Types of Coffins

Technically speaking, coffins can only be classified by size or material. This is because coffins generally follow one silhouette and are usually made of wood or metal, though in some cases, they are also made of biodegradable materials as well. Variations will come in the kind of wood or metal is used, finishes, and how big the coffin will be (adult, child, or pet size).

Coffins vs Caskets

When people ask what types of coffins can they choose from, they are generally comparing coffins with the more popular caskets that are used throughout the United States. Direct comparison between the two cannot really be made as these are like apples and oranges, there are similarities but they are not the same thing. It is not uncommon for someone to inquire as to what types of coffins are available when in fact what they had in mind was a casket. The inner coffin used in cremation is one that is often overlooked when talking about the different types of coffins.  The reason for this is because most people don’t consider it as a real receptacle since an outer coffin is still needed during the wake. Because the outer coffin is not burned with the body, most families opt to just rent one instead of buying it to save money.

Choosing Between a Coffin and a Casket

The argument for choosing between a casket and coffin is not based purely on esthetics. Size is also an issue since the narrow tapering of the sides that you find in coffins makes it impossible to fit larger people inside unless you choose to have one custom-made. Another thing to take into consideration would be the interior of the coffin or casket. While both can be lined with your chosen fabric or material you also have to think about how much allowance you should leave for the body and whatever else you may want to include inside. It is customary to include special items with the deceased when you bury them, as is commonly practiced in Asian cultures wherein intense preparation is made to ensure that their loved ones will have everything they need with them for the after-life.

Understanding Caskets

Unlike certain types of coffins, caskets can be made either from wood or metal. The wood used for caskets are of lower quality than the ones that you will find in furniture; but they are nonetheless sturdy and built to withstand the ravaging effects of nature. The metal models use one of the following materials: copper, steel, bronze, and stainless steel. These are understandably much more expensive than their wooden counterparts. One advantage to having a metal casket is that it comes with an identifying kit or memorial tube that makes it easier to identify the body if it needs to be exhumed afterwards. People have their own reasons for choosing a coffin or a casket but amidst all the fanfare, one must not forget that in the end it is all about giving your departed ones a proper farewell.