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SentrySafe Pistol Safe Strut Replacement

sentry pistol safe strut replacement

After a few years, your SentrySafe Pistol Safe may not open like it used to. You can easily replace the original strut with an inexpensive replacement gas strut, to resolve that issue.

Sentry Pistol Safe Strut Replacement

Like so many pistol safe owners, my SentrySafe pistol safe lid stopped springing open, after I unlocked it. After months of searches, I was able to locate a compatible gas strut, that fits in the Sentrysafe Pistol Safe, including both the standard version and the biometric model. This is not the same gas strut, that originally came in the SentrySafe pistol safe, but it fits, and it works great.

There are a couple options. You can go inexpensive with the Apexstone 80N/18lb Gas Struts for around $10, or you can spend a bit more on the BOXI 4053 Universal Lift Support Struts ($22ish).

Apexstone 80N/18lb Gas Struts

These Apexstone 80N/18lb Gas Struts come in a 2 pack, for under $10 USD, from Amazon, so you have a spare strut, for later on. All gas struts will eventually fail, over time,  so it’s nice to know, that you will have a spare strut for the next time.

The Apexstone 80N/18lb Gas Strut specifications:

  • Length (Center-to-Center): 7 inch (180 mm)
  • Compressed Length (Center-to-Center): 5.12 inch (130mm)
  • Force: 18 Lbs (Per Strut)

BOXI 4053 Universal Lift Support Struts

If you want your SentrySafe to open further, and are fine with spending a bit more money ($22ish) on this project, the BOXI 4053 Universal Lift Support Struts (pack of 2) will open to to a length of 7.50 Inches, and with a force of 25lbs.

The BOXI 4053 Universal Lift Support Struts specifications:

  • Extended Length: 7.50 Inches
  • Compressed Length: 5.34 Inches
  • Force: 111N = 25 Lbs.
  • End Fitting: Ball Socket U Band (Nylon)=10mm=3/8″=.39″


I am testing some aftermarket springs also, to give the lid a bit more boost. I will update when I have one that works correctly. Please stand by, while I test and review the springs, for fit and function.

If you are in a rush to replace the spring, you may be able to find a fit in this spring assortment pack.

Replacing the Gas Strut on your Sentry Safe

You will need some simple tools:

Make sure to put something in the safe, to keep the lid from falling and locking shut, while performing this procedure. Also do yourself a favor and change the batteries, while you are doing this procedure. I’d recommend some fresh Duracell AA batteries.

Update from a helpful commenter:

In most cases you won’t need any screwdrivers, sockets or wrenches to replace the strut. You should be able to turn the strut body to unscrew the thread at the lid’s ball joint, then turn the stem to unscrew the thread, at the eyelet joint in the body. Reverse to install. The threaded ends of the Apexstone units match the stock one exactly, once you remove the ball sockets.

To remove the original strut, use a phillips screwdriver to unscrew the screw on the bottom of the strut, and use the wrench and socket to remove the connection at the top side of the strut.

Sentrysafe gas strut replacement tools

Once the original strut is removed, the connectors, on the top and bottom of the strut, can be unscrewed and moved over to the new gas strut. The new gas strut has threaded fittings, on both ends, that also unscrew.

Keep in mind, once you install this strut, your lid will not open quite as far as it used to, but it will still open about 85%, well enough to retrieve your belongings from inside the Sentry Pistol Safe.

After a couple years, your Sentry Safe Pistol safe may not be springing open, after you unlock it, this should help you resolve the issue, or to prepare for this, when it does finally happen.

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  1. Thanks!, life saver.

  2. Ordered (2) of these for our safes. FANTASTIC!!! Quick to assemble and saved about$45.00.
    Great job. Thanks Much !!!

    • I was in the same boat. Glad this helped!

      • Holy crap…I had called SentrySafe for new struts thanks to a failure, of course. Customer service said, “they’re back-ordered so call back in 6-8 weeks.” They’re dead to me. I ran across this in my frustrations and am so glad I did. Worked like a champ and took 15 minutes to install 2! Thank you!

  3. I did this on 3 of my Sentry Safes last week. I don’t think it really works. The safe unlocks but the lid does not pop open. You have to coax it a bit. If you jostle it a little, then the new struts kick in and the lid opens. But on all three of my replacements, the lid stays stuck without extra intervention.

  4. Called SentrySafe in late Dec 2019 and was put on back order list. By Mar, was told it will be another month! These Apexstone substitutes arrived in one day and cost half of the SS cost! They work perfectly! Many thanks!

  5. This worked great. The fastener for the screw end was a bit tight, but the bench vise conquered that. Thanks for the tip.

  6. God bless you

  7. You literally don’t need any screwdrivers / sockets / wrenches to replace the strut. You can just turn the strut body to unscrew the thread at the lid ball joint, then turn the stem to unscrew the thread at the eyelet joint in the body. Reverse to install. The threaded ends of the Apexstone units match the stock one exactly once you remove the ball sockets.

    • Pete above is right you do not need any tools. You literally just twist and unscrew the old sytrut, then screw in the new Apexstone 80N/18lb Gas Strut it is an almost exact replacement. Took around 20 seconds with just my hand and no tools. My Sentry Safe works as good as new.

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