The SpareFoot blog has covered a host of stored items including large boat storage, small boat storage, guitar storage and gun storage. In our first gun storage post, however, we glazed over the actual details of what happens before and after you choose a self-storage facility to store your beloved pistols, rifles and shotguns.
Gun safety and preparation are incredibly important, especially when long-term storage is involved. The first–and most important–step is to make sure that your firearm is completely unloaded. The next step is to clean and oil your gun. If you’ve had a lot of time on the range or hunting this season, make sure to disassemble your gun and give it a very thorough cleaning. If you’re storing for an especially long time, you should also clean the magazine. Now that the gun is squeaky clean, let’s talk about storage facilities.
When deciding on a storage facility, keep in mind that security should always be your number one priority. Guns are worth a ton of money, and are incredibly dangerous if they fall into the wrong hands. Remember that some facilities do not allow the storage of guns in their facility, while some cater exclusively to gun owners. If you have a gun at home, but no space, using a gun safe in conjunction with a secure storage facility is a great solution. Trigger locks are definitely recommended, and might be required depending on where you are storing your gun. Fortunately, gun locks are relatively inexpensive and easy to use.
Humidity is always a concern, as humid temperatures can lead to rusting, which will definitely render a firearm unusable. If you didn’t shell out the cash for the ultimate luxury of climate-control, you should consider shelling out a little money for a breathable gun sock and some desiccant silica gel packs. The gel packs will control the local humidity in the gun sock, and the sock will keep the gun protected from extraneous weather conditions while maintaining a fairly stable environment.
After writing and researching this post, I sat down with SpareFoot’s public relations assistant Ross Betts and asked him a few questions about gun storage. Ross is an avid target shooter and renowned cheese critic with some insights about storing guns.
“The first rule of gun safety is to make sure the gun is unloaded,” he said. “For long-term storage, you also need to make sure that nothing is jammed.”
If storing in a facility, Ross reiterated the importance of safety and security.
“Guns are valuable and having any gun fall into another person’s hands is very dangerous. Climate-control is also something to think about, especially with older guns that are made of less resilient materials.”
Ross also recommended using a hard case for long-term gun storage.
“Bags and gun socks are a good idea for cosmetic protection, but long-term needs something more protective.”
Finally, be sure to remove the firing pin or the rifle bolts from your gun if you plan on storing for a long time.
“This only works for certain types of guns, but it’d be a good idea to remove something easy from the gun before storing it. That way, if it gets stolen, it can’t be used.”
For more of Ross, you can catch him in SpareFoot’s “Bust-a-Move-In” 2013 Storage Calendar, on sale now!
Image courtesy of spacesaver.com