Buying A Used Gun Safe Tips | Used Sturdy Safe Purchasing Tips

Posted by Demitri Gonos on

Buying a gun safe new can be simple when you know what you want, just find the manufacturer that offers the options you are looking for, at the best price.

Finding a great deal on a used one can be much more tedious since the exact safe you want might not be available, and models can change specifications at least every 3 years. For example, that old used Liberty Lincoln series may not have the DX-90 MONSTER MECH option the new ones offer.  

Below are some tips you can apply if you’re on the hunt for the perfect used gun safe, as well as, what to look for in a used Sturdy Gun Safe. 

 

Figure out what you want:

Think about these things during your search: 1. What steel thickness do you want? We suggest 3/16" or thicker because you can't breach it with non powered tools. 2. What size and gun count do you want? As they say, buy bigger than you think you need. 3. If you need it, does it have the fire protection you are looking for? 4. Is there any personal preferances you have to have like perfect finish, or specialty interior? Don't forget you can transform any safe interior with these gun safe accessories

 

Figure in additional costs: 

If a key is missing, or anything to do with the dial needs to be replaced, it’s best to inquire with local locksmiths to figure out what they would charge to fix/replace it. You can search for them on the SAVA website. 

Small scratches and dents are purely cosmetic, and are left to the judgment of the buyer. If your wanting to figure out additional costs there, there are two ways to go about it: Do it yourself with bondo and spray paint, or take it to an auto body shop. Aquire pricing accordingly. 

If the locking mechanism is damaged or broken, we recommend that you look at other options all together, because it likely wasn’t a good safe in the first place. 

Consider the moving/delivery charge for the safe. The majority of sellers of used gun safes won’t deliver the safe to you, especially if they are giving you a killer deal on the price already.

If you don’t have the means to pick it up, it’s in your best interest to factor in the cost of delivery as well as the time it may take to move, into your bottom line cost consideration.

We also recommend changing the combination of any used safe you purchase from a vendor, or have it re-keyed if you buy a safe with a mechanical locking mechanism. This will add about $50-$75 to your total cost.

 

Always be on the look out for better deals: 

When buying used safes, prices will vary across the board.

Keep an eye out for the best deals out there as often as possible, and know most people are willing to haggle.

It’s also beneficial to be open to different options when shopping around.

You may not find exactly what your looking for in used gun safes, but you sure can get close and find a good deal if you take the time.

 

Where to look: 

 Check with your friends and family. Someone you may know could be interest in selling their used gun safe. 

The biggest advantage to this route is that it’s easy and you’re likely to get a better deal. 

Another plus is that you know what you’re getting, assuming they are good people.

Craigslist is probably the most popular place for used safes, but you also have the growing Facebook ads, and eBay listings. 

  

Inspect the safe: 

This tip really applies to anything you buy used. 

Preferably inspect the safe in person, but if not, be sure there are enough pictures and insurance back up (such as eBay offers) for buyer protection. 

Most importantly, make sure the safe can be opened with the original combination, or get in writing that it does.

 

Other used safe tips: 

On average, if a used gun safe works, but the manufacturer of that safe is out of business, you should generally pay about 30% less for the safe beyond what a comparable safe in steel thickness and size and options would sell for now a days.

A good old safe with manufacturers who have gone out of business are usually TL Rated. The used pricing for them are usually fantastic for the steel thickness and size. 

Another great tip is not to let the person you’re buying the safe from know where you are taking the safe, or what you're putting in it. I can’t tell you how often people make this mistake. It is best to keep strangers out of your business, no matter how trustworthy they seem in this situation. Even if you change the combination, that person knows your safe inside and out.

 

old sturdy gun safe inventory

Tips for finding a used Sturdy Safe

A lot of what was already mention will apply here, however since we are the manufacturer, we can add expand on it when it comes to our safes. You really can't go wrong with buying a used Sturdy, they are designed to last a lifetime, even with abuse, but know what your getting. The color of the safe is usually what gives it away, HOWEVER, customers refurbish their safes with us all the time, or customers will request older colors to match their other Sturdy Safes. The only sure fire way to know what your getting is seeing the invoice, unless the safe is not insulated, because then you can see everything inside. 

If the Sturdy Safe is a solid light gray color, you can assume:

1. It was probably made in 2004 or later.

2. It will have one of the following gauge thicknesses:  10g body + 10g door,  8g body + 3g door, or 7g body + 5/16" door. The best way to tell is measure the thickness of the door plate while the door is open. 

3. If it's fire lined, it will have a 14g inside steel liner, 1" of 2300 degree ceramic wool, and 2" of 1000 degree high temp glass for the entire interior. 

4. If it has a silver spin dial that does NOT say S&G on it, replace the box on the inside with a S&G group 2 6730 box. The same dial and ring on the door can be used with it.

5. If it has a working electronic on it, first of all WOW, secondly replace it immediately. 

6. If the deadbolts are stiff to move, have no fear, oil them with any "Teflon Coated" oil/lubricant that's NOT WD40. 

7. If the door opening movement/ swing is stiff, oil/lubricating the hinges will fix that. The door will need to be lifted up 1/2" in order to do that. 

 

If the Sturdy Safe is a light gray AND dark grey speckle, you can assume: 

1. It was probably made between 2008 and 2014

2. It will have one of the following gauge thicknesses: 7g body + 5/16" door, or 4g body + 3/8" door. We started adding steel plates in various locations and thicknesses during this time, so it could 10g stainless, 3/16" stainless, or 3/16" non stainless added to it. The best way to tell is to have the original owner get the invoice from us since we will have it on file. If you are not the original owner, you can't get any information about the safe. 

3. If it's fire lined, it will have one of the following: Between 2008 and 2013 it was a 16g inside steel liner, 1" of 2300 degree ceramic wool, and 2" of 1000 degree high temp glass for the entire interior. Between 2013 and 2014 it was 16g inside steel liner, 2.5" of 8lb ceramic wool, with some low temp glass blanket added as a filler. This is our current insulator used. 

4. If it has a silver spin or black spin dial, it should say S&G, which is nothing that needs to be replaced. It's a fabulous dial that should't be giving you any issues. 

5. If it has a working electronic on it, replace it sooner than later. Replace it immediately is it is says Securam on it. 

6. If the deadbolts are stiff to move, have no fear, oil them with any "Teflon Coated" oil that's NOT WD40. 

 

If the Sturdy Safe is a dark gray and black speckle, you can assume:  

1. It was probably made between 2015 to present. 

2. It will have one of the following gauge thicknesses: 7g body + 5/16" door, or 4g body + 3/8" door. We started our packages around this time, which add to the steel thickness various ways as currently mentioned on our website. The best way to tell is to have the original owner get the invoice from us since we will have it on file. If you are not the original owner, you can't get any information about the safe. 

3. If it's fire lined, it will have the following: 16g inside steel liner, 2.5" of 8lb ceramic wool, with some low temp glass blanket added as a filler. 

4. If it has a silver spin or black spin dial, it should say S&G, which is nothing that needs to be replaced. It's a fabulous dial that should't be giving you any issues. 

5. If it has a working electronic on it have no fear, it's probably a S&G D-Drive which has a longer lifespan for an electronic. Replace it in 10 years. 

 

Although it may take some time to find what you’re looking for when searching for a used gun safe, it is a great option if you cannot afford a new one. Take the time to seek out all the best deals, and you are sure to find one that fits your needs. 


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