How to Store Short Rifles in Your Gun Safe: Compact and Secure

Do you own short rifles, but they don’t fit well in a gun safe? This article will help you organize and maximize storage space.

Large gun safes usually contain a gun rack pre-designed for long rifles. Gun racks have spacers built at a height making short rifles fall short from the mount.

This article will provide tips to fit short rifles inside the gun safe without tipping over. It is also important to note that guns stored inside should not touch each other to prevent damage, use individual fabric covers if necessary.

This article will cover factors in choosing a gun safe for short rifles, steps in preparing your gun safe to store the short rifles, and tips for maximizing space in a gun safe.

Whether you are still planning to buy a gun safe or already have an existing gun safe, read on to get important information about storing your short rifles.

Factors to Consider in Choosing a Gun Safe for Short Rifles

Whether buying a gun safe or re-racking or transferring guns from your existing gun safe to another, it is important to consider factors in choosing a gun safe for short rifles. Here are some of them:

1. Size and dimensions of safe

Gun safes for short rifles are usually sized 51 to 60 inches in height, 21 to 30 inches in width, and 11 to 30 inches in depth. These can house 6 to over 40 short rifles.

2. Security features

Although we consider all guns dangerous, a rifle is one of the most dangerous on earth, thus needing a highly secured and reliable safe.

3. Material and construction of safe

The thicker the gauge of steel used for the walls of a gun safe, the better the security.

4. Certifications

Safety seals or certification from legitimate auditors like Sargent and Greenleaf indicates a gun safe’s quality locking mechanism and overall score.

5. Proofing

All gun safes are designed to withstand fire. They differ in fire rating or on how long and at what temperature gun safes can effectively protect themselves and the valuables inside from fire.

There are also waterproof gun safes, a match for those stored at the lower part of the house.

6. Price

Pick a gun safe that is within your budget. Remember that the quality of the gun safe, the better protection it can give; worth spending or reinforcing.

Gun Safe Preparation

Before storing short rifles inside a gun safe, you have to prepare the gun safe first. This is important for swift and easy storage later on.

Here is how to get the gun safe ready:

1. Clean your safe.

Wipe or vacuum-clean your gun safe. If your gun safe is an old one, unload your gun safe and check for and treat molds and rust, and detach the shelves for better cleaning scope.

2. Organize the other contents of your safe.

Organize the guns and valuables you unloaded from your safe. As you do this, make sure your guns are unloaded. Also, take this early opportunity to measure and count your guns.

Cleaning and planning might take time, so place your guns somewhere safe before you proceed to #3.

3. Pick up a piece of paper and a pen, and plan.

Now that you have explored your gun safe more than ever, you can better plan positions for racks and shelves.

Check-in what ways they can be installed to maximize space. Measure lengths and draw and label.

4. Install shelves, gun racks, pockets, and brackets.

Try out your plan and make adjustments if necessary. Ensure proper and sturdy installment and mounting. 

Steps in Storing Short Rifles in Your Gun Safe 

Now that you’re done preparing your gun safe, it is time to store the guns in it.

This is almost the same as the steps previously listed, and here, we deal with the guns or the star concern, short rifles.

Gun owners need to follow this procedure for a swift process:

Step 1: Ensure that your short rifles are unloaded.

We have mentioned this above, but recheck if all your guns are unloaded for certainty, peace of mind, and utmost precaution. Put loads in your ammunition load box.

Step 2: Clean your short rifles.

Clean your guns before storing them. We don’t want dirty guns stack in a newly-polished gun safe, right?

Step 3: Store the guns.

One by one, carefully store your guns and the short rifles according to your plan. Make adjustments if necessary.

Step 4: Check stability and ease of access.

Check how your stacking looks. Check every gun’s stability and make adjustments for loose ones.

Check the ease of access for each gun. This will familiarize you with the new positions of your guns and calculate how easy or difficult it is to put each one in or out.

Make adjustments according to your rationale.

Step 5: Put other accessories and valuables on the shelves.

Put documents, certificates, jewelry, ammunition load boxes, and other valuables into the empty shelves. Check for and fix possible or accidental barriers that might jam the door before you shut it close.

Tips for Maximizing Space in a Gun Safe

The goal is to utilize the functionality of a gun safe properly. Check out these tips to maximize the space in a gun safe:

  • Install top shelves.

Most of the time, the top area of a gun safe is clear. Make use of this space.

  • Utilize the walls and doors.

Install pockets on the inside side of the gun safe door. Installs brackets for guns that can be stuck to the walls. Adjust the gun racks midway to give space to wall guns.

  • Install handgun hangers.

This hanger technology is a space-saver since it needs no bolt or screw, or protruding mounting knob.

  • Install rifle rods.

Rifle rods are “an injection molded plastic product with ultra-sonically welded hook fabric coin on top,” which sticks strongly, keeping your rifles upright.

  • Stacking rifles properly.

We want enough space for the guns and other valuables inside to breathe and not incur scratches to one another. Properly stacking the rifles, no matter the size, will accommodate the better number of rifles without taking up spaces from each other.

  • Removing unnecessary items from the safe.

It is understandable how gun owners keep other things that are non-gun related, but you need to control them. Avoid mindlessly stuffing random things. Make sure they are valuable or priceless.


There are factors to consider and steps to follow to store short rifles, other guns, and valuables in your gun safe.

Factors to consider in choosing a gun safe for short rifles are the dimensions of the gun safe against the dimensions of your guns, security features, proofing, and price. One must not take these factors for granted, for these are relevant to every responsible gun owner.

It is essential to follow the steps to keep yourself at pace and focused on your goal, adding no extra and unnecessary movements.

Have you already picked the perfect gun safe for your short rifles? Get your tools and start planning now!


What type of gun safe is best for storing short rifles?

Gun safes for short rifles are usually sized 51 to 60 inches in height, 21 to 30 inches in width, and 11 to 30 inches in depth. These can house 6 to over 40 short rifles.

What is the minimum size of a gun safe to store a short rifle?

This will depend on the measurement of your short rifles and all your short rifles properly stacked together. It is best to give allowances for spacings between guns.

Do I need accessories to store my short rifles in my gun safe properly?

Install quality shelves, gun racks, pockets, and brackets, to support your mounting and shelving for your short rifles.

Can I store other firearms or valuables in the same gun safe as my short rifles?

Yes, but avoid mindlessly stuffing random things inside a gun safe as much as possible.


‌Mizokami, Kyle. “These 5 Military Guns Are Most Dangerous Killers on the Planet.” The National Interest, 19 June 2021,

‌“Rifle Rods – the Gun Storage System Your Gun Safe Needs – Gun Storage Solutions.”,

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