Welcome to our world of Locks and Locksmiths (click logo or scroll down to view all):-
 www.Antique-Locks.com 
  
HoL
   COLTi
Or are you looking for modern, or recent past,
Keys, Locks or Safes.
keys, locks & safes
Industrial Archaeology of Locks HoL Museum
COLTi
  
Please support our forum sponsors where you can.
Researching locks from antiquity to the recent past.Maintaining a reference collection & archive.Today's scene and cutting edge developments.
Page 2 of 6 FirstFirst 123456 LastLast
Results 11 to 20 of 59
  1. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    1,265
    Country: United States

    Default

    Dicey,

    I'm glad you bought that picture and I look forward to a better scan. Note, the back of the image says it's from 1928, the Pennsylvania Trust Company in Pittsburgh (I haven't been able to find out where it was located). The date is consistent with Donsteel's "lifetime".

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Pennsylvania Trust Co Pittsburgh 1.jpg 
Views:	36 
Size:	468.5 KB 
ID:	6452
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Pennsylvania Trust Co Pittsburgh 2.jpg 
Views:	24 
Size:	375.0 KB 
ID:	6453
    Now compare with the following picture, which is from Dollar Bank (340 Fourth Avenue, Pittsburgh) at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Do..._new_vault.jpg and IIRC on was on Dollar Bank's web site as well. They claimed this was their new 1936 vault door but Donsteel wasn't being made then (you can just barely see a copper layer, or at least a color change). Unfortunately this picture is not available in a larger version.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Dollar_Bank_4th_Avenue,_Pittsburgh_-_new_vault.jpg 
Views:	34 
Size:	53.1 KB 
ID:	6451

    Compare the two images. The ramps, the floor, even the Persian rugs are similar. Of course the two doors are of diferent thickness and other details differ, but I believe both pictures are from the same bank, but that's not possible. Either Dollar Bank's information is all wrong, or the notes on the back of the picture you purchased are wrong (or both, I suppose!).

    You are now officially part of a minor mystery!

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    1,265
    Country: United States

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Halflock View Post
    I had not heard of a door standing up to a lance before. I would have loved to be there for that test.
    Notice that the article does not claim a door held up, but a mere 2-inch-thick plate! I suspect the test may have not been fair. It just does not seem credible.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Cleveland, Ohio USA
    Posts
    1,279
    Country: United States

    Default

    I can't remember the vault door in the Dollar Bank and doubt I took a pic but the building itself is one of the oldest around and the interior is like going back in time. I think I know where the other door is and if correct is no longer a bank. Struggling to remember the name of the building which was quite large but not a sky scraper. Regarding the Donsteel, it is somewhat strange that the test was on a block of the metal whereas the doors have it wrapped in considerable thickness of copper or copper heavy alloy. If it really was that good, why bother with the copper. I have an incomplete Xerox copy of a Mosler Donsteel booklet put out 1923 but it has really bad photos and doesn't go into any real detail about the Donsteel. I also found several patents from the early 20's for burn resistant vault linings that sound suspiciously like Donsteel, using magnesium and aluminum oxides. Doug

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    1,265
    Country: United States

    Default

    It is confusing that Mosler described Donsteel/Donmetal as an alloy, when photos clearly show a sandwich construction. It may have been both. The steel layers may have been alloyed to improve torch resistance (by raising the melting point and/or improving thermal conductivity, for example) while the copper layer was an additional measure to improve resistance even further (plus it was a very visible feature to the customers and crooks alike).

    Doug, could you post the patent numbers and scan the booklet?

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    1,265
    Country: United States

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Doug MacQueen View Post
    I can't remember the vault door in the Dollar Bank and doubt I took a pic but the building itself is one of the oldest around and the interior is like going back in time. I think I know where the other door is and if correct is no longer a bank.
    Dollar Bank still lists the building, 340 Fourth Avenue in Pittsburgh, as a branch (http://www.dollarbank.com) though of course they might occupy less space these days and have leased part of the interior including one of the vaults. The bank has an entry on Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dollar_Bank, the building was opened in 1871. I can imagine the interior is quite unique and historic. A short news item regarding the stone lions out front: http://triblive.com/business/headlin...#axzz2JU3loxkj.

    One of the pictured doors is probably the money vault, and the other is the safe deposit vault? I'm still assuming both images are from the same bank at the same time. The larger picture is stamped The Mosler Safe Co. so I would tend to believe their description over Dollar Bank's.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Frankfurt Main
    Posts
    705
    Country: Germany

    Default

    Hey wylk,

    No problem mate I will just scan it and then put it up leaving the interpretation for you mate ;)
    I think those rugs were just being common that time mate! Probably lots of rooms where the safe was looked like the same. Not sure on that though.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    1,265
    Country: United States

    Default

    Here's a color picture of a rectangular Donsteel door. I don't remember where I found the image and Google Images failed me. It may have come from http://reel-scout.com.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Donsteel Rectangular.jpg 
Views:	34 
Size:	53.0 KB 
ID:	6462

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Cleveland, Ohio USA
    Posts
    1,279
    Country: United States

    Default

    Go to Google patents and type in Francis J. Napolitan. Several patents will come up for oxy- acetylene torches and linings for vaults. He is mentioned in the Mosler booklet as being an expert in the use of a fluxing rod. The term oxygen lance is not used in the booklet. I may just send you the booklet and let you copy it if you want. It has about 60 pages and discusses the previous attack methods used in some detail. Doug

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    1,265
    Country: United States

    Default

    Another door: There was a quirky TV series Twin Peaks (1990-1991) which very briefly included a Donsteel door. The details are at http://braddstudios.com/2010/10/15/t...s-savings-loan which includes this image:

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	bank-vault-1.jpg 
Views:	26 
Size:	924.1 KB 
ID:	6495

    Notice the copper layer is not visible in the more recent version but I suspect it's just dust from time and construction.

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    1,265
    Country: United States

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Doug MacQueen View Post
    I may just send you the booklet and let you copy it if you want. It has about 60 pages and discusses the previous attack methods used in some detail. Doug
    Doug, if you're willing to let me borrow the booklet, I'll be happy to copy and return it. I'll send you a Private Message with my address. Do you have a copy of Mosler's 1999 history booklet? If not I'll copy mine for you.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •