The First Alert 2084DB (or is it the Honeywell 2084DB?) digital and fingerprint gun safe is one of the better small home safes on the market for your small valuables, like jewelry, papers, firearms, or whatever.
Before telling you why this is so, a little about the manufacturer/model confusion. This Honeywell 2084DB safe was originally made and sold through the Honeywell brand. Then the Honeywell safe division was purchased by Sisco and sometimes marketed as a Sisco-Honeywell safe. Now, more recently, this safe has become part of First Alert and is marketed under its name – the First Alert 2084DB.
Now what makes this gun safe so good? Well, many small safes are not fire proof. In other words, they cannot withstand a fire for sustained periods of time. If you want a fire proof safe you must specifically look for one that is fire proof.
Well, this 2084DB fingerprint safe fits this need. It has an Underwriters Laboratories fire rating of being able to withstand a temperature of 1700 F for 1 hour (inside temperature should not exceed 350 F). In most cases this should be quite sufficient to protect your valuables since most home fires are brought under control in less than an hour, and two, it is most unlikely that your gun safe will be located in the most severe, hottest part of the fire for the whole time.
The other unique and great thing about this First Alert safe is that it allows access through both an electronic lock or a fingerprint (or biometric) pad. Having these two options gives one a good bit of freedom in using this safe.
Actually, this safe is designed such that in addition to using the keypad or fingerprint pad a normal key must also be used to open it. In essence, the key can stay in its lock since the safe can’t be opened without entering a digital code or scanning your fingerprint.
The digital access lock allows you to enter any 2 to 8 digital pass code, meaning you have tens of thousands of combinations.
The fingerprint access of the safe allows you to enter up to 9 fingerprints. This means you can put multiple peoples’ prints in or just enter your fingerprint in different positions, which sometimes speeds up the safe access – since your finger must be pressed basically the same way (position and force) every time you use it.
These electronics run off four AA batteries.
Now this may get you thinking what if the batteries die or there is a malfunction with the keypad or the fingerprint pad? Well, in truth, there is a third way to gain access to your safe and this should only be used as a last resort, and that is by using a special emergency override key. With this key, you automatically bypass all the other mechanisms and take you directly into the safe.
A few comments on the physical aspects of this fingerprint and fire proof safe. The outside dimensions are about 18″ x 17″ x 18″ with the inside dimensions being about five inches less in each direction. This means the walls are about two and a half inches thick. The walls include heavy steel and fireproof insulation. Hinges and steel bolts are also heavy duty. Taking all these together your small fireproof and fingerprint safe will weigh a good bit over 100 pounds. The safe also comes with one shelf which is adjustable to whatever height you desire.
All in all this First Alert 2084DB fire proof and fingerprint gun safe is a good deal since it can do much and comes under the well known and trusted First Alert brand. At the time of this writing (June 2010), the price range on the Internet for these safes is between the mid three hundred to low four hundred dollars – and obviously does not include shipping.