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Antique Safes/Ockert Safe w/ York Lock


Bottom rail, center
Bottom rail, center  

Handle, Combo
Handle, Combo  
Hi Andy,

I literally saw this safe yesterday (Sept 21, 2013) and when I got home I did some "googling" and found many of your Q&A's. This stuff is fascinating! Anyhow, I would to know if you know someone reputable in my area that I could call on to get this safe open. The owner of the "antique" store said that he picked it up at an estate sale and was given what he thought was the combo; apparently it was not! If at first glance you can get an idea of what year this may be from, that info would be great too! And from your previous responses, I know that I need some pictures of the inside! I just want someone who isn't going to damage the safe because I really want to use it! I have many other photos, of the outside of course!
Thank you in advance!


while you may have a safe which was "sold" by the Ockert Safe Company, this safe was manufactured by the York Safe & Lock Company.   Unfortunately, the photos you provided don't allow me enough details to give you much info, but from what I can see (and the labels), this is a class "B" fire resistive safe (2 hour), built by York in the late 1940's or early 1950's.

Note:  After the death of the owner, S. Forry Laucks in April 1942, the company ran into "management" problems.  Because York was holding scores of millions of dollars in Navy contracts, the Navy stepped in to operate the company.   The company that managed York for the navy was known as Blaw-Knox.   The Diebold Safe Company acquired York from the Navy in 1946 and continued to run the factory under the York logo until around 1959 when it was eventually closed down.    Harley-Davidson Motorcycles are currently built out of one of the old Blaw-Knox plants, in York, PA. which was upgrade in 1973 when HD took over the facility.

I would recommend that you contact the following company, which has one of the top safecrackers on the east coast, to have your safe opened.   if he isn't available, he might know of someone closer to you.

Philip H Shearer
Hanover Lock & Safe
990 Washington St
Hanover MA, 02339
Phone: 781-826-8872

While your safe is NOT an antique, it may be a collectible, but I would have to see it to give you an evaluation.   It does not meet current standards for fire resistance, and it is NOT designed as a burglary resistive safe.   The "T-20" burglary classification actually means "TAMPER" Resistant - 20 minutes, NOT burglary resistant.

Hope this helps,  

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Terry V. Andreasen (Andy)


Safe and Vault related Questions; Antique Safe Repair and Restoration; With over 44 years in the Safe & Vault industry, if I can't answer your question I know where to get the answer. Current Project: Restoration of an Ely Norris Cannonball Safe from the early 1900's. Will answer Safe & Vault related questions concerning age, value, restoration, moving, opening & repairing, parts, operation and history. Note: It is not my intention to teach you to open safes or to provide information which may aid in the unlawful opening of a safe. I will not give out drill points or information which I deem inappropriate.


44 years in the Safe & Vault Industry. Owner and Service Manager for one of the largest Safe & Vault companies on the West Coast. Graduate of Lockmasters Safe Lock Servicing, Safe lock Manipulation and Safe Deposit Lock Courses. Graduate of Locksmith Institute. Author of "The Coffee Table Guide to Antique Safes". Certified Instructor for the California Locksmith Association teaching Basic and Advanced Lock Servicing, Basic Safe opening and Repairing. Factory Trained by AMSEC, LORD Safes, LeFebure, Mosler, KabaMas, LaGard and Sargent & Greenleaf

Safecrackers International and the National Antique Safe Association Safe & Vault Technicians Association

The Coffee Table Guide to Antique Safes

Graduate of Locksmith Institute 1972 Graduate Lockmasters Safe Lock Servicing 1974 Graduate Lockmasters Safe Lock Manipulation 1975 Graduate Lockmasters Safe Deposit Lock Servicing 1985 Instructor Certified - California Locksmith Association - 1985 Factory trained by AMSEC, MAJOR, STAR, Johnson-Pacific, Kaba-MAS, Allied-Gary, ISM, Lord, Brown Safe, EXL, Mosler, Diebold.

Awards and Honors
2009 - 2015 Listed in AllExperts top 50 Experts. All Experts Categories - Safes & Security Containers, Locksmithing, Antique Safes. Retired US Army Chief Warrant Officer (CW4), with 39 years of total service. With numerous awards from Vietnam, Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom. US Navy - 1971-1981 US Army Reserve 1984-2013 US Army Retired

Past/Present Clients
US Secret Service, FBI, BATF, Local Law enforcment agencies, Diebold, Hamilton Pacific, Red Hawk Int., Chubb International, Bank of America, Wells Fargo Bank, Mechanics Bank, El Dorado Savings Bank, many Credit unions and smaller banks. McDonalds, Togos, BurgerKing, TacoBell, Carls Jr. FoodMaxx, SaveMart, Lucky's, Albertson's, Raley's, Safeway, NobHill, Bell Markets, PW Markets. Great America, Century Theatres, Cinemark Theatres, UA Cinemas, and many homeowners and small businesses. Provide warranty service for lock and safe manufactures. Service area is Northern California - Fresno to Oregon, including western Nevada

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