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Posted: 5/31/2008 6:25:12 PM EDT
OK, I can't figure it out.  I started looking for a safe a few months ago.  Initially looked at a Stack-On Total Defense.  $995 for the 36 gun model.  Looked like crap...made in China, thin metal, "fire rated" but I don't know how, and a lock that looked easily picked and destined to fail.  Moved up to Liberty, Canon, Heritage and Champion.  Liberty easily "looked" prettiest, but Champion seemed to have a better container (10ga vs. 11ga box) at the same price point (thicker metal) or a slightly larger box (40 vs 35) with the same metal at a lower cost.  Then I watched Roge Safe Companies "Security on Sale" video from You-tube.  The guy there sent a picture of a major safe manufacturer safe cut in half with a sawzall.  Here's the link to the video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pqJhLbTVmNk&feature=user

Great.  I'm looking at spending $2500 bucks and I get a box anybody can cut open.  So I make a couple more calls to find out what a Graffunder costs.  $8500 in the size I need.  Can't do it.  The divorce would be more expensive than the box by a long shot.  

So what is it that I need? I'm leaning toward an AMSEC BF6040 ($3100 installed in the house) or a Champion Triumph 40 ($2500 installed).  Two of the safe pros I talked with said go with the Amsec.  10ga body, 16ga liner, real fire protection, and 1/2 inch door.  Two other safe pros said even the Amsec gives the appearance of security, that I should consider stepping down to a more basic Champion Tropy series or Liberty Franklin series.  The safe will be in the basement against a concrete wall on two sides, so it probably won't get all that hot if the house burns, plus we live close to a fire station.  While the boxes are 12 gauge, they point out that somebody wanting in the thicker metal will get in almost as quick.  They suggested using the "saved money" on the lower priced safe to get a better alarm system for the house.  Unfortunately, with two young kids (plus a forgetful wife) I doubt an upgraded alarm would get used religiously.

Any comments, suggestions, or catcalls welcome.  I've got to make a decision fairly quickly.
Link Posted: 5/31/2008 6:27:18 PM EDT
AMSEC.  If you have the funds then only hurt once.

Heck they are going to install it for you.

Max
Link Posted: 5/31/2008 6:32:06 PM EDT
Don't buy a Sportsman Steel, They were very friendly till the check cleared the bank. Then every thing got shitty. Shitty safe too.
Link Posted: 5/31/2008 7:01:19 PM EDT
I have the Amsec and couldn't be happier. I say go for it. Bolt it down and you're good to go.
Link Posted: 6/1/2008 11:49:15 AM EDT

Quoted:
I have the Amsec and couldn't be happier. I say go for it. Bolt it down and you're good to go.


Thanks!  That's two for the AMSEC.  Anybody have any opinion on the Champion, or think there's much difference between a 10 gauge and 12 gauge box for attack security?  The AMSEC wins the door hands down (1/2 inch) and has the 16 gauge liner inside the 10 gauge box, but $700 buys another nice plastic pistol or an upgraded alarm system if there's not much difference in the physical security of the two containers.
Link Posted: 6/1/2008 12:12:59 PM EDT
10ga, vs 12 ga is not that much different. either can be compromised by basic cutting tools.   Find a good location with wall on 2-3 sides of the safe and bolt it down.


I know you said you had concrete on 2 sides. IMHO, you would be better off spending the $$ building a stud or concrete block wall on the 3rd side of the safe so it would be a major PITA to hack thru the side (although still not impossible)

with that said, I think AMSEC makes the best safe for the $$$. What champion series are you looking at?
Link Posted: 6/1/2008 12:23:07 PM EDT

Quoted:
I think AMSEC makes the best safe for the $$$. What champion series are you looking at?


The Champion Triumph 40.  It's 10 gauge without a metal liner, and has 3 layers of gypsum board for fire resistance.  It supposedly weighs in at 1075 lbs compared to the Amsec's 1115 for the BF6040.  Amsec wins hands down for the door, but both bodies are 10 gauge.  Amsec has much better fit and finish.  No doubt it's a nicer box, but if I'm not getting significant additional security I can't see spending the extra money.
Link Posted: 6/1/2008 1:32:30 PM EDT
Both safes look pretty good. The only thing I dont like about the champion is the internal hinges which dont increase security and do reduce the amount you can open the door
Link Posted: 6/1/2008 6:48:18 PM EDT
Amsec BF series, HS series if you have the coin.

A friend had his BF attacked, they never got into it, and it took the locksmith 4hrs to get it open... I wouldn't say "I get a box anybody can cut open". You get anything under 1000lbs, bolt it down to the foundation.

I never understood how people will have an AR worth $2k, but are too cheap to purchase a good quality safe. It offers piece of mind (your home alarm isn't going to protect your firearms against a fire) and it is the responsible thing to do as a gun owner. home alarm calls are not a top priority for LE and they can be defeated, alarms.
Link Posted: 6/1/2008 7:05:32 PM EDT
I have an American Security and it is extremly well built.  In fact I'm about to get another.
Link Posted: 6/1/2008 7:07:47 PM EDT
http://sturdysafe.com/

I have a sturdy safe. It's not pretty but it is built very well. They make them about 20min from where I live. The owner gave me the full tour when I bought mine.

Here's a pic of the door.

2" of fire lining.


Just about no gap to pry it open.




Link Posted: 6/1/2008 7:24:01 PM EDT

Quoted:
http://sturdysafe.com/

I have a sturdy safe. It's not pretty but it is built very well.




