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Globe 2  
Good afternoon! I'm recently found a Globe-Wernicke Company safe at an antique store and was interested to see if you are able to give me any information about it from the photos I've attached! I'm mostly interested in seeing if it was considered a fire safe at one time (therefore containing asbestos). I also was interested in the complexity of Yale lock. The combination is not known, so I was interested in a rough guess as to what I should expect the cost of having a lock smith open it. Any additional information about this cabinet safe would also be welcomed! Thanks

Hi Reagan,

I'm not sure why you assumed that the safe would contain "ASBESTOS", just because it was  "built as a fire safe, and THEREFORE contained Asbestos".    Only a very small number of manufactures actually used asbestos.    The majority of fire resistive safes built never used asbestos as an insulation media.

Now if you had prefaced the claim as "due to its being made by "Globe Wernicke", then you would be absolutely correct as Globe Wernicke was a known user of asbestos as an insulation.

As Globe Wernicke manufactured safes from 1911 to about 1917, it may be an antique, however due to its use of asbestos it really isn't considered a collectible.

The safe is considered a "cabinet" rather than a safe, and was only used for secure storage of documents mainly from fire.    It was not designed to house any valuables for burglary protection.

You've provided two photos of the safe - one of the exterior and one of the interior, suggesting that it is open.    So, I'm kind of confused as to why you think you would need it opened.   If it is locked shut, then you will need a safe technician and NOT a locksmith to open it.   If it is open, it is relatively easy for a safe technician to recover or reset the combination on the lock and to ensure it is operational.
"IF" the safe is locked shut, you can expect to pay between $350 to $500 to have it opened and the combination recovered, WITHOUT ruining it.   Generally I never recommend using locksmiths for safe work, as they usually don't have the training, knowledge or tools to work on safes without causing excessive damage.

Check your yellow pages under "safes & vaults" for local safe companies.   If you don't have one, let me know where you are located (zip code) and I'll see who I might know in your area.

If you haven't purchased it yet, and "IF" it is locked up, my recommendation would be to save your money and keep looking for a much better safe.

Hope this helps,  


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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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