Customizing A Safe

In the past, burglary safes were stashed in back rooms, hidden from view. Floor safes were installed in garages or in some back corner of a home office or closet, covered by a rug or carpet. In those days, safes were kept in dark out-of-the-way places...


In the past, burglary safes were stashed in back rooms, hidden from view. Floor safes were installed in garages or in some back corner of a home office or closet, covered by a rug or carpet. In those days, safes were kept in dark out-of-the-way places where no criminal would even consider looking. The safest safes were considered to be the ones that were not to be seen.

Today, this hidden safe concept has been smashed to pieces. Safes can now be considered by many as part of the home’s furnishings, a unique way to express one’s personality. The front cover image of one recent safe brochure shows a large safe in the public area of a person’s home.

Safes are available in just about every size and configuration imaginable, ranging from small containers that would fit into an end table, to horizontal cabinet safes that looks like a chest at the foot of a bed, to large gun safes that weigh several tons and are the focal point of an entire wall.

The purpose for owning a safe determines both the type and size of the safe. If the safe is only for securing valuables, coin collections, cash and jewelry, then a burglary type container can be recommended. If the safe will be used to protect papers, photographs and non-metallic mementos, then a fire safe can be recommended. If the safe is going to protect papers and computer disks, than a fire safe having computer media protection is required.

There are safes specifically designed for computer media. Media protection is also available as a separate unit that is designed to keep the temperature (U.L. 125°F) and humidity to a specific level to ensure the safety of computer storage equipment.

If the safe will be used to store and protect firearms, than a gun safe is recommended. Gun safes come in a variety of sizes that are indicated by the number of rifles/shot guns that can be stored within an individual rack slot.

If the actual purpose of the safe is uncertain or if the safe will be used for both documents and valuables, then a burglary/fire or a burglary/fire gun safe can be recommended in order to cover the options.

Gun safes are larger safes; at a minimum, they are longer than a rifle. Prices range from a few hundred dollars to many thousands. The better the burglary protection, the thicker the steel on the door and walls will be.

Safes are available having no burglary rating to Residential Security Containers (RSC) to TL-15 and TL-30 safes. Fire protection in safes can be non-existent to 30-minute protection up to two hours or more at specific temperature fires. For most safes, the bigger, the heavier the safe, the better the level of burglary protection. The same generally follows for fire protection in safes.

Most safe customers do not know how much room they need to store their present and future possessions. One safe manufacturer estimates that more than 90 percent of purchasers outgrow their safes within a few years. This can be an important selling point. Ask your customers about their needs in the near and not so near future.

Larger safes provide more customization options and features. The exterior of the safe can be ordered with a gloss finish or a custom color(s). The combination lock can be an electronic pushbutton or a biometric. The handle can have a three- or five-spoke spinner or a ship’s wheel design. On higher end safes, 14Kor 24K gold plate or black chrome finishes are available for the safe lock and the handle.

If the safe has external hinges, consider installing finial onto each of the hinges.

A relatively inexpensive way to dress up a safe is by using a Mylar silhouette decal to give the safe a personal touch. A number of decal styles are available; most common are wildlife scenes. A standard silhouette is approximately 14 to 16 inches wide.

A hand painted mural is the ultimate personal touch for your customer’s safe. A custom mural can be painted from a photograph, picture, etc.

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