Storing Guns when Away from Home

This is a discussion on Storing Guns when Away from Home within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; A safe, no matter how expensive or well installed, is merely to keep honest people honest. We have a Stack On mounted in an inconsipicous ...

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Thread: Storing Guns when Away from Home

  1. #16
    Member Array gg12's Avatar
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    A safe, no matter how expensive or well installed, is merely to keep honest people honest.

    We have a Stack On mounted in an inconsipicous place, and we freely acknowledge that is is to keep the guns organized, dust free, and out of our children's hands/sight. It would never stop a thief, and it's certainly not fireproof. Those are the risks we take.

    My parents kept our guns in a closet (12g always loaded, rest unloaded, ammo on the upper shelf--when Dad wanted a gun, you'd better bring it loaded so that stuff was all stored together and it NEVER crosssed my mind to play with the guns, show them to visiting friends, etc....but that was over 20 years ago). It worked for them.

    Where's your risk tolerance I guess is what I'm getting at.

    I understand Janq's point, but if the thief is in your home, he's in the wrong. If he steals the unloaded John Wayne gold engraved 30-30 from over the fireplace and kills someone with it, how is that my fault? How much security is enough?? My car is certainly more deadly than my guns, and yet the only thing keeping it secure is a locked garage door (since we leave the cars unlocked)....so if it's stolen and he runs someone over am I to blame because I only had one door between the evil outside world and my deadly car? I don't know, I'm only wondering out loud....seems to me you can't win for loosing some days.

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  3. #17
    Member Array eatatjoz's Avatar
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    I don't have a safe, YET.
    I will be getting one soon.
    That said, I keep my rifles and emergency rations behind an automatic moving cabinet, secured by a 256 bit encrypted radio frequency that I rigged from a garage door opener. I've been meaning to add a fingerprint access, but haven't gotten around to it.
    As hard as I tried to hide it... I know it's not secure if someone wanted to go through the block wall or back of the cabinet. It is VERY well hidden though.

    The only loaded weapons in my house, consist of a .38 F.I.E. wheel-gun under the crisper in the fridge, and the 1911 that is on my person at all times.
    My nephews, and my lady-friend's kids come over every once in a while, and though I don't have any doubts about their actions and safety mindedness, I choose to keep these items "out of sight-out of mind".

    All in all, I'm not too concerned just yet, but I know the security could be better.
    Like I said, I'll be buying a safe soon and hopefully it will fit in my hidden room.

  4. #18
    Ex Member Array JOHNSMITH's Avatar
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    Any safe can be broken into given time. Most consumer type safes/residential security containers you can buy can be circumvented relatively quickly by an experienced pair of crooks.

    However, it is better than trying to "hide" firearms or just laying on a wall rack or closet shelf. You just have to go by the most likely scenario. Sure, you could hire a team of private armed security, have a laser grid intrusion detection system, and vault doors as bedroom doors. But is it worth it? Probably not, unless you happen to be building an American embassy in Iraq or such.

    To *me* (and you have ot the make the decision that is right for you), if I was in your shoes, I'd get the most safe I could afford. It won't stop an experienced or determined crook, but it will shake off the amateur or otherwise smash-and-grab crook that is the most common perpetrator of home burglary. They don't want to stick around and try to open a safe when they can just take your TV, maybe a few other appliances, some jewelry, and then run before anyone even noticed.

    However, if someone else knows you have the safe, they could plan an extended attack while you are away, so of course keep knowledge of it on the hush if at all possible.

  5. #19
    Ex Member Array Ram Rod's Avatar
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    I would recommend a safe. I have a Sentry 14 gun safe from Wal Mart, bolted to the floor and wall. Darn sure not top of the line, but very affordable, apparently mediocre peace of mind. I don't have guns scattered all over the house since I carry all of the time. You asked for any ideas......well, what I would do in your shoes if I were away from home and unable to secure them otherwise is take them apart...disassemble them as far as you can. Put some parts in a box, in the attic maybe, or any seldom seen place. Put them in a gnarly looking box that nobody would even take a second look at. You may have a few boxes spread here and there, and you may even want to take one box of parts with you in your car or whatever. Personally, I don't think even thieves would be interested in a box full of parts and they darn sure won't be going on a search for the rest of the pieces of the puzzle....they want in and out in short order. I know it might be a bit of a hassle, but you can surely put all of your guns back together for that trip to the range or whenever you want to. I figure this would at least meet your current goal for peace of mind while you're away.

