Browning Sporter Gun Safe Review

Sporter SP23

The Browning Sporter gun safe Series is a new line of gun safes for the company in 2012. The Sporter Series browning sporter gun safeis being billed as the entry level option, although the Theftgard series is still available in some retail outlets. This review takes a closer look specifically at the Sporter SP23, however the characteristics (other than size) are predominantly the same for all the models in the series.

There are 4 Browning Sporter Gun Safe models in the Series: SP20, SP23, SP33, SP40. Like all Browning Safes, these come with the DPX door storage system, which allows for excellent additional gun storage on the safe door. Prices generally range from $1,130 to $2,000.

The SP23 is on the lower price range, yet offers some very good features. Some of the terms I use below are best explained by reading my comprehensive Gun Safe Buying Guide.

Key Advantages

  1. Fire Rating: The SP23 has 45 minute fire rating at 1,200 degrees F. For an entry level safe, this is pretty good.
  2. UL Rated: Browning uses a UL rated combination lock (electronic lock is an option). Also, the safe has a UL RSC rating.
  3. Storage: The stated capacity of the SP23 is 9-18 long guns in the safe and an additional 7 guns on the door DPX storage system. This is a lot of storage for a relatively small sized safe.
  4. Force Deflector: The Browning Sporter uses something called a “Force Deflector”. This is a cam device that relieves force from being exerted on the lock during an attempted break in. This is important because you do not want to have any pry force being exerted on the lock, which could cause the lock to break.
  5. Price: All of this you get for around $1,250. Not too bad.

    Key Disadvantages

  1. Steel: Like almost all entry level safes, the Browning Sporter SP23 has 12 gauge steel. For a knowledgeable and prepared safe thief, this is not much of a problem. However, if you bolt the safe down and assume some of thieves are not prepared or skilled, the safe should hold up well to any random quick break in attempts.
  2. Short: The external height of the safe is only 58 inches. Make sure your weapons will fit.
  3. Locking Bolts: Locking bolts are on 3 sides only (top, and sides). Four sided coverage is preferred.

Fit and Finish

You get two color choices: hammer gray or gloss black. Obviously, choices are not abundant, but this is not unusual for an entry level safe. What is good, is that Browning has included the DPX door storage system with this low cost option.

Bottom Line

I always feel a little odd recommending a low cost option because they almost never compare to the expensive gun safes. However, I think you understand that you are not buying a $5,000+ gun safe. Thus, you have to make certain trade offs for a lower price point.

The Browning Sporter gun safe series is a very good option at a low cost. Keep it hidden and bolt it down and it will likely serve you well, for only about $1,200.



Browning Sporter Gun Safe – By the Numbers

Security Features: Sporter SP23
UL Security Rating RSC
Steel Thickness 12 Guage
Inside Bolt Holes No
Door Hinges External
Locking Bolts – No. 8
Locking Bolts – Sides 3
Locking Bolts – Size 1″
Re-Lockers NA
Lock Rating UL Group II
Lock Type Combination
Lock Manufacturer S&G
Lock Protection Yes
Clutch Mechanism Yes
Fire Protection:
Fire Rating Agency In-House
Fire Rating 45 Minutes at 1,200° F
Door Seal Palusol
Insulation Type Fiberboard
Other Considerations:
Interior Lighting Kit
Water Resistant No
Dehumidifier Kit
Basic Features:
Exterior Measurement 58″ x 30″ x 23″
Weight (lbs.) 515
Capacity 18 plus 7 on the Door