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  #1  
Old 08-09-2017, 6:02 PM
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Default Gun storage in an upstairs condo

I'm going to be moving to a condo that is on the second floor and I'm looking for some gun safe or very secure cabinet suggestions. I wouldn't say I have a large collection but I do have 8+ ("+" meaning it's always growing a little) rifles and as many pistols.

I know a typical safe is heavy and really hard to get into an upstairs unit, not to mention the weight on the floor. Have you had experience getting a safe into an upstairs unit or am I looking for a cabinet? I'm just looking to find a couple options if you have some solid suggestions.


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Old 08-09-2017, 6:28 PM
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Maybe a snap safe, you know those modular ones. You could move pieces at a time and assemble upstairs.

If you have a smallish 14-20 gun safe you should be able to move it around fairly easily if you have a hand truck and it's empty.

How do you plan on securing it? Bolt to studs?
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Old 08-09-2017, 6:54 PM
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I certainly wouldn't worry about the weight. I had a 100g reef tank in our third floor apartment for years and that thing weighed close to a ton. Your safe would likely span 2-3 floor joists.
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Old 08-09-2017, 7:08 PM
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a 300 lb safe, two people can get up the stairs.
rent a furniture dolly from U-Haul.
check your lease carefully. all it takes is one person to call the association manager.

or use one of these.
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Knaack-60...R-OS/207058098

http://www.homedepot.com/p/RIDGID-48...R-OS/300748574

cover with a blanket
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Old 08-09-2017, 7:34 PM
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I'd recommend one of the lighter weight ~16 gun safes. You can still get great quality while having the mobility to put it in a condo. You can get heavy safe's in there, which is fine if you don't ever plan to move but I couldn't imagine lifting over a 300lbs safe into a small condo.
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Old 08-09-2017, 7:35 PM
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Rent an appliance dolly. http://www.homedepot.com/tool-truck-...700/index.html
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Old 08-09-2017, 7:43 PM
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If you search this site you will find numerous posts addressing your question.

To paraphrase, many agree that there is not a strong correlation between weight of the safe and the theft security it provides. This means weight can be moved down in priority for theft protection.

The bulk of weight advantage is fire protection and preventing walk off. You are up stairs, so a 250# safe that is full will be tough for a theif to carry.....you don't need 1500# to prevent walk off. This means that weight can be moved down in priority.

If fire is a primary concern, the safe is going to need to be heavy because the burn proofing materials tend to be heavy.

For an upstairs apartment dweller, consider a modular Snap Safe (expensive) or a Residential Security Cabinet (cheap) from one of many makers. These two units should meet CA requirements (you need to verify). To that, add insurance coverage for fire and theft....NRA has cheap theft insurance. Fire is likely covered by your Renters Insurance...check as there is usually a firearms limitation similar to jewellery.

A heavy safe upstairs is dangerous and likely violates your rental agreement. Just because someone comes on here and says their 1500# safe never broke through the floor does not mean it is safe. Check the Uniform Building Code on residential floor loadings and see for your self what loads the floors are designed for.
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Old 08-09-2017, 8:50 PM
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It's likely thae size of a safe you need weighs in the neighborhood of 300lbs. It weighs a little bit more than a fridge. An appliance dolly and a friend can get it upstairs.
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Old 08-09-2017, 9:23 PM
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Most gun "safes" are meant to keep out kids. Don't leave a pry bar or angle grinder next to any bolted down safe and you should be fine. Any determined burglar will get your safe without a solid security system.
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Old 08-09-2017, 10:48 PM
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What happens if I sleep under your safe and it falls through
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Old 08-10-2017, 7:33 AM
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I had a large safe upstairs in my condo for years without any problem. It was a pain to get it up the stairs but we got it done.
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Old 08-10-2017, 7:36 AM
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You get free guns from the man upstairs. IT'S a Miracle.
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  #13  
Old 08-10-2017, 7:39 AM
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Do you own or rent? If you own, how long do you plan on staying?

