Maximizing Space and Organizing a Safe

Are you running out of room in your gun safe but aren’t exactly keen on upgrading? If you are lacking the funds or the motivation to purchase a larger safe you may still have some options to maximize the space that you have. Oftentimes a little bit of organization can go a long ways to getting the most out of the limited space in your safe. Finally years of Tetris may finally pay off! One great way to maximize space in your safe is to utilize some simple organizational tools. Here we’ll look at some simple ways to organize your home safe and get the most out of the space that you have.

Door Rack

One of the most effective and also a very common solution is a door rack organizer. The basic idea is a small rack that mounts to the back of your safe’s door that can hold numerous small objects of varying shapes. It is easy to use, cheap, and can provide you with a lot of space that you might not have known you had. The back of the door is often the most underutilized space in a safe which makes a door rack a great step in maximizing your space. These come in a variety of different sizes and are suitable for any upright safe.


Another great idea that can help to maximize the usable space in your home safe is shelving. If you find that you are storing a lot of small to medium size objects it can help both organization and space management to get a series of shelves installed in your home safe. The process of installing shelves is relatively simple as a do-it-yourself project but usually also available from your safe’s manufacturer. Shelving is a great way to maximize the vertical space in your safe without having to stack your valuables one on another.


In the same vein as shelving, drawers can also be a great addition to your home safe for organizational purposes. While technically you may lose a little bit of volume from your safe, if you are storing jewelry, coins, or other small objects, drawers can be a great way to put everything in order. The great part about drawers is you can design and customize them to suit your exact needs. By extending them flush with the threshold you can also be sure that you are utilizing your safe’s space efficiently.

The Aftermath of Self Defense

Owning a personal firearm for self defense is as good a reason as any but what you might not be prepared for is the aftermath in the event that you have to use it. While self defense is protected by the law it can certainly be a little more tricky to deal with that you might expect. Here we’ll look at what to expect in the event of a self defense shooting and some helpful tips to keep in mind to make sure you stay out of jail.

Firstly, it’s important to know the various laws pertaining to self defense in the state that you live in. While there is a general umbrella protection it can differ greatly from state to state in the details. For example, some states use the Castle Doctrine which allows your to use deadly force in your own home. Other states, however, use a ‘duty to retreat’ which means that you cannot use deadly force for self defense until all other options for resolving the conflict have been exhausted. The local laws that apply will be important in proving your innocence in the event of a self defense shooting so it’s important to be familiar and well versed in the basic self defense laws of your locale.


The next most important thing that you can do is find a good attorney that you trust and you can call in the event of a self defense shooting. It’s best not to wait until you are desperate but rather to keep a card in your wallet and be prepared. What you might not know is that if you use your gun in self defense against another human you will be arrested. Expect to be restrained, cuffed, and jailed. Place your gun in a visible place out of reach and do not talk to the responding police officers except to invoke your right to remain silent. It’s common to be anxious and scared and need to talk to someone but it is always best to invoke your right to remain silent until your lawyer arrives. Practice the following speech for the event of a self defense shooting, “My gun is laying over there, and that is the gun that I used to shoot my attacker in self defense because I feared for my life. Other than that, I do not want to say anything else until I have had time to talk to my attorney. I want to cooperate with the investigation completely, but I need to talk to my attorney first.”

Now, the rest is up to the legal system to sort out the issues but if your use of a firearm in self defense is justified you should have no problems. If you’ve followed the guidelines and not incriminated yourself during your arrest your prospects will be even better. In the end though it’s certainly not a simple process and can be incredibly stressful and expensive so you may want to consider a more peaceful resolution if one is available.

Safe Model Overview: AMSEC CSC1413

The American Security CSC1413 is a top of the line burglar and fire safe. This hybrid safe, to put it simply, is about as heavy duty as they come. While small in size it packs quite a punch when it comes to security features, fire resistance, and build quality. This AMSEC model boasts a 2 hour fire rating (for 350F) and an RSC (residential security container) burglary rating among a myriad of other features. Here we’ll look at some of the finer details of this safe and see just exactly what it has to offer.


  • Outside: 19.50” H x 18.00” W x 19.90” D
  • Inside: 14.00” H x 12.50” W x 12.20” D
  • Interior Cubic Feet: 1.24
  • Weight: 256 Pounds


If you’ll take a look at the dimensions and compare the outside and inside dimensions you’ll notice just exactly how thick this safe is. The door is constructed with an overall thickness of 4-⅝” with 2” of outer and inner steel plates to deter burglary. The body of the AMSEC CSC1413 is made from a high density composite fire resistant material and measures 2-⅞” in protective thickness. So, while this safe is small it is about as tough as they get. The only downside here is that the CSC1413 weighs in just slightly over 250 pounds for its small size.

