Gun safes can certainly come in all shapes or sizes but, more often than not, they are big. While bigger usually means better in the world of gun safes but it also typically means heavier. One of the greatest challenges of owning a rifle safe can be moving it. While you can certainly pay for professional service this might not always be an option or it might not fit in your budget. Fortunately there are some clever ways to move a heavy safe with little more than some ingenuity and manpower. Here we’ll look at some basic guidelines for transporting a large safe and some important safety guidelines to keep in mind.
The first step to moving your safe will be to create a plan and assess the challenges ahead of you. Stairs, inclines, and other obstacles need to be noted and planned for. Where you are moving your safe to, whether another location in your house or out to a truck, will require very different strategies. Begin by clearing a path and taking measurements for doorways and other obstacles in your path. If you plan to move it by vehicle it is important to know the weight of your safe as well as the carrying capacity of the vehicle and plan a means for raising the safe into the vehicle.
Next, you will empty the safe of all its contents before you start moving it. If possible, it is also best to remove the door of the safe. A lot of time the safe door will be proportionally heavier than the other parts of the safe and relatively easy to remove. Some fireproof safes include walls of sheetrock that can also be easily removed to lessen the weight of the safe for the purpose of moving.
Moving the safe can often be done with simple tools. A common method is to use steel pipes or rods to roll your safe with relative ease. You will also need a method of getting your safe onto the track of pipes. This can be accomplished with wooden shims inserted under the safe and sheer manpower to tilt the safe up. This method may not be as effective on thick carpets. If available, a hydraulic hard cart will always make the job easier.
The cardinal rule for safely transporting your safe up and down stairs or raising it onto a truck is that everyone involved should always have a clear place to jump to should the safe topple. Always have a well thought out plan for any emergency situations that should arise. Moving a large home safe is no easy task and can be quite dangerous if you don’t have the proper preparation and tools to do it safely.
Since its foundation in 1981 the Mesa Safe Company has been providing high quality safes for nearly all facets of your security needs. Though offering a very diversified selection of products, Mesa Safes have quickly become a favorite for gun owners due to the quality and integrity of their MBF line of gun cabinets. This reputation has been hard-earned through consistent use of high quality materials, modern engineering, and excellent quality control and customer service. Here we’ll look into what sets the Mesa Safe Company apart from some of the competition.
The Mesa Safe Company was founded in 1981 by George L. Vicente. With humble beginnings in the locksmith trade at the age of 16, Mesa Safes continues to be run by George Vicente with the same passion and expertise for safes that only a lifetime of dedication can achieve. Years spent breaking into safes (legally of course) make for a strong and logical foundation to know what it takes to build safes as secure as they can be. Since its inception Mesa Safes have quickly become industry leaders and earned a solid reputation for quality craftsmanship.
MBF Gun Cabinets
These are some of the most coveted rifles safes on the market and for good reason. There are three safes of varying sizes in this line with similar specs and a sleek design. Interior space ranges from 8 cubic feet in the MBF 5922e to 23 cubic feet in the MBF 7236e. Each of these safes is built with an all steel construction, 12 gauge body, and 1-hour fire rating up to 1750 F. These are the perfect combination of burglar and fire safe that you need to keep your guns secure.
- Electronic locking system with drill resistant hard-plate.
- Heavy duty steel hinges.
- Drop tested up to 2 floors.
- Solid ½ inch steel door.
- 4 pre drilled anchor holes.
- Fully upholstered interior with adjustable shelving.
- 5-spoke brass handle.
- 1 ½ inch diameter live locking bolts.
- Intumescent fire seal.
The MBF line is a well design line of rifle cabinets with a no nonsense approach to security and design. This combined with the history and dedication of Mesa Safes makes it a great pickup for anyone serious about security.
For the incessant tinkerer a firearm can be a wealth of fun projects. There’s a number of small modifications that can be made to improve the performance or aesthetics of your personal firearm. However, this is not exactly a project for the uninformed or careless. As always when you’re working with a deadly weapon you need to be careful and make sure that you know exactly what you’re doing. Here we’ll look at some fun projects that you can do to modify your firearm in a safe and fun way.
One of the easiest and most common ways to modify your handgun is to change the grip. This is a simple project that shouldn’t require more than some basic tools. Check with your manual for the specifics on assembly. The tricky part will be finding a grip that you like and suits you and your style well. Spend some time at the range trying similar models with different grips if you’re looking for a performance grip. You may find that some grips help absorb the shock better while others are less likely to lose traction from sweat. It’s all about knowing what you want out of your firearm. If you are a casual gun owner it might be fun to modify your gun with aesthetics in mind over performance. Some common materials available include wood, imitation pearl or ivory, polymer, rubber, plastic, and metal.
Another common modification for your firearm that can be easily and safely managed on your own is the installation or modification of sights. For rifles especially there are a number of different models and variations available. These can range from simple ‘iron’ sights that require you to line up notches on the front and back of your firearm to more complex telescopic or reflector sights. Additionally you can get all sorts of cool gadgets and add ons to augment your sights like laser dots or night vision. Installation should be easy but it’s important to make sure that the model is compatible with your firearm. More difficult may be finding exactly what you want out of your sight. Spend some time trying out different models and makes to find one right for you.
A very popular modification, especially among competitive shooters, is a lighter trigger pull. This can increase accuracy as well as your rate of fire for semi-automatics. In general a lighter pull can be dangerous in the hands of a novice because of accidental discharge but for an experienced marksman it’s a great option to take your shot to the next level. While this can be done by yourself it’s not quite as easy a task as installing a new sight or grip. The process may vary between guns and is generally delicate enough to warrant professional precision in most cases. Talk with your local gunsmith for some pointers if you’re interested in trying your hand at this modification.
Ammunition can come in all sorts of different shapes and sizes. While all ammunition has a common purpose of destruction there are some finer nuances that any gun enthusiast should be aware of. Some examples of alternative ammunition includes: lead round nose, wad cutter, semi jacketed, hollow point, armor piercing, and boat tail. This is only a portion of those available to give you an idea of the variation. So what makes each of these so different from another? Here we’ll look at some of the strengths and weaknesses some of the more common types of alternative ammunition can offer.
While this type of ammunition has nefarious connotations for its destructive properties it is in fact a very common type of ammunition and is debatably considered more ‘safe’ than some of the alternatives in many situations. The basic idea behind hollow point is that the tip of the bullet will expand upon impact much like an umbrella creating a larger impact hole. This creates a few key characteristics for hollow point ammunition. It has very high stopping power, it is ineffective against armored targets, and it is much less likely to pass through the initial target. For these reasons it is a popular choice for use by law enforcement and almost always used in hostage situations. Yes, hollow points are more destructive than their solid counterparts but in many ways it is a misconception that they are more dangerous. The additional stopping power may often require fewer shots needed in an instance of self defense. Additionally there is a smaller likelihood of collateral damage from passing through initial targets.
Full Metal Jacket
This variation of ammunition is characterized by being composed of a soft core (usually lead) encased entirely by a harder metal (usually gilding metal, cupronickel, or a steel alloy). The harder casing allows for higher muzzle velocities than many other types of ammunition. However, because the hard shell jacketed ammunition will not expand upon impact like hollow point or soft tip ammunition. This means that FMJ ammunition has less stopping power but is a viable solution for lightly armored targets. Jacketed ammunition is most commonly distinguished for its ability to cleanly pass through targets. While there may be a time and place for this type of ammunition it is probably not well suited to self defense as it has a higher potential for collateral damage and less stopping power than hollow point.
While this is a less common type of ammunition and has little place for self defense it does serve an interesting and unique purpose. The basic idea comes from the form of the ammunition which is slightly tapered at the base so that it resembles the hull of a boat if seen by cross section. This allows for the bullet to retain velocity over long distances and resist deflection from cross winds. However, it does take more time for boat tails to ‘settle’ into a steady flight path so it is considered less accurate for close ranges. In general this bullet is only suited to long range shooting but may make for a good addition to your hunting kit should a suitable situation arise.
