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Ma Deuce
04-13-2005, 04:17 PM
I had a question posed to me a while back by my parents about securing their weapons at home. The grand kids are spending a lot of time at their house. They are concerned about securing their defensive weapons while still having them available. I am a firm believer in educating children as the solution to most gun safety issues. There is a time, however, between when a child can conceivably get into trouble and when education will be effective. They are in that stage right now.

Of course, the best answer would probably be to just carry your ccw around the house, but not everyone is willing to go to those lengths to be prepared. I started to look into the various quick safes and gun locks on the market, but the more I looked the less confident I became in recommending one of them. It seems to me that someone under duress could have a very hard time remembering a combination or using a key.

I had this brainstorm the other night, and I'd like to hear your thoughts/criticisms. First, send them out to find a decent used lever action rifle, suitable ammo, and a box of zip ties. Load the magazine tube and secure the lever with the zip ties. The size of the zip ties can be matched with the age/strength of the children. Place a small pair of scissors, retractable utility knife, pocketknife, or whatever in close proximity to where the weapon is stored, and always try to have at least a folder on your person. If the situation calls for the house gun, then you simply cut or break the zip tie, rack the lever, and you are in business. What do you think?

Guantes
04-13-2005, 04:35 PM
What age and size?

todd_xxxx
04-13-2005, 04:44 PM
What age and size?

I would use new ones. Probably the three inch ones that are about 1/8" thick :)

MTS
04-13-2005, 04:46 PM
First, send them out to find a decent used lever action rifle, suitable ammo, and a box of zip ties. Load the magazine tube and secure the lever with the zip ties. The size of the zip ties can be matched with the age/strength of the children. Place a small pair of scissors, retractable utility knife, pocketknife, or whatever in close proximity to where the weapon is stored, and always try to have at least a folder on your person. If the situation calls for the house gun, then you simply cut or break the zip tie, rack the lever, and you are in business.

If the children can find/access the firearm then they probably can also find/access the cutting impliments as well.

You have a good start/thoughts though. Some kind of friction lock that a child cannot overcome but that can be opened/released by an adult.

Guantes
04-13-2005, 04:46 PM
I meant the kids?

Ma Deuce
04-13-2005, 04:48 PM
Just walking to about 4. Very mischievous. Gets into everything if not supervised every second.

RES
04-13-2005, 04:55 PM
When my sister and niece (age 3) come over to my house, I generally lock up the pistols in my Multi Vault.

Here's a link, the product in question is about halfway down the page, under "Mini Vault" and "Multi Vault":

http://www.gunthorp.com/accs%20cases.htm

I actually bought mine locally, not from the site.

Guantes
04-13-2005, 05:10 PM
Depending on several things including layout the following might help. Average reach over height is about 22% with finger tips. The average fridge is about 68" high. With a chair (avr seat 22") and a child say 36" tall and the 22% reach this is still 2-4" above fingertip reach. If the weapon is placed some what back on the fridge this should be safe. Some considerations, no high stools nearby, no counters abutting the fridge. In our case we have a micro on top of the fridge which makes the height about 83". Another thing is dragging a chair into/accross the kitchen floor is usually noisey. Prudence is obviously the key but it might be worth a look.

st_albert
04-13-2005, 05:29 PM
Remember that it is easier to gun-proof the child than to child-proof the gun. Recommend to the grandparents to find out about any NRA-sponsored "Eddie Eagle" programs in their area. They basically (IIRC) offer the strategy of "de-mystifying" guns for the kids. The kids are allowed to handle UNLOADED guns IN THE PRESENCE OF ADULTS, whenever they ask. This takes away the "forbidden fruit" aspect of guns.

Kids are more curious than cats. They WILL ransack your house, and they WILL find out about everything they can. I did. Didn't you?

The Eddie Eagle program will also train kids to react properly in the event they encounter a gun under unsupervised conditions: 1) Don't touch it. 2) Leave the area. 3) Tell an adult.

This is to cover eventualities such as when they are visiting Johnny, and Johnny wants to show off his new discovery of Dad's HD revolver.

I realize that all this takes maybe more parenting than a grandparent has the opportunity to provide. But it's better than nothing.

I myself may shortly (within the next year or so) have to deal with this. I plan to keep all guns not actually carried on my person (or on my wife's person) under lock and key while the young'ns are around.

Just my $0.02,

Albert

Al Lipscomb
04-13-2005, 06:11 PM
Ok it is not to young to start the educaiton. I agree that education alone will not be enough but it is a good start.

What I did when my kids were small was take them out to the woods, load up the 12 gauge, position them far enough away that the gun was loud but not a danger to hearing. Then I plastered a milk jug full of water.