Fire Resistance:

The CSC1413 has a 2 hour fire rating that can guarantee an internal temperature of 350F or less with external temperatures up to 1700F (an average house fire is around 1000F). Additionally, and quite a nice touch, is the intumescent seal on the door that will expand if there is a fire to further protect the interior of the safe from heat and potential fire damage.

Locking and Security:

Besides the overall quality build and thick walls there are some nice additional security perks and options for customization for the CSC1413. This safe comes standard with a combination lock with a chrome plated spy-proof dial which can also be easily exchanged for a digital lock. Additionally, this safe has a tempered glass relocking mechanism to prevent weak point drilling burglary attempts. The CSC1413 comes ready with an anchor hole and mounting equipment to prevent it being lifted out easily and reinforced heavy duty hinges to protect against forced entry. All in all this safe has its bases covered when it comes to both security and fire protection. Although it’s a small safe it’s the real deal and an outstanding example of quality safe construction by AMSEC.

Trends in Gun Legislation

Gun legislation has always been a hot topic in the United States and seems to always be in a constant state of change. There is usually a natural ebb and flow to the process in which gun laws and control are periodically strengthened and weakened. In 2013 alone there were over 1,500 bills introduced to congress. Of these, 48 were enacted into law. But what’s happening now? Where do gun sits on the national radar for 2014? Here we’ll look at some of the common gun legislation that is being proposed for 2014 and how it may affect you.

Every year there are about an equal number of bills proposed that would weaken or strengthen firearm control in the United States. From there, it’s up to the voters and the national sentiment towards gun control to decide how things swing. Unfortunately public sentiment has a tendency to rise toward stronger gun control in the event of national gun tragedies like school shootings even though these may not be ‘fixable’ with stronger gun control.

Currently, bills in support of stronger gun control seem to be carrying momentum. Some of the more notable bills include:

  • Disarming domestic abusers (16 states).
  • Requiring background checks for private purchases (18 states).
  • Requiring locking devices and / or safe storage (11 states).
  • Regulating technology to create 3D printed weapons (6 states).
  • Weaken or repeal ‘stand your ground’ legislation (9 states)
  • Disarming prohibited and / or imminently dangerous people (12 states).

On the other side there are still a lot of proposed bills to weaken gun control and provide more freedom for gun owners. These proposed bills include:

  • Allowing guns into bars (5 states).
  • Allowing guns into parking areas (9 states).
  • Restricting a doctor or school from talking to parents about the risk of guns in the home (9 states).

While there are always a lot of proposed laws only a select few usually make it through the process and become law. If you feel strongly one way or another it’s a great opportunity to put in your voice and write to your congressman or senator. Ultimately there’s no danger to the basic 2nd amendment yet but the times are changing rapidly so it’s best to be heard now while you can make a noticeable difference.

Famous Wartime Marksmen

Throughout history stories have always told of extraordinary marksmen of legendary skill. Who exactly are these people and just what makes them so good? These icons have been glorified through Hollywood westerns and WWII flicks but are they really worth the praise? Here we’ll look at a few of history’s most famous marksmen and just how they earned that badge.

Simo Hayha

Simo, nicknamed ‘the White Death,’ takes the title for most wartime sniper kills ever recorded. Of Finnish origin he earned his fame during world war two with nothing but an iron sight bolt action rifle and some tenacity. During the ‘Winter War’ of 1939-1940 between Finland and Russia Simo racked up over 700 confirmed kills in the span of about 100 days. He is famous for maximizing his home court advantage with perfect camouflage and minimal gear. One anecdote that remains from this story is the idea that Simo would put snow in his mouth to avoid making his breath visible to the enemy. He was eventually shot through the jaw by a stray bullet but managed to survive and live to the age of 97.

Carlos Norman Hathcock

Carlos, nicknamed ‘White Feather Sniper,’ was an American soldier in Vietnam that earned his fame for one shot in particular that is toted as the best sniper shot ever made. While stalking an enemy sniper Hathcock fired into a brief glint of light only to find later that he had actually shot a sniper through his own scope. Later he realized that for this to be possible the sniper must have been looking exactly at him. During his tour he racked up 93 confirmed kills and a $30,000 bounty on his head by the North Vietnamese Army (an unprecedented prize for a single man). His nickname comes from a white feather that he kept in his helmet that eventually came to inspire fear in his enemies.

Lyudmila Pavlichenko

Lyudmila was one of a force of about 2,000 women snipers who volunteered to fight for the Soviet Union during World War II. She is credited with 309 confirmed kills during her tenure making her one of the most prolific woman snipers in history (also 200 kills over any American sniper). Of this number, 36 are credited as being enemy snipers. She fought with a bolt action rifle with an attached scope primarily during the conflict in Odessa.

