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Antique Safes/Weight of safe


I have a Harris, Hall, Marvin safe I think is from the early 1900's.  When I acquired it, we found papers inside relating to customer transactions from an Atlanta Dept. Store dated around 1920.  I want to move the safe and need to know the approx. weight.  It is a double door measuring 43"W X 30"D X 70"H.  The serial no. Is S-6196 and has a "A" fire rating according to Underwriters Lab.

Any info you can provide is appreciated.


Hi Larry,

The manufacturer is the "Herring-Hall-Marvin Safe Company, Hamilton, Oh.

The serial number you have included is the "TAG" serial number and not the safes serial number.

As this safe has a UL label on it, I would expect it to be from the 1930's to early 50's.    While UL tested and labeled their first tested safe in 1914, many of the manufacturers were slow to accept testing by outside agencies.   Many of the companies didn't start using UL until the late 1920's or early 30's.    HHM was one of these companies.    Unfortunately there are no records which track the serial number for the tag on your safe.    generally UL only tracks these for a 5-10 year period, afterwards unless they are resubmitted for testing, the label has expired.

As far as the "transaction records" being from the 1920's, these could have been placed in the safe at any time, and are not indicative of when it was made, or acquired by that particular owner.

Weight of the safe is determined by the actual construction of the safe, as well as any interior compartments.    Jewelers Chests or round lug door money chests inside of a safe like this can easily add 1000 lbs to the weight of the safe.
Class "A" fire resistive safes, provided the best fire resistance - in this case it was a 4 hour rating.    The extra insulation to provide this all added weight.    

As you didn't provide any accurate measurements (inside AND outside) I have to make an educated guestimate, based on the info that you have provided, and assuming a wall thickness of about 6" thick.

Using the measurements you have provided gives us a surface area of about 90 square feet, and assuming 50lbs per square foot, gives us an approximate weight of about 4500 lbs.    So it would be reasonable to assume that this safe weighs between 4000-5000 lbs.     Any other factors would add to the weight of the safe.    It is always best to "over estimate" when dealing with heavy weights, so you don't have any unpleasant surprises!

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

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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.

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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

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