When my club, NCWoodworker.com, began making urns for Veterans several years ago, we found out that the National Cemeteries and others would not use them unless the cremation box could be inserted into the urn without the need to open the cremation box. If it had to be opened, the funeral home had to do it before it reached the cemetery. If too large, many other cemeteries would not accept them, since they would not fit into their concrete vaults. We altered our design to accept either of the two standard sized cremation boxes, and now keep quantities of these urns at our National Cemeteries in NC for their use. The bottom is removable, with 5 stainless screws attaching it, the uneven quantity serving to keep the orientation of the bottom correct when being re-installed. The corner joints are usually either box joints or lock miter joints and the top and bottom has rounded or Ogee edges and slightly larger than the box sides. The top is attached via pocket screws from the inside at the time of assembly.
We also provide laser engraved disks 2 3/4" in diameter with the branch of service emblem engraved on it. This emblem gets glued into a 2 3/4 recess in the face side of the urn at the time of it's use. Another laser engraved disk is installed in a similar recess in the bottom of the urn at the time of the urn's construction, that explains who we are and that the urn is being provided "free" and "with thanks for the Veteran's service to our Country".
Our urns are pre-cut from hardwood lumber that is donated by NC sawmills and cut to size by one of our members. These "Kits" are then distributed to other members who assemble and finish them. The Klingspore Workshops has been kind enough to store the finished urns for us in their warehouse, until the time that they are needed by the cemeteries. We also deliver finished urns direct to Veterans, or to their immediate family at their request, if the Veteran will be placed in a family plot in another cemetery.
So, making urns can be a bit more complicated than just making pretty boxes. Our urns are quite plain, but as functional and durable as possible. They get stained in different colors and several coats of polyurethane applied to make them look acceptable at the time of use. Cypress is the wood most preferred for these because of it's long life in wet environments.
Just passing this information along for those considering urn making. We opted for "simple and compatible" to keep them acceptable by all involved here. There are many rules and differences between cemeteries and their ways of dealing with urns. Find out what is required in your area before making them.
Central North Carolina
Last edited by CharleyL; 09-11-2020 at 09:04 AM.