Installing a Home Wall Safe

Installing a safe into your wall can be a fun home project that is manageable with a little bit of research and some do-it-yourself knowhow. Everyone secretly wants to have a sleek wall safe hidden behind a knock-off Van Gogh in their lounge or den and with this simple guide you can be on your way to a cool new approach to holding your valuables. Bear in mind that while fairly basic, this project may be best suited for a professional if you do not feel especially comfortable with home do-it-yourself projects.

The first step is buying a safe. It is important for it to be small enough to fit between the studs in your wall and shallow enough to fit between walls. There are specially constructed safes specifically for in-wall installation that are highly recommended for this project. These safes are typically more shallow and come with pre-drilled holes for securing it to the studs. It is important before buying your wall safe to get an approximate idea of the distance between studs in your home.

Next you are going to use a stud finder to locate the studs in your wall in the location in your house that you want to have your wall safe. It is important at this time to take measurements of your safe to ensure that both the width. height, and depth are going to be able to fit into the designated area. Additionally make sure that there are no electrical or plumbing fixtures where you want to install your safe.

Using a drywall saw and a level or straight-edge you are going to create an opening in your wall. It is advisable to begin with a small hole so that you can check for plumbing or electrical fixtures. Once you are sure that the location is good you are going to cut a hole the same size as the rear dimensions of your safe.

Depending on the space between your studs and your drywall opening it may be necessary to fill in the extra space with shims or small pieces of plywood so that your safe will sit flush against the studs. Finally you will place the safe in your wall and secure it to the studs with screws. It may be necessary to drill small pilot holes in your studs before hand. Once you have done this you can install shelves if desired and you now have a home wall safe. Hopefully this project doesn’t seem too daunting. It is always a little bit intimidating when you have to cut holes in your wall but this project should be fairly manageable for most people.

Sport Shooting

There’s a wide world of competition shooting out there just waiting for you to get involved. With all sorts of different types of competitions and it can be a great way to learn about discipline and really hammer in some gun safety. After all, sport shooting is even an olympic event with an average of over 15 categories between men and women over the past 20 years. Here we’ll look at some of the more popular styles of competitions and what it takes to get involved and find your way to the title for fastest gun in the West.

How to Get Started?

Often times the best way to get started with a sport is to start local and small and build your way up to bigger things as you get better. Check out your local gun range or gun shop and you’ll almost surely be able to find some pamphlets or flyers for sport shooting events, training, or even teams. This is especially true for young marksmen but should apply to any age bracket. There’s a lot of different categories, so pick one you think sounds interesting and get training. Being a potential dangerous sport there are a lot of rules and restrictions that are going to be important for beginners which is why it might be advantageous to join a team or group of people to help you out with practice and the basics.

What are the Different Categories?

There are dozens, possibly hundreds, of different styles of sport shooting but they can mostly be broken up into two main weapon types: handguns, rifles, and less commonly shotguns. From there the competition will be segmented into type of target, type of shooting position, range of target, speed, or any number of criteria. These are mixed and matched until you have things like 100 yard prone rifle rapid fire for example. There’s really no knowing what you’ll like so try out different styles until you find something that you’re good at or something you’d like to be better at.

Event Participation

One of the great thing about sport shooting is that usually anybody can enter an event. It’d be wise to brush up on the rules and basic gun safety beforehand of course but unless it’s a strictly sanctioned team game any individual will be welcome into the appropriate age bracket so long as they sign up in time and possibly pay the entrance fee. There are both local exhibition tournaments as well as larger county and state tournaments that may require qualification. If you think you might be interested you could always attend as a spectator and get the lay of the land and talk to some fellow enthusiasts about the merits of competitive sport.

Hunting Season

Are you an aspiring hunter? Don’t know where to start? There’s often a lot of rules and red tape surrounding hunting season and for good reason. Hunting in the United States is a controlled sport with the purpose being not to imbalance the sometimes fragile ecosystems providing your game. Here we’ll look at when you can hunt what and where to do it as well as a little bit of extra info on permits and regulations you can expect for hunting season. Remember, hunting can also be used to control overpopulation and regulate ecosystems in a positive way so don’t be discouraged by the red tape.

Hunting permits are generally regulated on a state level. This means that each state will usually have slightly different laws and rules governing the sport so there’s no easy catch-all to be had unfortunately. However, there are some federal guidelines that most states will adhere to. For example, the federal government regulates the hunting of migratory birds as well as endangered species. One can get permission from the federal government to hunt migratory waterfowl with a Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp or more colloquially called a ‘Duck Stamp.’

