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Do all GunVaults suck? Alternatives?

Discussion in 'Gun Safes & Secure Storage' started by raindog, May 31, 2015.

  1. raindog

    raindog Portland, OR Active Member

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    I've had two GunVaults. In both cases, they fail to open sometimes on the first try. I'd say they each open 8 out of 10 times on the first try. They open on the second or third try, though sometimes they seem to need more. But obviously if the point is quick access, this is a huge fail. I have had the case where I've needed to go find the keys to get it open.

    I have one of the big two-shelf ones and I had one of the small ones. Both have had the same issue.

    By "fail to open" I mean I type in the correct keystrokes on top and I can hear the mechanism try to unlatch but it fails to open. Sure, they open with keys, but the point is (a) quick access, and (b) no access by kids, so keeping keys nearby defeats the purpose.

    Is there a better quick-access GunVault-style safe? I have a real gun safe but want something bedside.
     
  2. chwilliams

    chwilliams Oregon New Member

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    No experience with the GunVault, you can swing the space check out the Amsec Defense Vault. Shotgun, rifle, and pistol all under your bed.
     
  3. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Is the mechanism lubricated? It seems to me that if the bolt is trying to open it is either binding or has insufficient power applied to move it. I have no experience with GunVault's design, but could a particularly large pistol cause there to be extra pressure on the bolt?
     
    F2CMaDMaXX likes this.
  4. raindog

    raindog Portland, OR Active Member

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    No, the pistol is back several inches. There's a u-shaped latch at the top and a spring provides forward tension on the door. Not a mechanic so I may not be describing exactly but essentially it should unlatch and the door pops forward.

    There's no illusion of security here in the sense that someone with a pry bar could pop it open in a couple seconds...but as I said, it's more about keeping kids out.

    They've very common...which is why I'm somewhat surprised by what I've experienced.
     
  5. raindog

    raindog Portland, OR Active Member

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  6. CHLChris

    CHLChris Portland Metro East Love me some guns! Bronze Supporter

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    I've never had problems with my GunVaults. They pop right open, first time. I use the deluxe version, though, which has batteries for backup, but is plugged in with a power adapter.

    My bet is that any moment your door doesn't open...BOOM...new batteries. And use lithium high-brow batteries. Same as with a magazine failure...BOOM...change the spring.
     
    Sgt Nambu likes this.
  7. coupeowner

    coupeowner SW Portland Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I had one that started eating batteries after a year. GunVault sent me a brand new one after just a call. The "new" one has gone 2 years w/no issues and opens every time. May want to call them and see what they are willing to do for you.
     
  8. ZA_Survivalist

    ZA_Survivalist Oregon AK's all day.

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    Mine SUCKS!
    Purchased new.

    Opened fine first 3 times.. Then would not open via finger code release.. Only mechanical key release..

    Talked to a retailer at Costco and he said the coating they used in early models had a thicker coating around the loop that fits into the locking mechanism :mad:
    (Pure BS, seeings how I paid $140 for it.. Yes I over paid, needed it for a car trip)

    Anyhow, Ive just been using the key to open mine.. Ill try shaving off some material from the steel loop to see if the electric release works.. Otherwise it'll stick to manual key opening for me..
     
  9. raindog

    raindog Portland, OR Active Member

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    I decided to give them another try and see if it was a battery issue...got a deluxe which has the AC adapter.

    Straight out of the box new...no sound. I'm sensing quality control is an issue at GV.
     
  10. CHLChris

    CHLChris Portland Metro East Love me some guns! Bronze Supporter

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    There are settings for beeps or no beeps. Did you read the owners manual? I, for one, like the beeps. But I seem to remember mine starting with no beeps, too. I had to change the setting so I'd get beeps.
     
  11. raindog

    raindog Portland, OR Active Member

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    Yes, it made no difference. I have a call in.
     
  12. gunfreak

    gunfreak Boise Well-Known Member

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    I have 2 Stack-on handgun vaults, $57 from bi-mart, and they have never failed to open. Just put in fresh batteries every couple years.
     
  13. Joao01

    Joao01 South King/North Pierce Active Member

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    i'm having the same issue with mine. I probably need to change batteries or lube the latch.
     
  14. Bridger81

    Bridger81 Lacey, Wa New Member

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    When mine has done that, a battery change solves the issue. I've had mine for 3 years, opening at least twice daily, I'm on my third set of batteries. Changing batteries once a year isn't unreasonable I suppose.
     
    eg_turbo_hatch and Joao01 like this.
  15. Simonpie

    Simonpie Portland Active Member

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    This kind of thing is what I love about the American firearm business. Real customer service/stand behind your product. Leupold and and Henry Rifle jump to mind, but there are tons more. Now GunVault.
     
  16. Joao01

    Joao01 South King/North Pierce Active Member

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    I just lubed the latch with WD40...worked for a while and then had the same issue. Just swapped batteries. I'll see if that does it.
     
  17. CHLChris

    CHLChris Portland Metro East Love me some guns! Bronze Supporter

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    I bet you know this, but WD40 (Water Displacement) is not a lube. Next time use maybe a CLP or synthetic engine oil or even machine oil or gun oil.
     
  18. Joao01

    Joao01 South King/North Pierce Active Member

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    Thanks. Wasn't really thinking at the moment.
     
  19. Dyjital

    Dyjital Albany, Ore Flavorite Member Bronze Supporter

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    GunVault says to change battery every year regardless.

    I have the 1000 series and mine only fails to open when I get happy entering the combo.

    I've had it for a year now, on second battery as of three weeks ago. Easy to remember, every Father's Day change battery.
     
  20. Joao01

    Joao01 South King/North Pierce Active Member

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    Changed battery, seems to have resolved my issue