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Thread: Emergency Doors

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Country: United States

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    We need to define "emergency." You seem to be thinking an emergency is when somebody gets locked into the vault and needs to get out. But in reality an emergency door is intended to be a second entrance into the vault from the outside, in the event the main door cannot be opened. A fault in the main door would be a great burden to a bank. If it's the safe deposit vault then customers cannot get to their boxes and that might be a really big deal to them. If it's the bank's money/securities vault, they cannot conduct business.

    The emergency door allows another way in, and allows a vault technician to debug the main door from the inside (or at least, try to get it open for business, then fix it). These were much smaller as a way of conserving cost. And, in the vault, there is less space that needs to remain unblocked than if a second full-size door were installed.

    To maintain overall security, the emergency door needs to be just as secure as the main door. Hence it is the same thickness, has the same number of time locks, and usually the same number of combination locks, though the diameter is just large enough to get an average person through it.

    These are no longer used as far as I know.

  2. #22
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    Here are some images to show examples of main doors with adjacent emergency doors. In other cases the emergency door might be "around the corner" on a different wall of the vault, or on the opposite wall.

    Click image for larger version. 

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Name:	Indiana National Bank Mosler 2 and emergency door.jpg 
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  3. #23
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
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    Frankfurt Main
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    Country: Germany

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    Interesting, I just found these pictures on Ebay but the guy is selling them way too expensive in my opinion.

  4. #24
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    That door must be the hardest of all to make. If it is rectangular fine, if it is round fine, but when you have aspects of both then it must have been a **** to make.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Gordon View Post
    That door must be the hardest of all to make. If it is rectangular fine, if it is round fine, but when you have aspects of both then it must have been a **** to make.
    While not an emergency door, here is a curiousity. The Bank of Montreal in Winnipeg (Main and Portage) has a very large rectangular door built by J&J Taylor, with Frederick S. Holmes as engineer. In this image note that the outer steps have rounded corners while the inner steps have sharp corners, and of course the steps are also tapered. A real manufacturing challenge and of course the frame matches.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  6. #26
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    Interesting!

    Bode Panzer here in Germany had doors that were square but had round corners. I heard that these were particular difficult to built back in the days. They also described the technique how they did it I believe, I have to look that up later. S.J. Arnheim in Berlin had the best version if you ask me. The step was neither round nor squar, it was more like a claw and called "Klaunefalz" clawrebate?

    I may also post a picture of that someday. It is described and pictured in an antique book by Julius Hoch.

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
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    Country: Australia

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    Here's some Chubb vault doors and their corresponding emergency doors. Scans taken from a Chubb catalogue.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  8. #28
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    Aug 2013
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    Country: Wales

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    Great pictures oldlock- I love looking at all those old brochures and catalogues

  9. #29
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    What were the "code words" in the Chubb catalog used for?

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
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    Country: Wales

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    Quote Originally Posted by wylk View Post
    What were the "code words" in the Chubb catalog used for?
    They were primarily for customers ordering by cable/telegraph- I have a few old British and American brochures from about 1905 to the 1920s and they also have the code system. but companies encouraged their use for orders by mail as well, as it helped eliminate mistakes by an incorrect order number.

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