In many cases you may not even need a hunting license. If you are looking to hunt pests such as small vermin you do not need a hunting license. American Indians can generally hunt without a license so long as they are a resident of an Indian Reservation. Active military members, natives of Alaska, and youth (under 12 in some states, 16 in others) can all hunt without a license as well.

Also important to know is that fishing requires a permit in many locales. This, also, is largely dependent on the state so it’s important to do some research beforehand and make sure you don’t have your gear seized and a hefty fine to top off your fishing trip.

Hunting seasons are usually regulated based on the fluctuations in a species population. When a species population peaks a state will enable ‘open season’ which means that a species may be hunted without concern to the peak breeding period or any harm to the population’s future survival. On the contrary, closed season is when a certain species is most vulnerable due to breeding or low population and should not be hunted for fear of damaging the population’s future survival.

Most Expensive Guns Ever Sold

While guns aren’t quite the high ticket items at luxury auctions like paintings and ancient relics they can still fetch a hefty price with the right story. Would you believe that some firearms have sold at auction for over a million dollars? Interestingly it’s not altogether uncommon for certain firearms to fetch such prices though they do need to be an important part of history in their own right. Here we’ll look at some of the most expensive antique firearms on the planet and what exactly makes them so special.

Washington’s Saddle Pistols

As expected, all high ticket antiques comes with a story and there’s no better story than that of the founding father of America George Washington himself. In 2002 a pair of Washington’s saddle pistols were sold at auction for 2 million dollars. Originally the pistols were owned by Gilbert du Motier Marquis de Lafayette, a French aristocrat and military officer originally gifted these pistols to George Washington. Washington is believed to have carried them at Valley Forge, Monmouth, Yorktown, and during the Whiskey Rebellion during his presidency. He kept and cherished these pistols until his death in 1799. Later the pistols would be bequeathed to Andrew Jackson. So, as you can see there’s a bit of history tied into these pistols and a notable portion of the high price comes from such an incredible story.

As for the guns themselves: each pistol has a barrel of ‘damascus’ steel embellished with silver and gold wire inlay, steel locks with engraved borders, and engraved tails with a panoply of arms all mounted on European walnut stocks.

Teddy’s Shotgun

Another great firearm of important American heritage is the fox shotgun of Theodore Roosevelt. A gold inlaid custom shotgun created by the Fox Gun Co. was presented to Theodore Roosevelt in 1909 as a gift and has recently sold for just under 900 thousand dollars. As an avid hunter this firearm was used extensively and may have even been present during the coining of the term ‘teddy bear.’ As the story goes, while hunting Theodore was unable to find any adult bears to shoot so his companions had captured and tethered a baby bear. However, Teddy would not shoot a tethered animal and uttered the famous words, “Spare the bear!” This series of events spawned a political cartoon in the Washington Post in 1902 and soon led to the creation of teddy bears as we know them. To date this is the most expensive shotgun to have been sold at auction.

Famous Guns

Every now and then, mostly from movies or books, certain guns attain a certain cult of personality and become ‘famous.’ While these guns may just be ordinary and nothing special beyond the intricate engineering there’s something fun about owning the same gun as James Bond for example. Here we’ll look at a few different kinds of firearms that have attained fame throughout the ages and what might make them so special.

.44 Magnum Revolver

The Smith and Wesson model 28 .44 magnum revolver has attained a unique level of notoriety via Clint Eastwood in the 1971 classic Dirty Harry. However, this gun deserves every bit of praise it gets. Despite it’s inception in 1955 it still remains one of the most powerful handguns available today. While the price is steep at just a bit under a grand it’s still relatively cheap when compared to other magnums and has the power to take down a polar bear. However, and quite possibly the greatest perk of this firearm, is the fact that if you ever have to use this firearm against another person you can nonchalantly ask your assailant, “You feeling lucky, punk?”

Walther PPK

This is potentially one of the most famous guns to exist with thanks to James Bond. Although he has mixed it up over the years and used a number of different weapons the Walther PPK is a mainstay of the classics and a symbol of espionage to this day. The mainstays of this gun and why it makes a suitable firearm for a spy is the fact that it is very reliable and small enough to be easily concealed. Since the olden days the Walther company has issued a number of new guns along the PP line with the same aesthetics and reliability that hearken back to this classic.


The M60 is an American made heavy machine gun that has been used regularly in the United States military since the Vietnam War. Anyone but the real gun enthusiasts will likely have never heard of it or know what it looks like. What makes this gun so famous is the fact that it is Rambo’s gun. Everybody knows Rambo’s gun but most people wouldn’t recognize it by any other name. This gun is able to fire between 500-650 rounds per minute. Any less and Rambo might now be able to mow down the bad guys with such ease.