  6. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ram Rod View Post
    I would recommend a safe. I have a Sentry 14 gun safe from Wal Mart, bolted to the floor and wall. Darn sure not top of the line, but very affordable, apparently mediocre peace of mind. I don't have guns scattered all over the house since I carry all of the time. You asked for any ideas......well, what I would do in your shoes if I were away from home and unable to secure them otherwise is take them apart...disassemble them as far as you can. Put some parts in a box, in the attic maybe, or any seldom seen place. Put them in a gnarly looking box that nobody would even take a second look at. You may have a few boxes spread here and there, and you may even want to take one box of parts with you in your car or whatever. Personally, I don't think even thieves would be interested in a box full of parts and they darn sure won't be going on a search for the rest of the pieces of the puzzle....they want in and out in short order. I know it might be a bit of a hassle, but you can surely put all of your guns back together for that trip to the range or whenever you want to. I figure this would at least meet your current goal for peace of mind while you're away.
    A friend's son just had a house build and it's a 3.5 bedroom place. From the outside of the house, the windows seem well-placed and in the normal positions. In the hallway, the bedrooms seem normal and the doorways look properly spaced.
    In one of the bedrooms (not the master) you have to through a 'secret' panel in the closet to enter the .5 bedroom.
    If he told you where the guns were, you probably couldn't find the room.
    This, to me, is the perfect gun room. He still has a safe on another room for safety or to give thieves a false workout, but most of the other stuff is well-hidden. It's a bit bothersome to get into, but no one is going to find HIS stash.

    This is my plan, if I can ever talk the wife into another move. (Married 37 years...lived in 25 places...)

    Stay armed...Shhhhhhhhhh...stay safe!
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  7. #21
    Distinguished Member Array fotomaker57's Avatar
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    I must restate what has been said. Buy a Safe and use it.
    Mike
    The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.
    Thomas Jefferson

  8. #22
    Distinguished Member Array nutz4utwo's Avatar
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    if a safe is too complicated or out of budget, something like a heavy duty steel toolbox (they are about $20) with a lock is at least a start. Put the handguns in it and the bolt of any long guns... Lock it to the wall or some immovable furniture as well.

    Your kids may be dependable, but I still would recommend a serious means of limiting access. After all, the 15 year old is still a minor.

  9. #23
    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eatatjoz View Post
    I don't have a safe, YET.
    I will be getting one soon.
    That said, I keep my rifles and emergency rations behind an automatic moving cabinet, secured by a 256 bit encrypted radio frequency that I rigged from a garage door opener. I've been meaning to add a fingerprint access, but haven't gotten around to it.
    As hard as I tried to hide it... I know it's not secure if someone wanted to go through the block wall or back of the cabinet. It is VERY well hidden though.

    The only loaded weapons in my house, consist of a .38 F.I.E. wheel-gun under the crisper in the fridge, and the 1911 that is on my person at all times.
    My nephews, and my lady-friend's kids come over every once in a while, and though I don't have any doubts about their actions and safety mindedness, I choose to keep these items "out of sight-out of mind".

    All in all, I'm not too concerned just yet, but I know the security could be better.
    Like I said, I'll be buying a safe soon and hopefully it will fit in my hidden room.
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  10. #24
    VIP Member Array HKinNY's Avatar
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    As stated in other posts, I would buy a used gang/job site box.(used to store tool at construction sites) They can be found on E-bay/Craiglist either cheap of free. I would lift it a couple of inches off the ground and cut a couple of holes just big enough to slip the barrle thru the top. It is wide enough to bolt to the as least 2 wall studs. The locks recessed inside the box so cutting the shackle is very hard. It will keep a normal person(s) out unless somebody is going thru the trouble to cut the wall studs with a sawzall.

    Somebody also posted a gun safe made from old soda machine.