The best way to keep stuff secure is by not letting people know you have it....

If you rented the place or plan on flipping out and buying a larger place in a few years, then consider buying 2 small safes... pop the doors off and they are now easy to move....

If you will live there a long time, look at craigs list for a used commercial safe.




Weight.... a bed has 4 legs.... add 2 humans.... and now you have a 100 pound bed, boxspring and mattress and another 250 to 450 pounds on the bed.

Each leg has over 100 pounds and covers a small footprint.

If that is fine on a floor, most RSCs that they sell are also fine
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Old 08-10-2017, 8:37 AM
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You should be to find something that would be fine to have in a condo. Stop by Liberty Safes in San Jose and talk to them. They are experienced and knowledgeable.
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Old 08-10-2017, 11:46 AM
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If I'm a bad guy who breaks into a house and I see a safe, I know what I want to open or take with me. That's why I stay away from safes, unless they are anchored into the concrete and so heavy that they are not going anywhere.

Instead, I have my valuables and guns in a vintage steel file cabinet in the garage, inconspicuously, behind a bunch 'a files. I have *some* cash and a watch in the night stand though, and an iPad in the living room, so a thief can feel lucky without getting to what really matters.
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Old 08-10-2017, 12:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brother_Hesekiel View Post
If I'm a bad guy who breaks into a house and I see a safe, I know what I want to open or take with me. That's why I stay away from safes, unless they are anchored into the concrete and so heavy that they are not going anywhere.

Instead, I have my valuables and guns in a vintage steel file cabinet in the garage, inconspicuously, behind a bunch 'a files. I have *some* cash and a watch in the night stand though, and an iPad in the living room, so a thief can feel lucky without getting to what really matters.
Until they ransack your entire house and find that stuff. If that's a risk you're willing to take, then fine. But personally if someone has to get powertools or drop a safe on the floor to remove it, that buys a lot of time and raises a bunch of suspicion.

Even 14ga steel takes time to chop through.
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Old 08-10-2017, 12:29 PM
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A residential unit is typically rated at 40lbs/sqft average for a joist (4x4 holding up the floor) going across a room.

Here is an example of how to do the math:
You have a 10'x10' room
You have a 4'x4' safe that weighs 600lbs
Your joists are 16" apart (this is the standard)

A 4' safe goes across 3 joists, putting 200lbs on each one.

Let's say nothing else is in the room. You have 200lbs on each joist, with each joist being 10ft long. That's 20lbs/sqft on the joist and is a safe load.

Let's make the safe crazy bigger to make it unsafe.

Let's keep the 10'x10' empty room, but use a 6'x4' 3000lb bank safe.

6x'4' is still across 3 joists depending on which direction the safe is placed. That puts 1000lbs on each joist. The joists are 10' long, meaning you have 100lbs/sqft or an unsafe load on the floor.

If you have other heavy stuff on the same joist (fish tanks, water beds, book cases, refrigerators), then make sure you include that weight in your calculations.

Remember that if two people with a furniture dolly can get the safe into your apartment, then two criminals with time and a furniture dolly can get the safe out of your apartment, however I don't know too many buglers that bring furniture dollies with them when burglarizing upstairs apartments. Just don't keep your angle grinder (the tool of choice to break into a safe) in the same closet as the safe.
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Last edited by unusedusername; 08-10-2017 at 12:41 PM..
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  #18  
Old 08-10-2017, 12:38 PM
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And move the safe into the apartment at a time limiting spying eyes...word will get around quick
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Old 08-10-2017, 6:45 PM
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I am in the same situation- I want my safe upstairs. Decided on modular safe. Found 2 companies that make them, Snap safe and Zanotti Armor. I choose Zanotti Armor. Expensive and 6 months wait to get one build. Mine will be home soo

Zanotti Size: 6’H x 31”W x 25” D Weight: 600 lbs. w/o interior, 15 or 30 long gun interior. Around $2500 will all options.

Check out the link, different sizes available.
http://www.zanottiarmor.com/pdf/brochure.pdf
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