Author Archives: Kevin

Handing Down Your Gun Safe to Your Children

A safe is a very good investment. It’s a durable good with few moving parts. It won’t go out of style or fashion. Everyone has a use for a safe.  Once you have a safe, you have a safe for life. Actually your safe will probably be around after you are gone. Other than your home, I can’t think of any other item that you are likely to will to your children besides a safe, guns or precious metals that will retain their value and require virtually zero maintenance.

Since we are talking the long term I would highly suggest a dehumidifier. There are rod style electric heaters and rechargeable pellet styles heaters available. Most are good and affordable. This will keep your guns and valuables from rusting out.

Besides guns you will want to store your irreplaceable heirlooms in your safe as well. This will insure that your grandchildren and great grandchildren will have a physical piece of their family history that is protected from fire. What a great way to be remembered, a big, heavy, secure safe.

So be sure to not size your safe for what you have now. Size it to hold everything that you may want to give to them as an inheritance. A conservative, neutral finish like matte black may be a good idea too.

Do You Have Kids?

Do you have kids? Do you have grandkids? Do children frequent your house? Do you have guns? Maybe only one, maybe you have 20. It really doesn’t matter. You need a barrier to separate the two. Please consider a safe. You will protect your children; you’ll protect the community. You will protect your investment.

Every time I hear about an accidental shooting involving a child it tears me up. There is just no excuse for this lack of security. If you have a gun you should be able to keep it out of the wrong hands. This seems very obvious to me, but these things keep happening so here is my part to solve the problem.

Actually, the problem is that some gun safes are not any better than a shoe box under the bed when it comes to protecting your children. To people who build safes for a living, gun safe is a bad term. Typically a gun safe does not operate in the same manner as a jewelry safe does, for instance.

So let’s back up. There isn’t really an argument to be made for locking up your guns so we will go into what kind of safe you choose for this purpose. The first thing you should do is find a product made in America by a company that stands behind its product — NOT a big box store that buys the cheapest product from China they can get their hands on to extract the largest profit margin possible.

Here is an article from Forbes that goes into this in great detail.

Sportsman Steel Safe Company was founded on the principal of protecting children from guns. When a suitable gun safe could not be found on the market, Kevin Hand’s father had one built. The safes we now offer follow the same philosophy. These are real safes, with real safe locks and real safe components. In 38 years we have never had a safe breached by drill, torch or file. There are however, safes that are sold at the big box outlets that can be opened by a three-year-old child (it’s in the link above).

So, do the research and then call us. We love the opportunity to make someone a safe expert. I think of our safes as REAL safes that happen to have gun racks inside. The door offers the same design features as our vault doors that we provide to the CIA, FBI, Homeland Security and Law Enforcement Agencies all over the county. Therefore, they offer true security, fire protect and hold their value.

Safes also are a great place to put XBOX controllers until chores are done.

Have questions about safes and security? Call for more information: 800-266-7150

On the web at: Sportsman Safes

Best Gun Safe Reviews

Best Gun Safe Reviews

Thanks for viewing Sportsman’s Best Gun Safe review. Buying the best gun for the money can be confusing. Here’s a checklist so you make the right decision.

1) 2″ Step Doors – If you want a safe built like a bank vault, make sure you get a step system door. These Jig-Saw-looking doors fit into the frame like a puzzle, creating multiple strength points & sealing points. 99% of gun safes have flat doors that only seal one sealing point.

2) Concrete Fireproofing – Believe it or not, most gun safes have fireproofing consisting of drywall or cheap ceramic blanket. Sportsman has a Magnesium Oxide Concrete that is 4 x more fire resistant than drywall.

3) Pry-Resistance Frame. When criminals attempt to break into gun safes, 75% of them try to pry the safe door open. This is why gun safes must have thick frames in front of the bolt system. Gun safe frames that get compromised by pry-ins are usually constructed with 1/8″ thick steel. Make sure you buy a gun safe with at least 3/8″ – 3/4″ Steel frames. Sportsman’s Anniversary gun safes have 3/4″ pry-resistant steel frames.

