Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Liberty Fat Boy Safe Review

Liberty Fat Boy Safe Review

As a family we have owned and collected firearms for generations and of course I have substantially augmented that collection over the years.  We also have a few things we treasure, documents, family photographs, and electronics that we want keep safe.  Many of us only think we need a safe to store guns and gold, but the reality is some of the most precious things we own such as family photos and documents simply cannot be replaced by insurance money. The problem is destructive fire and forces of nature don’t care these items are near and dear to our hearts.  Nefarious characters may also lust after some of these personal treasures as well.

Some alarming yearly statics make you start to think about packing your valuables into a safe such as 383K residential fires, 1,000 tornadoes, and the rapidly increasing 4 Million+ burglarized households.  If you have children, locked up firearms greatly reduces chances of accidental shootings.  Alarms and armament will only go so far and while sleeping, working, traveling, and socializing, and at those times items are vulnerable to theft or destruction. The answer to protecting our stuff was obviously a safe.
At first Mrs. Pandemic and I purchased one of those little safes about the size of a dorm refrigerator, but obviously the long guns could not be stored inside and we further realized the hour after we bought it that it was too small.  The number one complaint of every safe buyer is that they bought too small. This time around we went big, really big to assure we had plenty of room for our growing volume of firearm and personal treasurers. Liberty Safe is without a doubt the leader in home safe security and technology but very important to me was they they were are in the USA. I chose the #1 selling Liberty Safes Fat Boy to protect my valuables and thought you might like to know my reasons if you were considering a safe.

ABOUT LIBERTY SAFES - FAT BOY
Liberty was founded in 1988 building 6 safes a day and since has been famous for its quality, service, and reliability.  Since 1994, Liberty Safes became and has held the title of the #1 selling home & gun safe in America. Today Liberty Safes produces over 320 safes a day in their Payson, Utah facility. I did a load of research before purchasing a safe and all my research pointed over and over to Liberty Safes.

Liberty safe certainly has a strong reputation as a quality fire and security safe, but one of the more prominent reasons is that Liberty considers each safe a relationship with you for life beyond the initial sale and free delivery. Liberty Safes offers a lifetime warranty with free replacement due to damage from theft or fire.  Yes, if your safe gets worked over by a theft or fire, Liberty will replace, deliver and install your new safe for free and crack open the old one to retrieve your stuff.  Other benefits include transferring your warranty to a new homeowner if you sell your home and secure online combination safe combination storage in case you forget your combination.  The safes themselves also have a five year workmanship warranty on paint and locks.  When I see a manufacturer stand behind their products with this much support, I know they believe their safes will last a lifetime and have designed them to do so.

From what I understand, Liberty also has really worked to maximize the efficiency of their production and the result is more features packed into each of their safes than competitors such as configurable interiors, lights, interior power outlet, and accessory panels.  As I was shopping, the Liberty Fat Boy Safe simply delivered more value for the money without compromising on quality and safety.

BUYING & DELIVERY PROCESS - LIBERTY FAT BOY SAFE
As I now have a ton of notes on how to select a safe, look for an in depth article on that subject later on, however for me the Liberty Fat Boy combined cavernous size with high security and all the features I was looking for.  The buying process is very simple; visit the LibertySafe.com site, choose the safe you want, color, options, and curbside or the optional in home placement (well worth the extra $275-375), and pay.  The entire process was a simple atypical online order process.

I received a call the next day confirming my order and providing me with a delivery date estimate.  Liberty does have some of the quickest delivery in business because they stock more safes than any other manufacturer.  However the small local dealer in my area was out of the Fat Boy with the upgraded D-Drive electronic lock on my order, but after all it was right in the middle of the holiday season. The friendly rep provided an updated delivery date about two weeks out.  From my experience this delay worked out great as it took two weekends to plan and clear a spot for the safe anyway.

