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Old 04-24-2012, 09:54 AM   #1
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Gun/Valuables Safe - What safe is the best?

Hello Forum friends!

I did some searching around the forums and was unsuccessful at finding threads specific to safes.

I am looking to install a small fireproof save which I would store a .45, some ammo, some silver rounds, and miscellaneous other valuables. I also wish to bolt it to something sturdy.

Here are a few safes I found:

This Gun Speedvault would be in addition to another safe.

This safe looks perfect and is compact, what do you think?

This is a small floor safe; is a floor safe a very good idea?

This one just looks like someone could walk away with it.

If anyone has suggestions for better safes I am all ears! As always, thank you for all your input.

Brandon
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Old 04-24-2012, 10:48 AM   #2
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Publicly announcing/disclosing "safe" information and location just encourages the ill minded to prey on the travel trailers and RV's in general.

This is an example of that very sin.
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f161...ml#post1137532

If you can't figure out your own safe location for a gun, maybe you should not own the gun.

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Originally Posted by BrandonJenna View Post
Hello Forum friends!
I did some searching around the forums and was unsuccessful at finding threads specific to safes.
I am looking to install a small fireproof save which I would store a .45, some ammo, some silver rounds, and miscellaneous other valuables. I also wish to bolt it to something sturdy.
Brandon
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Old 04-24-2012, 02:02 PM   #3
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Publicly announcing/disclosing "safe" information and location just encourages the ill minded to prey on the travel trailers and RV's in general.
I disagree. Security through obscurity doesn't work.

In the era when it was common to keep an address book next to the telephone in the kitchen, it was common for people to write the combination to the safe in the address book under the heading "Safe." Most people thought themselves very clever and had no idea that it was something that accomplished burglars checked for whenever they found a residential safe.

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Suitable for keeping firearms out of the hands of children and visitors but not secure.

I've seen those at dealers. Not secure, I could open it in a minute with an ordinary prybar.

Better but the lock is the weak point on this one. Cheaply made round-key locks like that can usually be picked with a plastic tube without much skill, and this has been widely publicized.

Any small safe has to be secured to something. I've seen those at dealers, too, again, it's childproof but the metal is light enough that a prybar will open it in a minute or two.

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If anyone has suggestions for better safes I am all ears! As always, thank you for all your input.
For a rapid-access safe I recommend the V-line pushbutton safes. A google search will turn up dealers and prices. They do not require batteries and don't have electronics, which eliminates a couple of likely sources of failure. They are child resistant but can be pried open in a few minutes with tools.

Otherwise you trade off cost and weight for security. You have to get a B rated safe to provide a meaningful amount of protection against burglary:

Amsec C3 Floor Safe

You have to consider the value of the items you're protecting. Jewelry stores with million dollar inventories think nothing of buying a $5,000 safe. I don't have that problem.
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Old 04-24-2012, 02:26 PM   #4
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To some extent, it will depend on why you want to store a gun.

Is the trailer your full-time home and this is the only place the gun will be stored, even when you're not home?

Do you want to store the gun in a safe-but-accessible place and have it ready for instant access in case some vile miscreant breaks in while you're home?

Do you normally carry the gun when you're out and about, and just want someplace to store it when you're not wearing it?

Each of these cases will have a different "best" choice for a gun safe, in terms of not only design but location as well. In most cases, "more secure" also means "harder to get at when you need it in a hurry."
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Old 04-24-2012, 04:23 PM   #5
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Brandon I'm also looking at storage options for valuable items - cameras, laptops, both long and short guns, fine scotch.

I'M looking at installing a small lockable gun cabinet in one of the closets. I've at some at Academy, Dicks, and Sportsman Warehouse. This will allow storage of a rifle or shotgun as well as other valuables. While this wouldn't stop a hardened thug - the effort will stop mischievous teenagers, etc.

Choosing to have a firearm is a personal choice - kudos to thinking about securing the firearm when you are away from the trailer.
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Old 04-24-2012, 05:27 PM   #6
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Hello, try cabelas.com or any larger sporting goods or gun shop, they will have something or can tell where to go, there are small, tall safes that will hold several long guns, and or other items. You can install it in a closet and bolt it to the floor. The good ones are fire proof and can not be pried open. Try Heritage safe co. they are a very good brand. Sorry I don't know the web site, good luck, you may have a problem with weight, the fireproof may weigh about 300 pounds or more.
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Old 04-24-2012, 09:03 PM   #7
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Silver rounds? Are you expecting a werewolf?
Maybe I read that wrong.
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Old 04-24-2012, 09:08 PM   #8
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My husband is a licensed and certified locksmith and safe technician and has been for over 25 years. Here is his take. He was asked these questions on a daily basis for most of those! First off, here is what to ask yourself:

1. What am I protecting my valuables from--- fire, burglary, or both?

2. What dollar amount am I protecting?

And with an RV, you also have to ask, how much weight am I willing to carry? (and keep in mind that it is only as good as whatever it is attached to.)

