April 2, 2021
Written by John Nelson, LMGC Range Safety Officer
With the record setting number of first-time gun owners in America today, many individuals are finding themselves the proud owner of a new handgun, rifle, or shotgun and are now wondering how to safely store this new firearm. Whether it is to safeguard it from children or other occupants in the home, potential thieves, or for any other reason, firearms should absolutely always be safely locked up whenever they are not in your possession! Common options for securing your firearm include gun safes, gun cabinets, and single-gun lockboxes.
Gun safes are very commonplace in homes across the country and are an excellent option from a security standpoint. Typically the costliest and heaviest of the options, weighing in at several hundred pounds, these containers are ideal when you do not intend to move the container frequently, would like to store multiple firearms, or desire a container rated for protection against fire and flooding in addition to theft. That last feature also makes them great for other valuables and important documents.
Gun cabinets come in a myriad of sizes and shapes, many similar to gun safes on the market today. They tend to trade off the top-notch security and the fire/flood protection offered by safes for a lower price point and weight. They are another excellent option for storing multiple firearms and are markedly easier to move without strong helpers or specialized equipment than a similarly sized gun safe. Many models offer the option to bolt the unit to wall studs from the inside to prevent a would-be thief from carrying off a still-secured cabinet with its contents.
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Single-gun lockboxes are another popular option on the market today, and many can be readily mounted in drawers, vehicles, or under furniture for a compromise between keeping a firearm securely locked up, but still quickly accessible in emergency situations. Access options include keys, combination dials, fingerprint scanners, and even RFID keychains to suit individual preferences and needs. Models exist which are even designed to conceal themselves around the home and not broadcast valuable contents to would be thieves in the first place.
To reiterate, any firearm not in your immediate possession should absolutely always be safely locked up, and any quality-made variant of the options presented above will serve you well in keeping your firearms secured against accident and theft. Factors to consider in determining which option is best for you include your budget, how often you plan to move the container, how much space you have for firearm storage, how many guns you intend to store, and if fire/flood protection is worth the cost and weight premium. Happy shopping!