A gun owner who wants to protect his or her firearms from theft, unauthorized use and damage should avail of a gun safe. However, the wide variety of choices in the market in terms of size, interior arrangement, and security components can make picking a gun safe confusing. The key is to come up with an informed choice by conducting some research and looking at its features alongside what you need, rather than picking the cheapest one in the lot.
The gun safes in the market are not manufactured based on a generic prototype in terms of materials and methods used, and there is no regulatory body overseeing it either. Since you expect your gun safe to last you a lifetime, it is crucial that you buy a suitable safe the first time around and not buy another in the future. Keep in mind a list of things while browsing.
First time safe buyers typically bungle their purchase by procuring a unit that is too cramped for their needs. They want to get away with buying the smallest safe possible based on how many guns they have on hand and the safe’s carrying capacity. Once the safe arrives, everyone in the house will use it as a fireproof storage place for their jewelry, gadgets, documents, photos, and other things they can think of. The buyer may also instantly become conscious of the fact that a scoped rifle takes up more room that a one-rifle slot will allow, and there might be more guns he or she would like to collect in the future. Pretty soon the safe is full and not everything will fit.
Keep in mind this rule of thumb when sizing a safe: Calculate everything that you intend to place in the safe including, but not limited to, firearms and other items. The moment you have a final number, start looking for a safe that can store the whole collection. Be after a unit that is one size bigger. That way, you won’t need to buy a second safe in the foreseeable future.
The total toughness of a gun safe is typically measured by the density of the steel used in its fabrication. This may stump shooters a bit because the numbers used to quantify steel is in reverse of what they are accustomed to. While they know that a 20-gauge shotgun has a smaller bore size than a 12-gauge, a 12-gauge sheet of metal is thinner that a 10-gauge sheet. The recommended thickness of the metal for a home safe should be 10-gauge steel as the thinnest. Also needing particular attention is the thickness of the metal used in the door and frame of the safe.
The level of fire resistance of a particular gun safe should also be one of the prime considerations when procuring one. A higher level of fire protection equates to a higher price point. Independent test labs are paid by manufacturers to burn the gun safe in a controlled setting to determine its level of fire resistance.
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