To be clear, gun safes are the preferred method when it comes to keeping your firearms safely stored. However, that is not always possible for varying reasons. Maybe you don’t have the budget for a good safe. Or perhaps you just don’t have the room for a large safe. It could just be that you have too many guns to fit into a safe. Whatever the case, these methods will help you store your guns without a safe.
Methods to Store Guns Without a Safe
Even if you don’t have children, it is still a good idea to store your guns securely. In fact, in some states, it is the law that all guns be secured against access from unauthorized users. However, that’s not the case in every state, so make sure to check the laws in your state and jurisdiction.
But even if it’s not the law in your state, we should still consider storing our firearms safely as gun owners. You just never know who is going to come over to your house. Maybe a friend or relative with children or a nosy neighbor.
For this reason, it’s important to use some sort of locking system with your storage method, just for added security. It is also a good idea to store the ammunition separately from the firearm(s). Kids are inquisitive and can find even the most hidden of things.
In addition, if you can afford it, you should try to have one quick-access method of storage. Whether it is a small, inexpensive safe or biometric trigger lock, you should have one accessible firearm for home defense.
Trigger Lock or Cable Locks
Regardless if you use any of the following methods of storing your firearm, you should have a trigger lock or cable lock. If you purchased your gun from a gun store, a cable lock should have been provided. However, even if it wasn’t, your local police department might even have them for free. You can also check with organizations like Project Child Safe for ideas of where to get one.
As I mentioned, if you do not have the budget for a safe, consider a biometric trigger lock. This will provide you with at least one firearm that is accessible to you for home defense.
Gun Storage Bag
Although it doesn’t offer any level of security, a gun storage bag will protect your guns from corrosion during storage. This is an especially good option in the case of long-term gun storage. However, as mentioned, most do not provide any level of security. So, it is a good idea to store the ammunition away from the firearm(s) and have some sort of locking device in place.
Concealed Gun Storage Book
Although they offer no security, concealed gun storage books offer a high level of concealment. Many of the products on the market look real and are very convincing. However, make sure that your placement is equally as convincing.
Place it on a bookshelf with other books so it blends in and position it randomly within the other books. If you just have it sitting on a table or on its own on a bookshelf, people will be drawn to it out of curiosity. Make it blend in completely. Also, pick an obscure and boring title if possible. Don’t pick a book with an interesting title, or people will be interested.
Although they can be almost as expensive as a gun safe, you can find inexpensive options. Ranging from display cases to simple cabinet style, this is a good, lockable option for storing a long gun or two (or many more). They are typically lockable and prevent easy access. However, display models have glass fronts, so they will not protect against theft. If you choose this option, make sure to keep the guns unloaded for additional safety.
In most situations, firearms come in some sort of case, typically a hard case. These cases almost always have a hole for a lock. A small lock will help keep the honest people honest and the kids away from your firearm.
However, in some private sales, you might not get a case. Likewise, some firearms come with a soft case. In either of those events, speak with your local gun store about purchasing an inexpensive lockable gun case.
False Wall or Ventilation
If you are the home do-it-yourself type, you can construct a false wall. This will provide a hidden storage option that most people won’t even know is there. But make sure that it is done right and blends in. If done improperly it may garner unwanted attention.
Similarly, ventilation ducts make a nice little hidey-hole, especially if they are positioned higher up. Although they are not quick access, they will keep your firearm away from prying eyes and little hands. However, in the event of a break-in, it is possible that the burglar will check vents for valuables.
Security Case or Lock Box
In essence, a security case or lock box is an inexpensive safe, in that they are lockable. But you will not get the amenities typical in a gun safe. For example, they are typically not mountable, and their lightweight makes them easy to pick up and take. Likewise, their construction makes them fairly easy to open at a second location. But, if you are feeling industrious, you can drill a few holes and make it mountable.
Hidden Gun Storage Furniture
This option is not a budget option and is included mainly for those that want to have fast access to their firearm. Many great companies out there offer furniture and wall hangings that provide total concealment. But in a time of need, they open to reveal one or more firearms and extra magazines. They can get pricey but offer immediate access while remaining completely incognito when not in use.
Always check your local laws regarding firearm storage. Even if you have a foolproof plan, it still might not pass legal muster. Likewise, unless it is your home defense option, have a locking device on your firearm(s) and store ammo separately.
Accidents happen so it is important to analyze your plan thoroughly. Ask yourself, is it easy to find? If so, is it easy to access? Make sure to consider these questions from different angles such as children, inquisitive friends/family, etc.
The key is security, and it is up to you to scrutinize your plan. A combination of concealment and locking device will always be the most secure.