The Sun Welding H48 Home Gun Safe is a uniquely inexpensive full size fire rated rifle safe. Despite its low price at a bit over $900, this safe makes no concessions to build quality or materials and even comes with a full lifetime warranty. Additionally, Sun Welding safes are unique in that they are only manufactured in the United States. Here we’ll look a bit more into some of the features that this safe can offer as well important specifications you’ll need to know.
- Outside: 48.00” H x 21.00” W x 20.00” D
- Inside: 46.50” H x 16.50” W x 12.50” D
- Interior: 5.55 cubic feet
- Weight: 388 pounds
As you can see this is a large safe that is best suited to long guns. At it’s price it still qualifies as a budget safe but it does offer some substantial burglar and fire protection regardless. This safe comes with a ¼” thick door and 10 gauge solid steel body with drill resistant hardened plating. Additionally this safe utilizes a unibody construction with continuous welds.
The burglar rating for this safe is the CDOJ (though it surpasses these standards) which stands for the California Department of Justice construction standard. This means that it is lawfully entitled to hold firearms. Additionally it means that it uses a lock that is encased in drill resistant hardened steel. Also, in order to attain the CDOJ it must have at least 3 steel locking bolts of at least ½” in length (this safe has 6). Lastly it is required to have protected door hinges to protect against prying or the removal of the door. Additionally burglar protection for this safe includes 2 independent re-lockers.
Some additional features of this safe include pre-drilled mounting holes and an optional access point for powering an electric dehumidifier. The Sun Welding H48 gun safe is rated for 1 hour of fire protection and automatically expanding intumescent seals.
This safe is customizable in a number of aspects. The hinges and door can be situated for either left or right handed users. While it does come standard with a dial combination lock it can be upgraded to a digital lock. Additionally the fire protection can be upgraded from the standard 60 minutes to 90 or even 120 minutes.
Lastly this safe comes with a lifetime warranty and is a pure American made safe. It’s not flashy (though it doesn’t look bad) but it’ll get the job done for a very reasonable price.
Guns have come a long ways since their shaky inception centuries prior. Unlike some inventions, guns are not likely to hit any sort of peak in their development. Innovation has been steady and there’s likely much more on the way. Guns are becoming more accurate and reliable with a large number of innovative peripherals being regularly developed. Here we’ll look at some of the cool high-tech guns hitting the market and exactly what makes them more superior to their predecessors.
Corner Shot Launcher
While this firearm might never be available to the general population it’s still a pretty cool piece of equipment and definitely worth mentioning as the future of modern firearms. The basic idea is a gun whose barrel can rotate 90 degrees to shoot around corners (up from 60 degrees in previous models). It comes with an attached camera to allow you to see what you’re shooting without having to put yourself in danger by leaving your cover. This is something that has the potential to revolutionize military tactics and even save lives in the process.
TrackingPoint’s Smart Rifle
This awesome little piece of equipment has the ability to turn anybody into a world class sniper so long as you have $25,000 to spare. This recent innovation unveiled by Texas gun manufacturer TrackingPoint utilizes its patented ‘XactSystem’ to assist with the difficulty of hitting targets at incredible distances. It monitors a wide variety of factors including: wind speed and direction, distance, gravity, the rotation of the earth, and more. It will tell you when and how to fire the weapon to achieve incredible accuracy. Some critics argue that it might ruin the sport by allowing anybody to achieve what usually takes years of training and dedication.
This is one of the few successful attempts to oust the M16’s dominance over military assault rifles. Some of the interesting and important innovations included in this weapon are the built in laser sight, optical scope, and translucent magazines. Additionally, this is a ‘bullpup’ assault rifle which means that it holds its ammunition behind the trigger rather than in front. This allows for the rifle to have a more balanced center of gravity and much more manageable recoil. The SAR 21 maintains the same barrel length as the M16 but it lighter and generally more manageable. Currently this rifle is standard issue in the Singapore military but we’ll see if it can make its way into the mainstream in other parts of the world as well.
