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Antique Safes/Victor safe

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Question
Hi!  I have a victor safe from around 1890. I'm sure it has only sentimental value as it was in my dad's office for as long as I can remember. I need to know approximately how much it weighs before I can put it in my house.  We have a crawl space and I don't want it falling through the floor.  It's 48 inches tall by about 31 inches wide and 28 inches deep

Thanks so much for any info you can give.

Laura

Answer
Hi Laura,

First question is where did you come up with the 1890 date????    Other than the date the company was founded and/or a "patent issue date", dates of manufacture were not put on the safes, and as there are no records from the manufacturer, the best we can establish would be a time period (3-5 years).

As far as "weight" of the container it will depend upon the type of safe you have and its construction.    Safes were built either as fire resistive, burglary resistive or composite - both!    The weight will depend on what you have.

Assuming that it is only a fire resistive safe, based on the sizes you provided, I would have to assume that it is going to be around 1000 lbs (800 to 1200 lbs).     

Safes that have no wheels and sit flat on the floor disburse the weight over "square footage" as opposed to safes which sit on wheels and disburse it over "square inches".    While the weight overall is still the same, the pin point amount of weight placed on the floor at the castors can make the safe fail in THAT area.    Spreading the weight out over a large area will allow you to set the safe on the floor without worrying about it as much.    Generally floors are rated for about 300 to 400 lbs per square foot in the weakest part of the floor - the center of the room.    Along the walls, the floors generally have more support, and so can carry more load.   

Based on the measurements you provided, your safe covers about 5.1 square feet, which would allow the floor to support around 1500 lbs before needing to have additional supports in place.   The larger the area that is reinforced the less problems you will have.    For instance placing a sheet of 1" thick plywood (or sheet steel) on the floor, that is larger than the safe (36"x24" -  about 6 square feet) will provide more than enough support, and you won't have to worry about damage to the floor.

Hope this helps,

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Terry V. Andreasen (Andy)

Expertise

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.

Experience

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

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

Publications
The Coffee Table Guide to Antique Safes AllExperts.com

Education/Credentials
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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