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Gear Review: American Security Easy Carry Handgun Safe

If you’re a regular TTAG reader, you may have read Chris Dumm’s review of American Security’s aptly-named Heavy Duty Handgun Safe last year. If you didn’t, spoiler alert: he liked it a lot, especially as a secondary safe used to keep a full-size handgun handy in your bedroom or car.

It’s sturdy, pry-resistant and has a tough-to-defeat Simplex lock that can’t easily be defeated by punching it. Made of tough 10-gauge steel, AmSec’s Heavy Duty model is better built than Sophia Vergara, but weighs in at a Patton Oswalt-esque 24 lbs. Now, though, recognizing that some gun owners may want something a little more portable and a lot less likely to induce a hernia, AmSec has introduced the EZ Carry Handgun Safe.

I’ll save you some time. Read Chris’s review because virtually everything he wrote about the Heavy Duty model’s use and functionality applies to the EZ Carry. The only difference: the EZ carry is made of 14-gauge steel and weighs in at a comparatively svelte 14 lbs. And because the lid is significantly lighter, there’s no need for the Heavy Duty model’s gas pistons.

The primary reason for slimming the Heavy Duty version down is, of course, portability. AmSec may have put a handle on the Heavy Duty Safe, but it’s hard to imagine anyone toting that hunk o’ steel around much. It’s really only good as a fixed, bolted-down storage solution.

Make no mistake, no one is going to confuse the EZ Carry unit for a bag of feathers. With a gun, a magazine and maybe a flashlight stowed securely inside, it weighs as much as three standard red bricks. Not something you’ll be wanting to stroll down the street with often, even if off-body carry is your thing.

But the EZ Carry at least gives you that option. If you want to transport your piece to and from the range in something more sturdy than the plastic clamshell case in which you bought it, this is a very secure solution.

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The EZ Carry’s pluckable foam liner can be configured to fit your favorite pistol.

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And it’s roomy. That’s a full-size M&P 9mm, above, so there’s plenty of space to throw in a light, a couple of extra magazines or maybe that Rolex you don’t want the cleaning lady to know you have.

There’s another beneficial effect to the EZ Carry’s relatively thinner steel: a reduced price tag. The Heavy Duty safe will run you almost $240 on line. If you have kids and want a small, conveniently-placed safe and secure solution for a handgun and other valuables storage, that’s not an unreasonable amount to spend for peace of mind. Unless you’re planning to send them to college.

The EZ Carry safe won’t lighten your wallet nearly as much. At about $170, it provides close to the same level of build quality and security and will let you add $70 more to your 401K.

That Simplex lock is not only solidly punch-resistant, but unlike a lot of its competitors, it doesn’t rely on batteries. There’s a lot to be said for the simplicity and reliability of analog. It’s also easily programmed, allowing combinations that use multiple simultaneous button pushes. Unless Alan Turing breaks into your house, it will take a very patient burglar to guess your sequence.

But let’s be honest. While the EZ Carry is significantly lighter than AmSec’s Heavy Duty model, most people who buy one are going to bolt it down and use it for secure home storage.

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Just like its more zaftig older brother, the EZ Carry has four mounting holes drilled in the bottom to keep it from walking away when a burglar inevitably becomes frustrated by his inability to bust into it and hears distant sirens. Its full-length piano hinge and pry-resistant lid design will make it very difficult for him to get at your goods via brute force.

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That handle also tilts downward to stay out of the way when the EZ Carry is mounted. And even if it’s knocked off, the lock mechanism is encased by that 14 gauge steel so trying to get at it through those handle holes will be futile.

American Security’s heart was definitely in the right place with the EZ Carry. It gives you virtually all of the security of the Heavy Duty model with 40% less weight and 30% fewer dollars. Unlike its bigger brother, you won’t need a dolly to transport it, so you may actually choose to carry a gun or two in it from time to time. Me…I’m leaving it right where it is, securely screwed down to a shelf in my closet, knowing that no one will be able to get into it. That’s peace of mind.

Specifications – American Security EZ Carry Handgun Safe

Size: 10.09″ x 12.26″ x 4.13″
Weight: 14 lbs.
Construction: 14 gauge steel
Price: about $170 street

Ratings (out of five stars):

Build Quality: * * * * *
Like a brick shoot house.