4) U.S. Locks – Many gun safes have overseas made locks that can be opened with over-rider keys. These locks are poorly manufactured and have combos that can be by-passed with a key. This is not good because first year locksmiths can pick these locks relatively easy. In short, buy a U.L. Sargent & Greenleaf Group I or Group II lock or commercial grade Kaba Mas digital lock. Sportsman offers a commercial grade K.M. digital lock for $249.

5) FACTORY-DIRECT – This sounds cliché, but buying a gun safe from a safe dealer will cost you 30%-50% more than buying that same safe factory-direct. Sportsman has factory-direct plants/stores throughout the USA.

If you want to talk to a gun safe expert at Sportsman Steel Safes, call us direct – 800 266-7150. Please visit our website to see our new 2016 – 2″ Step Doors with Concrete Fireproofing –

Thanks for viewing our Best Gun Safe Reviews!
– Kevin Hand CEO Sportsman Steel Safes



6 Rules you should follow when buying a gun safe.

We are often asked many questions by customers who are interested in buying a gun safe. Below is a list of some of the most important rules to follow when you are in the market for a new safe.

  1. GET A SAFE WITH A THICK FRAME – 80-90% of the time when gun safes are attacked it’s by

    Thick Gun Safe Frame

    prying. Most thieves don’t bring cutting torches or harden drill bits to drill open your safe. They simply pry the door open and rip you off. Having a thick frame in front of your bolts will stop 99% of pry attacks. Most box store gun safes use thin frames, usually 1/8″, which is pretty easy to pry into. This is one of the reasons we suggest buying from gun safe manufacturer who offers thick 1/2″ – 3/4″ pry resistant frames, even if you have to pay a few more bucks for it.

  2. BUY A SAFE BIGGER THANK YOU THINK YOU NEED – Almost every gun safe buyer wishes he could go back in time before his purchase and buy the next size bigger. This is mainly because you buy more guns or ammo or your wife wants a few shelves for her jewelry and other collectables. So trust us, buy a safe at least 8″ wider than you think you need. You and your gun collection will be happy you did.
  3. CONSIDER A DIGITAL LOCK – Standard spin dial locks take 45 seconds to open. They have four number combos. You have to spin the dial four x to the left, 3 x to the right, 2 x to the left, then right till the dial stops. And if you’re off a number, you have to do it over again. Digital locks can be opened in 2 seconds. But make sure you buy an American made digital lock with a lifetime warranty. They are constructed better and can be repaired free if something malfunctions.
  4. BUY A GUN SAFE WITH A STEP DOOR – You probably hate when you go to a gun safe store

    Safe with Step Door

    and the door rattles when you push it back and forth. This is the way many gun safes are made. The problem with these loose fitting doors during a fire is heat rushes in the space between the door and frame, which heats up your gun safe fast. Step doors seal four times better and fit much tighter. They’re better all the way around.

  5. THICKER STEEL – Gun safes with 12 gauge steel and thinner can sometimes be penetrated with fire axes and saws easier than thicker steel. And thin steel actually flexes or bends when crooks attempt to pry gun safe doors open. Thick steel will not flex and allow the frame to contort, which could lead to pry-ins. Buying a 10 gauge steel body only costs about $200 more. It’s well worth it.
  6. BE CAUTIOUS OF MIDDLEMEN SELLING GUN SAFES ONLINE – They mark up prices for profits. When you buy from a manufacturer, they can use that extra money to build a better quality gun safe for you.In short, buy your gun safe straight from a manufacturer. It isn’t always the cheapest, but they do build the best gun safes. If you want a gun safe on sale, call a factory-direct gun safe company and ask a salesmen for gun safes on sale. They’ll usually cut you a deal! Good luck gun safe shopping.

Have more questions about buying a gun safe? Call us to talk with a gun safe expert: 800-266-7150

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1200 Weapons Recovered by Cops – Safety Issue or Right’s Violation?