At the beginning you asked for a fire safe, but a fire safe does not offer burglary protection, and a burglary safe does not offer fire protection--- unless you buy a safe which offers BOTH. With fire safes, people often assume they are secure against burglary, but they are really just fireproof containers. Also many so-called fire-safes are not even true fire safes. True fire safes have special material poured in the walls that when heated emit moisture inward.

A true fire-burglary safe which is extremely heavy and the walls are extremely thick. The ones at big box stores are almost always achieving some measure of fire protection (very low-level protection ) by lining the walls with Sheetrock.
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Old 04-24-2012, 09:11 PM   #9
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Silver rounds? Are you expecting a werewolf?
Maybe I read that wrong.
The same thing occurred to me, kemosabe.
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Old 04-25-2012, 02:04 PM   #10
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The majority of breakins into an unoccupied RV are committed by bored and curious kids. A locked door and locked windows and observant neighbors will usually stop them. Even the local junkies and punks looking for a camera, laptop or wallet will stop when they run into almost any kind of lock. But, the reality is, if someone is serious about robbing your trailer/RV you cannot stop them unless you are inside and prepared. Cell phones are a very good first line of defense. They are an effective deterrent (bad guys have to assume that you have one) and provide you with your first level of protection. Other RVrs camped nearby act as a deterrent as well.

We do have a lot of electronic devices and carry photo and video equipment that could be stolen. There is just too much of it to put into a safe or try to hide. All of it is catalogued and insured. We don’t travel with jewelry or other expensive valuables (unless you count the cook ware, down equipment, toaster, microwave, coffee pot, thermos, etc.). If we are away from our Airstream for a day or week we do take our passports and other documents with us. If you leave your Airstream for more than a day make sure you get to know your neighbors. Also, intrusion alarms are not expensive and relatively simple to install.

Airstreams are uniquely engineered. Our vintage 1976 International has many places that can be used to hide a few valuables but I would not put a hand gun out of reach. Locking and hiding a hand gun is essential if there are children around but most of us full timers seldom have anyone younger than 50 near us. Some states mandate that, when traveling, you carry any weapons in a locked “case” and require the case to be located out of the drivers reach or in the trunk. The “case” does not have to be a safe and the requirement is often negated when you consider that our Airstreams are our homes. Nevertheless, I would not want to push the issue in CA, MA or NY. Canada will not allow the transportation of guns under almost any circumstances.

If your Airstream is in storage I doubt if you would leave your valuables in it. I would think that a safe would be more of an enticement than a deterrent. There is little solid material to anchor a safe to. Anyone who has a crow bar could easily pull the head of a bolt through the bulkheads or floor material. You would have to remove the belly pan to anchor a safe to the frame but you would risk weakening the frame in the process. I would recommend leaving the bling at home or in storage and keeping the handgun in a small locked case when you are traveling.
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Old 04-25-2012, 02:40 PM   #11
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Silver rounds? Are you expecting a werewolf?
Maybe I read that wrong.
I presume he's referring to a type of ammunition favored by law enforcement that has silver-colored bullet tips as an identifying feature, in much the same way that Owens-Corning insulation is pink.
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Old 04-25-2012, 03:04 PM   #12
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I presume he's referring to a type of ammunition favored by law enforcement that has silver-colored bullet tips as an identifying feature, in much the same way that Owens-Corning insulation is pink.
Sure, but that takes a lot of the fun out of it. (I'm aware of Silvertips, but that leads to another thread topic.)

Several good points about safes have been made. As noted, it is difficult to create a secure place in an Airstream due to weight limitations, among other things. There's an old (1989) Burt Reynolds movie called Breaking In where Burt plays a thief. Early in the movie, he breaks into a home with a wall safe. Using a roofing hammer, he chops it out of the wall, lays it on the floor, and chops the back open in a couple of minutes. He explains that it has a good door, but that the back and sides were just plain sheet metal.