Value: * * * *
Same design and features as its much heavier older brother at a significantly lower cost. And you can carry it, if you’ve been doing your 10 lb. curls at the gym.

Overall: * * * * *
It’s an excellent, very secure storage option for a pistol or two and a few other essentials. No one will be easily breaking into it to get at your barbecue gun. Or anything else you have stashed in there. Bad guys are more likely to use a sledge hammer to try to take it with them to work on later…assuming they have the time. Good luck with that. And while the EZ Carry name may be a little bit of a stretch, your arm won’t be significantly longer should you ever decide to carry it to the range and back.

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  1. This looks great for travel. I use a somewhat smaller locked case now and use a metal cable to attach it to the inside of my luggage.

    When traveling with my concealed carry stuff, I still carry on most of my clothes and toiletries, so if they lose the checked bag, I only lose the use of the pistol. I use some extra clothes/shoes to fill in the carry on roller bag so my lock box doesn’t bounce around. And since it’s a roller bag I don’t really care how heavy it is as long as its under 30-40 lbs (no hernias or over weight luggage charges).

  2. 14 lbs is not what I would call “easy carry”… I’m not sure how much more protection something like this gives over an identical product made out of sheet Aluminum and weighing 1/3 as much.

      • That sounds to me like a great idea for a comparison article. Take one of these, the Heavy Duty model, and a cheapo hardware-store lockbox, and beat on ’em until they open.

    • No matter what you do to aluminum, you can’t make it drill resistant. Any aluminum container can be easily drilled with your average cordless drill. Steel is a different story, particularly if it is hardened steel. Still doable, but it will take some time and some planning (generally you need some coolant). If the only objective is to keep young kids out, then that might be ok, but if you are trying to dissuade a more determined individual, aluminum won’t cut it.

      • The reality is that someone is not going to drill this puppy on-site. Due to its portability, they will just snatch the whole thing and open it at their leisure. If the point is portability, an aluminum cash box style will easily prevent easy unauthorized access for a fraction of the price and weight.

        Once the case is off site, it does not matter all that much what it is made out of. A criminal WILL get it open. A portable lock box made out of sheet steel seems to me like a contest entry for the world’s most fire-retardant paper hat.

    • You can protect your $400+ handgun with a $75 safe or a $170 safe, but you do get what you pay for.

      • Sure, but in reality, these kinds of boxes are really only good for restricting unauthorized access to the contents by other members of your household (children, mostly). Dan’s got this screwed to a shelf in his closet (which is probably how most people would “secure” it). A thief could stomp that particle-board shelf in half in about two seconds without any tools and be out the door with the box a second later. It doesn’t matter what it’s made out of at that point, because he’s got all the time in the world to crack it open now.

        So, the question really is, can a child crack open the $75 safe any easier than this $170 one?

        • That’s the way it looks to me too. Keep the kids out..sure. Burglars get into bank vaults, popping this is merely a minor annoyance. Maybe hidden in a cutout in the wall behind that portrait of your great uncle. The one with the eyes that follow…..

  3. The one flaw in most of the inexpensive models (usually made in china) is that the fancy electronic locks have a backup key lock if your battery dies. The key lock is the weak point that is easily picked. This locking system has no power and no backup key lock, so it is going to be substantially more secure than almost anything in its size class on the market. Of course, as is true with all portable security boxes, they at best have a cable to secure them in a car or suitcase, and that cable is easily cut.

  4. There is another flaw:. Some combination locks can be overridden by pushing a red button on the inside of the box. It is easier than you think if you use the already drilled mounting holes. Apply a high intensity light to one hole. Use the second hole to look in. The third hole is the access for a metal rod heavier than a coat hanger. Push the button and turn the knob.

  5. Looks a lot like the V-line top draw with a handle and slightly heavier steel (14 ga vs 16 ga). The lid on the AMSEC has less overlap with the base which might make it easier to pry open.

  6. This might make a good vehicle safe provided it’s securely mounted (like the transmission hump, perhaps?) …

  7. Nice Patton Oswalt reference-a lot more obscure than you think! 10 pound curls-when I really walked on H2O I did hammer curls with hundred pounders-doesn’t seem too heavy to ME…

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