How to Build Your Own Pine Box Casket

If you have someone you love pass away, you may be wondering how you can honor that person’s life. A great way to pay homage to your lost friend is to offer to build his casket. Since caskets are generally expensive, this might also be a nice way for the family of the diseased to save some money. If you are handy with wood, this is a great way to say farewell and honor him.

Things You'll Need

  • Finishing Nails
  • Pencil
  • Hammer
  • Straight Edge
  • Three 4-Feet-By-8-Feet Pieces Of 3/4-Inch-Thick Pine Boards
  • Circular Saw

Measure the person who will be going into the box. You will need the shoulder width and her height. Transfer these measurements as two perpendicular lines onto two of the pine boards to begin your template. For this exercise we will use a width of 34 inches and a height of 75 1/2 inches.

Draw the tops and bottoms of your template first. The bottom will be 17 inches long, parallel to the width line, and the top will be 24 inches long, parallel to the width line. Draw lines connecting the ends of the top lines to the ends of the width line and then to the end of the bottom lines. This will give you your basic casket shape. Use the saw and cut it out. Make two of these shapes as this will be the lid and bottom of the casket.

Cut the wood for the sides. Use one of the other pieces of pine and cut one 17-inch-long piece, one 24-inch piece, two 59-inch pieces and two 18-inch pieces.

Angle the edges of the side pieces so they fit together. All of these cuts will be toward the center. The 17-inch piece will have ends at 49 degrees. The 24-inch piece will have edges at 53 degrees. The two 18-inch pieces will have one edge which is 76 degrees and one edge which is 53 degrees. The 59-inch pieces will have one edge at 49 degrees and one edge at 80 degrees.

Nail the sides to the bottom. The sides should fit together in only one way and they should go on the top of the bottom piece.

When you are ready, place the lid on the casket and nail it shut.


  • The height and width of the person is important and may change your measurements. If so, make sure that all the pieces fit together properly. If in doubt, bisect the angles of the side edges to make sure you get a good fit.


  • Make sure you use small enough nails that they don't come out the other side. If you do have a nail poke through, saw it off so your sides are all smooth.