will get STUCK... because of the soft carpet under a concentrated weight on the roller...

    also - do not overlap the plywood - simply butt the square ends together...

    take 1 4x8 sheet and cut (the 48" direction) it into 3 equal pieces approx 32"x48"

    these three pieces is all you will need... set all three in place (32" ends touching) and move along... Flip-flop the pieces till you get to you destination...

    You can use 3/8" if you are protecting a hard Surface floor...

    anything else I forgot??? :confused: :confused:

    Enjoy!
     
  16. TC-TX

    TC-TX Member

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    OK - ONE LAST THING...

    Make sure - BEFORE YOU START - that it is a SOLID BOTTOM chest and NOT a hollow bottom chest...

    Things are a Bit Different if you are dealing with a hollow Bottom...

    Let us know...

    :) :) :) :)

    EDIT NOTE: There are many ways to get the job done... I have provided for you the Safest, Easiest and Least expensive way to get the job done and a way where you can do it solo... PLUS you will have the experience AND the rollers for any future moves that may come up.

    Let me know if I can assist you.
     
  17. Bobhwry

    Bobhwry member

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    Go to your local rental store and ask for a piano moving rig. Moved mine by myself and it weighs 1100lbs.
     
  18. shooting time

    shooting time Member

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    I moved mine using 1/2" water pipe about 8 pieces 3ft long by my self and the safe weighs 850 lbs empty so if you had help it would be a piece of cake with the round pipes.
     
  19. NRA4LIFE

    NRA4LIFE Member

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    Thanks everyone. TCTX That's pretty much exactly how I had thought how to do it. Lee, thanks for the "angled pipe" trick to turn. I will have to turn it 90 deg. to get it out the door. I got a humungous heavy duty pry bar from my neighbor that easily got one side of the safe up. My plan is to get some plywood underneath it (it's on carpet) then get a piece of pipe in the center so I can rock it back to get a piece of pipe under the back of it and then one in the front. Then roll it slowly on succesive pieces of plywood.

    And you're right, on a that safe, the door weighs 500 lbs itself. Not a toy.

    I have also PM'd you
     
  20. orionengnr

    orionengnr Member

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    sounds like, if the door is removable, that would be worth the effort.

    Just a thought...
     
  21. DaveTN

    DaveTN Member

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    If you are remolding and recarpeting it seems to me the easiest, safest and most cost effective way would be not to move it and make it become part of the wall it is against. But I’m kinda lazy. :D
    [​IMG]
     
  22. TC-TX

    TC-TX Member

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    LEAVE THE DOOR IN PLACE

    PM replied to...

    ACTUALLY - it is NOT a good idea to remove the door for several reasons:

    1) the door is HEAVY - it can be VERY unwieldy AND DANGEROUS when it is off of its hinges... VERY Dangerous like a BIG FAT KNIFE if it falls to its edge... cutting off toes and feet and anything else that gets in its way...

    2) removing the door makes the rest of the safe VERY UNSTABLE as you now have a Large Metal Box that is OVER-WEIGHTED to one side - the back side - because the door is missing to counterbalance the back of the safe...

    3) Rehanging doors - Vault Doors or Safe Doors - is a Major PAIN if you are not skilled at it... it is REAL easy to bend a hinge pin and THEN you have more major issues...

    Bottom line - if you are moving the chest in the way described, you do not buy anything by removing the door. Moving the chest is easy once you get the rhythm down... hardly break a sweat! Removing and replacing the door does nothing but add more work AND POTENTIAL DANGER to the project...

    YMMV... Enjoy!
     
  23. Hoppy590

    Hoppy590 Member

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    just to add. dont hurt yourself

    definatly enlist the aid of some friends. will cost you a thirty rack of beer and some burgers.

    my kind of logic!
     
  24. CB900F

    CB900F Member

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    NRA4life;

    What model Graffunder? That weight would be about right for a B16, which is 40" X 27" X 60". Do not attempt to remove the door, it's really not necessary, & as has been accuratly pointed out, dangerous.

    The 1/2" plywood is correct for pile carpet, also the solid bar rollers. Turning can also be done on a plastic, visquine, sheet if you can manuver the unit on it without too much bunching up. One guy on each corner & all just push, hopefully, in the same direction at the same time.

    Or, use the plywood & rent a pallet jack & cut an 8' 4X4 to whatever lengths you need to block & manuver the jack. Usually two the depth of the safe & two 8" shorties that allow a corner to be blocked without interfering with a jack shift from end to side or vice-versa. Use enough plywood so the jack does not come off it & sink into deep carpet. That will almost certainly cause more excitement than you want to have. If necessary, bridge any gaps in the ply with a couple of 2'X2' 1/8" steel plates.

    I'm very familiar with Graffunder's & moved a B11 this morning. But then, I do it professionaly.

    PM me if you wish to.

    900F
     
  25. a1abdj

    a1abdj Member

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    Don't forget to use your head before you start:

    Measure the safe and any doorways it has to go through before you start the move.

    Make sure you have everything that you need before you start. Put it some place close, but not where you will be tripping over it.

    If you have others helping you, make sure everybody is vocal. When you're pushing, lifting, or lowering, make sure everybody knows so that they can act accordingly.

    Finally, in the event something goes wrong, get out of the way. Safes and walls can be replaced, people can't.

    Ideas like the golf balls would work, but can be very dangerous. The last thing you want to happen is to trip and fall in front of a safe that's in motion.
     
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