Saturday, April 19, 2014

BF716 Security Safe Review

I bought this Amsec BF716 safe.

In some respects, this is overkill.  I'm not storing highly valuable items in it.  It's for birth certificates, our wills and some other important papers, some low value coins that would be annoying but not sickening to lose and perhaps for short term storage of better coins before I transfer them to the safe deposit box at the bank.

In other respects, this might be seen as a weak defense. It's fireproof rating is decent but as a burglar proof container, it's bare minimum.  

First, it's only 412 lbs empty. One man with a hand truck can trundle that out of here.  The stairs will pose a little challenge, but a thief wouldn't mind just letting it crash down, so not so much.  But really, this is true for any safe: if people can bring it into your house, people can bring it out.

This safe does have a bottom bolt down hole.  If you could set that into concrete, it might make extraction a bit more difficult, but if it just bolts through your floor, that would barely slow anyone down.

Finally, it's only rated RSC - Residential Security Container.  That means it can survive a five minute attack by a single person armed with nothing more than a heavy duty screwdriver, a hammer,  some muscles and endurance.

Still, given my modest needs and modest budget, this seemed like enough to me. I really couldn't fit anything larger and heavier and spending on heavier steel doesn't necessarily gain you much: the next level up provides fifteen minutes of protection. That's not much, is it?

So, let's take a look.  Specs first:

Price? You can find the BF1716 on-line with in-home delivery for $1,700 or so.

So, what else?

I bought the electronic lock because my wife has difficulties with her hands.  It takes two batteries, accessible from outside.

That bothers me a little - presumably someone with a strong computer background could futz that circuit board?

The lock has useful features.  Let's say that the code was 123456#

You can punch 12345 and 98754317890 and then 6# and it will open. The idea is that it stores 5 numbers and then waits for the last before # so you can fool someone watching.

Get the combo wrong three times and it won't take any combo for the next fifteen minutes (time for the hammer?).

I had to leave it open all day because it was ice cold when it got here and would have been soaking wet inside had I closed it up.

They warn you to open it frequently to avoid condensation.

Now, what will it hold?  I happen to have 9 PCGS Box-O-Twenty holders.  I originally thought those might fit in my safe deposit box, but they won't, but by using those I can demonstrate that you could fit 28 with room left over.  The safe is also big enough to hold typical 8-1/2 x 11 inch binders if that's how you roll.

An adjustable shelf is included:

See for more information.

Don't forget to put desiccant in your safe and SDB and to check it and bake it when it needs regeneration.  I found tins of "Orange indicating" on eBay and Amazon -  I have one in each SDB, and two in the larger safe.  

Note:  All my coins in a safe deposit box.  I keep nothing in my home. 

This week's Coinweek Giveaway:

Also multiple contests going on at

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