Increase the beauty of your home and the complements from your neighbors with a custom-built mailbox house. When building a mailbox house, it is important to use hard, sturdy woods, such as cedar or oak; this will ensure the mailbox will last for years to come without requiring much maintenance.
Cutting the Wood
Prepare the mailbox pattern by printing out a scaled version and tracing it onto Mylar. Cut out the pattern pieces.
Straighten out one edge of the board with a jointer. Cut the board at 22 inches with a radial arm saw, and then rip the smaller board to 9 inches wide to create the floor.
Cut out two pieces 3/4 inch thick by 3 inches wide and 4 3/4 inches long for the chimney pieces. Glue and clamp them together and allow to dry. Cut the bottom of the chimney at a 40-degree angle once it has dried.
Plane the rest of the original board to 1/2 inch.
Cut two boards 22 inches long by 7 5/8 inches wide for the sides of the mailbox. Trace the window areas from the diagram and drill a hole in the center of each window area. Cut out the windows the rest of the way with a scroll saw.
Cut two boards 13 3/8 inches long and 10 inches wide for the front and back. Cut the roof shape into the top of each piece with a scroll saw.
Plane what is left of the board to 1/4 inch.
Rip the window frames, shutter frames and window grids and door grids from the remaining wood.
Sand down all the pieces with 120-grit sandpaper. Finish off the pieces with a 220-grit to remove any scratches.
Construct the base and walls. Paint wood glue onto the outside edges of the floor and place the walls into position. Have a helper hold the wall pieces still while you secure them into place with a nail gun and 1 1/4-inch brads. Secure the door's windows into position with 3/8-inch wood screws and place a layer of caulking around them to prevent water from leaking into the mailbox. Place the front and back onto the wood glue and have a friend hold it while you secure it in place with the brads.
Construct the roof and windows. Paint more wood glue onto the top of the walls and press the roof into position. There should be a one inch overhang from the front and back. Secure the roof on with brads. Glue the windows and their frames into position and caulk around the outside of the windows.
Glue the chimney into position and secure it with brads.
Attach the fascias to the under edge of the roof and clamp it into position while nailing.
Attach the roofing felt and shingles onto the roof.
Finishing the Mailbox
Attach the doorknob, door hinges and flag into position.
Fill all the nail holes with wood dough. Once the dough is dry, sand it with the 220-grit paper until it is level with the wood.
Caulk around every crack and opening with acrylic latex caulk.
Paint on two coats of latex primer to every surface and allow to dry overnight.
Paint on two coats of latex paint in the desired color.
About this Author
Steven White is a privately contracted software engineer, web developer, and tech support representative. He has 3 years of experience providing technical support for AT&T broadband customers. He is currently a Master's of Software Engineering student and enjoys sharing his knowledge and expertise with others.