Last week a gun owner passed away. When the authorities entered his home, they discovered 1200 weapons and 2 tons of ammo. For reasons unknown, the police took possession of the deceased firearms. Do you think this violates this gun owners’ family’s rights? Or was there a safety issue that needed to be addressed. The guns were just piled upon each other, incurring much damage when they were taken away. Do you think having these weapons in a gun safe would have prevented the seizure of these weapons?  Please let us know what you think about this article.

Gun Safes – What an Extra $300 gets you when buying a gun safe

We just finished researching the gun safe industry. Turns out 90% of folks buy their gun safes from box stores. They probably buy these safes because they save $300. Which means a safe they buy for $995 would cost $1295 from Sportsman Safes.

But here’s what you give up for that $300 savings! You’ll be blown away.

1) 30 Min Fire resistance Vs. 60 Min fire resistance – You get twice the fireproofing.

2) 1″ Step Door – The box stores give you a flat door that seals on one level. Our step door gun safes are built like bank safes that seal on five levels.

3) 250lbs – Our 60 x 32 x 28 gun safe for $1295 weighs 800lbs compared to a box store gun safe that weights 550lbs. Heavier is always better.

4) Thicker steel – We use 10 gauge steel vs. 12 gauge. That’s two gauges thicker.

5) 3/4″ Frame that protects your bolts from pry attacks. Many of these box store gun safes only have 1/8″ frames. They are MUCH easier to pry into. You can see online how thin frame gun safes can be pried open in less than two minutes.

So you can see you get what you paid for. Plus, a 60 min fire safe will protect your guns from longer fires. 30 min fire safes are not enough protection for your guns and other belongings.

Call us if you need help with any gun safe purchase. Or simple if you have questions about any of our vault door products.

kevin H — Thanks!

Tornado and Severe Weather Safe Room Shelters

Tornado and Severe Weather Safe Room Shelters Provide Critical Protection

Spring is traditionally the beginning of severe weather and tornado season, and this year is no exception. 2015 has been especially hard on folks living in tornado alley and other locations prone to severe weather events like tornadoes.

Even if you don’t live in tornado country you may still be susceptible to severe weather damage. High winds caused by thunderstorms and hurricanes can cause major property damage and bodily harm, or even loss of life. You should always protect your family and possessions by seeking shelter any time severe weather is in your area.

Ideally most communities should have local shelters to protect their citizens, but that may not always be the case. Many communities are adding new shelters for the public general welfare. A good example of a community shelter is the new severe-weather safe room next to the fire station in Fultondale, AL. The concrete building can accommodate up to 300 people and is designed to withstand wind speeds of 250 miles per hour in up to three-second gusts.

This is a great example of a community coming together to protect its citizens, however, not all communities have the funds for such projects and many people may find themselves at home when severe weather strikes. You may only have moments to seek shelter. The best way to protect your family and property is by having your own tornado shelter – safe room.

Safe Rooms Provide Your Best Defense in Severe Weather

shelterWhether for your home or business your safe room shelter needs to meet FEMA standards. The guidelines are very comprehensive, but the bottom line is your shelter needs to be firmly adhered to the foundation and constructed in such a way as to protect the occupants during severe weather events like a tornado. Safe Rooms can be located in your home or built externally, but should not be more than 150 feet from your main living area.

There are several solutions to creating the best safe room shelter for your situation. A pre-made shelter designed to meet FEMA standards for tornado or sever weather events is a good choice. The shelter is designed to withstand the strong forces it may encounter, and if properly installed will provide solid security for you and your family. Another option is to build your own reinforced shelter and add a high quality vault door for ultimate strength. To decide which option is best for you it is always best to consult with a professional. Sportsman has been building both Safe Room Storm Shelters and Vault Doors for Shelters for over 36 years. You are invited to call for more information about the best safe room, storm shelter solution for you or your business.

Gun Safe Fireproofing. We use 6000 Degree Concrete!

Is it true gun safes only use drywall for fire-proofing?
Yes! I’d estimate 98% of gun safes only use a gypsum fire board material.

