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View Full Version : Safes on a 2nd floor apartment weight and choices


pdude
03-29-2011, 11:39 PM
I've seen talk about safes in apartments on some other threads, but was thinking more about people who've used a safe with regard to weight and what choices they made for a manufacturer. Two that seem to fit in my weight concerns are amsec and sentry.

I'm in a newer apartment community where I don't think there's much between the floors. I'm on the second floor above a garage (the garage houses my neighbor's car which is an expensive classic car) and my neighbor above me wants a safe as well who is on the 3rd floor. We both are thinking closet to try to hide it. I would like to stay under 200 pounds, but looks like many safes are 300-500 pounds and above that could fit what I want. Then of course what I put in it.

Wondering who's had experience with the weight? And what did they choose. I've been looking at the Amsec 5517 and several Sentry safes that I found online. Not sure if there are other's people recommend.

On the weight some sales guys at the gun show told me it's like having friends over for dinner (weight wise). But I still think it's concentrated in a 2x3 sqft space 24 hours a day and am worried if something is too heavy as I don't want any crashing down through the floor and underlayment.

Appreciate anyone's experience or if they think it doesn't make sense at all and I should just go for the 600 pounder. :)

Saym14
03-30-2011, 12:04 AM
apartment floors are designed for a minimum of 40 psf. so if the safe is 2x3=6x40 = 240 pounds should be fine. I would keep it close to a bearing wall, not in the middle of the floor joist spans and you should be ok.

and if your friends over for dinner weigh 350 pounds just use them as a test and see if they fall thru the floor. :)

pdude
03-30-2011, 12:25 AM
Funny. :o

That's good to know. Is that in the California housing code? I will have to check with my apartment. So it sounds like technically I should be under 200 pounds for a safe if they are at the minimum of 40 psf since I might be loading that safe up! But if they are higher, then I could go crazy with something heavier.

Merc1138
03-30-2011, 9:43 AM
An ammo box filled with ammo weighs typically between 20 and 60 lbs (I've weighed them, the 60 lbs is for a 50-cal ammo box filled to the top with loose .45ACP rounds). Some people like to store their ammo in the gun safe (for fire and theft protection). A 2x3 safe can easily hold a dozen ammo boxes (for example as a flat layer on the floor of the safe). That adds another many hundred pounds.

A 2x3 foot gun safe can easily hold a dozen long arms, and a two dozen handguns (twice that is you stack tightly). At 7 lbs per long arms and 2 lbs per handgun, that's another hundred pounds.

If you add it all up, putting large gun safes on wooden joist floors with normal residential construction is just wrong.

You're definitely right about needing to watch the weight, but also consider furniture and people in apartments on the same floors and in the middle of a room(instead of up against a wall.

I used to have some large neighbors living on the 2nd floor. If I were to take a guess they probably weighed 600lb together. An average bed frame, box spring, and matress weighs what, 100lbs? Usually 6 little 2"x2" feet are holding up the bed. That's 24 sq in. supporting 700lbs, or since the feet are spread out around 115lbs per 4 square inches. Isn't that way over the 40 pound per square foot thing? Granted, it's not a safe sitting there 24 hours, but it is a lot of weight there for 8 hours a night.

My couch in my own living room would be even worse. It weighs maybe 150 pounds. My furniture weight estimates could be off, I don't usually weigh my furniture. Anyway, it has 4 feet that it sits on smack in the middle of the floor. Each of the feet has maybe 4 square inches of contact area. 16 square inches total. I know for a fact that having 2 friends over to watch a hockey game and sitting on that couch does not send it through the floor into the apartment below. I'm talking about 700 pounds worth of people sitting on a 100 pound couch, that's 800 pounds on 16 square inches of space, or 200 pounds per 4 square inches.

Now I do have a friend that had a 100 gallon fish tank sitting on the 2nd floor of his house and the floor started to sag as he was topping it off and realized the problem then had to start emptying it in a hurry. Although when you consider the weight of the stand, glass, rocks in the tank, pumps, and then the water it was probably close or over 1000 pounds.

I can't imagine it'd be too difficult to support a 300lb safe loaded with guns. Just keep the ammo elsewhere and weight shouldn't be an issue(other than moving the thing).

sephy
03-30-2011, 11:25 AM
http://www.tractorsupply.com/tools/safes/sentry-reg-safe-10-gun-combination-lock-safe-4061927

I have that one on the second floor. Hasn't busted through yet.

On the note of apartment weight bearing, I remember in college I went to a second floor apartment party. "Jump Around" came on the stereo and everyone started bouncing up and down. The floor was like a trampoline and I think I was the only one sober enough to be scared sh**less. I got out of there quick...

lgm118icbm
03-30-2011, 11:35 AM
I think I was the only one sober enough to be scared sh**less. I got out of there quick...

Haha! I think we have all had those moments! :D:D

macey109
03-30-2011, 3:02 PM
I keep a TF5924 on the 2nd floor..... Have done it for about 10 years in 3 different apartments/houses no issues. Now my bf7250 is a diff story.

pdude
03-30-2011, 3:34 PM
Nice. I don't know how I would even get the bf7250 through my twisting stairs!

I'm leaning towards the two smallest Amsec TF series safe. Anyone use the Sentry gun safes? I've seen a few safe dealers in the area this afternoon in OC and they all pretty much dogged the Sentry safes as cheap (or perhaps Sentry doesn't give them much margin for profit)

antonio
04-02-2011, 2:16 PM
When I lived in my apartment I had a 100 gallon Saltwater Aquarium on the second floor for 2 years with no problems.

AK4me
04-02-2011, 2:39 PM
I have a 525lb(empty) safe. not sure how much it weighs now but it hase 12 rifles and 5 pistols, couple ak parts kits, barrels, and ammo cans filled with ammo. It has been in the closet of my 2nd floor apt for over 2 years and it is fine.

97F1504RAD
04-02-2011, 3:45 PM
This topic is hilarious. Putting a safe on the second floor is not going to cause any issues at all. And if it does you have bigger issues that need to be dealt with in regard to the construction of the home or apartment.

Like Merc points out your furniture most likley weighs as much as a safe once you load all your clothes and other items in them and are only supported by 4 small feet Your bed is most likely the same way.

I have many friends myself included that have safes on a second story floor and there are no issues at all. Someone suggested putting t close to a load bearing wall and that is a great idea.

Maybe you guys shouldn't put refrigerators on the second floor either. :D

antonio
04-02-2011, 4:46 PM
This topic is hilarious. Putting a safe on the second floor is not going to cause any issues at all. And if it does you have bigger issues that need to be dealt with in regard to the construction of the home or apartment.

Like Merc points out your furniture most likley weighs as much as a safe once you load all your clothes and other items in them and are only supported by 4 small feet Your bed is most likely the same way.

I have many friends myself included that have safes on a second story floor and there are no issues at all. Someone suggested putting t close to a load bearing wall and that is a great idea.

Maybe you guys shouldn't put refrigerators on the second floor either. :rofl2::D

What he said