Locksmithing/Identifying my safe


inside doors
inside doors  
QUESTION: My father recently sold me a safe that I have wanted for a very long time. Everything is in working order and I was hoping to identify it. The outside of it has been painted in primer, so any exterior information is gone. I took a picture of the inside door and there is a number stamped on the handles. (116700)

It does have Mosler Safe and Lock Co. Hamilton, OH painted on the inside in multiple locations and is on the locks with the last patent date of 2 Aug 26, 1884.

I did not get a picture of the outside, but found this picture on a website and as far as I can tell it would be the same safe. http://www.my-time-machines.net/SG_4_in_Mosler_safe_door.jpg

The dimensions are 30" deep and 38" wide by 56" tall. With the wheels it stands about 63.5"

Any information would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you, Dan


Sorry but I don't "do" photos found on the web comparisons.  If you are interested in my looking at your safe to evaluate it, or to answer specific questions about it, I would be more than happy to.

In order to answer specific questions, identify, evaluate or appraise your safe, I'm going to need photos.  They should include full exterior and interior.  Detail photos should include pictures of the dial, handles, hinges, artwork, locks, bolt work, castors, cabinetry and any special details or damage.  Note:  You may have to remove the back panel on the door to gain access to the lock & bolt work – I will need these pics.
If you have a particular detail that you have a question about, I will need a photo of it along with your question.

I will also need to see any documentation that you have in regards to your safe.  If your safe has a unique historical perspective, you should be able to document this with letters, newspaper articles or photos, if not it is simply a story and will have no bearing on the value of your safe.

Please use as high a resolution as possible so that I can examine details of your safe.  Pictures which are low resolution, out of focus, or from a distance don’t help when we try to evaluate the container.  Note:  with higher resolution, you may only be able to send 2-4 pictures per email, depending on the size of the file, I have a 7mb limit per email.  If photos are larger than 2mb each, you may only be able to send 2 or 3 photos per email, requiring several emails.  Please don’t send me “cell phone” photos.

Please send all of the requested photos to:  andy@securitysafeusa.com

Note:  As I am in the field several days each week, covering a huge service area, I may not get back to your photos immediately, but I will respond as soon as I get an opportunity.  Due to field work, emails may tend to get backed up which means I may not answer them immediately.

Our informal evaluation is at no charge, however if you feel you need a formal evaluation or appraisal for insurance, estate sales, donations for tax write offs, or to establish it as an antique, there is an administrative fee for this service.

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

QUESTION: Terry, one of the previous pics was the actual safe, but it was only the inside of the safe. I am now attaching both the outside and the inside pics.

Some information about the safe if you need it. It is a Mosler safe with a serial number of 116700.
It is 38" wide by 56" tall (without wheels) and 30" deep. With the wheels it is 63.5" tall.

The dial on the door has this information:

Mosler Safe & Lock Co.
Hamilton OH

Sept 7, 1880
Nov 2, 1880
July 18, 1882
Mar 4, 1884
Mar 11, 1884
Aug 26, 1884

I would appreciate any information you might be able to provide me about this safe. It has been in the family for quite a while.

Thank you, Dan

P.S. I think I may have sent this as a new question by accident as well. I do apologize.


I'm more than happy to look at your safe to answer questions that you may have about it, but as stated I will need you to send the photos directly to my Email address:


I will need all of the previously requested photos.

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

QUESTION: I sent the e-mails you requested, but have not gotten a response. Did you get them? Do I need to re-send them?


Mosler manufactured these safes from around 1885 until the mid 1920's.   The patent dates on the dial are for the lock, not the safe.  These are also only the dates the patents were issued and not a manufacturing date.   The lock wouldn't have been made until after the last date, or probably 1885 to about 1905.

I checked my emails and didn't find any photos from you.   Please try to resend them again.  The address is:     andy@securitysafeusa.com  


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Terry V. Andreasen (Andy)


Safe and Vault related Questions; Antique Safe Repair and Restoration; With over 40 years in the Safe & Vault industry, if I can't answer your question I know where to get the answer. Current Project: Restoration of two Tilton & McFarland safes from the 1860'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.


40 years in the Safe & Vault Industry. 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. 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

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 - 2014 - Listed in AllExperts Top 50 Experts. All Expert 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 and Western Nevada)

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