Unbeknownst to many, the U.S. Military oftentimes uses small, commercial-style gun safes to keep their firearms locked up. Many bases, but especially smaller ones abroad, are at constant risk of theft, but can’t afford or are prohibited from owning the massive, bank vault-like safes you sometimes see on television. Instead, they use a select number of the highest quality gun safes on the market, decided upon by the safety they allow their firearms. This article will discuss some of the security features the military looks for in their safes, and which consumer gun safes best epitomize the military standard. For more on standard features of gun safes, see here. When we did our research, we also checked out a few different sites while looking for a way to find the best gun safe reviews and information.
• External Hinges
The military nigh-upon exclusively uses safes with external hinges to store their firearms. That’s because potential thieves tend to be distracted by external engines, and waste time trying to cut through them. With internal hinges, however, thieves tend to attack critical elements of the safe, such as the lock.
• Mechanical Locks
While electronic locks are certainly attractive, soldiers care more about reliability. Mechanical locks always work, regardless of power or software issues, and are generally only slightly less quick to open. Plus, purchasing a mechanical lock safe will usually be less expensive than a similar electronic lock safe although I’m not sure it will function as easily as some of the smaller electronic locking bedside gun safes typically do.
Especially for older bases and forts, it’s critical to avoid humidity damage to firearms. This goes double for safes intended for ammunition (on a similar note: always store ammunition separately from your guns. Storing guns and ammo in the same safe dramatically increases the chance that your firearms will sustain damage.) There are different ways to handle this, but the best is an actual dehumidifier within the safe. Alternatively, composite clad fire safes seldom require dehumidifiers due to their layered construction.
For secure safes, the military always goes for solid steel. Some safe manufacturers cut costs by using non-fireproof, easily penetrated sheet metal in the construction of their safes. That means that the best way to insure that you are purchasing a quality, military-grade safe is to look at weight: the heavier the better. Heavier safes are usually more resistant tot fire as well, as they contain high-weight, fireproof concrete amalgamate.
When it comes to safes that meet all of these military-grade requirements, a number of names jump out. The Sportsman Steel Iron American is one of the most secure safes on the market, and stores up to 100 guns of varying sizes. Due to it’s steel and amalgamate construction, it’s rated fireproof at up to 2000 degrees Fahrenheit, while its external hinges can withstand even powerful burglary tools. Those looking for a smaller capacity, yet military-grade safe might prefer any model from the Brown Safe line of gun safes. These safes come in a variety of sizes and, while priced for consumers, are made with military specifications in mind, and include external hinges, excellent locks, and durable construction sufficient to make any soldier proud.