Locksmithing/mosler safe


QUESTION: I recently bought an apartment complex and came across an old mosler safe. The only information about the safe I could find is on the handle and dial. The handle has the numbers 32559. The information on the dial is.... mosler safe and lock co, Cincinnati oh, Dec 12 1882 patented.  The number start at 1 andgo to 100. I was hopefully in finding the combination, value, and also more information. The safe has been painted several times and the rust is on the wheels. Thanks Adam

ANSWER: The earliest serial number in my records is 50717 from 1886. So the patent number and serial number date it to around 1884.

The combination records are no longer in existence. Even if they were, I'm sure somebody changed it in the last 100 years.

Is it open by any chance? If so, a competent safe technician (savta.org) could service the lock and set a combination.

It has more value as an antique than as a safe. Take some good pics and do a search for similar ones. We would pay around 150 depending on condition and then sink 800 in to it to restore it, selling it to a customer with their name lettered on it for around 1500

Sorry this wasn't more help.

Dan Terrigno
American Safe & Vault Service
Cleveland, OH

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: The safe is locked unfortunately. By chance did you know of anyone that may have records, that go back further? Do you believe a local locksmith would have any luck unlocking the safe?

As far as restoring the safe... do recommend sand blasting and powder coating? Or is there better?

What kind of records? Mosler went out of business over 10 years ago. The combination is not available.

You need to find someone that has experience opening safes. Most locksmiths are not qualified to open safes properly.

Find a safe guy that will give you a flat rate to open and repair it. If they want to charge hourly to "learn" on your safe, run away.

Safe opening is a learned skill comprised of technical resources, the right equipment and training.

Where are you located? Perhaps I know somebody in your area that is qualified.

Do not let anyone drill and punch the lock. These locks are not available. You may save a couple bucks on the front end, but the safes value as an antique will be scrap.

99% of the time the only things in an old safe are a couple of nickels and some rubber bands.



All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Dan Terrigno


I can answer questions about commercial locks, card access systems, locksmithing except for cars, safes & safe opening, video surveillance and master key systems


35 years as a locksmith, security system designer and installer, trouble shooting and repair of all manner of security related equipment

Associated Locksmiths of America, Safe & Vault Technicians Association

Attended Miami University, Kent State University, continuing education through the Associated Locksmiths of American

Awards and Honors
Certified Master Locksmith. Certified ALOA instructor.

Past/Present Clients
Numerous Fortune 500 companies, DOD, and other governmental agencies

©2017 About.com. All rights reserved.