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When I first started into the fantastic hobby of Guns, and being on a budget, I was was left with a situation of running out of storage space for my small but growing collection. Didn't really have the disposable $$$ available to purchase a safe but I did remember I had an old metal cabinet. I dragged the old thing out from the corner of my basement, dusted off the cobwebs and gave it some closer inspection. There was a little surface rust near the bottom of the door, legs and back side, and it was pink, however, it has adjustable shelving and I put my 30-30 in it to check spacing and I thought I could convert it into a nice little gun cabinet for my needs.

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I cleaned it all up, also fixed some dents, then added primer and paint to inside and outside using a roller because at the time, this was being completed indoors during the winter.

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After putting things back together, I had some carpet remnants I cut to fit the bottom and for the shelving. I had thought earlier I could store my firearms in the shelves for ease of access and display. Then I went on Amazon and picked up a dehumidifier system for $15 and a $12 LED light system for the shelving that had a motion sensor. I also purchased some adhesive hooks for the inside (for the lighting and wiring) and added heavy duty hooks on the outside for slings and such. Jonsey814 helped by making me a rack support for rifles that was also added after it was prepped. Added some adhesive felt strips to the rack system where the rifle barrels would be resting on the rack and purchased a padlock and hinge... and all in all, I spent about $45 on the whole thing.

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In the end, the finished product came out pretty well and it continues to serve its purpose pretty well. Since the original build I have also added some handgun storage on the inside of the cabinet door. I have come to the conclusion that I may need something a little different if the collection continues to grow.:D Anyway, I had fun building it and the cabinet functions well at the current time.
Finished project with some additions to give it a little character....:cool:


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Hey Curt,

Way Kool!

Later, Mark
 
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We have a metal cabinet very similar to yours. It is bolted through the back of it to the studs, on the far wall of a clothes closet. The clothes closet is the standard depth and the cabinet is a couple inches narrow than that. That was our gun cabinet for quite a few years. We now have a real safe but still use that cabinet for ammo and medium-importance paperwork - like the key to our safe deposit box at the bank and also the paperwork and combination of the real safe.

Yes, a determined thief could cut into it but we have a whole house alarm system and I'm not sure a thief would want to stay in the house with that alarm blasting, knowing that there was a possibility of LEO showing up before he finished his cutting.

To me the important thing was having it in a closet where it is not seen unless you know what to look for, plus having it bolted to the wall studs.
 

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Curt, It's nicely done, but get a good safe. When you get the safe, bolt it to the house. Put is somewhere that isn't particularly visible - and if you have an alarm system, consider creating a second partition just to protect it.

There is quite a range of safe construction available. I'm not that particular about it being fire certified (I depend on silicone gun socks to protect from such damage), but it should be heavier gauge steel, have a number of dead bolts on all sides of the door, and a commercial grade lock.

My own safe was constructed by a custom safe maker in Roxboro, NC named Greg Drake. When I saw him deliver the 800 pound safe by himself, I realized how easy is was for one to be taken by someone that knows what they are doing.
 
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Congrats and very nice. Will definitely keep the average smash and grab thief out. I have a good friend that is a locksmith and he recommends building a closet around the residential storage cabnet (that is what most safe are technically called). Then he recommends putting the door side that opens against the wall because it is more difficult to pry attack. Also look a round I was able to by 3 old mosler safes and one very old debold safes for under $300. Nice work and congrats definitely better than under the mattress
 

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I also bought used safes from Blockbuster Video when they closed their stores.

We have a safe dealer in the area that stocks used safes, and will also trade. I picked up a depository safe from our University surplus office for $15 a while back, and when I asked the dealer about help replacing the lock he offered to trade it even for a small cash safe (with 1/4 inch steel plate construction). Swap went fast, and I ended up with a perfect handgun safe.

Check out the local area for dealers. Every area has jewelers, retail stores and any number of customers that support local safe dealers.

I know, the last thing you wanted when sharing your project with us was advice on buying something else...
 
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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for all the feedback on the gun cabinet project. Just thought I would share a possible, inexpensive way to make functional storage for firearms, that works in a pinch. Never considered a used safe..good idea and something to consider. :)
 
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