I did some research on Sturdy as well, but as I'm in Georgia and they're in Fresno it makes it a little difficult to judge the product.  Their boxes were 1/4 inch or 5/16 inch door compared to the Amsec 1/2 inch, but used 7 or 8 guage metal on the outside of the box with 14 gauge inside, which is obviously better than 10 gauge/ 16 gauge on the BF series Amsec.  Their firelining was unique, a sandwich of ceramic and wool oven liner.  While they had a great picture on their website of a burndown with everything inside the safe intact, they didn't have any other objective testing data to compare.  I just wasn't willing to lay out that amount of coin on a product I hadn't physically seen, plus their product was either a little too small or a little too big unless I went custom.  The owner sounded like a great guy, and I've read several good reviews of his product on this site.

Thanks for the Sturdy recommendation!
Link Posted: 6/1/2008 7:27:13 PM EDT
I have one of the AMSEC BF Series and am well satisfied. A word of advice: the only "hole" in the safe for running a 110V electrical line in for a Goldenrod or similar humidity control gadget is in the lower right hand corner of the back of the safe. If you're going to use such a device, run the wire through the hole BEFORE they place it and bolt it down tight against a wall or you're screwed.  I discovered this well after my safe was installed and loaded. I can always drill a hole through one of the sides but that falls in the major nuisance category, and given that I live in Az, humidity isn't a major issue.

On the same subject. Walmart sells a digital hygrometer (humidity gage) with a magnetic base for $8 which displays current humidity and  temp as well as high and low humidy for the past 24 hours. $8 well spent.
Link Posted: 6/2/2008 4:33:43 AM EDT
Update:  I bought the Amsec 6040.  Thanks to all for the constructive input.
Link Posted: 6/2/2008 4:35:45 AM EDT
browning
Link Posted: 6/2/2008 5:49:26 AM EDT
Good choice!  Be sure to show us pics, and let us know how the installation went!


-James
Link Posted: 6/3/2008 2:02:39 PM EDT

Quoted:

Quoted:
I have the Amsec and couldn't be happier. I say go for it. Bolt it down and you're good to go.


Thanks!  That's two for the AMSEC.  Anybody have any opinion on the Champion, or think there's much difference between a 10 gauge and 12 gauge box for attack security?  The AMSEC wins the door hands down (1/2 inch) and has the 16 gauge liner inside the 10 gauge box, but $700 buys another nice plastic pistol or an upgraded alarm system if there's not much difference in the physical security of the two containers.


I have the a champion trophy model that I got just a few days ago, and I am very happy with it.  That said, if I had the $$, I'd have gone with AMSEC.  

*snip*

EDIT:  Nevermind.  Show pics.  
Link Posted: 6/3/2008 2:10:00 PM EDT
CANNON FTW!!!!Best warranty in the business!!!!!!!!!






--------------134thSIGNAL
Link Posted: 6/3/2008 2:22:52 PM EDT

Quoted:
Don't buy a Sportsman Steel, They were very friendly till the check cleared the bank. Then every thing got shitty. Shitty safe too.




Wow, Ive had the exact opposite experience with them.  Do you have one?  

Although I purchased mine about six years ago, I had a problem with the dial lock. It just didn't function correctly.  I would dial in my code, sometimes it would open, sometimes not.  I called them up, spoke with a manager.  He said they would replace the dial lock, but if I wanted to upgrade to a digital lock, it would be free of charge.  I agreed and they sent a locksmith over the following day.  He opened the safe and put the digital lock on.

While I was on the phone with the manager, he also said he would send me a pistol rack for my trouble.  In three days, I got a package from them, in it was the pistol rack, an interior rope light, a dehumidifier(I already had one) and a coupon for 40% off my next safe purchase, which has no expiration!!

On top of that, when I originally ordered the safe, everything was negotiable, safe and options.  Plus, I got free delivery.

So, after six years or so, no problems with my safe, electronic lock and all.  I replace the battery every six months and have never had a problem getting into my safe.


Anyhow, to the OP, DO NOT CHEAP OUT on a safe.  And I'm sure others have mentioned, buy one bigger then you think you need, if space allows in your home.



ETA;

Just about any safe can be broken into, it's not a complete fortress.  It's all about deterring and/or slowing down a thief.

If your going to keep it in a basement, built a concrete base for it.  For two reasons, it makes it easier to access things in the safe because it's higher. Plus, it gives you some room in case of a flood.  I have mine on a concrete platform, it's about 10-12" high.

Another thing is, you need a barrier between concrete and the metal safe, to deter rust.  On all sides, where safe meets concrete,  I first installed a rubber membrane on the concrete, over that a 4 mil.  plastic sheet.  On the platform, I added a piece of carpet between the plastic and safe.

As noted, it'd be great if you can have concrete on three sides and even across the top(I regret not doing that).
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 11:14:36 PM EDT
wow, i hope the Stack-On 36 gun one you described isn't too shitty.  i just bought a scratch and dent one off Ebay for $300.  it'll have to pretty damn bad to make it not a smokin' deal.
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 11:18:35 PM EDT
I have an AMSEC BF6040 and it's great. Got it new around $1800, delivered.

I'd buy another one, unless, when I need to, I find that I'm absolutely made of money, in which case I'd go with a Knox.
Link Posted: 6/6/2008 1:15:00 AM EDT
Sturdy Safe is the best deal out there.I also can't tell you strongly enough to buy twice as big as you need.My Sturdy Safe is rated at 40 guns.Once you start putting in weapons with scopes and pistol grips 25 guns is really going to be the max I can fit in.
Link Posted: 6/6/2008 1:26:57 AM EDT

Quoted:
CANNON FTW!!!!Best warranty in the business!!!!!!!!!






--------------134thSIGNAL


That is nice to know. I just bought a new Cannon yesterday.
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