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Posted: 3/5/2006 7:22:03 PM EDT
Im curious too see some of the high speed low drag mods you have made to your gun safes.
Now one quick question. I want to set up some lights in my safe and was wondering what some of you did for having the lights turn on when you open the door. I was thinking of using rope light in it and just need a setup to turn it on/off.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 6:41:06 PM EDT
Christmas lights and rope lights work slick. Some come with a switch that is placed near the outlet, others with switches that are moveable. As far as going on with the opening of the door, I don't have experience with that type of set up.

Home Depot can take care of your safe illumination needs for 20.00 or less.
Link Posted: 3/7/2006 6:08:50 PM EDT
Having the light come on when the door is opened might not always be wanted. I just bought 2 of those el cheapo tap lights, with magnetic backing and stuck them on both sides. I am an elctrician though, and would like to make something nicer/brighter.
Link Posted: 3/7/2006 6:53:35 PM EDT
What time would I not want my light to come on? Also I have some rope light, but the connection that would have to pass through the safe is hella huge, so my other thought was to run some 2 wire(rubber coated extension cord type) through a rubber grommet fron the back wall into the safe and throw a shallow old work box in the false floor for a duplex and plug the rope light into that. I will also have the outlet to charge up my mini DV video camera that I keep locked up in there also.

Not an electrician per say, but a contractor that knows the construction field very well. I just havent found a good way to switch the lights on/off yet. If the wiring was DC, it would be alot easier for me to come up with something. Oh well....
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 9:24:53 AM EDT
If I wanted to wire something up to come on when the safe was opened I would go to a junkyard and pull some of the door switches that turn on the dome lights when a car door is open. You could [robably get them really cheap, if not free.
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 4:06:56 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/8/2006 4:08:16 PM EDT by blackhawk2000]
what if some creep happens to be standing in the dark, and you want to reach in the safe without him seeing the light come on?


As far as wiring a switch in it's a piece of cake. First cut the wires so they are hanging out of the front of the box at 6". Put a pigtail in the box if it's metal it's the easiest way to do it right. Then take the 2 ground wires, and a 1' piece of ground wire and wire nut all 4 together. Then stuff those ground wires in the back of the box. Route the longer ground wire so it is out the front of the box, and cut off until about 6 inches is only sticking out. Then wire nut both white wires together. Stuff those in the back of the box too. Then take the ground wire, and attach it to the switch. Take 1 black wire, and attach to 1 screw on the switch, and attach the other black wire to the other screw. Wrap the switch with electrical tape to be safe, and screw in to the box. Put on a cover and you are done. Ask an electrician to show you next time on a job, so you get a good visual, then look back at this to remind you what you saw.

Whatever you do, don't run lamp cord. It's junk. Why don't you go to Home Depot, and tell them what you want to do, and they can set you up with the stuff you need. If it was me, I would put a box on the outside with a disposal cord whip spliced in the box to MC, then thru the wall with the MC, up to a switch box, then more MC, up to a metal light box, then a flourescent light mounted to the box. If you do use stranded wire like MC, then you need to wrap your screws a little different. Leave about 10" of black wire, and the long ground wire. Go back about 3-4" from the end of the wire, and then take your strippers, and make like you are stripping the wire. Pull the end wire like you are trying to strip that much off the wire, but don't pull the insulation off. What you want is a gap in the insulation about 1" long. Take the gap area, and wrap that around your screw, then tape. Make sure no small strands are hanging out the hollow end of the insulation. Hope this helps
Link Posted: 3/8/2006 8:22:16 PM EDT
Im actually fine with wiring regular single pole switches, I just would love to have a light come on automatically and I allready have my HD weapon outside of my main safe. Ill fight my way to the safe if I need more gun, but normally Ill be fine with my HD gun on most calls. No worries of the bad guy seeing a light turn on. I just want to see whats inside my safe.

As for the wiring, I was going to run power to a box behind the safe and then run insulated wire(14/2, kinda like what you woud use for 25' extension cords) into safe for the box inside there. I still would like an auto on light, but Im not aware of any AC pin switches for the door. DC ones are much easier to come by like the ones used for car door lights. If I must wire a single pole switch so be it and my lazy ass will have to live with it.

Also black, Why would you use a pigtail on the ground? I usually leave a lead extra long, and either use a buchanan, or a greenie wire nut. IMO much faster. Ive thought about getting my Journeymans license, but I have my Construction supervisors license and really dont have a need for the electrical license. It would be nice to have for side work, except here in NH you need a Masters to pull permits, but MA is fine with a Journeymans.

Just a disclaimer for people using the advice above for wiring. If you dont know what you are doing or are uncomfortable with what you are doing please hire a professional. Please even be careful with the advice given from the home depot or lowes guys as they arent always the best informed. Thoughts of people getting advise about how to wire up 220v or generators and getting misinformation. Electricity can kill you.
Link Posted: 3/9/2006 12:02:08 PM EDT
I have a rope light with a magnetic switch in my safe. As soon as the magnets break contact the light goes on. Other than that and a golden rod and silica gel I have no high speed low drag safe mods to share.

Oh, and if I don’t want the light to come on when I open my safe I will reach down the side and flip off the power strip first.
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