  11. #25
    Member Array eatatjoz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dukalmighty View Post
    Bond...James Bond
    It seemed better than leaving stuff laying in the closet.
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  12. #26
    Member Array metaldemon7's Avatar
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    I might be a little overly safe. I have a bolted down gun locker in my bedroom closet. It is an old house so I also have the skeleton key locks on all the doors. I lock the closet door, and the bedroom door whenever I am not in the room. The take two different keys. Skeleton locks might not be the best, but it is better than leaving everthing open. My youngest son is 13. He good with gun safety, but with friends over I don't need any peer pressure problems.

  13. #27
    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mi2az View Post
    I was wondering do you guys have gun safes and is it worth my while in case my house gets broken into when we are not there ?

    I don't think having a gunsafe would actually stop a person from getting the guns inless the safe is huge and heavy and can't take it with you.
    To my way of thinking, there's the answer.

    Yes, I've got a safe and, yes, I think it's worth the protection. About the only way to avoid criminals taking the guns away is to either have them not be found, or to have them in a safe that they can't take away, or break into. And that means one thing, more or less: a stout, high-quality safe that's bolted to your foundation in an inaccessible spot of the home, protected by the home's monitored alarm system in an area where the response times are quick enough to stop them. Less gets less peace of mind.

    As well, keep in mind that a safe can help beyond merely keeping them from being stolen. A safe can help preserve the quality of the firearms by maintaining a consistent environment. If you store them in the attic, garage or shed, they'll be subject to swings in temperature and humidity. Even just laying about in a home, the humidity and dust can do a number on them over years. I'm sure you're treating them well by keeping them well-cleaned, -oiled and free of fingerprints, but a safe can help with the task.

    Finally, a safe can be the place at home where you put the most-valuable documents you store at home. If of a high-quality fire grade, it might even keep them from burning, should a fire damage your home.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
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  14. #28
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    No kids, no safe. Great hiding place for guns not taken with me when I am going out of town. Won't say more about that. I will also dismantle and hide key parts in different locations so if a gun is stolen, it is useless.

    Yes, someone could break in and get them while I am on a short errand, but it would be extremely unlikely and just as likely there'd be a home invasion when we are here as a break in when we are briefly out.

    Lots of course depends on your particular community, neighborhood, block. What works for me won't work for you. I have nosy neighbors who watch everything. I have dogs who watch the neighbors watching everything.

  15. #29
    Senior Member Array PaulJ's Avatar
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    First consider the threat you are trying to protect yourself and your guns from. Personally, I consider two scenarios:

    (1) home invasion or burglary at night while I am home. My dog will likely alert me first. My goal is that I can get to my guns quicker then the bad guy. If I am awake, my handgun is usually with me. If I am in bed, it is typically on the nightstand. Given the warning from the dog, I figure that would work. I do have a little gun safe for my backup gun. It would probably take a couple minutes for a bad guy to get into after they found it.

    (2) burlgary while I am not home. I do have an alarm system. From past experience (luckily only a couple false alarms so far), it takes the cops about 10 minutes to arrive. So the guns have to remain "safe" for that time. The hand guns should survive that long in the hidden gun safe. The shutgun is locked to a bolt in the closet pending me getting a big enough safe for it.

    But overall: Think about what you try to achieve. Will a couple of high tech burglars with welding torches be your problem, or do you expect a couple kids high on drugs looking for cash? How long until you expect help from neighbors/cops/alarm company?

    BTW: Remembering me at 16-18... I wouldn't trust your kids a second with guns sitting around.
    I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend. (Thomas Jefferson)

  16. #30
    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    But overall: Think about what you try to achieve. Will a couple of high tech burglars with welding torches be your problem, or do you expect a couple kids high on drugs looking for cash?
    Within 20mi of most homes, I'd think there are numerous druggies looking for cash, safecrackers with a background, and everyone in between. Who's to say? On a given day, it's unknown which of them is going to decide your own place is the one to be hit. Torches, drugs, brass ... none of these is exactly rare.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
    Explain: How does disarming victims reduce the number of victims?
    Reason over Force: The Gun is Civilization (Marko Kloos).
    NRA, GOA, OFF, ACLDN.

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