Need some help... installing a pistol safe

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Thread: Need some help... installing a pistol safe

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array Taurahe's Avatar
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    Need some help... installing a pistol safe

    So heres what i got.... My pistol needs to be mounted securely and not sitting on a shelf. It currently resides on a built in bookshelf in my bedroom closet. I cannot mount the safe directly to the wall. The safe is roughly 15 inches wide, 15 inches high, by 12 inches deep. The shelf is as deep as the safe is. The shelf system is nothing fancy. It is a simply installed bookshelf style contraption, with a side running from floor to the top cross shelf of the closet on each side, with several shelves. My safe ( security cabinet?) is predrilled on the back and bottom in each corner. As stated, mounting the back of the safe is not an option.

    My thinking is to drill holes in the shelf and run 1 1/2 lag bolts through the bottom into the safe. Under the bolt head and lock nut inside would be the biggest washers i can find to distribute pressure. Therer will be one in each cornerof the safe. The shelf itself will be reinforced, at a minimum, on the bottom with 90 degree brackets, at least two per side.

    Im not sure what else I can do to make the whole thing stronger. Its not ideal, but it is what I have to work with. Any suggestions anyone might have would be greatly appreciated.

    Heres some pics to give you an idea of what im working with.....
    photo (2).JPGphoto (3).JPGphoto (4).JPGphoto.JPG
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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array Easy8's Avatar
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    If there are holes in the back you might want to try some toggle bolts into the wall

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    VIP Member Array Taurahe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Easy8 View Post
    If there are holes in the back you might want to try some toggle bolts into the wall
    I live in an apartment.... I dont feel like having to fix holes before I move out... and on that note, what is a toggle bolt?
    ”God grants Liberty only to those who love it, and are always ready to guard and defend it.”
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    VIP Member Array Easy8's Avatar
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    image.jpg handy bolts for tight spots

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    Senior Member Array jca1's Avatar
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    Is there anywhere in a closet or alcove, etc. that you can screw it to the floor?
    If I gave a crap about what you think about my guns.....it was early this morning and I already flushed it!

  7. #6
    VIP Member Array Taurahe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jca1 View Post
    Is there anywhere in a closet or alcove, etc. that you can screw it to the floor?
    Given the small size of it I dont want it on the floor, I want to be able to actually get into it lol. My apartment actually has brand new laminant flooring and i would get raped on the security deposit if i put holes in it. As it sits it is actually in my bedroom closet, which has sliding doors on it.
    ”God grants Liberty only to those who love it, and are always ready to guard and defend it.”
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    Member Array TiredRetired's Avatar
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    My question is what is your goal in "mounting" the safe?

    If you do not want it sliding around, then the bolts through the bottom will work. It would take a thief with a large hammer about 4 good swings to smash the shelf unit and pick up the safe (with the remaining attached wood) and run out.

    If you want to keep a thief from walking off with the safe, your only hope is to use lag bolts through the back of the safe into the studs. Even then, you will only delay a thief and require them to make noise which your neighbors MAY overhear.

    Most safes. especially the light weight ones, are little to no deterrent to a moderately experienced thief with a screwdriver.

    I don't understand why you object to putting holes in the wall you will have to patch in the future but you have no issue with bolts through the wood. Walks get patched with puddy and painted. The wood would have to patched and painted or even be replaced if the holes are large enough????

    Just my two cents...

  9. #8
    VIP Member Array Taurahe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TiredRetired View Post
    My question is what is your goal in "mounting" the safe?

    If you do not want it sliding around, then the bolts through the bottom will work. It would take a thief with a large hammer about 4 good swings to smash the shelf unit and pick up the safe (with the remaining attached wood) and run out.

    If you want to keep a thief from walking off with the safe, your only hope is to use lag bolts through the back of the safe into the studs. Even then, you will only delay a thief and require them to make noise which your neighbors MAY overhear.

    Most safes. especially the light weight ones, are little to no deterrent to a moderately experienced thief with a screwdriver.

    I don't understand why you object to putting holes in the wall you will have to patch in the future but you have no issue with bolts through the wood. Walks get patched with puddy and painted. The wood would have to patched and painted or even be replaced if the holes are large enough????

    Just my two cents...
    My goal is to secure it in some fashion. Right now it can be carried away. Their is no way for me to make it impossible to take, but I want to make it as difficult as possible given what I have to work with. I am aware that it is a simple, non impressive gun safe, but it is what I have. Something is better than nothing. $ good hammer swings may be all it takes to alert my neighbors who call the cops... or i walk through the door and drop em.

    As far as mounting to the wall, the holes I guess arent a big deal, i would have to borrow some extra tools to mount to the studs.
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    Once you bolt it down to the wood i would cut some filler cleats out of wood to trim it in so if the bolts are ever loosened you will still have the trim peices that hold it in .

    I hope i explained well enough .
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  11. #10
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    I would think it easier to come up with a way to hide it rather than latch it to wall studs.
    I tend to think of these little safes as 'metal carrying cases' more than a safe. The primary purpose of such small safes is to keep tiny hands from the firearm(s).OMO
    There are many effective hiding places in an apartment/condo that you don't own...think about it.
    A thief with a pry bar (probably used to break in) would be able to detach such a tiny safe from the wall in pretty quick fashion, but 'out of sight, out of mind'.

    Hope this can help...
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    Given that this safe can be defeated by a hammer or big screwdriver, you're simply trying to make it harder for the thief to just swipe it off the shelf and walk away with it.

    My approach would be to get either s single piece of steel plate at least 1/8" thick and drill 4 holes to match the pattern in the bottom of the safe. Then drill through the shelf in the same 4 places, and mount the plate on the underside of the shelf the box is on, and run 1/4" of bigger bolts through the plate, through the shelf, then into the safe. Find some Torx-head bolts or socket-head cap screws, rather than hex-heads, again to slow down the thief. The nuts to inside the safe, and use Loc-Tite. That gets the safe ruggedly attached to the shelf.

    The next weak link is the shelf attachment, and you need to address that. I'd get some aluminum angle "iron" from the hardware store and use it to reinforce where the shelf attaches to the vertical boards.

    Just my $0.02 worth.
    Smitty
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    Senior Member Array jca1's Avatar
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    The bookcase is definitely your weak link. So far, retsupt99 has the best idea: hide it.
    If I gave a crap about what you think about my guns.....it was early this morning and I already flushed it!

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