There are few things I enjoy more at the Expo than discovering high-quality products from makers unknown to me. At the West show, during a break between shepherding people around the General Tire driving track, I noticed some very handsome drawer systems at one booth. Closer inspection revealed them to be several steps above most similar products, with such stout construction and security features that they were more like safes that happened to have a drawer.
Indeed, talking with Ryan Curtis there, it developed that Boss Strongbox had been making vehicle storage systems for law enforcement departments and the military for a decade—generally to secure weapons—and only recently decided to address the overlanding market. The result is a selection of storage boxes and drawer units that go way beyond the usual “security” systems from most manufacturers.
My eye fell upon one of their smaller offerings, a versatile-looking pistol or camera-sized safe, mostly square but with a half-hexagonal front shape. Made from 16-gauge cold-rolled steel (like most of Boss’s offerings), it incorporated an overhanging lip on the lid, and an internal lip formed from a second layer of steel, making the lid double-thickness—and double pry-proof.
The lock was a substantial Medeco rather than a hardware-store bit, and the actual locking tab was a thick rotating steel piece that slid into a snug slot. With this box properly bolted down a thief would have a very difficult time breaking into it even with a good-sized crowbar. There’s simply no purchase or access for prying.
I have a large custom-made safe under the driver’s seat of the FJ40, but it’s a bit difficult to access quickly. I’ve often wished for a smaller (and stouter) safe for quick storage of the pistol I usually have with me, for when I need to visit a government building or other place where weapons are not permitted. This is it. I’m still pondering where to mount it, as over the years I’ve filled the Land Cruiser with platforms, built-in boxes, and a water tank. Since the Boss Strongbox takes up no more room than it needs for its mission, it shouldn’t be too difficult.
Boss makes other and larger safes, up to rifle length and with much more volume, along with a growing number of bespoke drawers systems. All are made in the U.S., all are finished in a durable crackle powdercoating, all are expensive, and all are worth every penny if you value what you plan to store in them—or if those items absolutely need to be kept out of the hands of potential criminals. Highly recommended.
Boss Strongbox is here.