DIY Plans to Make Your Own Plywood Casket

diy casket plans

Taking an active role helps prepare and grieve a death. Though the wood and other materials are inexpensive (well under $200), the satisfaction of your hands-on contribution to the undertaking of a loved one’s funeral — or your own — is of great value.

Casket plans for the novice woodworker

You will find these casket plans straightforward. The tool and material lists, as shown below, are short and basic. You can buy everything at Lowes or any store like it. In 8 steps, you’ll have a sturdy plywood coffin without busting the year’s budget! Estimated construction time is 4 hours.

casket plans


  • screwdriver (power or hand tool)
  • saw (power or hand tool)
  • tape measure
  • pencil

MATERIALS for 6′ coffin

  • 3/4″ inch plywood, about $70
  • 2″x4″ wood, about $12
  • 2″ screws, about $10
  • OPTIONAL:  1-1/4″ screws for optional lid guides and handles:, about $10

The regular size coffin is 6′ long; the long is 6’6″ and costs a little more for the extra plywood. Both sizes are deep (about 15″) and wide (about 23″). Both regular and long plans come included.

Time to talk: Funeral homes and DIY casket plans

Many funeral directors make a profit margin selling a family a coffin. So if you’re going to use a funeral home, know your rights. You are allowed to bring your own coffin.

As you may know, I’m Don from Piedmont Pine Coffins. Over the last five years I’ve dealt with lots of funeral homes and cemeteries in and around North Carolina. I’ve been on the local news and in magazines and newspapers talking about my work. Yep, I even made the Los Angeles Times once. So I’ve met a lot of good people in the funeral business (and one or two crab apples).

If you’re new to the idea of arranging a loved one’s funeral, this is a good place to start. If you need to speak with a funeral director RIGHT NOW, I suggest you go back and google a specific funeral home phone number.

But if you have a week or a month (or more) before you need to plan a funeral, watch this 2-minute video. In it, I lay out the top three tips you need to know before talking to funeral directors.

Watched it? Good, here’s the contact form I mentioned:

Those three tips, especially #2, will give you peace of mind as you engage funeral home services. Ready to talk? Fill in the contact form above and I’ll have a funeral director I trust get in touch with you. Use your first name only, that’s fine.

Talking to Funeral Homes: Further Guidance

When you talk to a funeral director, the options are likely to be:

  • Burial — the customary practice, often including memorial ceremonies in the funeral home or at graveside.
  • Cremation — ashes to ashes, as they say. This practice is gaining in popularity and will soon account for the majority of dispositions.
  • Home Funeral, a.k.a. DIY — a “flipped” funeral where the family handles on their own certain details — such as transport of the casket, burial in a family plot on rural land, or a casket made from DIY casket plans. The wake and memorial ceremony may even be in the family home. This is, of course, the most old-fashioned way. Funeral homes can assist in planning a home funeral, as can any home funeral guide from the National Home Funeral Alliance.

As I say, if you wish, fill in the contact form. I won’t use your details for any other purpose than having someone reach out to you.