Six months later when my brother came over and we were looking at a handgun he had just purchased my son put his hands over his ears and left the room.

They went on to have some fun with .22 and shotgun in the 4H Sharp Shooters program.

A good location where it is out of reach and easy to maintain visual status of the firearm would be my choice. The top of the fridge when everyone is around the kitchen is a good example.

jack76590
04-13-2005, 07:11 PM
While I have never send one I have heard good things about the magna ring conversion. Maybe someone has some actual experience. Link

http://www.tarnhelm.com/magna-trigger/gun/safety/magna1.html


Another option is to place an unloaded auto in accessible location. Lock all ammo up except loaded magazine which you carry. A heavy recoil spring also may be impossible for some children to operate.

I have a cannon gun steel box with a simplex lock - you push buttons in set order, then turn lever. You can change order and no batteries involve. This has some merit.

Then there is a tool box with padlock either combo or key- you can wear key around your neck.

Frankly I have never had to deal with this situation, but if I was confronted by situation I believe my choices would be:

1. magna ring conversion

2. Good strong tool box, whatever with padlock. I would bolt box to high shelf and wear key around my neck.

RES
04-13-2005, 07:14 PM
I would bolt box to high shelf and wear key around my neck.

I'd be kind of hesitant about anything with a key- I'd probably take it off to get in the shower, it'd fall down the sink drain or the cat would make off with it, or whatever, and this would happen right when I needed it!

One of the reasons I like my Multi Vault, is that there is a key, but it isn't dependant upon a key to open- so, if I lose the key, no big deal.

jack76590
04-13-2005, 07:28 PM
I'd be kind of hesitant about anything with a key- I'd probably take it off to get in the shower, it'd fall down the sink drain or the cat would make off with it, or whatever, and this would happen right when I needed it!

One of the reasons I like my Multi Vault, is that there is a key, but it isn't dependant upon a key to open- so, if I lose the key, no big deal.

Lossing key would be a problem if you needed gun immediately and did not have key. However, I don't really see "lock out" as problem as you could have back up key in large gun safe, safety deposit box or even another locked tool chest. A padlock is good in case where you "lose" key but have concern child may have "found" key. You can just buy another padlock cheap. Of course combo safes usually permit change of combination. This is good if child observes you, but bad if you have problem remembering new combo. This to me is merit of key.If you feel system compromised buy new lock and no transition required as in remembering new combo. Plus child seeing you use key to unlock whatever is not the same as child observing and remembering combination, which I realize would be rare.

But gun on your person with other ammo and guns locked up is the way to go. And with the comfortable holsters available today this is not hard to do. However, a major concern is what to do if you are sleeping in a house with children and want your gun accessible during the night. For this situation the magna ring appears ideal.

fuzzysni
04-14-2005, 04:52 PM
There is, or at least was, a small safe that had a finger print reader instead of key/combo. As I remember it would accept something like 16 different fingerprints allowing for plenty of authorized users and more than one finger each.

f.

Ma Deuce
04-16-2005, 08:16 AM
As I said before, education is the best method. Worked for me, my parents, my grandparents and presumablely on back throughout my family history. What I'm referring to here is when a child is still a little too young for education to be trusted as the only method of safety.

We've never locked our guns up in any kind of safe as we lived in a very low crime rural area. We do have a locking gun cabinet, but everyone knows where the key is kept. Ammunition is kept seperately. They are not concerned about securing the other arms, just their home defense weapons. They want them to be ready for action.

I don't believe in gadgets. Gadgets fail at the worst times. Using that magna-whatever is not something I would want to risk my life on when there are so many better options.

If you are relying on a safe to secure your weapon I think you should re-think the situation. In my present assignment I deal every day with key and combination locks combined with rapid response situations. It is amazingly easy it is to fumble the lock when it's go time. You would be in some kind of s@#t sandwich if you needed the gun NOW, but couldn't get it cause you fumbled the lock. At the very least, you should do some adrenal stress drills to test your methods.

ColoradoPacker
04-24-2005, 08:26 PM
I have the mini vault for the kitchen and the multi vault for the bedroom. They have quick acess, and if your battery dies you can use the supplied key to open the safe.

I can get 2 glocks in the mini, but it is tight. I can get 3-4 in the multi just as tightly, and 2 easily.

CarlosDJackal
04-25-2005, 09:46 AM
Child-proofing guns is only half the answer. You must gun-rpoof the children. Educating them not to play with such items as knives and matches is no different than educating them not to play with guns. Contact either your local NRA-affiliated club or the NRA to see if they have any Eddie the Eagle publications for both children and parents.

If you are unsuccessfull in this, PM me a mailing address and I should be able to send you the materials you need. Good luck!!