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Locksmithing/Mosler Vault Questions


Mosler vault
Mosler vault  

Mosler vault
Mosler vault  
Good afternoon - I understand you may be able to answer a question or two about the following. I am the Manager of Surplus @ the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis, TN. We own a commercial building on campus that once housed a bank branch. They left the building and my manager wants to know if the Mosler vault/frame etc. in the picture attached has a value and/or worth doing anything with it? It would have to be removed by others (an expert) etc.

Mosler 21058 (the only number I found)

Thanks in advance.
Jim Randolph


That's a gorgeous vault door - probably 1920's construction.

Until the door, frame, vestibule and all the parts have been removed, and cleaned - it doesn't have any value.
Note:   Door and Frame are meant to be installed or removed as a composite unit, NOT separately.

This door also does NOT meet current standards for vault doors, which will limit its sales potential to customers that are NOT required to have a Class M, I, II or III rated vault door.   Customer's could include a home owner needing a really nice storage facility, or possibly a pawn shop or credit union that doesn't have to meet banking requirements.

Unfortunately, this means that unless you have a potential customer on line before you pull the door, you may wind up having it in storage for a number of years (5-10) before you find a customer - and only then if you've been doing active advertising.

Generally, if you are planning having a safe & vault company "buy" it from you - think again!   Usually a company that has the capability to remove a door like this could easily charge you between $10K to $20K to remove the door and haul it away.   You may also have additional costs to repair the walls or opening (general contractor repairs).    Cost to remove the door WILL depend on a number of items (which would require a site survey), beginning with the weight of the door, whether it is grouted in place or not, access of equipment, and egress of door once it has been removed.

Next problem is finding a company that has the capability of removing this door - Possibly the nearest company is going to be in Dallas.    There are maybe 1/2 dozen companies in the US, that have the capabilities to remove a door like this safely, and with no damage to the door.

The reason that banks abandon and leave installed doors like this, is the profit to loss ratio is NOT acceptable!    Currently most banks do not own the buildings or property that they are in, and install "pre-fabricated" vaults.   When they leave, it is MUCH cheaper to remove these vaults and doors, and then set it up in another location.
Poured in place vaults like this one were never intended or designed to move to another location.

Hope this gives you some food for thought.   if you have any specific questions that I can answer I would be happy to, but as it sits right now you have two options (unless you already have a buyer for the door) - leave it in place, or pay some big bucks to have it go bye bye!  


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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)

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