As others have pointed out, most of these safes would do to discourage casual theft in the Airstream. That's about all you can really hope for anyway.
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Old 04-28-2012, 08:50 AM   #13
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Quote:
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Silver rounds? Are you expecting a werewolf?
Maybe I read that wrong.
Hahahaha... 1 oz rounds, bullion. Although that's a thought, you never know what the zombie apocalypse will bring.
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Old 04-28-2012, 09:13 AM   #14
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Thanks everyone for the great feedback. Your responses have forced me to define more specifically in my mind why I want one in the first place. Being only 29 and living in my airstream full time with my wife, I really just wanted something that sounds like it doesn't exist; I wanted a small, easily accessible for me, fireproof safe that I can bolt to a rock solid hidden place in my airstream.
It's frustrating what passes for quality today. I think what I will do is store the most important documents and irreplaceables in my father's gun safe or a safe deposit box at the bank. I could also mount one of my pistols in a hidden but easily accessible area for when I am not concealing. Thank you again, I will continue to keep a close eye on this thread for further thoughts and comments.
Brandon
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Old 02-20-2013, 11:04 AM   #15
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I'm a little late to the party for this thread but have been researching this same idea, a safe in the airstream. I'm coming to the conclusion that a safe in the tow vehicle for small valuables (spare cash & credit card, Wallet, Ipad, gps, etc.) is the way to go. Something like Autosafes.net sells.

I have a locking tuffy box for a console in my jeep for this purpose. I once parked my topless jeep at a trailhead where most every other car was broken into but my jeep was left alone (the police noticed this and I had to answer a few extra questions LOL). Could be that the locking box in plain view was more trouble then it was worth to try and open it. Or... It could have been that my jeep is such a rust bucket that they figured nothing of value could be in it.

Any thoughts on this vs. a similar safe in the airstream?
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Old 02-20-2013, 12:42 PM   #16
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My earlier thread covers most of the questions about this product but I'll touch on it. Mostly the buyer needs to ask themselves questions and weigh the options.
1 What am I protecting from? Fire,burglary,safety, one or all?
2) What is the dollar value of what I'm storing?
3) How accessible do I need it to be?
4) What material am I mounting it to?

Keep in mind the word "safe" is misused and misleading. Anything can be kept safe but from what? Remember thieves don't care what they damage and its only as good as what it's mounted to. ie a plastic console. In all cases obscurity helps but is not always convenient.
If it was me, the ideal safe to protect from burglary and fire would be a small BF rated safe with a UL rated digital keypad. Then it must be bolted down properly. The only way to truly secure it in your Airstream is to bolt it to the frame. Any rating higher than that would be a waste unless you are storing more than 5000 in value. If you are we can talk further but as far as the console "safe" be careful what you store in that! Remember, its mounted to plastic.
Rob
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Old 02-20-2013, 02:51 PM   #17
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Everyone's situation is different.

Theft of contents from inside RVs parked in campgrounds, that are in daily use, is vanishingly rare.

Thefts occurring in campgrounds almost always involve generators, ATVs, boat motors, or other unsecured items outside. There are also thefts from cars and trucks.
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Old 02-20-2013, 02:56 PM   #18
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I have a locking tuffy box for a console in my jeep for this purpose. I once parked my topless jeep at a trailhead where most every other car was broken into but my jeep was left alone (the police noticed this and I had to answer a few extra questions LOL). Could be that the locking box in plain view was more trouble then it was worth to try and open it. Or... It could have been that my jeep is such a rust bucket that they figured nothing of value could be in it.

Any thoughts on this vs. a similar safe in the airstream?
Either can be opened in under a minute with a pry bar. But sometimes the thief doesn't have any tools other than a rock.

I don't travel with much in the way of valuables, and I keep my wallet and phone with me any time I leave the trailer.
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Old 02-20-2013, 06:05 PM   #19
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Same as above.. I tend to take my wallet, phone, concealed firearm, with me when ever I leave the trailer or TV.
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Old 02-20-2013, 06:46 PM   #20
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I have a small gun lock box with push buttons on it. The box slides onto a steel plate and when locked it can't be removed. I have several of the mounting plates and move it between trailer, boat, house, and truck as needed. Holds a couple of guns and few small items. Most Airstreams have a few ares which have pull out panels and only another owner of a similar trailer would know where they are, that is where the lock box lives. Not fire proof or pry bar proof. More than likely the cost of the damage to get in the trailer will be more than the value of items taken.
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