Liberty includes curb side delivery which delivers the safe on a pallet to your curb, however if you are smart you will just pay the extra $275-$375 (depending on stairs they will have to ascend/decend) for in home delivery... I don’t know about you but I do not have a specialized hand cart that can stabilize, maneuver, and place a 
Liberty Fat Boy 880lb safe. The two man Liberty team arrived, rolled my safe off the truck, and began unpacking the safe. Once unpacked they secured it on the specialized cart and maneuvered it into place inside my home.  Placement is up to you whether you want it on the main level or one flight up or down, however additional delivery fees will apply for multiple level or difficult deliveries.

The service and delivery experience was great and they even provided a short training session on how to use the safe, change combinations, and how to configure the interior.


FIT & FINISH
The quality and fit on each part on the safe is top quality and the exterior powder coat paint finish is impeccable.  I have ordered a few large items like this before and they always seem to arrive with a little scratch or dent, but Liberty assures you will have a showroom finish with that attention to crating and packing.  My only issue has been a nominal issue of the included Velcro not holding up the very bright interior LED lights. After the alcohol rub down of contact surfaces and re-application of new velcro, I have had no further issues. The three LED light bars on each light can be aimed which is nice they are including quality lights versus just whatever lights they could find.
FEATURES
As I have listed below in the detailed specs, Liberty has some impressive industry leading specs from a fire, theft and protection perspective.  That said I cannot possibly discuss all the videos on Liberty’s site so you might want to pay the site a visit. After you have selected a Liberty safe and have it sitting in your home, you really start to appreciate the extra user features such as the 4-in-1 Flex interior, Accessory Door Panel, D-Drive Electronic lock, and 2- motion sensor lights.

The Liberty Fat Boy Safe's 4-in-1 Flex interior allows the interior of the safe to be configured and customized to your use. The center divider is about ⅔ the interior height and has adjustable shelf mounts on each side.  On top of that divider is a dual use gun rack/shelf which has two metal fabric coated covers which allow you to uncover each right or left half of the shelves exposing the gun racks.  If you don’t have long guns you can keep them covered, and reclaim two shelves. If need the gun rack you can expose one or both and nest the metal covers on another shelf all without having to externally store them.  The four half shelves can be configured however you want on the right or left sides of the divider or removed completely. Unlike many take it or leave it safe interiors the Liberty Safes can be configured exactly to fit your needs whether you have a bunch of guns or not.


Where many safe brands I looked at had flat door panels, the Liberty Fat Boy put the door to good use with an Accessory Door Panel.  The Accessory Panel holds up to 10 pistols and provides various document pockets for small items and even a Cool Pocket for extra fire protection for papers and digital media.



My only upgrade to the D-Drive Electronic Lock is much better than having to spin a combination lock every time I want to access the safe and is super fast to use.  Punch in your 6-digit code + #, turn the digital lock collar a quarter turn and spin the 3-spoke handle to open the door. My wife and I are in and out of the safe several times a day and the digital lock is a must have upgrade in my opinion.


Other accessories I never really thought about during my giddy excitement while purchasing was how handy the included Motion Sensor Lights and internal power outlet would be.  The simple but effective LED motion sensing function like a refrigerator light and pop on when you open the safe and the internal power outlet is handy for an electric dehumidifier, lights, laptop charger, or other electrics you want to store in the safe.





FUNCTION & USE
The Liberty Fat Boy Safe is just like having your own bank vault in your home with no need to drive to the bank. Every family member will say at least once “that is so cool”. Aside from the cool factor the Liberty Fat Boy safe adds 24 hour access to your own bank vault and significant protection beyond an alarm system.  The Liberty Fat Boy not only provides a extraordinarily flexible safe interior, but also a huge cavernous interior as well. I like the fact that the
Liberty Fat Boy Safe is big enough to put not only the obvious valuables, but let’s say things go really south, this safe is still big enough to hold ammo and even food should the security situation arise.

