Anyone built a vault?
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Old 02-16-2011, 10:09 PM   #1
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Default Anyone built a vault?

I have no plans on building one, but......

I've read a couple of threads about guys building DIY vaults by converting a closet. Usually the same basic design, a closet lined with 10ga or thicker steel, then double thick 5/8" sheetrock and finished out with a solid core steel firedoor locked with your favorite deadbolt(s).

My question is has anyone built one before and if you have, where did you get the metal. To go down to the supply house and buy a sheet of 10ga is expensive, let alone enough to line a 5x5 closet.

I did actually read one thread where the guy used chicken wire instead of the metal. I don't think that would work to well.

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Old 02-16-2011, 10:33 PM   #2
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for a real safe you need hardened steel plates an inch or more thick. everything else including those liberty safes which i have one of are nothing more than slight deterrents. any determined person with a nice saw can get in one fast. a small hand portable torch will cut a nice access hole in no time.

the lock and hinging are the weak points.

something along this line will make short work of any readily available sheet metal



they are pretty cheap and commonly found in pawn shops.

a gun safe is a good deterrent to neighbor kids looking to steal an xbox or loose change.

unless you invest in high quality safe steel a good door and hinges and a quality lock and really know your stuuf in safe building your wasting time and money.

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Old 02-16-2011, 10:41 PM   #3
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I have a 22 gun Sentry Fire safe. But I was just wondering if anyone had built a vault. If they did, what security measures did they take? Fire proofing is easy, security is tough.

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Old 02-16-2011, 10:53 PM   #4
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Are you looking for an actual vault room or more of a security room? I have some experience through work on building fortified facilities - vaults, jails, panic rooms, safe rooms.

If you are looking for a secure vault room you will need plate steel - very heavy and cumbersome to work with. Keep in mind that this type of construction will need a foundation to support the steel walls. Would you plan on fortifying the ceiling as well? Some more support will be needed for that too. Another option is poured in place reinforced concrete or grout filled reinforced masonry units (cinder blocks).

If you are looking for a security type room a common technique would be to use 12ga diamond mesh - very strong and pretty easy to work with. You could line the room, securing the mesh with screws/washers and then covering it with sheetrock.

As you mentioned a steel frame door/jamb would be a good upgrade. Hope some of this helps.

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Old 02-16-2011, 10:56 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DarinCraft View Post
Fire proofing is easy, security is tough.
yes it is.

real safes you should consult a real security company. building a closet safe yourself will make your home extremely difficult to sell. a properly installed secure professional safe will make your home easier to sell.

improperly installed materials when your talking the weight of sheet steel or plate steel can actually be dangerous. do it yourself steel work one learning mistake can result in you getting squished or the materials falling thru the flooring. its very dangerous.
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Old 02-16-2011, 10:57 PM   #6
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Thanks Darren,
I was curious more than anything. I know some people are perfectly happy with putting the guns in the closet and forgetting about them, while others like me have a fire safe and still worry when they come home from a trip the safe will be gone.

If I were to do something like this I think your idea of expanded metal would work, because I would put the safe inside as well.

Thanks
Darin

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"Liberals make great proctologists. They're the only ones who truly know what the inside of an anus looks like."~me
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Old 02-17-2011, 03:07 AM   #7
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Not a vault, but my next house will have a tornado shelter next to the wine cellar in the basement. Gun safe will be in the mix somewhere.

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Old 02-17-2011, 04:01 AM   #8
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I have a friend in Indiana who had the foresight when building his house to build a Gun Vault/ Tornado and Security Room for his weapons and his family. He built it out of reinforced concrete and rebar. Which it is also alarmed supported by a 110 and battery alarm system with transmitter should anyone cut the wires. He purchased a safe door from an old bank building and made it so the family can open the vault door from the inside. Should there be a home invasion. Great foresight. Wish I could have had that much. I have safes and also an alarm system with transmitter in the attic for my trinkets. Plus if I ever catch them here the alarm and police will be the least of their problem. As the old saying goes they can run but they can't hide. They can figure out what that means.
Anyway I would love to have built what my friend did but finances is another issue. I do not know what his safe room cost but it is fantastic. Has lights and all

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Old 02-17-2011, 04:36 AM   #9
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Just as Jon said, there are very few things that are burglar proof. One of those being an in ground re-bared masonary vault, however when converting an existing structure within the confines of reasonable expense you are pretty much left with something that I initially wrote and Darren (Dog2000) said.

Couple of layers sheet rock for fireproofing and some kind of metallic lining. A steel fire door pinned so if the hinges get punched the door can't come off. If you aren't mechanically inclined enough to build a cam system with a series of bolts then I would recommend three deadbolts at the height of the hinges.

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"A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball, and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be your constant companion of your walks."
Thomas Jefferson
From the great speaker...er uh Barak Obongo

"Liberals make great proctologists. They're the only ones who truly know what the inside of an anus looks like."~me
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Old 02-17-2011, 04:43 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sniper03 View Post
I have a friend in Indiana who had the foresight when building his house to build a Gun Vault/ Tornado and Security Room for his weapons and his family. He built it out of reinforced concrete and rebar. Which it is also alarmed supported by a 110 and battery alarm system with transmitter should anyone cut the wires. He purchased a safe door from an old bank building and made it so the family can open the vault door from the inside. Should there be a home invasion. Great foresight. Wish I could have had that much. I have safes and also an alarm system with transmitter in the attic for my trinkets. Plus if I ever catch them here the alarm and police will be the least of their problem. As the old saying goes they can run but they can't hide. They can figure out what that means.
Anyway I would love to have built what my friend did but finances is another issue. I do not know what his safe room cost but it is fantastic. Has lights and all

03

Same thing here. A friend of mine is building a home in Tennessee and in the basement he made a gun room reinforced with rebar/poured concrete, and a door that can be opened from the inside. I'm not sure if he is going with the alarm but it's still not completed so there's time yet to have it installed. I think I heard him say the door alone was close to 300 lbs. and it has steel cylinders that slide into the foot thick concrete wall for extra protection.
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