You are here:

Locksmithing/protectall safe fire resistant


i received an old safe with serial number begin with an X and 3 digit. I don't have a code for opening, i want to know if it's able with a serial number to have a code from the company or it's better i take a good seat and try all possibilities.
Thank's for answer.

Excuse my English I'm a french Canadian


1.  Manufacturers NEVER published any listings of combinations or serial numbers for obvious security and liability reasons.

2.  Lists are ONLY accessible "IF" the manufacturer is still in business, and "IF" they maintain a listing.   Many only keep lists for the last 10 years or so.

In the case of your "Protectall" safe.   This company was in business from the early 1930's until it was acquired by Mosler around 1941.   Mosler continued to manufacturer these safes until about 1949 when the factory was closed and every thing consolidated at Mosler's Hamilton facility.   While Mosler may have continued to utilize the "logo" for a few more years, these were not the same safes.
Mosler went out of business in 2001, and none of the records exist or are available.

This basically provides you with two options.

1.  You can test all of the possible combinations for the lock, or
2.  You can have a trained safe technician from a local safe company, open the safe and recover the combination for you.

In general, the majority of these safes used a three wheel lock capable of about 1,000,000 possible combinations, though a few models may have had 4 wheel locks capable of 100,000,000 possible combinations.
If you elect to test all of the combinations, and assuming that you test 500 combinations each day - EVERY day, the three wheel versions would take about 5.5 years, and the 4 wheel versions would take about 548 years.   HOPEFULLY you would find the combination before spending that much time.

A trained safe technician should take about 2-3 hours to have the safe opened, repaired, the combination recovered and/or reset, and the safe operational.   Cost should be around $350 to $500.
NOTE:   I NEVER recommend using locksmiths for safe work as they generally don't have the training, knowledge or tools and can cause excessive damage or charge exhorbant fees.   Locks are no longer available for these safes, and if they damage or destroy it during the opening - "IF" you can find a replacement lock, it is probably going to cost more than the safe is worth!

Ok, now you know your basic options.   Unfortunately, I don't have very many listings of safe technicians in Canada that I personally know or would recommend, so you are kind of on your own at this point.   Check your local listings for a "Safe Company" (not locksmith company) to find a local trained safe technician.   You can discuss costs and options with them.

Hope this helps,


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Terry V. Andreasen (Andy)


Safe and Vault related Questions; Antique Safe Repair and Restoration; With over 42 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. 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 Author of "The Coffee Table Guide to Antique Safes".

SafeCrackers International and the National Antique Safe Association Safe & Vault Technicians Association (SAVTA)

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 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)

©2017 All rights reserved.

[an error occurred while processing this directive]