Safes & Security Containers/SLS Jewelers safe


QUESTION: Before I buy this SLS Jewelers safe trtl-30x6, It is my understanding that the door was recently opened using the combo. Later when they went to close it, the bolts wouldn't retract. Talking with a safe guy familiar with SLS, they determined that a relocker must have been triggered. The safe is a couple hours away - in the middle of nowhere. I am attempting to figure out if it is a good enough deal to warrant the time & treasure to get this fixed. I want to put treasure in the safe - not into the safe. Since the door won't close, I would probably need to haul it back - door off. Are relockers available for SLS? I am trying to get an idea "if" it is repairable and what kind of price range I might be looking at to get it repaired.


I'm sorry but my answer is going to sound a little rough and I may have to pull out the "Bullshit" card on you.

First off, I have to question the validity of your so called "SAFE TECH".   As this safe is open, and ready to be inspected, I'm kind of baffled as to where a "determination" of a relocker being activated came from.   Out of every 100 so called "fired off relockers" I hear of, about 99 percent are not, and are simply misidentified problems by "want-a-be" safe techs.  If your "safe Tech" was a trained professional, they wouldn't be making guesses about a problem like this, they would simply "go to the safe and fix it".   If you don't want to pay the safe tech for the trip, then it indicates to me that you simply aren't really a motivated buyer and are simply looking for an easy way or excuse to get out of the possible deal.

If they had actually looked at the container, it would have been a simple event to deactivate the relocker, find the problem and fix it.   If there was a problem with broken glass, causing the activation, then the question would have been "where do we get replacement glass" instead of concern about the relocker replacement since you don't even have an idea of what is wrong.  This is another indication that no one that knows anything about the safe has looked at it.

Second problem - as I doubt that you would spend several thousand dollars on a used car without looking at it, slamming the doors, kicking the tires and listening to the engine, I find it hard to believe that you would consider spending money on a safe that you have no idea of what (if anything) is actually wrong with the safe.

I would think that it would be the sellers responsibility to ensure that the safe was in proper operation before selling it.   If you DID elect to buy it in "AS IS" condition, then again, I can't understand why you would worry about spending money as you elected to buy it as is.

Third problem - again, you are worrying about traveling with the container with out properly preparing it for travel.   If the relocker isn't already activated, you will probably activate it on your trip.

Lastly would be your worrying about the repair or service costs, again without having examined it.

If you were a serious buyer, you would simply make the two hour trip WITH a trained, qualified safe technician, not someone claiming to have knowledge, to examine the safe.   If you are making the trip anyway, I would recommend that you are also prepared to bring the safe home.   If you don't have the training or equipment to move the safe, the safe tech and/or their company should have the equipment.

Worst case if you and your safe tech decide that this isn't a good buy, even though it may cost you for the trip, you would have saved yourself a bunch of money.

Again, I appoligize for being a little rough with the answer, but your question was so full of holes, I didn't see any way around it.

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

QUESTION: Thanks for your response & not beating around the bush.
My lack of accurately explaining details caused some misunderstanding.

The gentleman who was selling it, knows little about the safe - It came with the property he bought. He had a safe technician attempt to step-by-step talk the him through retracting the bolts (over the phone). He ended up getting the safe technician come out and repair it. Then the safe technician bought it out from under me. A TRTL30x6 for $1,300 and the technician got paid for his travel - not bad.

I do know little about security safes. I was totally ignorant about the need to prep glass re-lockers for travel.
It sounds like I need to explain my need and get a recommendation.
I will do that as a seperate post.

Thanks for sharing your knowledge with the world.


Sorry you lost out on what might have been a great buy.   I also hate hearing about either locksmiths or safe techs that try to beat out other buyers simply because they are on site and have cash in hand.   Generally I've found that many of these unscrupulous locksmiths and safe techs will lie to the owner, to get them to "FEEL" they have a real lemon on their hands, and THEN offer what appears to be a nice price to "RELIEVE" them of the burden!

These are people that I would not knowingly recommend for service.

It does pay to educate yourself about anything that you plan on buying, from cars to cell phone plans to safes.   Knowledge is power.

If you need help in the future I would be more than happy to answer your questions.

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

Anchor Safes out of Detroit bought the safe out from under me. I happened to call them to see if they had any TRTL30x6 safes and when I shared my story about "the one that got away", they fessed up that they bought it but assured me that it was not all that good of a deal since they need to do all manner of work to it.


SLS safes aren't what I would consider a particularly "good" safe.  If you are interested in quality TRTL30x6's, I would look at the ISM's.

There are plenty of good x6's around that are from discontinued companies - Rosengrens, Fichet-Bauche, Masada Hadikan's, etc.   The biggest problem with older - discontinued safes is condition and parts.   If you get one that has had maintenance done on a regular basis, you can have a really good safe, on the other hand, jewelers tend to be "cheap skates" and ONLY have maintenance done AFTER something fails.

Like anything else, it pays to educate yourself on what a good safe is, what makes it good, and WHAT condition it should be in.   It also pays to have a TRAINED Safe Tech, check out any potential safe before you make an offer, or have it bought out from underneath you.   

While I'm glad that you checked with me before buying - going to someone on a "general question and answer forum" to get info on an expensive purchase, really isn't the smartest way to buy anything.   Just like having a really good doctor or lawyer in your listing of people to call, you should have a really good safe tech and/or locksmith available to use for security purposes.   Find a good one and use them - NOT the internet!

good luck, and feel free to contact me with questions concerning safes, at any time.

Safes & Security Containers

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Terry V. Andreasen (Andy)


Safe and Vault related Questions; Antique Safe Repair and Restoration; With over 44 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. NOTE: I also answer safe related questions in the Locksmith and Antique Safe Categories sections.


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 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 Experts 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, including western Nevada

©2017 All rights reserved.