Is there anything better?
Yes, concrete! That’s what bank vaults use for fireproofing. In our quest to build the best gun safe, we offer a 6000 Degree Concrete.

Watch our JET BOARD CONCRETE FIRE MATERIAL video! We put a 6000 Degree torch of drywall & JET Board concrete! It’s 5 x more heat resistant than drywall. HERE’S THE GREAT NEWS! Our gun safes with concrete fireproofing are the same price as competitor’s gun safes with drywall. Buy our deluxe gloss paint jobs & get the concrete fireproofing free this month.

Hello Gun Safe Buyers

Hello Gun Safe Buyers,

Recently an article came out on gun safes that illustrated the dos and don’t of buying a gun safe. They talked about the importance of bolts, seamless constructed bodies and 30 Min fireproofing.

They made a few good points, but a few were off.

First, whether a gun safe body is seamless or welded is not very important.
Sure you don’t want a gun safe with minimal 2″ long welds connection your safe pieces, but a gun safe box with continuous welds on the inside seams is very, very strong. Having a seamless box isn’t important. I’ve never heard of a single gun safe having their welds popped in 35 years. But I have heard of gun safe doors being pried open because the door frames were too thin.

Which brings me to my next point. You need a thick steel frame in front of your bolts. How many bolts you have in your door doesn’t mean anything if your gun safe has a thin protective frame. When you pry a gun safe door, the bolts will bent back a thin protective frame and the door opens. That’s why Sportsman Steel’s gun safes have massive, thick 3/4″ frames which are near impossible to pry.

The article also states with enough time you can get into any gun safe. This is kind of true, but there are several things you can do that will make breaking into your safe almost impossible. One is building an interior shell of torch-resistant stainless steel. A good 1/2″ stainless steel interior will make torching the safe very, very hard. Sportsman sells an stainless steel bodies for as little as $1500 depending on your size. View all of our gun safes here.

So call if you want to know more about gun safes or vault doors. We’re here to help.

Kevin Hand, CEO Sportsman Vaults – 800 266-7150
Clients: FBI, CIA & U.S. Secret Service
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Coffee, Burritos, and a side of Ammunition? Restaurants Take a Stance on Gun Control

“A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” This is stated in the American constitution, however the meaning is often timed debated. Sure, the right to bear arms means that Americans have the right to own a gun, but should they have the right to carry that gun? And if so, should there be any limits as to where the gun can be carried such as in restaurants? This seems to be a huge issue that moms are demanding answers to and restaurant chains including Chipotle and Starbucks are left to make a huge decision: should they honor the right to bear arms in their restaurants?

Gun Purse

By now you’ve probably heard about the recent gun scandal regarding Chipotle. In the middle of May, a Texas Chipotle was blasted for allowing a group of men to do an “open carry” demonstration while armed with military rifles to openly meet inside of the restaurant. A photograph of the occurrence quickly made its way onto Facebook and became a viral sensation. Moms were outraged and garnered support from former New York City mayor, Michael Bloomberg. Together, Bloomberg and Moms Demand Action created a campaign demanding that Chipotle forbid guns and rifles from being carried into their restaurants. Chipotle responded just a few days later announcing that they would ban guns from being inside their restaurants unless being carried by law enforcement officials in an effort to make their customers feel more comfortable and safe.

Chipotle’s not the only restaurant to take action against guns either. Back in September Starbucks requested that their customers no longer bring guns inside their store. However, as noted in CEO Howard Schultz’s open letter, Starbucks was not outright banning guns from their restaurants. There reason? They wanted gun owners to have the ability to responsibly carry their guns and they thought this would help ensure the safety of their employees.

Chipotle and Starbucks are both recent examples of restaurants doing their best to make their customers happy and to keep their restaurants safe from firearms. While they both have a bit of a different stance on the issue of gun control, safety is still their number one priority. Rather than having customers openly carry a gun into their restaurant, Chipotle and Starbucks would both prefer to hear that their customers have chosen to keep their guns at home, locked away in secured gun safes.