When it comes to maximizing space in your gun safe it’s all about organization. Due to the sometimes cumbersome dimensions of firearms (notably long guns), organizational tools are going to go a long way to helping you get the most out of the space you have. There are a lot of options available depending on what you’re looking for and they might even let you delay the size upgrade on your safe that you’ve been dreading. Here we’ll look at some creative and unique ways that you can organize your gun safe and your guns.
Back of the Door
One of the most underutilized places in a safe is the back of the door. Thankfully there are a number of different accessories available to help you utilize this space to its fullest potential. The most common is a simple hanging rack with various pockets and pouches for storing pistols, ammunition, or other accessories. Another cool accessory that also utilizes the space on the back of your safe’s door is the velcro gun holster. These are generally designed to hold pistols and are attached to the back of your safes door with velcro. It’s a nice option for storing handguns that you regularly use. Lastly, one cool idea to help you store ammunition is the use of magnetic strips that can be attached to the back door of your safe.
This is a unique accessory that can help you organize your long guns to get the most out of the space you have. The basic idea is a rod that fits down the bore of your rifle and extends vertically to hold your rifle upright against the roof of the safe. This is both a nice option for organizational purposes but can also improve your management of space. When your guns are leaning upon one another in a haphazard way you are wasting space and complicating your storage space. You’d be surprised how rifle rods open up your safe and allow you to store additional long guns.
Pistol Racks and Hangers
There’s a number of options when it comes to storing numerous handguns. The most common are simple pistol racks that will let you neatly organize and store your handguns in a simple and efficient fashion. The basic idea is a slotted box with space for usually 4-5 pistols. Another interesting option are hangers that can hold your handguns. These are best utilized after installing a rod across the top of your gun safe. It’s a great way to use the upper portion of your safe that would otherwise be sitting empty.
Boxes and Drawers
Lastly, as with any gun owner, you probably have more accessories and ammunition than actual guns. It’s a great idea to get organized with small boxes or drawers that you can keep in your safe to reduce the clutter and put everything in its right place. You might find that you have more space than you realized once you clean up the clutter.
While a solid safe is always going to be the best option for safety and security, sometimes you’ve got something special enough that you just need to show it off. Gun display cases can offer a nice compromise between safety, security, and visibility. However, there are a number of things to keep in mind when planning to display your firearms. Here we’ll look at some of the basic precautions you can take to make sure that your items on display will remain secure and in prime condition as well as some simple guidelines to keep in mind when shopping for or building your own gun display case.
The first that that you need to keep in mind when displaying your firearms is that they still need to be locked up. This is a basic safety precaution as well as a way to prevent theft. Though it will never be as secure as your rifle safe it should still pose some difficulty for potential burglars or curious children. This is usually best accomplished with a simple padlock though alternative solutions do exist. Additionally it is a good idea to make sure that your encasement is well built with solid materials and reinforced hinges.
The most common option and a near necessity for gun display cases is the use of acrylic sheeting in place of glass. This will increase security due to its resistance to shattering. Additionally acrylic can provide additional UV protection which will help maintain the quality of your firearms on display.
While there are many options available for the aesthetics of your display case the most popular are based on a wooden frame with a velvet or felt backing. Additionally important to note is the number of different variations available for gun display cases. Wardrobes converted into long gun display cases are a common and great do-it-yourself option. Additionally there are a number of ‘framed’ wall mounted displays that can accomplish the same task. Lastly there are counter boxes that can also make for an interesting way to display your firearms though these are usually best suited to pistols.
It’s important to take good care of your firearms that are going to be on display. This is especially true of antique guns with high value. Some important things to keep in mind include: humidity control, UV regulation, and a scratch free interior. Additionally it’s important to wax and clean your guns thoroughly before putting them on display for extended periods of time. This will ensure that they don’t deteriorate over long periods of display.
Owning a firearm for self defense is one of the most common purposes for gun ownership in America. However, the use of your firearm for self defense may have some additional legal and financial consequences you wouldn’t expect. While ‘technically’ a lawful endeavor, the use of your firearm for self defense will almost always invariably lead to a criminal investigation as well as a number of legal fees for the process. Here we’ll look at some of the finer details of self defense law as well how you can be prepared to avoid financial disaster at the hands of the American legal system.