After filling the left side with a little over a dozen long guns I was pleasantly surprised that there was still plenty of room especially if you start to load the guns first against the back walls.  I filled one row in the rack with ARs and the spacing allowed me to fill all the slots. ARs were used because they take up more room, less balanced when standing, and are bulky compared to bolt, pump, or lever actions.  I was still able to start test filling the next row however the balance started getting a little off so it would be best to fill the next row with skinnier rifles.  I doubt Mrs. Pandemic would allow me to fill both racks to the 64 gun capacity, however it is good to know I could stuff the racks full.  The Liberty Fat Boy is deep and provides a ton of room storage room for all the Mayan gold you can stuff in, or in my case scopes, laptops, camera equipment, my wife’s “pittance” of a jewelry collection, saffron, and bone for my dog (because he has valuables too).  I still ended up with several empty shelves which allowed use to also start storing our family photos, our back up media drives, and a couple preloaded go bags.

FINAL THOUGHTS
It has been a month since our Liberty Fat Boy safe landed in the Pandemic household and we still seem to be in and out of it several times a day.  Previously I did worry about not having all the arms and valuables locked up however those are replaceable. The most odd thing to me was the is the feeling of security when all those treasured pictures of our family and family digital media videos were all tucked away in my Fat Boy safe from fire and natural disaster... these are the things that are impossible to replace. In either case the theft-able and intrinsic valuables all have room and are safe and sound in this huge safe

It is my belief that a home safe will become more important as things get worse in the economy and break ins continue to increase. Statistics are high you will be broken in at least once while you are a home owner. Luckily the financials of owning a safe make sense. The cost these days of valuables insurance is ridiculous, my insurance company quoted me $400 a year.  Adding the extra $100 per year cost on a bank safety deposit box and in five years my Liberty Fat Boy easily pays for itself.
The Liberty Fat Boy Safe is the best gun and home accessory I have purchased and I highly recommend instead of that next gun or two, maybe you should consider protecting what you have from forces out of your control. One last thing.... I LOVE MY LIBERTY FAT BOY SAFE!!


GENERAL SPECS
Model Fatboy
Bolt Count 12-  1.25" Bolts
Long-Gun Storage 64
Dimensions HxWxD 60.5" x 42" x 30.5"
Ext Cubic Feet (without handle) 40.4
Interior Dimensions: 56 H x 38 W x 20 D
Interior Cubic Feet 24.8
Warranty Lifetime
Weight 880 lbs.
Country of Origin United States
MSRP $2,399
MSRP + D-Drive Electronic Lock as tested $2,528

SECURITY SPECS
Security Rating U.L. Residential Security Container
Door Thickness 5" with 1" composite door
Door Bolt Sides 3 Sides
Body Steel Thickness 11 Gauge
Total Body Thickness 1 5/16"
Lock Combination/Key, Sargent & Greenleaf™
Relocker Type Fail-Safe™, Punch and Drill
Bolt Locking Type Over-Center Cam-Drive
Bolt Protector Type EZ-Glide
DX-90 MONSTER MECH, Over-Center cam mechanism increases security
25% larger bolts, now 1.25"
33% longer bolt extension with anti-pry tabs
Triple case hardened steel plates protect lock from drill attack
UL Listed S&G™ Group II lock guards against lock manipulation

FIRE PROTECTION SPECS
Fire Rating 1200 Degree/60 Minute, 83,000 BTU fire rating
Fire Temp 1200
Fire Minutes 60 Minutes
Layers 3 in ceiling, doorjambs and door, 2 in walls
Heat & Smoke Door Seal Heat-Activated, Expanding Palusol™
Fireboard ⅝” 3 layers ceiling, doorjambs and door, 2 layers in all walls

FUNCTIONALITY SPECS
Exterior Gray Marble Gloss
Fabric Type Fabric
Upholstery Fully Upholstered
Handle Style 3-Spoke
Interior Type 4-in1 Flex
Interior Lighting 2-LED Motion Sensor Lights Included
Gun Capacity 64 Long Guns

SOURCES
Liberty Safes
http://www.libertysafe.com

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