Letter from Rourke Re: Safe Room Doors on Budget

A vault door may not be necessary unless you really need a blast door or you are very worried about theft. If you are far enough from a likely ground zero and able to at least somewhat hide your door, a steel fire door will probably suffice nicely. For bargains, look for commercial demolitions, or contact people or companies who do this. Tell them you are looking for a swinging conventional doorway sized steel fire door, preferably with the steel frame, dent and scratch is fine. If you must buy new, find a 90 minute rated steel fire door. They have cheaper ones for residential use, commercial is always at a premium. Consistent with the recommendations for safe room doors, you want minimum of six points of attachment from door to frame. Best way to do this is three strong hinges with really heavy and deep screws on one side, and three deadbolts on the other side. You should space your deadbolts top, center, and bottom of the door handle side. To really be secure, add two more, top center and bottom center of the door. Go to a lock store or home hardware suppliers and get all deadbolts keyed the same. That can provide good security and protection at a more reasonable price. For combination entry, there are combination deadbolt locks also. For EMP concerns I would stay away from electronic ones. Those little key boxes that real estate agents use are nice, and can be hidden easily so you are never without a key. http://www.nokey.com/comlocbox.html – Rourke (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/survivalretreat)