It’s something of a modern myth that your homeowner’s insurance will protect you in a case of self defense in your home involving a firearm. However, this isn’t usually the case. Most policies include an ‘intentional injury exclusion’ clause in the fine print releasing your insurer from liability. The first step is going to be to check with your insurer on the details of your policy in relation to self defense in your home. Additionally, even if you are covered your insurance still will likely not be able to provide you the immediate funds necessary for your attorney retainer, bond money, lost wages, or criminal defense fees.
Similar to homeowner’s policies, many people think that generic liability coverage will be able to provide for them in cases of self defense. However, the fact is that it is illegal for insurance companies to insure you for illegal actions you may commit. This means that even with umbrella coverage you are going to be out of luck until the charges are dropped, meaning you’ll have to front the bulk of the funds for your legal defense and bail until you are acquitted (though it may be reimbursed later depending on your plan).
Self Defense Laws
One important thing to note about self defense laws in America is the clear distinction made between lethal and nonlethal force. The details differ a bit from state to state but the general gist of it is that you can use non-deadly force to prevent imminent injury and deadly-force if there is a reasonable fear of serious injury or death. Additionally, some states employ a ‘duty to retreat’ clause that states deadly force may only be used when you are unable to safely retreat. Additional amendments to American self defense law include the Castle Doctrine (duty to retreat doesn’t apply in your own home) and Stand Your Ground (refutes your duty to retreat in more situations than your home). While these laws make it easier to lawfully defend yourself with a handgun and prove your innocence you will still need to cough up the legal fees for the sometimes lengthy process.
With the above information in mind, it might be time to get covered with a specialty self defense insurance policy. There are a number of policies out there so take some time to find the right one for you before you find yourself under a pile of legal fees for no other reason than exercising your American right of self defense.
Shooting ranges are a great way to practice your marksmanship skills as well as enjoy your hobby in a social setting with like minded people. Above all, it’s important to be safe and practice proper firearm safety. Additionally, it’s a great opportunity to learn and demonstrate proper shooting range and firearm etiquette. While each range may have its own rules there are some basic guidelines that apply to any range for the basic purpose of safety. Here we’ll look at some ways that you can stay safe and demonstrate your knowledge and respect for firearms at the shooting range.
The very first and most important rule of the range is to maintain proper gun safety. This means following the basic golden rules of gun safety. To reiterate some of the basics: always point the muzzle of your firearm in a safe direction (down range), keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to fire, always keep the gun unloaded until you are ready to use it, etc… Every rule that applies to gun safety while hunting or at home also applies to a gun range. If you can display proper gun safety you are a whole lot closer to earning the respect of the range master and the other range goers.
At the Range
Each range will likely have its own set of rules. Know the rules and abide by them. If there are rules you are unfamiliar with or don’t agree with feel free to discuss it with the range master. Do not pick and choose the rules you like. Abide by all of the rules regardless of your opinion on them. All range commands should be followed immediately. If the range master (or anyone) calls for a cease fire you should immediately stop shooting, remove any chambered ammunition, set the gun down, and take a step back (to be polite). During a ceasefire do not touch your firearm (not even to pack it up) until the rangemaster has yelled ‘commence firing’ or ‘range is hot.’
While at the range conduct yourself in a serious manner. Respect the fact that you and other people around you are operating highly lethal equipment. The shooting range is no place to horse around or play practical jokes. Avoid disturbing others while they are firing and save the small talk for the shop or the soda machine. Additionally, most people won’t appreciate unsolicited advice, crazy government rants, or crude stories about your ex-wife.
Lastly, make sure to clean up your area when you are finished shooting. This means pick up your casings, trash, and old targets. Leave the station as clean or cleaner than you found it. Some ranges like to recycle casings, it’s polite if you are new to a range to inquire if this is the case. Also don’t forget to have fun. There’s a unique satisfaction to be found in being a model range marksman.