I just watched the segment on PBS about Home Funerals.
I'd like to start early on the pine box. We both weigh under 170
lbs and I don't forsee a problem with 1x lumber. Dont' want the
thing coming apart when it goes to the cememtery. Any suggestions?
Also, it is hot here in Texas and we may need to take a little extra
precaution to keep the smell down for a couple of days until the plot
is ready. Maybe make a spray bottle full of purcel to spray over the
body and in the orifices? Any suggestions?
If you're handy with a router you could get fancy and make the parts
with dovetailed joints like this one:
That way they could be stored under your bed until they're needed. <G>
For those who didn't have a prior need to know, a traditional Jewish
coffin is supposed to have no metal parts in it so that it can readily
decompose completely to fulfil that "dust to dust" admonition.
Some of the "kosher caskets" I've seen have several large holes through
their bottoms to permit easy entry of moisture and help speed their
contents back to the earth.
You may want to start with a phone call or two to local authorities.
They may have specifications for coffins. You may also want to ask about
burial arrangements and what may be required there. You will need to know
who to contact and what paper work may be needed at various points in the
I would not be surprised if you find some of this information difficult
to find out. You will likely get the usual, go see the funeral home
director as an answer. However I believe this information is a matter of
public record and they must give it to you. The mechanical parts like
making the box are likely to be the easiest part, especially at a time when
your thoughts will be directed other ways. You will want to have those
other details worked out ahead of time as much as possible and at least know
what they will be.
Been buiding them for years for fun.
Just remember, if you ask a funeral director, there is no law against
building your own and using it. Rockler.com has plans to build your
own. I have a set and it's not that hard to do.
I would hope that would be the case everywhere, but I would not be
surprised if they got some laws passed in some areas that do require
commercial version or some feature that the individual can't easily provide,
or as some such laws add, require some fee (roughly equal to the total cost)
be paid to the funeral director even if they don't provide any service or
I'll accept that is true, but the respose I received on that from a
funeral director I know pretty well was, "Yes, but we still have the
right to refuse to do business with someone for any one of a number of
So why bother with a funeral home? Get the corpse in the ground quick
enough and embalming isn't required either.
Of course, there is still that thing about some cemetaries requiring a
concrete vault for the coffin...answer is to use a different cemetary.
Now if we could just get rid of silly municipal laws requiring burial in
dadiOH's dandies v3.06...
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LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that.
Get it at http://mysite.verizon.net/xico
Some years ago, I toured an old Victorian mansion which had been turned into
a historical museum. They had a funeral table, since funerals were done at
home in those days. As I recall, the coffin was set into a recess which held
ice, to slow decomposition. You might consider building ice compartments
into the walls or bottom your coffin, allowing for drainage as it melts, of
course. Or a network of pipes on the bottom; hook the garden hose to an
inlet sticking through the wall of the coffin, run cold water through it,
and have a discharge hose taking water from the outlet at the other end.
What is purcel, some type of perfume? The Victorians used flowers in season
to mask any odor; not sure what they did in winter. You could get some
incense sticks at Spencer Gifts.
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