Probably you’ve noticed that the industry of firearm safety products is largely an industry
of electronic gadgets. Handgun safes are often little more than toys. So, in response to
complaints I’ve received about unreliable electronic safes, I recently looked at AMSEC’s
Heavy-Duty Pistol Safe, model PS1210HD, which features a mechanical lock.
In one sense, I could summarize my findings and state simply: “It’s great. If you need a
handgun safe, buy this one.”
The safe has outstanding features, including a scratch-resistant finish, a protective
housing for the lock, and reinforcement for the hinge at the back. The entire box is made
of 10-gauge steel. The lock is a KABA Simplex lock, designed to withstand years of
steady use. The safe also has a handle to allow for portability, and it has pre-drilled holes
Now, I need to clear up a misunderstanding I created a couple of years ago regarding the
KABA Simplex lock. In a 2016 video I pointed out that, given enough time, a person
could stumble upon the combination of a Simplex lock. What I failed to explain is how
difficult that is. If you need convincing, look around online for a video showing someone
banging through all 1,082 possible combinations in one long, sustained attack. You won’t
I doubt anyone will ever record such a video. The attack is hard to perform. It’s easy to
get lost in the sequence of combinations. And it hurts. When I tried banging through the
combinations, I had to go for 30 seconds at a time and then added all the time up.
Probably I added wrong and it took longer than I estimated. The point is this: A Simplex
lock is more than enough deterrent to stop an opportunist who tries breaking into your
And now, my only complaint about this safe: The gas strut attached to the lid is the same
gas strut used in the Stealth Tactical Original Handgun Safe and the Fort Knox Original
Pistol Box. When you go to throw the lid open, the strut wants to fight you. Conversely,
when you release the lid, the strut will not catch the lid, allowing it to bag shut on one’s thumb—if one is something of klutz, like me. I would like to see AMSEC replace the gas strut with one that lets you thrown the lid open and that catches the lid to prevent it from banging shut.
If you’ve seen my work online, you know that I test and compromise firearm safety
products. Then I record demonstration video highlighting my findings. Then I post my
video online and hope that I’ve prevented another gun from getting into the wrong hands.
With AMSEC’s Heavy-Duty Pistol Safe, there are no significant design flaws to expose,
which sounds like I’m doing sales—I realize that. But this is not paid advertising. I’m
just trying the share positive findings when I can, and AMSEC’s eavy-Duty Pistol Safe is
only the second safe to receive my HandgunSafeResearch.com seal of approval.
By Dave Goetzinger